7 Causes of Yorkie Dandruff and How to Get Rid of It

Dandruff is a common problem that plagues many dogs, including yorkshire terriers. It’s not something to be taken lightly- it can cause skin irritation and infection if not treated properly! In this article, we’ll cover the 7 most common causes of dandruff in yorkies and how to get rid of it quickly and easily for good.

The Top 7 Causes of Yorkie Dandruff

Medication side effects

This one is pretty self explanatory. If your dog has been prescribed medication for any reason, chances are they might be experiencing dandruff symptoms as a result of the medicine interacting with their system in an unexpected way and causing itching or dry skin.

Not brushing your Yorkie’s fur regularly

Brushing your Yorkie’s hair isn’t just good for getting out knots. It will also help you spot dandruff in the early stages, which is a lot easier to treat than when it’s too late.

Yorkies with long hair can hide the appearance and signs dandruff, so it’s important to check them regularly for white flakes. This will also help you spot possible allergies or any other issues in their fur that need attention before they become a major problem down below skin level.

Allergies and Chemicals

Allergic reactions are one of your Yorkie’s most common causes for experiencing skin irritation and itchiness. Yorkies can be allergic to various foods, pollen, dust mites, or other substances in the environment.

Exposure to harsh chemicals such as chlorine and ammonia in swimming pools or hot tubs can also dry out the skin leading to dandruff.

Excessive bathing or shampooing

Do you bath your Yorkie often? This can lead to dry skin. Soaps and shampoos clean the skin by removing oils. Over time this leads to drier and drier skin that eventually starts flaking off as dandruff.

Not drinking enough water

Does your Yorkie drink enough water? Lack of fluids can contribute to dandruff as well.

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It can be tough to get your Yorkie to drink when they don’t want to. One trick is to find a way for them drink without realizing it.

You can try adding some ice cubes in their water bowl, soaking the food with wet dog treats or add enough broth so that they don’t notice any difference when drinking from one of these sticky bowls than those made out just stainless steel.

Poor diet

What your Yorkie eats plays a huge role on the health of their skin.

A Yorkie’s diet should mostly consist of protein, healthy carbs, some fat and nutrients. A lack of key nutrients such as zinc and essential fatty acids (EFAs) can cause dry skin and dandruff. 

Feed your Yorkie a diet of healthy foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables, chicken meal with brown rice or sweet potato chunks.

Eating too many salty foods which can lead to an excess of oil on the scalp that will cause dandruff when it mixes with sweat and sebum (the natural oils produced by the skin).


The final most common reason for Yorkie dandruff from dry skin is stress.

Yorkie’s are a breed of dog that can be very sensitive to their owner. Just like us humans, when we’re stressed our immune system is weaker and this makes them more susceptible for illnesses such as skin conditions.

How do I get rid of dandruff on my Yorkie?

While you can use anti-dandruff shampoos and conditioners it’s also best to discover the root cause of your Yorkie’s skin issues and solve that as well.

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Follow these 6 steps to get rid of the root causes of dog dandruff.

Step One: Put your dog on a healthy diet with an anti-inflammatory agent.

If you’re feeding him or her canned food, make sure that the protein is coming from fish and not poultry to reduce inflammation in their bodies.

Step Two: Switch to Better Shampoos and Conditioners

We recommend decent shampoos and conditioners in this article but there are plenty more to choose from. 

Step 3: Never Use a Bath or Shower as the Only Cleaning Method

Too much bathing, especially with soap or shampoo, will lead to dry skin. Brush more, bathe less.

Step 4: Make Sure They Are Drinking Enough Water

Use some of the tricks above like putting a little food in their water or feeding them cooked vegetables or rice to get more water naturally in when they eat.

Step 5: Never Use Harsh Chemicals and Reduce exposure to outside chemicals like chlorine in pools

Try swimming in natural ponds and lakes instead.

Step 6: Have them tested for allergies to pollen, dust mites, and other common causes

Follow these steps and you will have a clean, happy healthy Yorkie. Remember to take your time with the process so that it doesn’t all become overwhelming for both of us!

You can do this easily over weeks or months- just be sure not too forget about any aspect in particular.

How do I moisturize my Yorkies dry skin?

If you’ve followed the advice above to remove the causes of dry skin, use these methods to help further moisturize their skin.

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  • Massage coconut oil into their skin to relieve the dryness and itchiness
  • Make sure their food includes healthy oils like fish oil, olive oil, or avocado
  • Use a humidifier to help keep the air moist. This helps relieve dry skin in humans as well!
  • Use a good dog hair conditioner when bathing
  • Use edible moisturizers that are safe for pets

Is Yorkie Dandruff normal?

Yorkie dandruff is completely normal. There are many causes of Yorkies dry skin which can lead to such symptoms, but having itchy and flaking small patches on your dog’s head or body isn’t a cause for alarm so long as you’re following the advice above!

Do I need to take my Yorkie for a vet if it has dandruff?

No, but you should visit your veterinarian at least once every six months. As stated before dogs with dry skin are more susceptible towards illnesses and the best way is prevention rather than curing.