Silky Terrier Breed Guide

Breed Group:
Companion Dogs

Middle Age: 6 years

Geriatric Age: 12 years

Life Span: 12 to 15 years

Silky Terrier Background Information & History

A cross between a Yorkshire Terrier and an Australian Terrier creates the fun-loving and energetic Silky Terrier. These tiny pups originated in Australia back in the 1890’s and were solely created for the purpose of being a loving companion.

During the years of World War II, a few Silky Terriers were brought over to the United States from Australia. These couple of dogs sparked a huge interest in America and pretty soon 100’s of Silky Terriers were being brought over to fill this new demand. By 1959, the United States officially recognized the Silky Terrier as a legitimate breed.

Silky Terrier Temperament & Personality

The Silky Terrier is loved by many, and that’s not only because of their adorable appearance. The breed is loving, alert, and inquisitive, everything you could possibly want in a household companion. They also serve as an excellent watchdog and will alert their owners at the first sign of an intruder.

Like most Terriers, Silkies are known to be quite independent, however, that doesn’t stop them from showering their owners with complete love and devotion on a daily basis.

Silky Terrier Training Tips

As said before, Terriers are known to be a challenge when it’s time for training. Their intelligence needs to be honed in with firm and consistent practices. As a general rule of thumb, start the canine training process while they are still a puppy so they become a well-behaved pet from the very beginning. They also respond very well to positive reinforcement. Always reward good behavior with praise and playtime.

Silky Terrier Exercise Needs

Although they may be small, the Silky Terrier still needs daily exercise to stay both happy and healthy. These pups should get at least a 30-minute walk around the park or have an open space to run and play as they please. If your Silky does not get an adequate amount of exercise, he may turn destructive or develop bad behavior. Prevent this from happening by giving your dog plenty of entertainment through daily exercise and your undivided attention.

Silky Terrier Lifespan

Silkies usually live to be about 12 to 15 years old.

Silky Terrier Breed Popularity

In general, Terriers are one of the most popular and beloved breeds throughout the U.S. Although the Silky may not be the most well-known out of the entire bunch, they are currently ranked as the 100th most popular breed in America by the AKC.

Silky Terrier Feeding Requirements

Silkies should consume between ½ to 1 cup of high-quality food a day, split into two equal meals. However, keep in mind that not all Silkies are created equally. That’s why it’s important to consider the dog’s age, size, weight, activity level, and metabolism before creating their individual feeding regimen.

Silky Terrier Grooming

As you could probably assume by their name, the Silky Terrier has a beautifully elegant coat that gives them their signature look. Generally, Silkies should be brushed at least 3 times a week and bathed once a month in order to keep their coat clean and healthy.

Aside from regular canine coat grooming, make sure to brush your dog’s teeth once a week and trim his nails whenever necessary. If you can hear his nails tapping on the hardwood floor, that usually means it’s time for a trim.

Are Silky Terriers Good With Kids?

Although their rambunctious personality and loving demeanor work great with children, their fragile size may be too risky for young children. That’s why many professionals recommend waiting to have a Silky in a household until the children are old enough to understand how they are should handle their pet.

Silky Terrier Health Problems

Terriers, in general, tend to be fairly healthy, however, that does not make them immune to all health ailments. Possible dog health problems a Silky may face include:

Diabetes Mellitus: Just like in humans, dogs can also suffer from Diabetes as well. Diabetes in dogs occurs when the body is unable to regulate blood sugar levels, which causes a number of different symptoms.

Epilepsy: Epilepsy in dogs is a condition that causes seizures. This condition can be brought on by a number of different triggers such as toxins, brain damage, or even tumors. While this condition may be severe, most dogs can continue living a normal life.

Patellar Luxation: Patellar Luxation in dogs occurs when the kneecap becomes dislocated from its regular positioning. When this happens, a dog may experience pain, lameness, and eventually arthritis.

Other Resources

National Breed Website: Silky Terrier Club of America

Rescue: Silky Terrier Rescue