The Morkie dog isn’t a purebred dog, it’s a mixed breed dog that comes to life when a Yorkshire Terrier parent and a Maltese parent are cross bred with one another.
Morkies are one of the “hottest” mixed breed dogs of today, and this trend is only gaining in popularity as more and more people are learning about this dog from other people they know in the dog owner community, or by running a simple search online.
If you’re interested in learning more about the Morkie because you’re thinking about getting this lapdog home, or you just want to discover what this dog is all about for knowledge’s sake, we’ve got all you need to know in this article, so read on!
Morkies are not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) since they aren’t purebred dogs and the AKC doesn’t recognize mixed breed dogs.
The practice of breeding two Morkies together is being picked up on quite a bit nowadays by dog breeders in an attempt from them to eventually have the Morkie be recognized as a purebred dog by the American Kennel Club.
However, this is a long shot and won’t be happening any time soon, if it ever happens that is.
For the time being, Morkies are recognized as designer breed dogs by the following institutions:
- International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR)
- Designer Dog Registry (DDR)
Morkies don’t have one universal appearance that’s common with all of them out there, how a Morkie looks will depend greatly on which of its two parents it takes most of its genetics from (those related to appearance, at least).
One Morkie may look very much like its Yorkshire Terrier parent, another Morkie may look very much like its Maltese parent, while other Morkies may have an appearance that has equal resemblances from both parents.
Size, Height & Weight
Morkies are very small dogs in size, as they stand at an average weight of anywhere between 4 to 12 lbs, and stand at an average height of anywhere between 6 to 8 inches.
Morkies don’t come in one universal color, they come in a variety of different colors instead.
Here are some of the most common colors that the Morkies come in:
As for the length of their coat, Morkies are known to have long and silky coats.
Exercise & Physical Activities
Morkies are considered to be fairly active dogs that love to keep on the move and absolutely love to play around their fair bit of time.
However, and even though the Morkie does like to be active, this dog has certain limitations that it usually meets in no time because of how small it is in size.
Small dogs like Morkies will only need a small amount of exercise per day before they become exhausted and want to call it a day, meaning that one walk per day is usually enough to make your Morkie feel like they’ve done more than their share of daily exercise.
One thing you have to know about the Morkie dog is that they are one of the most emotionally attached dogs when it comes to their relationship with their owners, which means they’ll need you to physically be there for them a whole lot of time, much more than other dog breeds need their owners to be there for them.
This is one of the critical factors you have to think about before getting a Morkie home, because if you don’t have the necessary time or capabilities to be there for your Morkie most of the time, then this is bound to become a problem.
When you’re away and they terribly miss you, your Morkie may very well develop destructive behavior and try to voice their frustration at the fact that you’re away by barking excessively, thinking that this will make you come back to them.
Morkies also develop affection for other family members, and this can greatly help when you’re not always available and they fill in your place, but the affection this dog holds towards its owner is a special kind of affection that is irreplaceable – meaning no one can truly replace you in your Morkie’s heart but you.
While not exactly the most stubborn of dogs (as there are other dog breeds that are way more stubborn than a Morkie), this dog does have a bit of stubbornness in its personality that you’ll have to find a workaround if you want to succeed in training it to do whatever you want it to do.
With that being said, Morkie owners that have started training their dogs ever since they were young puppies have noticed that the process is made tremendously easier, so this is also something you should keep in mind.
When training your Morkie from a very young age, they won’t be as stubborn and they will learn things much faster than if you were to only start training them later on in their life.
The key to successfully training a Morkie is for you to remain consistent with your training and approach it with a calm (yet firm) demeanor.
The last thing you want to do is be harsh in your training methods with a delicate dog like the Morkie.
Many dog owners have found out way too late that they have severely hurt the relationship between themselves and their Morkie and have damaged the affection that their Morkie once held towards them, all because they used to follow harsh training methods that have been proven to not work many times.
The more you can make use of positive reinforcement methods in training, and the more entertaining you can make these training sessions for your Morkie, the better their responsiveness to training will be.
Despite their very small size, Morkies tend to make very good watch dogs because of their very high awareness levels when it comes to their surroundings and anything unusual happening around them, where if they sense such a thing going on, they will bark a lot to alert you of the issue.
However, many dog owners report that their Morkies are over-alert, meaning that they tend to react to any and all movements they see next to the house, whether that be a car randomly passing by, someone walking past your house going to wherever they intend to go to, etc ..
Expect your Morkie to alert you about many “false-positives”, but this can eventually be solved with training this dog and teaching it what’s considered as normal movement around the house and what’s considered as suspicious behavior that you should be warned about.
Morkies have a higher risk of suffering from specific health conditions because of many different factors, as well as some health issues/physical problems they may inherit from either/both of their Yorkshire Terrier and Maltese parents.
The following is a list of the most common health and physical problems that a Morkie may encounter during their lifetime.
– Eye problems (especially debris buildup around their eyes, which is why it’s very important that you make sure this area is always clean).
– Ear problems
– Dental problems (which is why it’s best to stick with dry dog food when it comes to feeding your Morkie, as dry dog food is better for dogs that suffer from dental problems than canned/wet dog food).
