Parti Yorkie: What Does “Parti” Mean in Yorkshire Terriers?

Parti Yorkie playing in the grass

Yorkshire Terriers are small long-haired dogs with a loving and loyal nature. This dog breed is famous for its long silky coats which come in combinations of blue and tan.

However, there is a lesser-known variant of the Yorkshire Terrier which boasts hints of white fur — the parti Yorkie.

Contrary to popular belief, parti Yorkies are not designer dogs. They are purebred Yorkshire Terriers that carry a rare type of recessive parti gene. 

If you are interested in learning everything there is to know about parti Yorkies, stick around!

This guide is filled with beguiling facts and useful information about these adorable pups. From their history and temperament to their health and grooming needs, it’s all here!

What Is a Parti Yorkie? What Does “Parti” Mean in Yorkshire Terriers?

Parti Yorkshire Terrier looks at the camera

Parti Yorkies are purebred Yorkshire Terriers with tri-colored coats. They are the exact same dog as regular Yorkies; the only difference is that a big portion of their coats is white. These dogs usually have a coat color that is a combination of blue, white, and tan. 

When you examine the word “parti” closely, you will come across the definition which reads “a good or desirable match.”

While this is not exactly how it is used when it comes to parti Yorkies, that definition is somewhat close. 

The “parti” in parti Yorkie is believed to be a short term for the word “particular.” This naming simply implies that the dog is “particularly colored.” That’s it, there’s no crazy etymology to it!

Moreover, due to popular use in the dog breeding community, the term parti is also associated with the so-called “parti-gene.”

Simply put, the unique recessive parti gene is responsible for the parti Yorkie’s unique coat color.

If you are interested in learning more about parti-colored dogs, you can also read our guide on parti Poodles.

READ NEXT: Parti Poodle: 17 Things to Know Before Getting a Parti Poodle

Are Parti Yorkies Purebred?

Yes, parti Yorkies are purebred Yorkshire Terriers. However, their specific coat color is not listed in the breed standards of kennel clubs such as the American Kennel Club (AKC), United Kennel Club (UKC), Canadian Kennel Club (CKC), and Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI).

Nevertheless, these cute puppies share the same genetics as other Yorkshire Terriers except for the genes responsible for their coat color.

In fact, if you decide to get a parti Yorkie, you can still have your pup registered with the AKC and join AKC agility competitions.

It is also worth noting that the AKC, in its full breed standard for the Yorkshire Terrier, states that “any white markings other than a small white spot on the forechest that does not exceed one inch” is a disqualification. 

That said, you would be relieved to know that you do not need the approval of kennel clubs to own a parti Yorkie! Regardless if they are recognized or not, they are purebred dogs deserving of a forever home. 

Parti Yorkie History and Origin: Where Does the Parti Yorkie Come From?

There’s not a lot to say about the history and origin of the parti Yorkie. There is no mysterious scroll or stone tablet that proves any claims about their alleged origin.

However, there is reason to believe that parti Yorkies have been around since the 1800s. 

According to Elvis Yorkshire Terrier, a reputable Yorkie breeder, the Yorkshire Terrier breed was crossed with Maltese centuries ago. This was done to improve the length and quality of the Yorkie’s coat. 

That said, many believe that the genes responsible for the tri-colored coats of parti Yorkies are remnants of the Maltese breed. This is also why some people believe that the parti Yorkies are not purebred dogs.

In fact, during the earlier years of breeding Yorkshire Terriers, tri-colored Yorkies were secretly put down because they are deemed undesirable. 

However, it was around the 1980s when one legitimate breeder decided to keep tri-colored Yorkshire Terriers. This breeder believed that purebred Yorkshire Terriers could still produce parti Yorkie puppies.

Since then, many breeders followed suit, and shortly, genetic research on the parti Yorkshire Terrier was pushed. 

A few years later, in 2000, AKC finally recognized the parti Yorkie as a purebred Yorkshire Terrier. It was shortly after that when the parti Yorkie gained its much-deserved popularity. 

