Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers, also known as Yorkies, enjoy reputations as little dogs with big personalities and are confident, friendly companions. It is little wonder that a mix of these small, energetic breeds would become so popular. This hybrid, called a Chorkie, is also occasionally referred to as a York-Chi or Yorkiehuahua.
The Chorkie tends to be quite small, usually less than 3.18kg / 7 lbs. and not usually larger than 4.54kg / 10 lbs. Chorkie colouring can be any colour or combination of colours found in either parent breed; common colours include black, fawn, tan, chestnut or silvery. Chorkie appearance often favours the terrier in the bloodline, so frequently Chorkie puppies are born black and gradually change into a tan or fawn colour, much like a full-blooded Yorkie.
Owners of Chorkies and dog enthusiasts describe the pet as warm, intelligent, loyal and friendly. Chorkies, like their parent breeds, are highly social and usually friendly with other animals of similar size. Chorkies are known for their tendencies toward brash, overly brave behaviour. This makes them great watch dogs, as a Chorkie will sound the alarm via a round of barking if a stranger comes near or inside the home. Chorkies should be monitored around water, high ledges or strange animals, though; their fearlessness can lead them to injury.
The Chihuahua and Yorkshire Terrier hybrid was conceived in an attempt to combine the most attractive physical, personality and intelligence traits between the two animals. The breed first achieved widespread popularity in the 1990s. While many assume that a Chorkie consists of exactly half of each breed, this is a misconception; any percentage of either breed qualifies the dog as a Chorkie, as long as only both breeds are present.
Both Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers are susceptible to patellar luxation, also known as kneecap dislocation. Special attention must be paid to females, as they more frequently suffer from the condition. The two most common causes for kneecap dislocation are genetic malformation and injury, and the issue usually manifests itself by about four months. If your Chorkie still hasn't shown any hind limb lameness by four months, it will probably avoid the malady.
Is a chorkie right for you?
Chorkies are very small animals with fragile builds, so they are not recommended for homes with small children. Because of their fragility, this hybrid can be injured by falls, so they should be kept away from very high furniture. Chorkies do not require a yard, as they are a mix of two indoor breeds. The Chorkie mixed breed requires a lot of attention, so some consider them high maintenance.