Do Yorkies Shed?

Written by Amber LaRock
Updated: October 11, 2022
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When it comes to hair, the beloved Yorkie has quite a bit of it. This adorable breed is known for their long and luxurious hair, but many wonder just how much the Yorkie will shed because of it. More hair doesn’t always equal more shedding, and our Yorkie friends are a perfect example of that. We want to make sure you have all the details needed to determine how much shedding you can expect in your Yorkshire Terrier, so let’s dive in!

Understanding The Yorkie’s Coat

Yorkshire Terrier (Canis familiaris) - running through grass

Yorkshire terriers have hair similar to our own


Before we move forward we should start by saying that the Yorkie’s coat varies greatly to other dog coats. While many canine friends will have plush fur or a thick undercoat, the Yorkshire Terrier has hair instead. The Yorkie’s coat is much more similar to our hair than it is to other dog’s fur. This is what makes the Yorkshire Terrier so unique. Just as our hair constantly grows and sheds lightly throughout the year, the Yorkie is exactly the same. The Yorkie can certainly shed hairs that become brittle or damaged over time. However, it is nothing like other breeds of dogs that shed fur constantly.

Another thing to keep in mind is that while a Yorkie does not shed anywhere near as much as other dogs, they do have hair that is constantly growing. This means that unless you want your Yorkie to sport their natural long locks, you will need to have their hair cut every 4 to 6 weeks to keep their hair at a manageable length.

How Much Does A Yorkie Shed?

Most Yorkies shed very little hair

Yorkies shed very little – a few hairs a day at the most

©Dulova Olga/

Now that you are aware of just how different the Yorkie’s coat is in comparison to other breeds, we can answer the question of how much they shed each day. Due to the fact that they have hair instead of fur and no undercoat, this means that the Yorkie sheds very little, if at all on some days. They may shed a few hairs each day. However, you likely won’t even notice them due to the stray hairs getting caught up in their other hair. You may notice some hair loss when you brush your Yorkie’s fur or when you are bathing them. However, even then it should only be a small amount of hair lost.

Is The Yorkie A Hypoallergenic Breed?

Due to the fact that Yorkies are considered extremely low shedding, many assume this means they are hypoallergenic. While the Yorkie may be less irritating for allergy sufferers due to their minimal shedding, it is impossible for a dog to be completely hypoallergenic. Most people that have an allergy to dogs are not just allergic to their fur, but they are most allergic to their dander and the proteins in their saliva. You can never eliminate these allergens in your dog. Therefore, you may still have an allergy to your Yorkie at the end of the day.

Though no dog can be hypoallergenic, we will state again that the Yorkie might be less irritating to some pet owners with allergies due to their minimal shedding. If you still want a dog even though you are allergic to them, the Yorkie may be a good fit. Just be aware that you still may struggle when exposed to their dander or saliva.

Causes Of Hair Loss In Yorkies

do Yorkies shed? They don't typically shed much but there are a few things that can cause excessive hair loss

Insufficient grooming of the Yorkie’s long hair can cause tangles and lead to extra shedding

©egarc2 / Creative Commons

Now that you are aware of the fact that Yorkies are light shedders, you might be especially concerned if your Yorkie is losing a large amount of hair each day. There are a list of potential shedding triggers that can lead to increased hair loss in Yorkies. Let’s break down each possibility below.

Inadequate Grooming

Just because Yorkies do not shed often does not mean we can ignore their grooming needs. The long and silky hair of the Yorkie needs to be brushed daily. This prevents any painful tangles and mats, both of which can lead to an increased risk of skin irritation. These tangles and mats can tug at your Yorkie’s skin. In some cases it can cause them to scratch or bite at the area constantly. If this happens, your Yorkie can lose more hair than usual.

