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Shorkies might be one of the smaller designer crossbreeds, but their big personality offers the perfect counterbalance to their diminutive stature. While more common in the US, it is slowly growing in popularity around the world due to their ability to adapt to different households. The breeds that make up the Shorkie are the Shih Tzu and the Yorkshire Terrier.

The Shorkie can be a first cross (with one Shih Tzu and one Yorkshire Terrier parent), be bred back to one of the original breeds or be two Shorkies bred together. This means there are varieties in size, shape, colours and coat types, but in all cases, this is a very small companion dog.

The usual height of a Shorkie is between 20-28cms and it depends on the size of the parents.
Shih Tzu - not exceeding 27cms
Yorkshire Terrier - 18-20cms
The usual colours of a Shorkie can be any mixtures of their parents’ colours, with or without white markings.
Shih Tzu: All colours permissible apart from merle. White blaze on forehead and white tip highly desirable in particolours.
Yorkshire Terrier: Steel blue and tan
UK Kennel Club Groups
Utility (Shih Tzu) and Toy (Yorkshire Terrier)
The need-to-know
  • Dog suitable for non-experienced owners
  • Basic training required
  • Generally healthy breed
  • Enjoys active walks
  • Needs under an hour of walking a day
  • Small dog
  • Minimum drool
  • Requires grooming every other day
  • Chatty and vocal dog
  • Barks and alerts to visitors/anything unusual
  • Could have issues with unknown dogs but gets along with known dogs
  • May need additional training to live with other pets
  • May need additional supervision to live with children
  • Needs a small garden
  • Can happily live in the city
  • Can be left occasionally with training
Generally healthy breed

There is often a degree of variation in the health conditions and issues that crossbreeds are predisposed to. This is because some individuals retain more of the characteristics of one breed over the other. 
The Puggle crossbreed is likely to have fewer respiratory concerns than a Shih Tzu as the cross with a Yorkshire Terrier means there is less shortening of the muzzle and potentially larger nostrils.

For more information on the health problems that may affect this crossbreed, visit the Shih Tzu and Yorkshire Terrier breed pages.


Like most crossbreeds, the personality of a Shorkie depends on the parents and how they have been bred and reared. But both parents are affectionate dogs who bond closely to their owners.

The Shih Tzu is an extraverted, confident, affectionate dog who can be quite independent and aloof with strangers. Although quite intelligent, sometimes they can give the impression that training is optional for Shih Tzu dogs!

The Yorkshire Terrier is intelligent, lively and affectionate with their owner, but has no idea that they are a small dog! They are fearless, tenacious and protective - both of their home and their people. They will enjoy games and are constantly on the go and will want to be a part of everything their owner does.

The Shorkie is a small companion dog who inherits the love of life from the parents. But depending on how the breeds mix in each individual, they can turn out to be more or less independent.

The personality of a Shorkie seems to be more consistent when they are first crosses (F1). As a line is successively bred, they can be either bred back to one of the original breeds (and so strengthen either the Shih Tzu or the terrier personalities) or be bred to another Shorkie - in which case there is less predictability in temperament (and in-breeding becomes more of a potential issue).

Responsible breeders should be prioritising behaviour as highly as health and so it is important to find a good breeder. A well-bred Shorkie should be outgoing and confident, not nervous, shy or fearful.

Vet Rating

History and Origins

Ideal Owner

Exercise Needs

Space Requirements

Nutrition and Feeding

Grooming Shorkies

Training the Shorkie

Family Friendly Dog Breeds

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