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The pint-sized Morkie is a fluffy and adorable designer hybrid. Created by crossing a Maltese with a Yorkshire terrier, Morkie puppies make affectionate, playful, and silly companions.
Despite their loving nature and lapdog status, these small pooches can be as stubborn as they come, so previous experience owning dogs might come in handy if you’re interested in adopting a Morkie.
These little dogs form strong bonds with their people, which can become a problem when they are left at home alone. Most become extremely dependent on their owners, so training from an early age is a must!
If you are looking for a fluffy and tiny pooch to keep you company and entertain you with its silly antics, the Morkie is a fantastic choice! Keep on reading to learn more about this petite hybrid’s temperament, diet, health, training, and more.
Morkie Breed Overview
- Size – 4 to 8 inches tall; weighs from 7 to 13 pounds
- Coat – Long, soft, and smooth single coat; color varies
- Shedding – Non-shedding
- Lifespan – 10 to 16 years
- Trainability – Trainable, but tends to be stubborn
- Activity – Moderately active; needs around 30 minutes of exercise every day
- Best For – Singles, couples, seniors, families with older kids, apartments, homes with or without outdoor space
What Is A Morkie?
The Morkie is a mixed-breed dog developed by breeding a purebred Maltese with a purebred Yorkshire terrier.
While “Morkie” is the most popular name used for this cute hybrid, you may also hear names like Morkshire terrier, Yorktese, Malki, or even Maltiyork. If you ever come across any of these names, rest assured that all of them are used for Morkies.
Unlike its purebred parents, the Maltese Yorkie mix isn’t officially recognized by any major kennel club. However, they are recognized by:
- American Canine Hybrid Club
- Designer Dogs Kennel Club
- Dog Registry of America
- American Morkshire Terrier Club
- Morkshire Hybrid Registry
- International Designer Canine Registry
The Morkie’s appearance can vary greatly depending on what traits they inherit from each parent.
Taking into account the size and appearance of both the Maltese and the Yorkshire terrier, you can expect their offspring to be a finely boned dog with a lean neck and back and straight limbs. Here’s what else you can expect:
Since the Morkie is a cross of two toy dog breeds, it’s safe to say your pooch will be on the smaller side. Most Morkies weigh somewhere between 7 and 13 pounds and are between 4 and 8 inches tall at the withers.
With that being said, there are no set standards for this mix, so some Morkie puppies may be larger or smaller than average.
The Morkie’s coat can vary in color and is usually a mix of their parents’ coats and colors. Their coats can be black, white, brown, tan, or any color in between. Additionally, some individuals may be a mix of these colors.
While some dog lovers don’t like not knowing what to expect in terms of coat colors from the Morkie crossbreed, others find this diversity charming.
This pocket-sized hybrid has a long, soft, and smooth non-shedding single coat. Since this designer pooch doesn’t shed much, it can be a good option for allergy sufferers.
Keep in mind, though, that the Morkie isn’t considered entirely hypoallergenic, so it may still make you sneeze.
Morkie Temperament And Character
Don’t let their small size fool you! The Maltese Yorkshire terrier mix has a big personality and an energy level to match. Morkies are happy-go-lucky dogs that can play with toys for hours on end, regardless of their small stature.
Underneath their feisty and playful surface, this petite hybrid is a true lapdog that likes to snuggle with its people.
Morkies are sweet, affectionate, and doting dogs that form strong bonds with their owners and want nothing more than to be by your side every minute of the day.
However, no matter how cute the Morkie’s devotion may look, it can also quickly turn into overly dependent behavior.
Coddling your Morkie puppy and indulging their neediness can cause serious behavioral problems down the road, including separation anxiety and destructive behavior.
Thankfully, with early and consistent training and socialization from an early age, this can be avoided.
Being devoted lapdogs doesn’t stop Morkies from being vigilant watch dogs as well. While their small size won’t scare a burglar, their yappy voice will sound an alarm whenever someone is lurking near your home.
That being said, you may find that your pooch is too watchful! Most Morkies tend to bark when someone is at the front door but also when birds are chirping in the backyard.
Their small size and loving temperament make Morkies fantastic apartment dwellers. However, their love for nuisance barking can make you unpopular with the neighbors.
