How Do Yorkies Show Affection? (15 Ways Yorkies Are Affectionate)

Do you love your dog?

Of course you do! And you show your pup how much you love it any chance you get.

There’s no mystery about how you feel.

But does your pup return those feelings? Are Yorkies affectionate?

And if so, how do Yorkies show affection to us?

There are actually a number of different ways Yorkshire terriers demonstrate their love.

Keep reading to learn all the methods Yorkies use to display affection. You’ll quickly realize just how much your little pup actually loves you!

How Do Yorkies Show Affection?

There are plenty of ways Yorkies show affection, for example through body language like wagging their tails, licking your face, and eye contact.

But unlike other dogs, they only show affection to their owners, so don’t feel too offended if a Yorkie that isn’t yours isn’t showing you much love. They are simply very loyal to a single person.

But if you are the owner, you want your pup to shower most of its love and affection on you. Does it? Let’s see just how Yorkies show affection and find out!

Tail Wagging

yorkie wagging tail to display affection

You always know your Yorkie is showing you affection when it wags its tail. Even yorkies with docked tails wag them. This is the classic expression of happiness and affection, and it means your Yorkie is relaxed around you and feels calm. The relaxed tail muscles reflect this.

When a dog is calm, it wags its tail with ease. But if its muscles are rigid and it is wagging its tail, you’ll notice immediately. This usually indicates that your pup is irritated.


Yorkies love playing with their owners. It is a sure sign of affection. They may be tiny and cute, but they have no problem with squelching their paws in some mud and getting dirty.

Just like any other dog, they also love a game of fetch with their loving owners. And if a Yorkie brings you its toy, which they see as something they own, it means they must really love you.


Do Yorkies like to cuddle? Most do. Cuddles show that your Yorkie is comfortable around you. When a dog is happy to snuggle up close, that is a sure way to know that it adores you.

Even if it is just sitting on your lap or lying by your side, it shows affection. This isn’t something a Yorkie would do, if it didn’t consider you a close part of its life. It is the same if it naps around you. Yorkies won’t nap around someone they don’t trust.

Cuddling after mealtime is also a strong indication of affection. Food is a prime concern for our dog buddies. In fact, it is the most vital issue in their lives. After a meal, dogs turn their attention to someone they are close to.

Yorkies want to rest after having filling their tummy. If your Yorkie wants to come nap next to you after eating, it definitely loves you. Another excellent way dogs will express their affection that is similar to cuddling is when they put their head or paws on your legs.

Licking And Nose-Nudging

Every time your Yorkie approaches and nudges you with its nose, it’s an indication of affection. It is your pup’s way of showing how much it likes you.

That said, nose-nudging is also a technique dogs use to get attention. You can tell that your dog is displaying affection, if an expressive stare follows the nose-nudge.

Many owners are left wondering: why do Yorkies stare at you? Well, most of the time, it is as a way of showing you affection. Especially if it is followed, or preceded by nudging or licking.

Licking your face is a dog’s equivalent to kissing. These licks are a sign of affection and are something that your Yorkie’s mother would have done to it as puppies. It is a method to show affection that they learn from a young age. And most Yorkies lick you and everything else throughout their lives.

However, affection is not the only reason a dog might lick you. If your dog’s licking is a problem for you or someone else in your family, figuring out why it is licking is the first step in how to train a dog to not lick your face.

6 Other Reasons For Licking

Here are six of the other reasons Yorkies enjoy licking us with their tongues.

1. Attention Seeking

Yorkies love being the center of attention and they can be very cunning about how they get it. They quickly learn that the more they lick, the more love and attention they get. If they learn that it does not get them what they want, you will see an improvement in their behavior.

2. Showing Respect

Licking may also be a symbol of gratitude and modesty towards you. It is a positive sign, because it indicates that your dog regards you as the leader. Many dog behavior issues stem from the dog’s belief that it is in control.

3. Communicating

Dogs convey thoughts and emotions by licking each other. It is a type of dog communication and body language.

When a dog licks the ears of another dog, it is expressing sympathy. It may also be an act of courtship, when a male dog does it to a female dog. Licking its lips is a symbol of submission and even obedience.

4. Tasting Your Skin

Dogs enjoy the taste of our skin, particularly if we’ve been sweating a lot. We excrete salt through the pores in our skin when we sweat.

