The mixed breed Pomeranian Yorkie dog is what is known as a ‘designer dog’, a kinder term than ‘mutt’ or ‘mongrel’ . One might ask why a designer dog is necessary, given the enormous variety of purebred dogs available. In fact, all dogs have a common ancestor, the wolf, first becoming domesticated more than 15,000 years ago. This means that so-called ‘purebred’ dogs are relative newcomers, the designer dogs of either evolution or more recent selective breeding.
Choosing to own or create a designer dog is not inherently wrong, as long as you know what you are letting yourself in for. So it will be useful to have some knowledge about this mixed breed before you welcome one into your family.
Other names for the Pomeranian Yorkie mix
As the full name implies, this particular crossbreed is normally a combination of a purebred Pomeranian and a purebred Yorkshire Terrier. The Yorkshire Terrier breed is also known as ‘Yorkie’. Breeders and owners have exercised their imagination in order to come up with novel names for the new mix. As well as ‘Pom Yorkie’ (with or without a space between the two words), you will also hear the mixed breed referred to as ‘Yorkie Pom’, ‘Porkie’, ‘Yorian’ and ‘Yoranian’.
Whatever you choose to call it, you will not be able to register your mixed breed animal with the American Kennel Club, but there are several other organizations who recognize the Pom Yorkie, including the American Canine Hybrid Club (Yoranian), Designer Dogs Kennel Club (Yoranian Terrier), International Designer Canine Registry (Yoranian/Porkie), Designer Breed Registry (Yoranian) and Dog Registry of America.
The role of genetics in selective breeding
While the offspring of two purebred animals of the same breed will have a reasonably predictable size, temperament and appearance, the outcome of mixing two breeds is something of a lottery. This is because the puppies’ genes, while they are certainly supplied in equal proportions by two parents whose genetic history is known and documented, will be a combination of dominant and recessive genes. Where both breeds have a trait which is similar, such as a small body size, it is most likely that the resulting puppies will demonstrate that same characteristic. But where dissimilarities exist, a dominant gene in one breed will prevail over the recessive gene in another.
It is also possible for a Pom Yorkie or Yoranian to be something other than a 50/50 mix of the two single breeds. This is because some breeders may create multi-generation crosses. For example, a Pom Yorkie mated with a Pomeranian would produce puppies that were 75% Pomeranian, 25% Yorkshire Terrier. A Pom Yorkie mated with a Yorkie would produce offspring with 75% Yorkie genes and only 25% Pomeranian genes.
Comparing the traits of Pomeranians and Yorkies
- Breed type Pomeranians and Yorkies are both classified as Toy breeds.
- Height A Pomeranian can measure anywhere between 7 and 12 inches. Yorkies typically reach an adult height of only 6 to 7 inches.
- Weight Pomeranians tip the scales at only 3 to 7 pounds, while the slightly stockier Yorkie ranges from 4 to 7 pounds in weight.
- Appearance A Pom’s coat color may be orange or red, or variegated white, brown, black and gray. Yorkies are two-tone dogs, appearing in black/tan, black/gold, blue/tan and blue/gold combinations, very occasionally overlaid with white star shapes. Additionally, Yorkies have distinctive puppy markings which fade as they grow.
- Coat type Pomeranians have two coats: a long, wiry outer coat and a soft dense undercoat. Yorkshire Terriers have only a single coat of very long, silky hair which may trail on the ground.
- Shedding Pomeranians are prone to extensive hair shedding. Yorkies are only light shedders and are suitable pets for people who suffer from allergies. They are sometimes described as having a hypoallergenic coat.
- Life expectancy Both Poms and Yorkies are small breeds, who tend to live much longer than large dogs. So, like both its parents, a Pom Yorkie can expect to live for 12 to 16 years.
- Health weaknesses Pomeranians have few health problems but their teeth need regular cleaning to avoid plaque formation. Yorkies can be picky eaters as a result of their sensitive digestive system, and may be susceptible to cataracts and bronchitis.
- Original purpose of breed Pomeranians were bred in eastern Europe from the larger German Spitz, and were intended for show purposes. The Yorkie, on the other hand, had lowly origins as a working dog, a rat catcher in northern England’s 19th century mills and factories.
- Temperament While playful and inquisitive, Poms can also be assertive and stubborn, and wary of strangers and inclined to bark. The Yorkie has a more even temperament and is known for its good nature. Both breeds thrive on love and attention, and are highly active, affectionate and intelligent, responding well to firm training. Neither breed has a reputation of being good with young children.
Looking at the above list, it is fairly easy to predict that your Pom Yorkie will be a small, affectionate, active, intelligent, long-lived dog with a variegated coat which could include the colors black, brown, white, blue and orange, and that it will not be particularly suited to households with small children. But exactly how much shedding and barking it will do, and whether it responds to strangers with suspicion or acceptance, is very much left to chance and the dominant genes of its parents.
Whether you regard a designer dog like the Pomeranian Yorkie mix as a good or bad idea depends largely on your position in the debate about hybrid vigor versus established bloodlines. Designer dogs enthusiasts insist that breeding from the same bloodlines, generation after generation, results in inbreeding and physical and mental weaknesses. Purebred devotees call designer dogs ‘mutts’ and accuse their breeders of running puppy mills and turning out animals that will end up in rescue centers. If you are not sure whether a designer dog in general, and a Pomeranian Yorkie mix in particular, is right for you, why not call a local breeder and arrange to meet one? Be warned, however. You may fall in love at first sight.