White Yorkies: Separating Fact from Fiction

If you’re a fan of the Yorkshire Terrier breed, you may have wondered if there are white Yorkies out there. While there are several coat colors recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) breed standard, white is not one of them. However, there are some ways that a Yorkie can have a mostly white coat.

One way a Yorkie can have a white coat is through the parti gene, which produces a piebald pattern of black, white, and tan. Parti Yorkies can have a coat that is mostly white, with patches of black and tan. Another way is through the recessive piebald gene, which can produce a white Yorkie, but this is extremely rare and can come with health risks. Additionally, a Yorkie can be born with albinism, which would make their skin and fur all white.

While a white Yorkie may be a rare and unique find, it’s important to remember that coat color should not be the only factor when choosing a pet. Consider the breed’s temperament, health, and exercise needs as well. It’s also important to only purchase from reputable breeders who prioritize the health and well-being of their dogs.

Are There White Yorkies?

If you’re wondering if there are white Yorkies, the answer is yes. However, white is not a recognized color by the American Kennel Club (AKC), the breed standard for purebred Yorkshire Terriers.

parti yorkie black and white

Understanding White Yorkies

White Yorkies are Yorkshire Terriers with a white coat. They can be achieved through several genetic mechanisms, including the piebald gene, albinism, and the Merle gene.

How Do White Yorkies Come About?

The piebald gene is responsible for the white coloring in Yorkies. It is a recessive gene that can produce white, but it can also cause health problems. Albinism is another genetic mechanism that can produce a white coat, but it is rare in Yorkies. The Merle gene can also produce a white coat, but it is not recognized by the AKC.

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Theoretically, you could have an all-white Yorkie if the dog suffered from albinism. Albinism is a genetic disorder that causes the dog to be unable to produce melanin to tint its fur and skin with color, causing them to become white. This also causes the eyes to become a bit red, the paw pads and nails to be a pinkish color, and other strange colors across the body. 

There has yet to be a documented case of albinism in Yorkies, but it is theoretically possible as it happens to humans and other dogs all the time. 

Are White Yorkies Purebred?

White Yorkies are not considered purebred by the AKC because white is not a recognized color for the breed. However, some breeders may still advertise white Yorkies as purebred.

What Are the Characteristics of White Yorkies?

White Yorkies have the same characteristics as other Yorkshire Terriers. They are small, energetic, and intelligent dogs that make great companions. However, they may have a higher risk of health problems due to their white coat.

What Are the Health Risks Associated with White Yorkies?

White Yorkies with the piebald gene may have a higher risk of deafness and blindness. They may also have skin problems and be more susceptible to sunburn. Additionally, white Yorkies may be more prone to genetic disorders associated with the S locus and E locus, which can cause health problems such as liver shunts and bleeding disorders.

Sources: Dogsnet, Dog Food Guide, Hepper

Breed Standards for Yorkies

If you are wondering about white Yorkies, it’s important to understand the breed standards for Yorkshire Terriers. These standards dictate the ideal physical characteristics of the breed, including coat color and pattern.

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The American Kennel Club Breed Standard

The American Kennel Club (AKC) sets the breed standard for Yorkshire Terriers. According to the AKC, Yorkies should have a blue and tan or black and tan coat that is glossy, fine, and silky in texture. The coat should be parted down the middle of the back and hung straight and evenly on both sides of the dog.

The AKC breed standard does not include white as an acceptable coat color for Yorkies. Breeders who are dedicated to conforming to standards and keeping bloodlines pure will not breed white Yorkies.

Parti Yorkies and the AKC Breed Standard

The Parti Yorkie is a non-standard version of the breed that can have a mostly white coat with some black and tan or blue and tan markings. While Parti Yorkies are not recognized by the AKC breed standard, they are still purebred dogs.

Parti yorkie on couch

It’s important to note that any all-white Yorkshire Terrier is a crossbreed, usually with the Maltese or the West Highland Terrier. Theoretically, it could be an albino, but none of those have ever been documented.

In summary, the AKC breed standard for Yorkshire Terriers does not include white as an acceptable coat color. While Parti Yorkies can have a mostly white coat, they are not recognized by the AKC. Any all-white Yorkshire Terrier is a crossbreed.


Other Coat Colors of Yorkies

If you’re wondering whether there are white Yorkies, the answer is no. Yorkies are not supposed to be completely white according to the AKC breed standard. However, there are other coat colors that are recognized by the AKC, including:

Black and Tan

The black and tan Yorkie is the most common and recognized coat color. They have a black coat with tan markings on their face, chest, legs, and around their tail.

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Depositphotos 8279540 S1

Blue and Tan

The blue and tan Yorkie has a blue coat with tan markings. The blue color is actually a dilution of black, which results in a grayish-blue color.

Black and Gold

The black and gold Yorkie has a black coat with gold or tan markings. The gold color is usually found on their face, chest, and legs.

Red-Legged Yorkies

Red-legged Yorkies have a black coat with tan markings, but their legs have a reddish tint. This is due to a recessive gene that affects the pigmentation in their fur.

