Top Notch Toys - July 2021

If you’ve made a wise choice texture- wise, you’re on the right road to an adult Yorkie with proper coat texture and proper coloring. SIZE The Standard allows up to 7 lbs.; size within this range is therefore a matter of individual preference. A good “rule of thumb” is the weight at three months will double in the ma- ture adult. If your preference is for a smaller Yorkie, then try to choose a puppy with overall balance and one that has bone in relation to its size. Understandably, if it’s going to be a small Yorkie at maturity, it cannot have large bones as a puppy. If so, you may end up with a very coarse adult, and a coarse Yorkie is never elegant-looking. TEMPERAMENT Certain puppies seem to be born with a disposition that makes them stand out right from the beginning. Given the proper environment and training, this puppy is bound to be noticed in any show ring! Bear in mind, these are all quali- ties of perfection as they relate to the Standard for the Yorkshire Ter- rier. and minor deviations should not be considered as rendering that puppy worthless.

than he is long. Otherwise, you may end up with something resembling a caterpillar! The body, when viewed from the top, should have no distinct “curves” to it… it should be straight along the sides from the shoulders to the root of the tail. A pear-shaped body (wider in front than behind) could mean bad shoulders at maturity or even a bad rear, so look for that puppy that is straight from the shoulders to the tail. The topline at this early age should be LEVEL with no dip at or behind the withers and no extra height over the hips or the rump. The tail should ap- pear to be an attachment of the last spinal vertebrae; if there is a slope from the point of the hip to the root of the tail, you will end up with an adult that is “long in croup,” and even the gayest of these animals have trouble It seems that not enough emphasis is placed on the extremities of our breed. A gorgeous-colored, beauti- fully-coated, elegant-looking Yorkie is absolutely useless if he isn’t stand- ing on four sound legs! His gait should be free and smooth. Though it may be bouncy, gay, and playful, it should not be a hackney gait. (A hackney gait is an exaggerated high-stepping gait in which the dog flexes its legs before re- turning them to the ground.) holding their tails up. LEGS AND FEET When standing, the puppy should ap- pear square, and his feet, both front and rear, should turn neither in nor out. When moving toward you, the puppy’s front legs should appear straight and there should be no weav- ing or twisting of the legs or feet as he moves. When viewed from behind, again, the legs should appear straight and there should be no weaving or twisting either at the hocks or at the hips. Some deviations from these gait patterns will be observed; some will outgrow some of the deviations from these gait patterns, which are due mainly to a lack of coordination and muscle development. However, NEV- ER choose a puppy with elbows out at a young age, as this fault will only be magnified as he matures and de-

velops. A puppy that moves too close or narrow in the front will sometimes improve as he matures. The spring of rib and width of chest in the mature animal will sometimes correct these deviations. A cow-hocked puppy (one whose hocks turn in) may also im- prove; as he grows and matures his muscles will develop and he may out- grow this condition. COAT This is probably one of the earliest features that can be seen on a puppy and yet it is one of the hardest to de- tect. A Yorkie does NOT have a puppy coat; the coat he is born with is the coat that he dies with! Puppies that will mature into adults with the prop- er silky texture of coat, and thus have the best chance of getting the proper coloring, show signs of this coat at a very early age. The coat is silky and shiny even at a young age, and when you run your fingers through the coat you will be able to feel the silky qual- ity of it. The thick, heavy, dense coat that feels very soft is going to be exact- ly that at maturity, and more probably than not, will never break color. Just to confuse the issue, we have another type of coat that appears much like the coat of silky texture, as it too ap- pears somewhat shiny and silky-look- ing. However, if you run your fingers through it, against the lay of fur, you will feel bristly ends. This type of coat texture will be stiff, coarse, and very slow-growing, if it grows much length at all! COLOR Undoubtedly, this is the most dif- ficult factor to predict in the young puppy. However, much can be deter- mined at an early age from the tex- ture of the coat. The tan is evident at an early age… the blue, well, we have no magic formulas to offer! We try to pick the puppy that has a lot to offer in all directions, and couple this with good coat texture... and then PRAY! Choose a puppy with bright tan on the legs, around the muzzle, and at the base of the ears. Stay away from the puppy whose tan is dull or appears reddish or very dark.

Now deceased, Betty R. Dullinger was an AKC judge and a dedicat- ed breeder with a vision for health in our beloved breed as Past-Pres- ident of our Foundation.

54 • T op N otch T oys , J uly 2021

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