All Color Variations of Parti Yorkies

In general, the parti Yorkie is easily distinguishable from other Yorkshire Terriers because of its tri-colored coat. However, there are some instances when parti Yorkies do not have noticeable tri-colored coats.

Examples of this are the chocolate parti Yorkie and the blonde parti Yorkie. All of these are discussed in detail below:

Blue, White, and Tan Parti Yorkie

Parti Yorkies with a blue, white, and tan coat color are easy to spot. They typically have scattered blue-colored hair along their back, on their ears, and on the areas surrounding their eyes.

Meanwhile, their muzzles, feet, and chin are usually tinged with tan hairs. 

Blue, White, and Gold Parti Yorkie

Blue white and gold parti yorkie puppy by a fire hydrant

The long-haired parti Yorkie shown in the photo above has a blue, white, and gold coat color. Their blue-colored hairs may be solid patches across their backside or scattered alongside their white fur.

Their golden hairs are present mostly on their heads and sometimes on the lower part of their feet. 

Chocolate Parti Yorkie

The chocolate parti Yorkie is arguably the most teddy bear looking among the bunch. Their coats have scattered patches of varying shades of brown.

Typically, the chocolate-colored markings on their coats are a lot darker during their puppy years. 

Blonde Parti Yorkie

The blonde parti Yorkie is the most recognizable among the different parti Yorkie colors. Unlike Yorkies with darker coat colors, their faces are noticeably lighter and typically covered in white hairs.

The markings on their bodies are also less pronounced because of their scattered light blonde hairs. 

Parti Yorkie Size and Weight: How Big Do Parti Yorkies Get When Fully Grown?

Parti Yorkies grow up to 7 pounds in weight and around 7 to 8 inches in height according to the American Kennel Club breed standard. Size-wise, parti Yorkies share the same size as their regular Yorkshire Terrier cousins. 

These dogs reach their full height and weight around their 4-year mark. However, they grow relatively fast during their first year.

Once they reach around 6 to 7pounds, a parti Yorkie can already be considered a fully-grown adult dog. 

For reference, when fully grown, a parti Yorkshire Terrier is about the same weight as a Pomeranian, Miniature Pinscher, or Papillon.

Despite the relatively dinky size of these Yorkies, they are still larger than the average Chihuahua and Maltese dogs. 

Parti Yorkie Color Genetics: What Makes Them Exhibit the Parti Coloration?

The “parti” color in Yorkies is due to the so-called “parti-gene.” Scientifically, this gene is referred to as the piebald gene or the S-Locus, a variation of the microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF)

MITF is responsible for a dog’s physical features such as its eye color, skin color, and coat color. When the piebald gene is present in a dog, it will most certainly exhibit white spotting in its coat. 

Moreover, it is worth noting that the parti-gene or MITF is a recessive gene. This means you are unlikely to get a parti Yorkie from breeding a parti Yorkie with a regular Yorkshire Terrier.

The only way to have parti Yorkie pups is by breeding two parti-colored Yorkies. 

Are Parti Yorkies Rare?

Before parti Yorkies gained popularity in the 2000s, they were regarded as fairly rare dogs.

While they are still considered scarce today, especially when compared to other variants of the Yorkshire Terrier breed, parti Yorkies have significantly grown in numbers. 

This is evident from the number of parti Yorkie breeders that have sprouted since the popularization of the breed.

However, some people are still not convinced that the parti Yorkie is purebred because parti Yorkies are still greatly outnumbered by traditional Yorkshire Terriers. 

Do Parti Yorkie Puppies Change Color as They Grow?

Yes, the coat color of parti Yorkie puppies changes as they grow. However, there is no specific period as to when this change starts and when it ends. In general, the color-changing process will vary from one dog to another.

Nevertheless, the most common time when this process starts to take place is around the dog’s 6-month mark. This process can take as long as 3 whole years! It usually ends when the dog reaches 30 to 36 months old.

