How Long Do Yorkies Stay in Heat?

If you are having a Yorkie as your pet and you are interested in knowing her life cycle including heat duration and other important things related to this occasion, then you are at the right article. Being a responsible pet parent is necessary for you as well as for your pet. 

This will ensure the development of a good relationship between you and your pet and will help you in keeping everything under control.

How Long Yorkies Stay in Heat?

How Long Yorkies Stay in Heat?

So, the question is that how long Yorkies stay in heat. The answer is that a Yorkie female can stay in the heat for about 2 to 4 weeks. This duration is for every single cycle. Once your Yorkie is mature, you should expect your Yorkie to come into heat twice a year. 

However, the length, as well as the frequency of the heat cycle depends on a few factors. It depends on the genetic, your Yorkie’s overall health, and the fact whether she has been spayed or not.

When Does Heat Cycle Begin?

You can expect from Yorkie to begin her heat cycle at the ages between 6 months to 12 months. However, sometimes smaller breed dogs tend to have their first heat cycle as early as 4 months and as late as 18 months. So, you should not start worrying if some Yorkies are early or late in their first heat cycle.

However, if you still have any questions regarding your pet’s heat cycles, then you should visit your vet immediately to get your questions answered.

What exactly is the Yorkie Heat Cycle?

The heat cycle of the dogs means their reproductive cycle. It is somewhat similar to the menstrual cycle of a human.

The heat cycle of a dog consists of four stages. These stages repeat themselves after every 5 months to 6 months. 

The first two stages usually last for 2 to 3 weeks. These stages are identified by behavioral changes, vulva swelling, and bleeding. 

However, the last two stages are said to be a relaxing time and recovery time. However, in the case of pregnancy, the last two stages are said to be of baby development, birth, and recovery.

These cycles vary from dog to dog and changes are also marked by the dogs’ age.

The four stages are described briefly as follow:

Proestrus Stage:

This is the first stage in a heat cycle and is marked for 7 to 10 days. It is said to be a preparatory stage that is accompanied by swelling. Sometimes, darkening of the vulva, as well as blood discharge from the vagina can also be observed. The vaginal discharge will usually be thick and dark red at the start. It will eventually become water and blood-tinged at the later stages.

Estrus Stage:

This is the second stage which lasts for 3 to 4 days. In this stage, the vaginal discharge decreases, and the color also changes to pink. There is an enlargement and softening of the vulva. In this stage, the female dog is receptive to the male’s advances. During this stage, the female is the most fertile, on almost the 11th day. This stage usually completes by the 14th day.

Diestrus Stage:

This is the third stage having the duration of about 2 to 3 months or until the birth. At this stage, the hormones level off. The swelling of the vulva also starts to decrease and the vaginal discharge disappears too. At this stage, the female is no more receptive to the male.

Anestrus Stage:

This is the fourth and final stage which lasts for 1 to 3 months. It is actually the duration marked by the end of diestrus and the start of the next proestrus.

Symptoms that your Yorkie is in heat

Symptoms that your Yorkie is in heat

Following are the signs and symptoms to indicate that your Yorkie is in the heat:

Appetite Change:

Your Yorkie may eat either more or less than normal. It might be due to the hormone’s fluctuation or discomfort.


Due to fluctuation in hormones, the female starts to take her toys and other objects into her area. This is called Nesting. However, not every female dog does the nesting, but Yorkies do that.


Hormonal fluctuations force a female to behave differently than their normal routine. You may observe her to be alone, becoming aggressive, or even clinging to your side.

Swollen Vulva:

The size of the vulva will increase as well as be soft. 

Vaginal Discharge:

There will be a small amount of vaginal discharge with the change in color from whitish-pink to dark red.

Things to take care of while Yorkie is in Heat

During the heat cycle, your Yorkie expects as much affection from your side as possible. During this time, she is an emotionally needy and somewhat clingy dog. It is due to the hormonal changes she is going through. 

During heat, there is a drastic physical change in her body and therefore, she will need you more to help her with pain relief as well as her hygiene. Some of the things to take care of while Yorkies are in heat are as follow:

Enough Supply of Food:

You should make sure that there is enough supply of food as well as the water around your Yorkie when she is going through her heat cycles. The food should be such that it keeps her strong through the rest of the cycle.

Keep your Yorkie Deodorized:

When going through the heat cycle, Yorkies tend to have a specific heat smell. To get rid of that, you should maintain a regular grooming schedule.

Get a Cozy Environment to Relax:

During the heat cycle, Yorkies tend to spend most of their time napping. They should have a comfortable spot where they can sit and recover from fatigue or pain. The spot should be such that there are accessories like toys and blankets nearby for her convenience. A dog bed also proves to be a comfortable spot.

Buy Doggy Diapers:

During the bleeding stages, doggy diapers prove to be a better solution. Doggy diapers are important to cope with the problem like blood and the increased frequency of peeing. This will let your Yorkie be less anxious.

Should I spay my Yorkie?

Should I spay my Yorkie?

In case you don’t have any intention of breeding your Yorkie, then it is a better consideration to get her spayed. Spaying is an invasive surgery in which the removal of the reproductive organs of the female dog is carried out. It involves the complete removal of the uterus and both ovaries.

Getting your Yorkie spayed eliminates the chances of pregnancy. It also helps in the elimination of the heat cycle, and all the symptoms accompanied by it. However, spaying has its pros and cons on the overall health of your dog.

If you are wondering if you can get your Yorkie spayed during the heat cycle, then the answer is, Yes, you can get your Yorkie spayed during her heat cycle. But doing so can lead to bleeding as well as complications from the surgery. However, it is better to get her spayed once the heat cycle is over. This will ensure a reduction in any sort of complication.

Spaying your Yorkie before her first heat:

Yes, you can get your Yorkie puppy spayed even before her first heat cycle. But, mostly it is recommended to wait until the puppy has fully developed. A study has shown that dogs who were spayed before the 6 months of their age were likely to suffer from parvovirus than those dogs who were spayed at 1 year of age.

Effects of Spaying on the overall health of Dogs:

According to the research, it has been concluded that the female dogs who were spayed lived an average lifespan of 25% more than unsprayed dogs. It is due to the fact that spayed dogs are immune to infectious disease and trauma. However, it has been noted that spayed dogs have a risk of dying from cancer. 

Unspayed dogs are most likely to develop mammary tumors as well as a painful yet serious infection in the uterus. This infection is called Pyometra.

However, it is better to consult your vet before getting your dog spayed. But, it is quite evident that spaying proves to be good for the health of the dogs.

However, with the right timing and right procedure, spaying proves to be beneficial with several pros like reduced aggressiveness, control breeding, and is also helpful in preventing reproductive system cancers.

Do Yorkies go through menopause?

With the aging of female Yorkshire, the heat cycle changes. But, she is not prone to experience menopause. However, it is evident that she is prone to reduced fertility.


It is evident that Yorkies do have some complications related to pregnancy as well as heat cycles. But, it is also dependent on their pet parents. So, it must be clear in your mind whether you want to breed your Yorkshire or not. Once you have made up your mind, then you should be vigilant in the overall procedure involving the upkeep of your Yorkie’s health.


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