The Morkie has seen a huge increase in popularity over the last few years as more and more people fall in love with the breed and choose to add a little morkie to their families. For those who don’t know, morkies are a mix between the maltese and Yorkshire terrier and although there are a number of Yorkshire terrier mix breed options out there, morkies are definitely the most popular. The breed is also known as the morkshire terrier but we will be referring to it as a morkie throughout the article as it is the more commonly used name.
Morkies tend to have a small size, very few hereditary health issues, and are a great little pet but they can have a mixed temperament. Just like most dog breeds that are a hybrid between two more established breeds, morkies can take traits from both parental bloodlines with both the Yorkshire terrier and the maltese having very different characteristics. Thankfully though, the vast majority of reputable breeders will not sell a morkie puppy unless it has at least three generations of morkie parents rather than being a first, second, or third-generation descended form direct Yorkshire terrier or Maltese parents.
Thankfully, this is an easy way for breeders to make sure that the morkie dogs that they are selling have a more balanced temperament as they have been able to implement selective breeding throughout the three generations to try and promote healthy personality traits. This usually results in a really well-rounded dog with a pleasant temperament similar to what you would expect from the other small dog breeds.
That said though, there is no guarantee in the personality of your morkie and due to it being such a new breed, there is still a high chance that it can pull traits from either the Yorkshire terrier or maltese bloodlines. We are now going to be taking a more detailed look at what you can expect from your morkie as well as ways you can discourage unwanted behaviors if they do begin to show.
Temperament Of The Parent Breeds
To understand the morkie temperament, you first have to understand the common personality traits of both the parent breeds. Just like many of the other mixed breed dogs, they can often take on both positive and negative traits of their purebred parents and the morkie dog is no different. As we touched on above, people who breed the morkie bloodline do implement selective breeding to try and produce the positive personality traits of the parent breeds but it will take generations before the more negative traits have a minimal chance of emerging.
First up, we will be going over the Yorkshire terriers dog breed and as most people know, Yorkshire terriers are extremely active, intelligent dogs with big personalities with many being very inquisitive yet having a feisty side too. Provided a Yorkshire terrier has been socialized enough and trained, they make excellent pets and are one of the most popular dog breeds all around the world. A Yorkshire terrier tends to love attention while also being very protective of its owners too.
Moving onto the common personality traits of the Maltese bloodline that most morkie breeders tend to promote in their pups that they produce. The Maltese breed was bred to be spoiled lapdogs rather than working dogs like the yorkie, over the generation this has resulted in a very gentle, sweet-natured, affectionate, loving, and calm dog breed that can make an ideal companion due to their loyal and devoted nature to their owners.
Positives Of The Morkie Temperament
With the morkie being a maltese yorkie mix, it can take on any of the positive traits mentioned above while also having its own unique personality too. The more desired traits and characteristics in a morkie tend to be the intelligence and inquisitive nature of the yorkie while also having the loving, gentle, and calm nature of the maltese bloodline all in one pup. This can result in a very friendly, cute, adorable little morkie pooch that can make a great family dog but it is very rare that all of these traits will be present in your morkie.
Almost all morkies will form a strong attachment to their owners and the family that they love with and absolutely love being played with and will actively try to get you to play with them at times. A morkie also tends to be very excitable, energetic, confident, and loyal too and is one of the more social dogs from the smaller breeds. Depending on what you want out of your new dog, this may make a morkie an ideal new addition to your family as they do tend to make a strong bond with their human family members quickly.
Now, we have left this last common trait to last as it can be considered either a positive or negative trait in the breed depending on what you are looking for. A morkie can be extremely suspicious of strangers as this is a common trait from the yorkie bloodline that seems to persist in a morkie too. They will do everything in their power to alert their family of a stranger or even an unusual sound and although they do not make ideal guard dogs due to their small size, they are an excellent early warning system.
On the flipside of this though, we have seen a number of reports from people who own a morkie saying that their dog can bark for five to ten minutes just because it heard a neighbor coughing. Although this characteristic can often be trained out of your morkie, it can be problematic if you are living in a small apartment with thin walls and strange noises on all sides that may take a while for your morkie to get used to.
Negatives Of The Morkie Temperament
Moving on to the more negative sides of the morkie personality, as a morkie can quickly form a very strong bond with the human members of its family, it can often want a large amount of attention and depending on your other commitments and the time you have available, you may not be able to give your pet morkie all of the attention that it may want. If your morkie feels like it is not being given enough attention then this may lead to some destructive behavior with the dog taking it out on items in the home.
The morkie breed can also be prone to separation anxiety too, and separation anxiety can be problematic to train out of dogs, unfortunately. If your morkie is left alone for long periods of time then its anxiety can kick in and result in your dog barking for extended periods of time while alone. Again, this will depend on your home and your own personal situation, but if you do live in a small apartment with thin walls and have to leave home for work or school then this may result in your morkie barking for long periods of time.
Although this is less common in the morkie breed, they can suffer from what is commonly known as small dog syndrome while also having a diva attitude. This can result in your morkie potentially forgetting its size if it takes a dislike to another dog while out on its walks or in the dog park and it barking at much larger breeds aggressively. Thankfully though, this is usually much easier to train out of your morkie and discourage with basic dog training techniques but it does require consistency to train the behavior out of your morkie.
Although a more common train, the stubbornness of a morkie can usually be broken with a treat. This tends to be another trait inherited from the terrier bloodline where they can be very stubborn and only do things on their terms. Just like many other dog breeds though if your morkie does decide to be stubborn and not do as required, flashing its favorite treat can often get your morkie to do as you wish without issue.
Are Morkies Good Pets?
That brings us to one of the most commonly asked questions that we see when people ask about adding a morkie to their family. In our opinion, morkies make excellent pets and are an excellent little dog that has the spirit and inquisitiveness of a terrier while also having the loving and playful nature of the maltese bloodline too. Provided that you are willing to put some time and effort into training the negative traits out of your morkie, they can make great additions to your household.
Do Morkies Make Good Family Dogs?
In our opinion, morkies can make for an excellent family dog and will likely adapt very well to living with families as well as living with small children too. As we have touched on earlier, the morkie breed tends to be a dog that will quickly build a bond with its owners and see itself as a part of your pack. This will often lead to your dog wanting to play with your children and can offer a way to get both your dog and your kids from under your feet while at home if you have other things that you have to get done.
As we mentioned above, many breeders will try to promote the maltese traits in a morkies personality and the maltese dog makes excellent family dogs. Even if your morkshire terrier takes more of its characteristics from its yorkie bloodline, they still make excellent family dogs.
Are Morkies Aggressive?
The vast majority of morkies will get along with other dogs and other household pets with ease provided that they have either been brought up together or are introduced to each other as family members rather than just put into a room and left alone. Although it is very rare for a morkie to be overly aggressive, they can become a little protective if threatened or if their small dog syndrome kicks in but as we touched on earlier, you can usually train this out of the breed.
Do Morkies Like Cuddling?
We see a large number of potential morkie owners reaching out and asking if the breed enjoy cuddling. If your morkie takes most of its characteristics and personality traits from the maltese bloodline, it is extremely likely that your pet morkie will enjoy cuddling due to having bred as a lapdog. That said though, even if your morkie takes most of its characteristics from the yorkie bloodline there is a high chance that it will enjoy cuddling.