Do Golden Retrievers and Yorkies Get Along?

If you are looking to bring a new dog into the home (or two new dogs), it is important to make sure they get along, especially if they are Golden Retrievers and Yorkies.

In this post, we will review whether these dog breeds get along, what factors you need to consider when bringing them under the same roof, and how best to achieve two lifelong doggy friends.

Do golden retrievers, and Yorkies get along? The answer is complicated, but in essence: Yorkies can be suspicious of other dogs, any other dogs, but they absolutely can get along with Golden Retrievers so long as you socialize them and train them early on.

Socializing and training at the appropriate ages is key to ensuring these two get along. But first, what is the difference between the two breeds and how does that factor into training and socialization?

Differences in Breed

Yorkshire terriers might be small in stature but they have some of the biggest personalities you will find in the dog world which means that they are an excellent companion dog for more docile personalities specifically breeds like golden retrievers.

It is important to understand the breeding information between the two so that you can understand the amount of maintenance and training you need to allocate to each.

Golden Retriever Yorkshire Terrier
Height Male: Up to 25 inches

Female: Up to 34 inches

Male: Up to 10 inches

Female: Up to 10 inches

Weight Male: Roughly 50-80 pounds

Female: Roughly 50-70 pounds

Male: Roughly 6-10 inches

Female: Roughly 6-10 inches

Lifespan Up to 12 years Up to 15 years
Temperament Smart, Friendly, Loyal Smart, Friendly, Loyal
Training Ability Level Easy Medium


As you can see in the table above, in terms of temperament they are very similar. Yorkshire terriers have a very large personality; they are adventurous and affectionate with their owners.

They make excellent companion dogs and can be taught to bark at strangers which is why they serve well as watchdogs.

Yorkies are, in fact, the second most popular dog to have in America because they enjoy spending time with their owners. They love spending time with older children as well and other dogs in the house so long as both dogs have been appropriately trained.

Golden retrievers are equally famous for their intellect and their beauty. These breeds are much more active dogs, and they take longer to mature.

They love to roam around the yard, and as a hunting breed, they do best with regular exercise. Just like Yorkshire Terriers, Golden Retrievers remain very loyal to their owners and quite affectionate toward other people or dogs.


In terms of trainability, you will have to exercise more effort with the Yorkshire Terrier than the Golden Retriever.

Training a Golden Retriever

Golden Retrievers can be trained within 10 weeks of being born, but continual training will need to be exercised for the whole of their puppy phase.

Intelligent, they learn quickly and so long as you reinforce their socialization and training, they will learn to be gentle and friendly toward other dogs.

Training a Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terriers are intelligent and therefore easy to train. They will learn new commands at a faster rate than the average dog and with persistent training, you can socialize them to behave well among children and other pets, including golden retrievers.

  • They can be stubborn if you do not exercise proper boundaries.
  • You have to remain consistent.
  • The problem with the Yorkshire Terrier is that it is very small and cute and therefore people allow it to get away with more than they would be the dog larger in size. If a dog like a terrier is allowed free rein in the home they will eventually assume they are the boss and at that point, it can be very difficult to change their behavior.

Yorkshire Terrier puppies need to be trained as soon as you get them. When they are puppies, you will have better luck avoiding bad habits.

When they are young they need early socialization, meaning exposure to different sounds, people, sites, and experiences. This early socialization will help them to become friendly and particularly friendly toward other dogs.

For Yorkshires, no matter how many animals you have in the house, they will assert themselves by way of amusing hijinks. This is not necessarily aggressive, but rather, a sign of self-confidence.


Golden retrievers work best with Yorkies if the golden retriever is already an adult.

The reason for this is that Golden Retriever puppies are very boisterous. During the puppy phase which lasts approximately 3 years with their large size and big paws, they are not typically respectful of space nor are they gentle which is why during this phase they typically ram into furniture and other people.

While this is never necessarily malevolent, it can still hurt the significantly smaller Yorkie.

Once the Golden Retriever outgrows that puppy phase they make for excellent companions with Yorkshire Terriers.

Introducing a New Yorkie to an Existing Golden Retriever

If you have a golden retriever at home already and you are simply planning to introduce a Yorkshire Terrier,  you should already know how tolerance your current dogs are of other dogs.

When you are ready to introduce your new Yorkshire Terrier to the home, here are some tips to follow:

  1. Have separate food bowls and water bowls already set up?
  2. Have a playpen so that you can separate the dogs if necessary during this adjustment phase.
  3. Only have immediate family present during the introduction. If you have too many friends and neighbors it can overwhelm your new dog and the whole purpose of this introduction is to familiarize the dog with the other dog, not the whole neighborhood.
  4. Put both dogs on a leash. It’s recommended that you have a leash and a harness rather than a collar because when the two dogs meet there might be quick movements or jumping and a harness is the safest way to maintain control over the dogs without injury.
  5. Introduce the dogs outside of the home, in your front yard but not near the front door. This will help to avoid an intrusion immediately on to the existing dog’s territory.
  6. During this time allow the dogs to sniff one another. The scent glands are an important way to relay information about, gender, and mood. So allow the dogs to do this at their own pace.

Once the dogs know one another, spend some time along with the newcomer. Lead the new Yorkshire Terrier through every room in the house allowing them to explore or sniff as they see fit.

Make sure to stop near the bed, toy area, and food and water bowls during which time you should speak words indicative of item.

This is a process you will want to repeat with your Yorkshire Terrier several times per day for the first two or three weeks that you have the puppy.

When you are done making the rounds inside, lead the puppy along the perimeter of your yard so that they can acquaint themselves with the full territory available to them.

What to Expect When The Two Meet

What reactions can I expect when I bring the two dogs together? Don’t rush things. It’s normal for both dogs to take time, maybe several weeks to really get accustomed to one another.

They might vary between curiosity and disinterest during this time. In other cases, they might instantly get along and become immediate friends. Just keep doing what you should in terms of training and socialization.

What Each Dog Needs are Different

Do they have the same needs? Remember that even though they might be best friends, these are still two dogs with very separate needs.

There’s going to be a gap in terms of exercise, one-on-one time that you have to spend with each, and of course feeding times as well as serving sizes.

Be sure to continue caring for the golden retriever the way that you already have and provide care for the Yorkshire Terrier based on breeding requirements.

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