How Long Do Yorkies Stay in Heat
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How Long Do Yorkies Stay in Heat?

Do you have a female Yorkie puppy? And are you curious about their heat cycles? As a responsible pet parent, it’s important to understand what to expect in terms of physical and personality changes during these seasons. That way, you are better prepared to care for your adorable Yorkie. 

So how long do Yorkies stay in heat?

Yorkie females stay in heat for about 2 to 4 weeks every single cycle. Upon maturity, do expect your Yorkies to come into heat once every 5 to 6 months. The length and frequency of heat cycles depends on a lot of factors including genetics, the Yorkie’s overall health and whether or not they have been spayed.

In our article, we will take a look at exactly what these periods mean for the little furry besties and your role in their overall reproductive health. Most importantly, you will learn how to better prepare and care for your little pup during their heat cycle.

How Long Is A Yorkie Period?

The heat cycle is best understood based on when it begins, how long it lasts and when it finally stops. For yorkies, this depends on a variety of factors as earlier stated including reproductive and general health status as well as genetics and age of your little furry buddy.

For the heat cycles on a yorkie to begin, the dog has to reach sexual maturity. Yorkshire Terriers attains maturity at between 6 months and 18 months with a 12 month average age. This is marked by several changes including development of gonads and genitalia as well as an overall growth spurt.

Once the reproductive system is fully developed, the yorkie begins to have heat cycles. These are marked by changes in hormones and physical nature of reproductive organs all in preparation for potential breeding.

In yorkies, the cycles last 2 weeks to a month and come at least once or twice every year.

Conditions like obesity and other hormonal imbalance may cause the yorkie to have longer intervals and longer-lasting periods.

What is interesting about the heat cycles in yorkies and other dogs in general is that they never stop. As the dog grows older, however, the cycles become longer and may even be 12 months apart. They also last shorter with about 2 week-long heat sessions. Finally, the fertility in general takes a major heat and despite still being considered in their reproductive ages, older yorkies do not conceive as easily as younger ones under 6 years of age.

How Long Do Yorkies Bleed In Heat?

The heat cycle is divided into 4 different stages. One of these is the proestrus stage. This is when the yorkie female bleeds from their vagina. In this dog breed, the stage lasts between 8 and 10 days depending on the individual yorkie and factors like age and health status. However, it can last up to an entire month after which the rest of the cycle is blood-free. So no, your yorkie does not bleed the whole time they are in heat.

The bleeding stage is the first one and in addition to bleeding, you may observe some physical and psychological changes in your little pooch. The dog is often unresponsive to contact by male yorkies and even by you as the owner. They may also have reduced appetite and general lethargy. Other symptoms and signs that could point to this stage include:

  • A swollen vulva.
  • They may seem more agitated than usual.
  • They urinate more frequently which is a big deal for yorkies and their small bladders.
  • Repetitive licking of their genital area which is how they clean off the blood.
  • Walking around with the tail constantly raised.

After the bleeding stops, the dog stays in heat for between 6 and 8 months. Here, the other 3 stages of the yorkie heat cycles play out with different physical, cellular, and hormonal changes. Some of the stages last a few weeks while others last several months.

During these stages, the yorkie’s body is generally being prepared for pregnancy. They are also generally more receptive to male yorkies.

Can A Yorkie Be Spayed While In Heat?

Spaying is the process of surgically removing reproductive organs from a dog. For female yorkies, this involves the removal of both ovaries and the uterus. It is a considerably invasive procedure but with several benefits to offer both the dog and you as the owner. You just have to make sure that you get the timing right for the best results and fewest complications.

The best time to spay a yorkie female is before they begin their heat cycle. This starts between 6 to 8 months of age which leaves the 4-6 months window as your best option. At this stage, they are old enough to handle the surgery, medication, and recovery.

Strictly speaking, spaying can actually be performed on yorkies that have already begun their heat cycles. However, it is never as easy and straightforward as doing it before. Changes in hormones and physical structure make recovery more complicated and it is associated with issues like excessive and prolonged bleeding post-op.

With the right timing of the procedure, however, spaying is a fantastic procedure with several perks. These include:

Reduced aggressiveness

Yorkies calm down after spaying because a lot of their aggressiveness beforehand was fueled by hormones. With no gonads to produce them, your pooch will become more agreeable and generally easier to live with. They will bark less often than usual.