5. Investigating And Exploring

A dog’s tongue can collect a lot of data about its surroundings. When it comes to humans, we lick something to get a taste of it. Since dogs have a fraction of our taste buds, licking is less about taste for them.

Licking is all about detecting texture and odor. It can seem odd that licking something aids in their ability to smell it.

When dogs lick something, the taste goes to the roof of their mouth and is carried to the nose. For that reason, scenting breeds, like hound dogs, have prominent jowls that sweep the ground, lifting odors into the mouth.

6. Boredom

Yorkies have a lot of energy and are very intelligent. They may become bored and irritated if they do not get enough exercise and activity. This can lead to excessive licking. You need to know how to keep your Yorkie entertained.

But dogs can tell whether you want more kisses, based on your body language. If you don’t like the face kisses, let your dog know. It is just one of the ways they like to express affection, so you can offer an alternative. You could let your pup give you arm and hand kisses instead.

Eye Contact

yorkshire terrier making eye contact to demonstrate affection

Eye contact is an easy way to tell if your Yorkie is giving you some affection. It shows that they are engaged with you and feel comfortable enough to be looking at you.

We humans make eye contact to prove that we are paying attention. In the world of dogs, this is not the case. When dogs lock eyes with each other, it is seen as a challenge.

But it is different when they lock eyes with us. Dogs typically look at their beloved humans out of affection, not a challenge to fight. If your Yorkie returns your gaze, it typically means it is content and happy with you.

Following You Around

Your Yorkie may follow you around like a tasty snack. If it’s your first time taking care of a dog, you might begin to wonder if you have treats hidden in your pockets. But that’s probably not the case.

When a Yorkie loves you, it will follow you all the time. Yorkies aren’t good at reading body language or recognizing that you need some alone time. So it will always be there.

In fact, if you leave Yorkies alone too much, they can develop separation anxiety. Try to concentrate on your dog and give it your full attention during bonding activities like walks and playtime.

Warm Welcome

yorkshire terrier giving warm welcome

Part of the delight of getting home is when you receive a warm welcome from your dog. It will respond like you have been away for days.

It will jump, wag its tail, and spin around. It’s an indication that your dog loves you and is delighted you’re home safely.

Nothing beats a dog happily running to you when it hears its name after you return from a long day at the office. Your pup will act like it hasn’t seen you in years. It’s even better when it is playing with its favorite toy or exploring a new smell, but it drops that fun activity to come greet you.

Running Away With Your Things

When your Yorkie runs away with your things, it might be a bit annoying. Sometimes it’s extremely annoying to have to chase it down.

But it might make you happy to learn that this behavior is a true sign of love. Your fragrance is all over the items your pup steals, and that brings it joy, contentment, and a feeling of protection.

Research has shown that your dog’s brain’s reward center, or caudate nucleus, is activated by your scent.

A researcher named Gregory Berns taught dogs to enter an MRI machine voluntarily and without anesthesia. He then scanned their brains while exposing them to various human scents.

Each dog’s caudate lit up the most when it smelled the scent of someone it recognized. The brain activation patterns appeared strikingly similar to those found when humans are shown pictures of someone they love.


We know that yawning is contagious, and this is not limited to humans. When we yawn, our dogs sometimes yawn, too. In fact, research has shown that dogs actually yawn together to a higher degree than we humans do.

The same research also determined that yawning could be a sign of appreciation in dogs. So when your Yorkie yawns with you, it could be displaying its affection for you.

Eyebrow And Ear Gestures

Facial appearances can give us a hint about a dog’s feelings. A profound way your Yorkie displays its love is when it lifts its eyebrows and move its ears back. Your Yorkie’s eyebrows signify its affection for you, and demonstrate that it is delighted to see you.


When your Yorkie leans against you with its full-body weight, it may be nervous or need something. Ofen what it needs are cuddles or a feeling of security. Leaning on you is a sign that your dog trusts you without questions. You can also think of it like a full-body embrace.


A dog’s grin may have several interpretations. When your Yorkie hears your voice and comes up to you with an open mouth, while making eye contact, then you can be sure it feels happy and relaxed around you.

Experts have discovered that dogs and humans have similar muscles when expressing their feelings. A Yorkie grin is exclusive for human or dog buddies and shows enjoyment and love. It is a telltale sign your Yorkie is happy.