Your Yorkie may also lose more hair than they need during their brushing sessions if they are not brushed often. These tangles can cause you to have to tug harder than usual with each stroke. This leads to an increased risk of hair loss. Not only can they lose more hair than usual, but their brushing sessions can also be incredibly painful if they are tangled and matted.

Skin Allergies

Yorkshire Terriers are known for having increased skin sensitives. These pups are unfortunately prone to developing allergies that impact their skin. Unfortunately, this can cause excessive hair loss in many cases. Yorkies can be allergic to anything in the world around them. This can range from the grass in your yard to the fragrances in your home. If your Yorkie does have a sensitivity to something they are exposed to often they may develop itchy skin, increased hair loss, patches of hair loss, skin redness, hives, dry skin, and eye irritation. Some Yorkies will even develop secondary skin infections due to their allergies. This can increase the risk of hair loss even more.

Fleas & Skin Mites

A flea in the hair of a dog.

Fleas and mites can caus skin irritation and lead to hair loss

©Vera Larina/

Itchy fleas and skin mites can cause significant skin irritation for your Yorkie. Not only can the presence of these critters be itchy in themselves, but the irritation they bring can increase the risk of hair loss. Some skin mites even target the hair follicles themselves, leading to patches of hair loss throughout the body. Ectoparasites on your Yorkie can also lead to constant itching, dry skin, skin redness, and skin infections. If you see any evidence of fleas or mites in your Yorkie, we always suggest having them seen by your vet for proper treatment.

Ongoing Stress

Stress and anxiety can impact our dogs in a variety of ways, with one of the complications being hair loss. A Yorkie that is overwhelmed for any reason may shed more hairs than usual. This can catch you by surprise if it’s not normal for your pup. Yorkies can develop stress or anxiety if they endure any changes in their normal routine or environment. So this can be anything that impacts your Yorkie’s daily life. This can include being left alone for long periods, the sudden absence of a loved owner, a new animal in the home, a recent move, and anything else that impacts their normal routine.

Hormonal Changes

Just as hormone shifts can impacts humans, they can impact our canine friends as well. If your Yorkie is not yet spayed, they can experience hair loss during any significant hormonal changes. This often occurs when your Yorkie is in heat or when they are pregnant. This is always something to be aware of if you have an intact (not spayed) female Yorkie.

How To Care For Your Yorkie’s Coat

You may not need to sweep up an excessive amount of hair from your Yorkie, but you will need to care for their coat in other ways. Your Yorkie will need to be brushed daily with a brush that is created for long haired dogs. This will prevent them from developing any painful mats or tangles. Brushing them daily will also help you remove any plant material or fuzz that finds their way into your Yorkie’s hair. If you need any guidance on choosing the best brush for your Yorkie, we suggest taking a look at our detailed guide on the best Furminator brushes for dogs.

Not only will you need to brush your Yorkie daily with a brush that addresses tangles, you will also need to consider having them professionally groomed every 4 to 6 weeks if you want to maintain a certain length of their hair. You will also need to give them frequent sanitary trims around their back end every 2 weeks or so. This is because their stool can easily become trapped in their hair.

Yorkies are low maintenance in some ways, but they are considered high maintenance when it comes to grooming. If you want to welcome a Yorkshire Terrier into your family, you have to be prepared to set aside time each day to groom them.

Final Thoughts

Yorkshire Terries have a unique coat that does not shed as often as other dogs. Though you may not need to sweep up a large amount of loose hair around your home, you will still need to dedicate some time to daily brushing and regular grooming. If you are okay with an adorable pup that needs a quick brushing session each day, then the Yorkie might be the right fit for your home!

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The photo featured at the top of this post is © Dulova Olga/

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About the Author

Amber LaRock is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering topics surrounding pet health and behavior. Amber is a Licensed Veterinary Technician with 12 years of experience in the field, and she holds a degree in veterinary technology that she earned in 2015. A resident of Chiang Mai, Thailand, Amber enjoys volunteering with animal rescues, reading, and taking care of her two cats.

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