Control breeding

If you do not want your yorkie popping our puppy litter after puppy litter, spaying is the best form of contraception. This also helps prevent overpopulation in your space, especially if you have nowhere to take the newborns.

Prevent reproductive system cancers

One of the leading causes of death in yorkies is cancer with many of its forms being hormone-sensitive. By spaying your yorkie, you significantly reduce the risk of tumors on the breast while completely eliminating chances of ovarian and uterine cancer.

How To Best Care For Your Yorkie In Heat

When your yorkie is in heat, they need as much tender loving care as you can spare. They are generally very emotionally needy and clingy dogs and this more often than not only increases as they go through different hormonal changes.

The physical changes also take their toll and they may need help with things like pain relief and hygiene to make it through the period. Here are a few things that you can do as the owner to make their life easier:

Invest in doggy diapers

This is particularly important during the bleeding stages of the yorkie’s heat cycle. They come in handy with both the blood and the increased frequency of peeing sparing your doggy the discomfort. Paw Inspired Disposable Dog Diapers are worth looking into for this purpose with the soft and absorbent pad as well as their leak-proof design for small dog breeds like yorkies.

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Keep the yorkie clean and deodorized

Yorkies have a specific heat smell and you could get rid of this by maintaining a regular grooming schedule and investing in odor masking products. John Paul Pet Tea Tree Conditioning Spray is a good choice that I would recommend you to strongly consider. The fragrance from tea tree oil is strong enough to mask the odor while offering calming effects to the worked up pooh.

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The Maple Holistics Pure Lavender Essential Oil is a worthy alternative with additional headache relief and stress-reduction effects. Apart from these calming effects, lavender is also known to ward off fleas and prevent flea infection. Use it in the more obscure areas like the back of the ears to keep the infection at bay.

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Make sure they are eating well

Loss of appetite is a common problem with yorkies during heat cycles. So keep an eye on what and how much they are eating to ensure they remain strong enough to ride out the rest of the cycle.

Get a comfortable spot for the yorkie to relax

They will be spending a lot of their time napping and recovering from the fatigue or pain. The least you could do for them here is just get them a comfortable spot whether it is on your couch or a dedicated dog bed with accessories like toys and blankets nearby for their convenience. 

How Do I Know If My Yorkie Is Pregnant

One possible outcome of heat cycles is pregnancy. As the dog owner, you will need to pick up on this as soon as possible in order to get your yorkie the professional care and attention they need for a successful pregnancy. To help you out, here are 5 key clues that could point to a pregnant yorkie.

Localized weight gain

When pregnant, a yorkie will inevitably gain weight which you may pick up on during routine vet visits. However, if you notice an increase in girth around the abdomen it is most likely a pregnancy.

Nesting behavior

This is when the female yorkie starts to prepare a spot in or around your house for the future pups. You may notice a pile of ripped fabric or even grass if it is outdoors.

Change in color and size of nipples

These usually become larger and turn darker as the pregnancy progresses. It is in response to pregnancy hormones and is meant to prepare the dog for breastfeeding when the pups come.

Unusual reduction in energy levels

When yorkies are pregnant they tend to be very lethargic. They are not very large or strong so the extra weight definitely takes its toll. So you will find them napping a lot or just laying down and chilling where they would usually be playing full time.

Extremes in appetite change

When pregnant, yorkies will either eat too much or have very low appetite. The former happens mainly during the early weeks of pregnancy and may be associated with morning sickness. 

Related Questions

How Many Times A Year Does A Yorkie Go Into Heat? A yorkie heat cycle comes every 6 to 8 months. As a result, the dog may go into heat about one or 2 times every year. This interval gets significantly longer as the female grows older or if there are any associated health issues especially when hormones and metabolism are involved.

When Do Yorkies Mature? Yorkies as a small breed of dogs tend to reach maturity at a much younger age than their larger counterparts. For the most part, physical and sexual maturity occurs between 6 and 18 months of age. However, it is not unheard of to have some yorkies start their heat cycles as early as 4 months old. 

How Do I Know When My Dog Is Out Of Heat? The best way to know when your dog is out of heat is when they stop displaying signs of being in heat. The best set of clues are the behavior clues. When your dog is no longer in heat, they will be more calm and playful than their former aggressive selves. They also eat better and maintain what is considered normal levels of activities for a yorkie. 

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