Does your Yorkie loves to lie down and release a long and blissful moan? Gentle tones like moans and soft cries are indications of happiness in dogs. If your dog cuddles up and moans, it’s a way of expressing that it feels secure at your side.


A lot of owners do not like when their dog hops around, but it is an affectionate gesture of excitement. Your dog likes your face and hopping is an attempt to get closer.

Barking At Strangers

yorkshire terrier barking

This may seem like an unusual way to display affection, but if your Yorkie is barking at strangers, it is acting in your best interests.

This barking behavior is especially common with small dogs. Yorkies are also very territorial. They are extra protective of you, your home, and everything else that belongs to you.

They will never grow large or strong enough to defend you physically. But Yorkies can protect you by alerting you to any possible threats.

If you own a Yorkie or another small dog, you might have noticed that they:

  • Bark at other people and dogs when you’re out for a stroll
  • Bark at seemingly nothing at all
  • Greet anything or anyone that comes close to your house with a bark

It is possible to alter this instinctive behavior and stop your Yorkie from barking so much, but it is not an easy task. But if you live in close proximity to other, you’re going to need to teach your pup not to bark so much.

Just understand why all Yorkies bark a lot and that it is one of their ways of expressing their love for you. They simply want to make sure nothing bad ever happens to you, so they warn you of every possible potential danger.

Are Yorkies Affectionate?

Yorkies are very affectionate dogs. They show this in a variety of different methods, all of which we’ve just described, like face licking, tail wagging, and wanting to play with their owners.

Do Yorkies Like Affection?

Yorkies also love to receive attention. They always want to be doted on. If you’re planning to get a Yorkie, make sure you are ready to devote the time required to give your pup all the attention it wants and needs.

In fact, the Yorkshire terrier is one of the dog breeds that requires the most affection and attention. They have a very loving and affectionate personality and want nothing more than to receive tons of attention from their favorite human.

Not only will they love a cuddle from you, but they will also love for you to show affection through playing with them, especially if you have a younger dog.

Yorkies are well known for holding a deep connection with their owners. In fact, it can by quite clingy, with constant cuddles and always following you around. This breed is famous for being a one-owner dog. And they are incredibly loyal to that one owner.

How Do You Know If A Yorkie Loves You?

Do Yorkies love their owners? In most cases yes.

The best way to know if a Yorkie loves you is if it kisses you or licks your face. This is a dog’s number one way of displaying affection to its owner.

You may find it quite overwhelming if your Yorkie starts jumping all over you and licking your face, but it’s nothing to be worried about. In fact, it’s the complete opposite.

Just as a human’s number one way to show affection is through kissing, the same is also true for a Yorkshire Terrier. How flattering!

How Do Yorkies Pick Their Favorite Person?

A Yorkshire Terrier will pick its favorite person based on whoever provides it with the most care. This doesn’t just include affection, but also those small everyday tasks, like preparing your dog’s meals, brushing it, and taking it for walks. They’re known to cling to the person they see as the biggest caregiver in their life.

Why Is My Yorkie So Clingy?

Your Yorkie may have some anxiety issues. There may be some separation issues and you may find it following you around constantly while at home, or you may notice that it is not happy when you leave the house and it is left on its own.

If it becomes a problem, your vet may be able to help in treating your terrier for this and should be able to provide behavioral modifications to make life a little easier for you and your dog.

It could also be the complete opposite of this! Dogs are great at sensing if something is wrong, and this includes their owners’ emotions. If your pup has noticed that you’re feeling stressed or anxious, it may not want to leave you alone. It is another way Yorkies show their affection.

How Yorkies Show Affection: Conclusion

There are many things to love about your Yorkie. This breed is faithful, lovable, and will bring a lot of joy and laughter into your home. As a token of appreciation, you want your Yorkie to treasure its life and love you as much as you love it.

It’s not difficult to understand how to love our dogs, but it is tougher to assess how your dog feels about you. Luckily, Yorkies have numerous ways they show their affection.

If you are not sure how your pup feels about you, pay attention to the way it acts around you. If it displays any of the above signs of affection (usually you’ll see most, if not all), then you can be sure it loves you. And when your Yorkie expresses its affection, it’s real, complete, and for keeps.


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