Another thing to note about this process is that as your dog’s color changes, the weight of their hair also changes. Your dog’s coat will become thinner and a bit lighter from heavier and thicker strands of hair. 

This color-changing process is one of the joys of owning a parti Yorkie. There will be times when your dog will have a coat color completely different from the one it had before!

As a rule of thumb, you can expect your Yorkie’s final coat color to be lighter than the one it had as a puppy. 

Are Parti Yorkies Recognized by AKC and Other Kennel Organizations?

To cut to the chase, parti Yorkies are recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). However, their hair color is not listed in the breed standards for Yorkshire Terriers. In fact, any white coat larger than one inch is considered a disqualification for the AKC. 

That said, you still have the option to register your parti Yorkie to the AKC. However, to qualify, your Yorkie’s parents should also be registered in the AKC.

When it comes to kennel organizations other than the AKC, parti Yorkie recognition is a bit tricky.

There is no widespread information that links other major kennel clubs such as the CKC, UKC, and FCI to the recognition of the parti Yorkie. 

But since AKC is one of the highly regarded kennel organizations all over the world, you can rest assured that other kennels are likely following suit.

You can check out this historical document that officially welcomes parti Yorkies to the purebred Yorkshire Terrier family!

Parti Yorkie Temperament: Do Parti Yorkies Make Good Pets?

Parti Yorkie lying in the grass with tongue out

Parti Yorkies are dogs that are relatively easy to train. They are responsive to training and they pay attention to their owners most of the time. That said, parti Yorkies do have a few quirks worth noting. 

While they can get aggressive and bark at strangers, parti Yorkies are very affectionate once they get comfortable with other people.

Also, these adorable pups are always in need of attention. They hate being left alone and they always love cuddling with their owners. 

However, if you already have other pets around the house, it might take some time for a parti Yorkie to get along with them.

This is especially true if your Yorkie is still a puppy. It is common for Yorkies to exhibit small dog syndrome towards larger dogs. 

Moreover, parti Yorkies and toddlers might also require some time to get along, unlike other dog breeds. Yorkies are prone to snapping at younger kids if they feel threatened or if they are startled.

But over time, with proper training, you can expect your Yorkie to be friendly with kids in your household.

In general, parti Yorkies can grow up to be well-mannered dogs. You just need to be persistent in training them during their puppy years so they’ll grow up to be great family dogs. 

READ NEXT: Male vs. Female Yorkshire Terrier: Which Is Better?

Parti Yorkie Lifespan and Health Issues: How Long Do Parti Yorkies Live?

Parti Yorkies live up to 11 to 15 years of age. If properly cared for, a parti Yorkie will live a full and sickness-free life.

They are generally healthy dogs; however, there are a few health issues you should watch out for. Here are some of them:

  • Dry Eyes: Dry eyes or Keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS) is due to an immune-mediated problem that results in inflamed tear glands. It is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the dog’s cornea and surrounding eye tissues.
  • Distichiasis: Distichiasis is caused by an abnormally growing eyelash that causes irritation to the dog’s eye. In most cases, this issue can be easily averted by trimming the abnormal eyelash or using eye drops.
  • Luxating Patella: Luxating patella or the dislocation of the kneecaps is another health issue you should keep an eye out for. This health problem is usually diagnosed in small dog breeds such as the Bichon Frise, Poodle, and the Yorkshire Terrier. When left untreated, a parti Yorkie with this issue will feel excruciating pain when moving.

Aside from these, you should also watch out for genetic diseases that your pup may inherit from its parents. Be sure to buy a Yorkie puppy only from reputable breeders who screen their parent dogs.

If you decide to adopt a parti Yorkie instead, it is advisable to have it screened for genetic health issues. 

To ensure that your parti Yorkie is always in tip-top shape, you should only give high-quality kibble.

Giving your dog vitamins and healthy treats are also ways to improve its overall well-being. Also, don’t forget to exercise your dog!