Although their small bodies are full of life and capable of playing for hours on end, don’t forget that Morkies are tiny and fragile dogs. They can easily sustain serious injuries during play and rough handling.
This is why the Morkie is best suited for older children and adults or homes without other larger pets that can roughhouse this small hybrid during a play session.
The Maltese and Yorkie mix is a moderately active dog that doesn’t need a lot of physical activity to stay happy and in good shape. Their short legs can’t cover huge distances, but this pint-sized doggo enjoys brisk walks.
If you aren’t particularly active or don’t have time to exercise your dog for hours every day, the Morkie is the right choice!
Apart from regular walks, this extremely playful pooch will enjoy playing games around the house or in the backyard as long as there is someone to play with them.
Caring For A Morkie Puppy
As with any other dog, you should come up with a care routine that will keep your Morkie healthy and happy from the moment you bring them home.
Keep up with your pup’s regular veterinary checkups and stay up-to-date with their vaccinations to detect any health problems early on.
When it comes to your Morkie’s care routine, be sure to keep the following factors in mind.
Since Morkies are moderately active dogs, they don’t need vigorous exercise to stay in good shape. Their short legs don’t need much to get fired up, so a 30-minute walk daily should be enough for most pooches.
Besides regular walks, you can keep your small pup active by playing games both indoors and outdoors. Games such as fetch, tug-of-war, hide and seek, flyball, or anything else your pup fancies will keep them healthy, happy, and entertained.
The Morkie is a clever dog that can quickly become frustrated and destructive without proper mental stimulation. If you think such a tiny pooch can’t cause any serious damage, you’re in for a rude awakening.
The Morkie’s small size won’t stop them from ripping your sofa cushions to shreds or chewing your shoes, bags, carpets, or anything else they come across if they get particularly bored or anxious.
If you don’t want to come back from work to find your home in shambles and your dog in the center of it, invest in interactive toys and puzzles.
These toys are specially designed to keep dogs like the Morkie occupied and entertained for hours on end, and they will keep your pup busy in a good way while you aren’t there.
This pocket-sized hybrid loves people and is a bona fide lapdog. Affectionate and sweet, they want nothing more than to spend time with you and stay by your side.
Make no mistake; Morkies are clingy dogs that will demand almost constant attention and affection. If their needs aren’t met, these pups will throw a tantrum and start peeing and pooping inside the house even if they are housetrained.
Be sure to avoid leaving your Morkie home alone for long periods of time to prevent these tantrums from occurring.
The Morkie is a people-oriented, loving, and needy dog that doesn’t like to be alone and demands constant company. If you live alone and work long hours, this isn’t the right breed for you!
They do best in homes with one or more persons to keep them company all day, like large families or those with children.
The Morkie’s soft and smooth coat doesn’t shed much, but it will become matted and tangled if it is not brushed regularly. While this may seem excessive, daily brushing is essential for this breed and will help keep your pup’s coat clean, shiny, and tangle-free.
Bathe your pooch at least once every two months or more often if they tend to get dirty, but don’t overdo it. Use a mild dog shampoo and conditioner that won’t damage their coat, dry out their skin, or cause any irritation.
Since their coat can grow several inches long, consider clipping your Morkie’s fur every 6 to 8 weeks. Trimming your doggo’s coat and keeping it short will make brushing a lot easier and less time-consuming.
As part of your grooming routine, check your dog’s ears once a week for dirt and waxy buildup and clean them as needed. It also helps to brush your Morkie’s teeth daily, since their smaller jaws put them at an increased risk of tartar buildup and dental problems.
An ideal diet for Morkies should be formulated for small breeds with moderate to high energy.
These tiny dogs can pack on the pounds easily and become overweight if you don’t carefully limit their intake. Instead of free-feeding your pup, stick to a regular feeding schedule of three smaller meals a day, and limit their amount of treats, too.
Known Health Problems
While they are generally healthy, Morkies are predisposed to some of the same health problems that the Yorkshire terrier and Maltese face. The most common health issues seen in this mix are:
- Collapsing Trachea: This condition affects Yorkshire terriers and is caused by the malformation of the main airway. It causes a hoarse cough that is usually triggered by exercise or exertion.
- Hernias: Most commonly found around either the umbilical or the inguinal canal in the groin, hernias are usually diagnosed in Morkie puppies.
