Top 12 Facts a Morkie Owner Needs to Know

“Maltese Yorkie Mix”

When you see a Morkie for the first time, chances are that you’ll be entranced by the little cutie.

They’re just so adorable, and it won’t be too surprising if right then and there you decide to have one for your very own. If your name is Mindy, they’re just about perfect LOL!

The Morkie gets their name from their breeding, as they’re a mix of purebred Maltese and the Yorkshire terrier. It’s this particular combination that has also led to the name Yorktese. In fact this was the original name, but “Morkie” just seems right. It rolls off the tongue better, and it sounds just as cute as they look.

So are you just jumping at the chance to own a Morkie? To help you understand what you’re in for, here are some facts you need to know:

  1. Not yet officially recognized. The Morkie isn’t yet recognized by top dog organizations like the American Kennel Club. Of course, that may not be a big deal for you—that cuteness trumps such official recognition anyway. Besides, the Morkie is still recognized by the Designer Dog Registry and the Designer Canine registry, since it is after all a “designer do”. Also, it has its own Wikipedia page, so nowadays that’s sufficient official recognition.
  2. The Yorkshire terrier side. If you want to know more about a hybrid breed, it’s always a good idea to check out the family tree. On one side you have the Yorkshire terrier, which resulted when workers from Scotland came to Yorkshire back in the 1800s. They brought the Clydesdale terrier along, which was bred to get rid of mice and rats around the mills. This breed was crossed with the local terriers, and the Yorkshire terrier first came about in the early 1860s. Afterwards, some of the workers came to America and they brought their Yorkie with them.

Yorkshire terriers are brave, confident, and smart, and these qualities may be seen in Morkies as well. However, you don’t want to overindulge a Yorkie, as they can become spoiled brats.

  1. The Maltese side. This breed was also brought to the US in the late 1800s, but it has a very long history. The Maltese supposedly came from Malta, but no one’s really sure. It does seem that the breed was already known among the Romans, Greeks, and even the Egyptians. In the Middle Ages they were a favorite among French and English nobility.

The Maltese is very sprightly and energetic, and they like hanging out with people. Training them isn’t all that hard, as they respond well to affectionate rubs and kind words.

  1. The Look of the Mix. Since both sides of the mix involve small breeds, the Morkie is definitely a lapdog in size and weight. Their coats are often long and silky straight. Sometimes they look more like the Yorkie side and in other cases the Maltese side is more dominant.

At 4 to 8 pounds (12 at the most) and at 6 to 10 inches high, you can call the Morkie a toy dog. The eyes are deep set and shaped like almonds. The muzzle is small and the nose is black. The color can also be either more of the Yorkie (brown, tam, or black) or more of the Maltese (white or cream). In some cases, as puppies they look more like Maltese but as they get older they look more like the Yorkie.

  1. A Morkie is quite small, so you need to be very careful so that you don’t hurt them. They don’t shed too much, although you may want to brush the coat daily so you can fix up the tangles. You may want to visit professional groomers every now and then.

Their nails need to be clipped regularly and the teeth should be brushed at least 2 times a week. Once a week, you should also check and wipe the ears. The eyes need to be cleaned, and the unsightly eye stains should be removed (especially on light coats).

As for baths, it should only be given if they’re especially dirty or stinky. Too much bathing may disrupt the natural oils on their skin.

  1. Playing well with others. The Morkie gets along well with other pets, especially with early socialization and training. They’re great with other small dogs, and even with cats.

They’re not so good with large dogs, since they’re so small they can get hurt. That can be a problem when you have a Gryffindor Morkie who has no compunctions about approaching bigger dogs.

With adult folks, they’re the ideal lapdog. They really want to please their human masters. They’re cuddly and affectionate, so they’re very hard to resist. They also recognize new people with just a few encounters.

With kids, they do well with the older children. That’s because the younger kids may not know enough to be careful and your cute little Morkie may get hurt. With the older kids, the cutie will love to play and cuddle all day long, and even at night they may want to sleep beside your kids.

  1. They don’t need much, so about a fourth or a half cup of high quality dry kibble will be fine per day. You’re better off with 2 or 3 small meals, rather than a single huge meal a day. It should also be dry food, so as to prevent dental issues that are common for Morkies.
  2. The Morkie is quite energetic, though they’re small enough that they don’t need a large yard. Even a small apartment will do, although you should just take them for a walk every day.

If they don’t get enough exercise, the Morkie can be a handful. They’re actually known to be destructive when they get bored.

  1. Yes, the Morkie is a barker, which can be a problem. They bark when they see a stranger, and they also bark when they’re lonely or bored. If you live in an apartment, you better hope you have understanding neighbors.

Of course, you can just introduce your Morkie to your neighbors. That keeps your Morkie from barking at them, and chances are your neighbors will love your pet so they won’t mind the barking too much.

  1. Need for attention. This is one of the defining characteristics of the Morkie. They love people so much that they don’t do very well when they’re left alone. They get separation anxiety. That’s why they’re perfect for stay-at-home owners or for people who can bring them to work.
  2. It’s not that hard to train a Morkie. They’re very smart, although they may be a bit stubborn. The trick is to be patient, and you can’t use harsh methods because these affectionate dogs won’t respond well to that. Instead, you want to shower them with affection, warm praise, and treats when they do well.
  3. Getting a pup will cost you at least $800, and some go for up to $1,700. Then you need to spend up to $1,000 a year on various expenses.

All in all, the good outweighs the bad if you have older kids and someone’s always at home to play with them. That cuteness is really hard to resist, and it’s easy to love their affectionate nature. With Morkies, you have a friend that can make you (or your kids) smile when you’re feeling down.

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