RELATED: How Long Do Yorkies Live? Average Lifespan & Causes of Death

How to Groom a Parti Yorkie? DIY Grooming Tips for Parti Yorkshire Terriers

Grooming a Yorkie is not an easy task. Their long and majestic hair is sometimes too intimidating to touch!

However, with a bit of practice, you can surely groom your parti Yorkshire Terrier in the comforts of your home. 

DIY grooming starts with bathing. It is recommended to bathe your Yorkie pup as often as once a week to prevent tangling and matting of hair. This is also done to keep your dog smelling fresh and free from ticks. 

When bathing your parti Yorkie, it is important that you use good quality shampoo, preferably one that has a pleasing scent and natural ingredients.

Many Yorkie breeders use organic shampoos with baking soda, aloe vera, and oat proteins as ingredients. 

Make sure to untangle your pet’s hair while bathing it. This may be challenging if your Yorkie is still a stubborn pup, but it will get better in time! After your pup’s bath, dry its coat using a hair dryer while combing.

As for grooming tools, here are some useful ones you may need to get for your parti Yorkie: 

  • Nail clippers
  • Hair dryer
  • Toothbrush
  • Dog toothpaste
  • Dry shampoo
  • Electric trimmer

Small dog breeds are prone to oral health issues. Therefore, you should brush your dog’s teeth or give it dental treats at least three to four times a week. 

Also, for nail cutting, you should do this as frequently as necessary. Once you feel that your puppy’s nails are getting long and sharp, you can trim them right away. Just try to have your pup stay still! 

Lastly, if you want to cut your dog’s hair, a cordless electric trimmer is the best way to do it.

However, be warned, as this part will require a lot of patience and practice. Not every Yorkie owner is an expert DIY groomer, but with practice, you can be!

Here’s a helpful video on how to groom your Yorkie:

Grooming Guide - Full Grooming Yorkshire Terier #44

Parti Yorkie Puppy Price & Expenses: Are Parti Yorkies More Expensive Than Standard Yorkies?

One of the most common concerns of aspiring parti Yorkie owners is the cost of buying and owning one of these puppies.

To give you a quick overview, you will need to shell out anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 for a parti Yorkie puppy. Keep in mind that this is just the price of the puppy itself!

Parti Yorkies are typically more expensive than other variants of the Yorkshire Terrier breed. This is mainly because of the recent high demand and public interest.

Of course, you can always save a ton of money if you choose to adopt a parti Yorkie instead but they are typically harder to find. 

If you are interested in buying a parti-colored Yorkie, you might be wondering what determines the price of these precious dogs.

The answer to that is a bunch of factors such as the puppy’s bloodline, documents and papers, appearance, health condition, and breeder guarantee. 

On top of the initial cost of buying a parti Yorkie puppy, you should also know about the common prices of other essential items. 

The following is a list of all the things you need to buy for your parti Yorkie puppy:

Type of ExpenseAverage Cost
Dog Bed$30
Carrier$60
Microchipping$25
Neutering/Spaying$100
Nail Clipper$20
Grooming Brush$20
Toothbrush and Toothpaste$10
Dog Shampoo$10
Toys$30
Collar$20
Hair Dryer$20
Total Initial Cost$345

As you can see, you will need an extra $345 to buy the essential accessories for your parti Yorkie. However, if you already have some of these items at home, then you might be able to save some money.

Also, it is common for breeders to bundle their puppies with some of these accessories so keep an eye on those deals.

Hold on, it doesn’t end there! For the recurring cost of owning a parti Yorkie puppy, you should expect to spend an average of $1,000 to $1,500 per year. This covers vitamins, dog food, treats, regular shots, and some grooming products.

Places to Find Parti Yorkie Puppies for Sale or Adoption

Three parti Yorkie puppies for sale or adoption

If you are already in love with parti Yorkies and want to get yourself one, this part of the guide is perfect for you! Here you will find the best places to find parti Yorkshire Terrier puppies for sale or adoption.

Now, before you go get yourself a new best friend, make sure to keep a couple of things in mind. 