– Collapsed trachea
– Reverse sneezing
– Medial patellar luxation
– Heart Disease
– Kidney Problems
– Slipping knee caps
Generally speaking, a Morkie that leads a healthy life and is given the proper care it needs in order to thrive in life will live an average lifespan of anywhere between 10 to 13 years.
Not exactly the longest of lifespans out there if compared to some other dog breeds, but not the shortest either, it lies somewhere in between.
Because Morkies are one of the newer mixed breed dogs on the market, you’ll find some different sources stating different average lifespans for this dog, as not enough time has passed for one strict range to be agreed on.
However, from the literature available about Morkies as of this writing, 10 to 13 years seems to be the most accurate range.
If you’d like to do the math yourself, search for details about the life expectancy of the Morkie’s parents, the Yorkshire Terrier and the Maltese dogs, add them up and divide them by 2 – that’s your answer right there.
A Quick Word About Morkie Overeating
While it’s very true that Morkies are tiny dogs, and this may lead you to assume that they generally don’t like to eat much food, this couldn’t be any further from the truth.
Morkies are tiny dogs that LOVE to eat, and will do just that as long as they have ready access to food.
Whether they’re hungry or not, Morkies will eat even if it’s just for fun and because they have nothing better to do with their time.
This is one reason why it’s absolutely vital that you set a strict feeding schedule for your Morkie to follow, one that’s ideally set by your veterinarian after they have a look at your Morkie and determine how much food they actually need to eat.
If you don’t do this, you run a huge risk of having your Morkie overeat big time and become overweight or even obese, as Morkies know a thing or two about playing the “I’m hungry, please feed me” card even when they’re not.
The first grooming practice that must be discussed when it comes to taking care of a Morkie is brushing their coat, as they have a long and silky coat that needs extra special care in order for it to stay in excellent form.
Generally speaking, Morkies require their coats to be brushed once every day, or else you run the risk of having their coats becoming tangled and losing their special shine.
Some Morkies may require more frequent brushing than once per day, but this is a good place to start from and increase/decrease the frequency as required.
This frequent brushing of their coat isn’t exactly to avoid them shedding excessive hairs, as Morkies aren’t excessive shedders. Both parents of the Morkie dog, the Yorkshire Terrier and the Maltese dogs, aren’t known to excessively shed hair, a trait which they pass on to their Morkie offspring.
This frequent brushing is to avoid tangling of hair and to keep the coat in its silky and shiny condition.
Besides regular brushing, it’s best if you take your Morkie to a professional groomer for them to have a haircut once every 8 weeks.
As for brushing their teeth, it’s best if you carefully brush your Morkie’s teeth around 3 times a week, or once every other day.
Morkie Living Conditions
Indoors Or Outdoors?
Morkies will live very happily whether you decide to have them live with you in an indoors apartment or whether you decide to have them live with you in a house where they spend the majority of their days outdoors in your backyard.
Morkies will be content living in either small spaces or large spaces because their tiny size helps them perfectly fit in both situations – they won’t feel squeezed if you have them live in a small apartment, and they’ll surely enjoy the large outdoors space they get to spend their time in if you have them live in a house with a large yard.
For a dog as small as the Morkie, moderate weather conditions are best.
This means that it’s best to have them avoid areas where the temperature can get too hot or too cold at times, or else problems are bound to happen either way.
During days where it gets too cold, keep your Morkie inside the house and make sure the temperature is nice and warm inside, and during days where it gets too hot, make sure your Morkie is properly hydrated at all times and has readily accessible water for them to drink whenever they feel like it.
Other Household Pets
When it comes to making friends with other household pets you may have at home, Morkies usually do a good job at this and aren’t known to cause problems with other pets (dogs and/or other animals alike).
However, it’s best if your Morkie is raised with any of these pets, as this practically eliminates the chances of your Morkie being aggressive or unfriendly towards them.
A puppy that has been raised with specific pets is much more likely to befriend them than a puppy that hasn’t.
One thing you have to be very careful about, though, is the dangers of having your Morkie live in the same household with other larger sized dogs.
Imagine you have a dog as tiny as a Morkie at home living with another dog as big as a Golden Retriever.
It only takes your Golden Retriever the slightest of rough physical contact with the Morkie to inflict significant physical pain, and this is definitely not something you want to happen.
So, if you have other similarly tiny sized dogs at home, then adding a Morkie to the household is completely fine, but please don’t add a Morkie to your household if other significantly larger sized dogs live there as well.
Young Kids – Good Or Bad?
If you have little children at home that still haven’t reached the age of maturity yet, it’s best that you don’t get a Morkie home, because of how tiny this dog is and how fragile its body and bone structure are.
When little kids play around with dogs, they can sometimes get overly excited and play a little bit rough, something which larger sized dogs are able to take, but tiny dogs like Morkies will get badly hurt (physically) from.
It’s much better if you get a Morkie to live in a household with older children that are fully able to comprehend the dangers of playing rough with such a tiny and fragile dog.