Chocolate Yorkies

Chocolate Yorkies have a brown coat with tan markings. This color is also a result of a recessive gene that affects the pigmentation in their fur.

Cream Yorkies

Cream Yorkies have a light tan or cream-colored coat. This is a rare color and not recognized by the AKC breed standard.

Sweet little Yorkie Poo puppy sitting on a white background.

Rare Yorkie Colors

Yorkies can also come in other rare colors such as parti, which is a combination of white, black, and tan. Other rare colors include blonde, gold, and sable. However, these colors are not recognized by the AKC breed standard and may indicate cross-breeding or health problems.

Mixed-breed , yorkshire and chihuahua, sitting against white background

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The color of a Yorkie’s coat is determined by genetics and can vary depending on their parents’ coat colors. While some colors are more common and recognized by the AKC, other colors are considered rare and may not meet the breed standard. It’s important to do your research and choose a reputable breeder if you’re looking for a specific coat color.


History of Yorkies

Origins of Yorkies

Yorkshire Terriers, or Yorkies for short, originated in the mid-19th century in Yorkshire, England. They were bred from several different terrier breeds, including the Skye Terrier and the Dandie Dinmont Terrier. These small dogs were used to hunt rats and other vermin in textile mills and coal mines.

Development of the Yorkshire Terrier Breed

The Yorkshire Terrier breed was developed through selective breeding to create a small, energetic dog with a luxurious coat. The breed was first shown in England in 1861 and quickly became popular as a companion dog. In the late 1800s, Yorkies were brought to the United States and were recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1885.

Today, the Yorkshire Terrier is a popular breed around the world. They are known for their small size, intelligence, and affectionate personalities.

While white is not a recognized color for Yorkies by major dog breed registries, there are several genetic mechanisms by which it can be achieved. However, some of these can have serious implications for their health and purebred status.

Biewer Terriers

If you’re looking at a dog that looks like a Yorkie and is mostly white, you might be looking at a Biewer Terrier. Biewer Terriers were bred from Yorkies, but they are now a separate breed of their own. 

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Biewer Terriers always have three colors in a banded or belted pattern. Meanwhile, Yorkies usually have only two colors. In any case, if you’re seeing a dog that looks very much like a Yorkie, but has a lot of white all over its coat, you are, in most cases, looking at a Biewer Terrier. 

This is a great choice for anyone looking for a white Yorkie, as they are similar to Yorkies in behavior and look (as they were bred from Yorkies), and are very often white! 


How rare are White Yorkies?

White Yorkies are exceedingly rare, even the ones we’ve gone over that actually exist. This is because Yorkies are almost always blue and gold or blue and tan, as these are the dominant genes in Yorkies.

There are some Parti Yorkies with some white, but Parti Yorkies who are mostly white are only a subsection of Parti Yorkies who got a lucky piebald pattern. All this being said, they’re very, very uncommon. 

Keep in mind you can always get a Yorkie mix! These can be a plethora of different colors, and although their bloodlines aren’t “pure,” they can be fantastic dogs with good qualities from multiple breeds. 

Are there all brown Yorkies?

Yes! There are Yorkies that have all brown fur. These Yorkies can have a bronze, dark brown, chocolate, or any other brown-colored coat. They are often called chocolate Yorkies, and can also be called red Yorkies or red-legged Yorkies. 

Chocolate Yorkies are extraordinarily rare, but unlike all-white Yorkies, they do actually exist, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility to find one. 

Are there all-black Yorkies?

There are no all-black Yorkies. Many Yorkies do start their lives with a lot of black in their coat in puppyhood. However, they have a greying gene that quickly turns this black into the blue color that so many Yorkie owners and Yorkie lovers are familiar with. However, there are no Yorkies that grow up and stay all-black. 

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However, there are plenty of Yorkie mixes that aren’t purebred that have black in them. These dogs are perfectly fine, and oftentimes have good qualities from more than one breed! However, if your heart is set on a purebred Yorkie, this wouldn’t be the way to go. 

What is the rarest color of Yorkie?

The rarest color for a Yorkie coat that actually exists is the chocolate Yorkie. These all-brown Yorkies were originally made by cross-breeding Yorkies with other dogs that can have all-brown coats such as the Dachshund. After this, chocolate Yorkies were bred together to continue making them not only browner but also more like Yorkies again after the original cross-breeding. 

How much does a white Yorkie cost?

A mostly white Parti Yorkie shouldn’t be very much more expensive than a regular Yorkie. However, that isn’t to say it won’t be an expensive purchase. After all, purebred Yorkies are expensive puppies, ranging from $1,200 to $2,500 from a reputable breeder. 

If you want a chocolate Yorkie instead, you’ll be paying even more. Purebred chocolate Yorkies from reputable breeders will cost you anywhere between $2,000 and $6,500! Talk about an expensive pet!

Do Yorkies turn grey?

Yorkies have a greying gene that will turn some of the black they have on them as puppies into silver and blue in their fur as they age. However, this greying gene is not strong enough to turn the entire dog grey as it grows into old age. This means you will not be seeing all-grey or all-silver Yorkies any time soon.