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King Charles Yorkie

Nicole Cosgrove

June 18, 2021

The King Charles Yorkie is a mix of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Yorkshire Terrier. This small cross breed is talented in areas like tricks, hunting, guarding and watchdog. She has a life span of 12 to 14 years and is also known as Cava-Yorkie, York-A-Lier, Cavayorkie and Yorkalier. She is a patient and loving dog.

Here is the King Charles Yorkie at a Glance
Average height 7 to 12 inches
Average weight 6 to 18 pounds
Coat type Fine, silky, long
Hypoallergenic? Yes
Grooming Needs Low to moderate
Shedding Low to moderate
Brushing Daily if coat is kept long
Touchiness Very sensitive
Tolerant to Solitude? Low – can suffer from separation anxiety
Barking Occasionally
Tolerance to Heat Moderate – not good in very warm or hot climates
Tolerance to Cold Moderate to good depending on coat
Good Family Pet? Very good to excellent
Good with Children? Moderate to excellent – will depend on which parent they are more like, socialization will be needed
Good with other Dogs? Good to excellent – see above
Good with other Pets? Good with socialization
A roamer or Wanderer? Average
A Good Apartment Dweller? Excellent due to size
Good Pet for new Owner? Very good to excellent
Trainability Moderately easy – can be stubborn
Exercise Needs Somewhat active – will need daily walks
Tendency to get Fat Moderate to above average – the Yorkie is not prone but the spaniel is more so
Major Health Concerns Heart problems, SM, Episodic Falling, Patellar Luxation, Eye Problems, PSS, Hypoglycemia, Collapsed Trachea
Other Health Concerns Hip dysplasia, Reverse Sneezing
Life Span 12 to 14 years
Average new Puppy Price $400 to $750
Average Annual Medical Expense $435 to $535
Average Annual Non-Medical Expense $535 to $635

Where does the King Charles Yorkie come from?

The King Charles Yorkie is one of many new designer dogs being bred today. Mixed or cross breeds are not something new, people have been doing it since dogs were first domesticated to develop new purebreds. But the difference is with designer dogs the intent is that first generation litter. It should be done by people with knowledge, experience and skill who also care about the animals. Sadly though there are a lot of bad breeders out there. To ensure you are not buying from puppy mills or backyard breeders make sure you do a lot of research before you hand over your money. Often there is little information on where and why a designer dog was bred and that is the case for the King Charles Yorkie. So we take a look at the parents to get a better idea about their offspring. .

The Yorkshire Terrier.

In England in the 1800s Scottish workers came looking for work in Yorkshire and brought with them a dog called the Paisley Terrier or Clydesdale Terrier. They were bred to catch rats and mice around the mills. These were crossed with other terriers and in 1861 we see the first Yorkshire Terrier then called a broken haired Scotch Terrier. In 1870 they began to be called Yorkshire Terriers because that is where most of the development happened. He came to America in 1872. .

Today the Yorkie as they are often referred to is a confident and clever small dog with quite an intrepid spirit. They can have a range of personalities, some are more cuddly, some are more active, some are mischievous. One thing most Yorkies have in common though is if you spoil them too much they can become quite a handful! .

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

This dog is under a century old in the form he comes in now though he ancestors can be found back to the 1600s. He was a companion to the noble and royal. Mary Queen of Scots had one with her when she was beheaded, King Charles I and II loves them and gave their name to them. In the mid 1800s English breeders started to refine the breed but in America in the 1920s a breeder spent 5 years looking for spaniels that resembled the ones found in paintings from those days. This led to two breeds eventually emerging, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the King Charles Spaniel (also known in America as the English Toy Spaniel). .

Today this is a sturdy dog, friendly and very social. He can be quiet all the way up to rowdy and some bark more than others. Some are good watchdogs and some are not. .


The King Charles Yorkie is a very affectionate and loving dog with a lot of playfulness mixed in. She is gentle and patient but also lively and protective. She is a very happy dog and a very loyal one too. She has brains and makes a great family dog or companion. Getting lots of attention and being at the center of family activities is very important to her. It is important though that she not be over spoiled and allowed to think she is the boss of the home as this can lead to small dog syndrome. She is a sensitive dog and she does not like being alone for a long time, it can lead to separation anxiety. .

What does the King Charles Yorkie look like

This is a small dog weighing 6 to 18 pounds and stands 7 to 12 inches tall. She has fears that flap over and a coat that is straight, fine, silky and medium to long. Common colors are brown, black, tan and blue. .

Training and Exercise Needs

How active does the King Charles Yorkie need to be?

Being a somewhat active dog but on the small side the amount of exercise she needs is manageable for most owners. She will need daily walks twice a day of about 20 minutes each. Her playtime will also be a part of her physical needs. Take her to a dog park so she can play some doggy games with you, run off leash and play with other dogs. A yard is a place she can explore too but it is not a requirement, she can live in an apartment without a yard thanks to her small size. .

Does she train quickly?

The King Charles Yorkie is moderately easy to train so while there will be some effort involved there will be progress it will just be gradual. They are smart but they are also stubborn so there will be a need for you to be firm with her so that she known you are the boss. Be positive with your techniques, keep it engaging, rewarding and be patient and consistent. Give her praise when she has successes, use treats and rewards to encourage her. Also put importance in her socialization. A dog that has been properly socialized is one that can deal with various people, dogs and animals as well as places without becoming anxious or snappy. .

Living with a King Charles Yorkie

How much grooming is needed?

They are low to moderate shedding depending on which parent their coat is more like. If kept to its medium to long length it will need daily brushing to keep it free of tangles and debris. This is also a good way to move it natural oils around its coat and keep it shiny and healthy looking. Those natural oils need protecting so avoid bathing too often. Only shampoo when the coat is really dirty and needs the clean. .

Her ears can be prone to infection so check them once a week for signs such as discharge, bad odor or redness and swelling. Give them a wipe using a cotton ball and dog ear cleanser. Do not insert anything into them. Brush her teeth two to three times a week and clip her nails when they get too long. There are blood vessels and nerves in them so if you are not familiar with this have the groomer do it for you. .

What is she like with children and other animals?

With socialization this dog is usually very good with children, lively and playful, loving and gentle. Some can be better around older children though who do not accidentally get too rough. She can get along fine with other animals and other dogs too.

General information

Usually she is alert and could be a good watchdog. She barks occasionally and will need to be fed ½ to 1 cup of a good quality dry dog food a day, split into two meals. .

Health Concerns

There are not specific issues linked to the King Charles Yorkie but she can inherit issues from either or both parents. These health concerns include Heart problems, SM, Episodic Falling, Patellar Luxation, Eye Problems, Hip dysplasia, Reverse Sneezing, PSS, Hypoglycemia and Collapsed Trachea. .

Costs involved in owning a King Charles Yorkie

A King Charles Yorkie can cost $400 to $750 prices varying due to location and type of breeder amongst other things. It will need a crate, carrier, leash, collar and other basic items. She will also need to be spayed, micro chipped, examined, vaccinated, have blood tests done and be dewormed. All of these initial costs are going to be around $365 to $400. Yearly costs for non-medical needs like grooming, license, treats, food, toys and basic training are going to be $535 to $635. Medical basics like check ups with a vet, shots, flea prevention and pet insurance are $435 to $535. .


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The King Charles Yorkie when well raised and cared for could be a great small dog for a couple, single or family owner. She will bring a lot of life and energy to your home as well as being a great snuggle partner when it is time to relax.

Featured Image Credit: StefanieMueller, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.