How To Choose The Best Dog Food For Yorkies
You love your little Yorkie and want to give them the best care possible. You may find yourself asking; what is the best dog food for Yorkies? Here you will find all the information about your Yorkies nutritional needs as well as a few great products we recommend.
**Below, you'll see more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices and read customer's reviews on Amazon.
The Yorkshire terrier is exceptionally prone to tooth decay and gum disease especially as they age. Most veterinarians will recommend that Yorkies are kept on a dry kibble diet only. Wet or canned dog food tends to stick in-between dogs teeth, causing cavities, and worsening tooth decay.
If for any reason you must use wet dog food for your Yorkie, you will need to invest in a baby tooth brush to wash their mouth out after eating to prevent tooth decay.
Always Read the Labels!
When it comes to quality food for your Yorkie, you cannot rely on popular name brands to bring quality nutrition to your dog’s food bowl. Some commercial brands are fine but you must read the label of any dog food before you buy.
There are many things you should look for when choosing the best dog food for your Yorkie. Yorkshire terriers should be eating puppy formula dog food until they are at least ten months old. Here is a brief list of other things to consider when selecting a dog food.
Tips For Dog Owner
- A minimum of 30% protein. Protein is important for any dog breed and Yorkies are no different. A high protein intake ensures high energy and a strong muscle mass for your Yorkie. Without protein, you risk your Yorkie becoming lethargic and weak, shortening their life span.
- Meat as the main ingredient. If you look at the first ingredient on the back of a dog food bag and it is anything other than some form of meat, put the bag down and move to the next one. Without meat, your Yorkie will not be able to get the high-quality protein he needs.
- Small kibble is best. Many dog food brands have food pieces that are much too big for your Yorkie's tiny mouth. Kibble that is too big can damage your dog's teeth, hurt them to eat, and cause stomach upset if large pieces are swallowed. There have also been cases of Yorkie's choking on kibble that was too large.
- Small breed formula. As always check the labels before buying any dog food. That being said, most small breed dog food are specifically formulated to bring proper nutrition to toy and small breeds.
- A “Complete and Balanced” label. Dog food brands that claim to have a “complete” or “balanced” nutrition are legally bound to abide standard set by the law.
How Much Food Does Your Yorkie Need?
This is a common question among Yorkie owners. Unfortunately, there is no real right or wrong answer. Every Yorkie is different. It all depends on your dog's personal taste and energy level.
My recommendation is to let your Yorkie free-feed. While some dogs tend to ever eat when having food readily available at all times, Yorkies usually do not have this problem. You can leave a small amount of food out all the time and get a good gauge of how hungry your particular Yorkie is.
If you are worried that your Yorkie is eating too much, record his food intake and give your vet a call for advice.
Being a picky eater is a common problem among Yorkshire terriers. Sometimes all you need is to switch food brands or put a little beef or chicken broth into their food. If your Yorkie is refusing a food he once loved, there may be a medical reason behind the problem.
Intestinal parasites and other stomach issues can make Yorkies refuse to eat. If you are concerned about your dog's eating habits, contact your veterinarian before your Yorkie becomes malnourished.
Making Your Own Food
This is a great food option that is my personal favorite when it comes to feeding my dogs. With a raw diet, you know EXACTLY what your dog is getting and can alter recipes according to taste and health needs. You can use just about any meat as the base for your dog food. A few other things you can add are:
- Eggs. Eggs provide a great source of protein and there is no need to discard the egg shells which provide calcium.
- Vegetables. Green beans, peas, and carrots are surprisingly healthy for your Yorkie. Just make sure there are more protein ingredients than vegetables.
- Supplements. You can find many vitamin and mineral supplements online to add to your dog food.Here is a helpful video on making your own dog food.
While this brand is not breed-specific to Yorkshire terriers, Wellness Complete promises high-quality nutrition for all small and toy breed dogs.
- Small Breed Formula. Many commercial dog food brands have a kibble size that cannot be easily chewed and digested by small breed dogs. The small size kibble of this dog food is perfect for your Yorkie's tiny mouth.
- All Natural Ingredients. You will not find any meat by-products in this healthful dog food. Only real meat is used during its production. Wellness Complete also refrains from any use of grain fillers (a rare quality among most dog foods) which provide no useful nutrition.
No artificial sweeteners, preservatives, or colors are used in this product. Many of these things have been known to cause cancer in dogs making the all natural ingredients a huge plus for this brand.
- It’s Inexpensive. This is a cheaper dog food option for those trying to stretch a dollar. It can be hard to find a nutritious grain-free option at this price.
- Stomach Upset and Bloating. A small percentage of dog owners complained that this food made their dog very ill. Instances of vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, and gas have been reported. You never know how this food will affect your Yorkie until after your dog eats it. Buying a product with these kinds of reviews can be a gamble.
