Yorkshire terriers are among the most popular dog breeds because of their friendly, affectionate disposition. However, without adequate exercise or proper training, these dogs can be very hyper, particularly as puppies. There are several things you can do to help your dog calm down.
Give your dog 30 minutes of exercise daily. Time in the backyard is insufficient. Instead, your dog should have one or two brisk walks. Yorkies don't need as much exercise as many other dog breeds, but well-exercised dogs are less hyper and more trainable, so exercise should be the starting point for any training program.
Reward your dog for calm behavior. Dog owners often inadvertently reward rambunctious behavior by playing with or yelling at dogs who are tearing around the house in a hyperactive spree. Instead, wait for your dog to calm down. As soon as she becomes calm, say "calm" or a similar command. Click the training clicker and give her a treat. This helps your dog learn an association between a command and calm behavior. Practice this exercise several times each day for a week. Then progress to saying "calm" while your dog is being hyper and rewarding her as soon as she calms down.
Put your dog in a crate when you are not home and when visitors come over. Crates can help calm hyper dogs, and many dogs are particularly rambunctious when visitors first walk into the house. When your dog calms down, let her out to calmly greet visitors, and click the training clicker and give her a treat when she sits or otherwise behaves calmly.
- Your Pure Bred Puppy: Yorkshire Terrier Temperament
- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: Exercise for Dogs
- The Power of Positive Dog Training; Pat Miller
- Yorkies are highly affectionate dogs who need lots of attention. If you are away from your dog all day, she's more likely to become rambunctious, so consider hiring a dog walker to break up long stretches of time alone.
Brenna Davis is a professional writer who covers parenting, pets, health and legal topics. Her articles have appeared in a variety of newspapers and magazines as well as on websites. She is a court-appointed special advocate and is certified in crisis counseling and child and infant nutrition. She holds degrees in developmental psychology and philosophy from Georgia State University.