When buying a parti Yorkie, make sure to choose a reputable breeder. Do not buy from backyard breeders or puppy mills. Check out their customers’ feedback and the environment where they breed their puppies. 

Here are some Yorkshire Terrier breeders where you can find parti Yorkie puppies for sale:

  • Heritage Hills Yorkies – Heritage Hills Yorkies is a parti Yorkie breeder located in Kansas City. They are known for providing high-quality puppies to their customers.
  • Stonewall Ranch – Stonewall Ranch is another Yorkie breeder. They specialize in breeding parti Yorkies and they offer a bunch of discounts.
  • Jeff’s Yorkies and Boutique – This Yorkie breeder has been in the business for over 15 years and specializes in producing 27 different color options for Yorkie including parti Yorkies. These colors range from chocolate, biro, parti, biewer, gold dust, merles, and up to the traditional Yorkie colors.

RELATED: Best Yorkshire Terrier Breeders (2021): 10 Places to Find Yorkie Puppies for Sale

Adoption is always a good idea. You just need to make sure you are adopting a healthy puppy with no underlying health conditions. This will save you a ton of money; plus, you are also saving a dog’s life this way!

Here are some pet adoption sites to find parti Yorkies for adoption:

  • Pets4You – Pets4You is an online platform that bridges breeders and dog owners. Established in 2006, this site caters to both cat and dog lovers. You can check out their listings for a Yorkshire Terrier from time to time. There’s a good chance there’s a parti Yorkie in there!
  • Petfinder – Petfinder is an adoption platform. They have all kinds of pets, from bunnies and birds to cats and dogs! Petfinder is partnered with different shelters and rescues all over the country. You can check their listing for a parti Yorkie.
  • Adopt-a-Pet – Adopt-a-Pet is another adoption site where you can find parti Yorkies. Their service has one of the largest pet selections online. Plus, you can also narrow your search by using their location-based filter. 
  • Operation Kindness – If you are looking to adopt a parti Yorkie, start your search with Operation Kindness. This is an online service that lists adoptable pets. Their search filter is not that effective but you can surely spot a parti Yorkie if ever there’s one! 

RELATED: 10 Best Yorkshire Terrier Rescues for Adoption (2021): Our Top 10 Picks!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Parti Yorkies Hypoallergenic?

Similar to other Yorkshire Terriers, parti Yorkies have long and silky hair. Despite their length, their coats are known to be non-shedding. This simply means they can be considered hypoallergenic. 

Unlike dog breeds that shed a lot, parti Yorkies do not have undercoats. This is one of the main reasons why Yorkies are not shedders. More often than not, these dogs will only shed if you brush their hair vigorously. 

That said, it is still recommended to keep your parti Yorkie’s hair short. This way, brushing is more manageable, and your pet will look neat and tidy even with minimal maintenance. 

Are Parti Yorkies Smart?

In general, Yorkies (including the parti-colored) are highly intelligent dogs. In fact, in a study conducted on 138 dog breeds, Yorkshire Terriers ranked as the 34th smartest breed.

These dogs fared better than the other terriers such as the Boston Terrier, Welsh Terrier, and Irish Terrier.

While they are not at the very top of the list, you should not have a problem training a parti Yorkie. After all, all dogs, despite their intelligence ranking, can be trained with a bit of perseverance and patience. 

Final Thoughts

As you have learned in this guide, parti Yorkies are purebred Yorkshire Terriers. They are fantastic companions and great family dogs. Plus, their unique coat color has a subtle hint of controversy and an interesting story. 

If you are looking for a small dog that does not shed a lot and is fun to be with, the parti Yorkie should be at the top of your list. Just be prepared to shell out a pretty penny because they are definitely not cheap!

John Carter

My name is John Carter and I absolutely love pets, especially cats and dogs. I've got a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Behaviour and Welfare and have several years’ experience working in animal shelters and rescues. My passion for animals started at a very young age as I grow up on a farm with several horses, cows, cats, chickens, and dogs on our property.

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