- Dental Issues: The Morkie has small jaws and crowded teeth that are prone to tartar buildup. This buildup, if left unchecked, often results in periodontal disease. Regular teeth brushing and vet checkups are essential for preventing dental problems.
The Morkie has an average life expectancy of 10 to 16 years. With regular veterinary checkups and proper care, most of these tiny pooches reach old age without any major health problems.
How To Train Your Morkie Puppies
Morkies are smart but stubborn dogs, so training your pup will likely test your patience more than once. Training must be a fun and positive experience for your Morkie, so focus on positive reinforcement training rather than harsh corrections and yelling.
Being harsh or aggressive won’t get you anywhere with this mix (or any other dog, for that matter) and will only make matters worse.
When treated badly, Morkies tend to become grumpy and uncooperative. If this occurs, you can forget about training for the rest of the day.
Start training your Morkie puppy as soon as you bring them home to help them grow into an obedient and well-mannered dog.
Besides training, you should also start socializing your puppy as soon as they have received their primary vaccinations.
Aim to expose your pooch to as many people, dogs, cats, places, and situations from an early age to help them grow into a confident and friendly dog.
Who Should Own A Morkie Dog?
Morkies make fantastic pets and companions to people of all ages, in particular families with older children. Affectionate and loving, these pint-sized pooches tend to be needy and demand a lot of attention, so they are best suited to homes with no other pets.
Their small and fragile stature puts them at greater risk of injuries if handled roughly, so they aren’t a good choice for families with small children.
One great thing about the Morkie’s small size is it makes them ideal for apartment living or homes without outdoor space. However, they are just as happy living in a huge home with a fenced backyard.
This mix is best suited for people who spend a lot of time at home or work from home so they can keep their dog company. If you have long hours, travel a lot, or have other dogs, the Morkie isn’t the right pooch for your home.
Buying Morkie Puppies
The Morkie is a highly sought-after designer hybrid, so you shouldn’t have trouble locating a breeder in your area. When looking for a breeder, be prepared to do some digging and research beforehand to ensure that they are reputable and ethical.
It’s worth mentioning that the growing popularity of teacup Yorkshire terriers spurred some breeders to use them in creating teacup Morkies.
These smaller dogs are often plagued by a range of different health problems, so continuing these issues by deliberate breeding is generally seen as inhumane and unnecessarily cruel.
So, no matter how cute they may look, steer clear from teacup Morkies so you won’t have to deal with their numerous health issues or contribute to unethical breeding practices.
When it comes to standard Morkies, be prepared to spend anywhere between $1,500 and $3,700 for a healthy puppy. The exact price depends on many factors, including the breeder, supply and demand, pedigree and the quality of both parents, and coat color.
History Of The Morkie’s Parent Breeds
Developed in the 19th century in Yorkshire, England, the Yorkshire terrier is one of the smallest dog breeds. Yorkies are one of the most popular toy breeds, packing a larger-than-life personality in a tiny body.
Feisty, loving, spunky, and smart, the Yorkie makes a fantastic pet and companion to people who don’t mind grooming its long and silky coat.
Believed to have originated from spitz-type dogs in south-central Europe, the Maltese is a small dog breed in the toy dog group.
Best known for their long, silky, pure-white coat, the Maltese is an affectionate, gentle, and fearless pooch that makes a fantastic pet to families with children and people of all ages.
FAQs About Morkie Puppies
Is a Morkie a good dog?
The adorable Morkie makes a fantastic pet to singles, couples, families with older children, and smaller households with no other pets.
Their small size and moderate exercise needs make them superb apartment dwellers and ideal companions for urban dwellers. True lapdogs at heart, Morkies tend to be needy and demanding but make great companions.
Wrapping Up: Is The Morkie For You?
Created by crossing a Yorkshire terrier and a Maltese, the Morkie is a very popular pint-sized designer dog breed.
Although they are small in size, they have a big personality and make wonderful pets to urban dwellers, families with older kids, singles, seniors, and couples.
The Morkie can be a loving and devoted companion, but don’t forget that they are:
- Needy and will demand your undivided attention
- Yappy and tend to bark a lot, which may be a problem if you have neighbors close by
- Stubborn and may be challenging to train, especially for first-time owners
Are you thinking of getting a Morkie, or do you already have one at home?
Tell us and our readers more about owning this cute mix in the comment section below!
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