Royal Canin dog food has a reputation of manufacturing high-quality breed-specific dog food. They understand that nutritional needs of each breed and formulate their food accordingly. This dog food is geared toward adult Yorkshire terriers.
- Specialized Kibbles For Dental Health. Yorkies are susceptible to tooth decay as they age. Royal Canin’s adult food for Yorkies is designed to prevent plaque and tartar buildup, giving your dog the best chance at great dental health.
- Biotin for Their Unique Coats. Yorkies long, single strand hair needs extra nutrients to remain long, strong, and beautiful. Royal Canin’s Yorkshire food provides biotin and fatty acids to keep that beautiful coat healthy.
- Tasty for Picky Eaters. Yorkies are known to turn their nose up at many kinds of food. Royal Canin maintains consistent positive reviews for taste.
- A Bit Pricey. This brand of dog food definitely costs more than your run-of-the-mill commercial dog food. Though you will be hard pressed to find a high-quality breed-specific dog food for a cheaper price.
- Contains Corn. Corn is never a good ingredient for any dog food. Corn does not supply any significant nutrition and is pretty much just a filler companies use to make their food cheaper to produce.
Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Yorkshire Puppy Food is a similar dog food to the one mentioned above but it is meant for Yorkies under 10 months old.
- Small Kibble. Baby Yorkies are very tiny and may have a hard time chewing puppy kibble from other brands. These small kibbles prevent choking and are easier on their little tummies.
- Promotes Dental Health. This dog food is designed to prevent plaque and tartar buildup. This is great because Yorkies have been known to be prone to dental issues.
- Great Taste. Yorkies can be a little picky when it comes to their food. Royal Canin strives to make Yorkie food that both smells and tastes great.
- Chicken By-Products. It is preferable for any dog food to use real, high-quality meat rather than meat by-products. By-products lose valuable nutrients when they go through heavy processing.
- Corn Fillers. Corn is not easily digested by dogs and contains no nutritional value. Unfortunately, corn is a very common ingredient in many dog food brands. Companies use it as filler so they can produce their food cheaply.
This brand prides themselves on providing a balanced and easy to digest diet that is specifically tailored to small and toy breeds. Hills Science diet for small and toy breeds is intended for adult dogs aging one to six years. There are also convenient senior and puppy varieties of this dog food.
- Variety of Options. Hills Science Diet provides dog food for all sizes and age groups. You can also find a variety of flavors and types such as canned, dry, and treats.
- No Artificial Ingredients. Artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives have been known to cause cancer and stomach issues in dogs. Hills Science Diet prefers to avoid these ingredients that may be harmful to you Yorkie.
- Healthy Ingredients in the Bag. This brand adds things like amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants into their food to bring balanced nutrition to your dog’s food bowl.
- Loaded with Grains. Grains provide no nutrition to your dog. This is a common flaw among most dog food brands. In fact, these days you can be hard pressed to find a dog food without these ingredients. Hills Science Diet has corn, soy, and wheat.
- May Cause Allergies. Owners of dogs who are allergy prone may want to look elsewhere for the perfect dog food. The most common food allergy that dogs experience is grain allergies.
Here is another breed-specific dog food specifically formulated for your adult Yorkshire terrier. Eukanuba is a fairly popular brand that gets great reviews on a regular basis.
- Breed Specific. It is great to know that the dog food you buy was created with your Yorkie in mind. A dog food that is good for one dog may not be great for another. This is especially true for small toy breeds like the Yorkshire terrier.
- DENTADEFENSE. Eukanuba claims that their DENTADEFENSE system can reduce tartar build-up in just twenty-eight days. Dental health is important to the overall health and life quality of your Yorkie.
- Large Bags and Reasonable Prices. This brand is less expensive than most breed-specific dog foods. The dog food also comes in large bags giving you more for your money.
- Taste. The most common bad review on this dog food states that many Yorkies refused to eat this product. Yorkies are among the more picky eaters in the dog world. If they don't like the taste, they'd rather not eat.
- Stomach Upset. Some reviewers complained of their dog not feeling well after eating this dog food. A few even complained of vomiting and diarrhea which is obviously a huge drawback for this brand.
The clear winner of this product roundup is Wellness Complete Health Small Breed. Unlike so many of the others, they do not use grains or artificial ingredients. Grains and artificial ingredients like sweetener, preservatives, and colorings have no nutritional value and can cause adverse health effects.
The dry kibble is small in size for your Yorkies tiny mouth and the best option for dental health. Wellness Complete uses only natural ingredients and real meat, giving your Yorkie all the best of a commercial dog food brand.