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Deb | ABOUT MORKIES - Part 2
Does your Morkie Have Small Dog Syndrome?

Does your Morkie Have Small Dog Syndrome?

If your toy dog is a pain in the neck, he may be suffering from Small Dog Syndrome and the problem originates with — YOU! So what exactly IS Small Dog Syndrome, how do you know if your Morkie has Small Dog Syndrome and how do you overcome it?

Is Your Morkie a Spoiled, Snarky Brat?

Does your pet have small dog syndrome.

Symptoms of Small Dog Syndrome

This syndrome defines the little dog who is spoiled and obnoxious.

It is the caricature of some breeds, expecially Chihuahuas or toy Poodles.

Yet there’s no biological reason for whiny, entitled dogs; they all started out as canines. But pets with small dog syndrome have been trained to act badly.

This bad small dog syndrome behavior includes:

  • being territorial over areas of the house, toys, food or people
  • biting and yapping
  • growling
  • peeing or marking all over the house
  • ignoring house training or potty training
  • obsessions with certain toys, food bowl or people
A pet with small dog syndrome may have to wear a muzzle because of biting

You would never accept this behavior from a large dog.

Small Dog Syndrome is NOT the same as Separation Anxiety

sad dog

Separation  Anxiety is a serious problem, not a mere annoyance like Small Dog Syndrome.

A dog with Separation Anxiety is nervous, frantic, sad and agitated when separated from his main caregiver.

There are steps you can take to reduce Separation Anxiety in your Morkie, but it’s likely that the original causes are beyond your control:

  • was your dog removed from the litter too early? Toy dogs should stay with their mothers until they’re at least 8 weeks old.
  • was your dog surrendered to a shelter, abandoned or given to a new family?
  • has the dog lost someone significant in his life?
  • has there been a traumatic event in his early life, such as an attack by a large dog?
  • time spent in a pet shop or an animal shelter
  • being a puppy mill dog

For more about resolving this painful situation, please check out the ASPCA’s article here.

“Small dogs compensate for their size by acting big and tough when they feel intimidated, nervous, upset, threatened or afraid.”

Isn’t Small Dog Syndrome natural?

Small dog syndrome, or the tendency for tiny dogs to be yappy, untrained, snappy and generally obnoxious, is not something that is natural or common to small breeds by nature.

It’s learned behavior that is directly caused by the way we owners treat our toy dogs. Dogs with small dog syndrome have been rewarded for behaviour that is less than ideal.

As humans, we are programmed by Mother Nature to coddle and take special care of creatures we perceive as babies.’ No surprise, it’s a biological response, and it’s how our race has survived. The problem is toy dogs, with their big eyes and tiny size, bring out that babying tendency in us, even when they are adult dogs.

So we keep over-compensating for their small size (carrying them everywhere!) and overlooking bad behavior that we would never tolerate in a medium or large dog.

The good news is, with some understanding of the roots of the problem and active steps to counteract it, you’ll have a happier, healthier small dog.

Toy poodle with small dog syndrome

Dogs with small dog syndrome aren’t necessarily happy dogs. I fact, SMS can make your pet quite anxious to hold on to the power he thinks he has.

seriously spoiled dogs with true small dog syndrome

 Pets with small dog syndrome can be very annoying to others.


What Small Dog Syndrome is NOT

  • It’s not a high spirited, outgoing dog.
  • It’s not a happy, sociable dog.
  • It’s not a high-personality dog.

A dog with Small Dog Syndrome is a spoiled dog who has decided to take the lead in his or her household. The “SDS Pet” often doesn’t see himself as a dog.

But doubling down on discipline is not the solution. In fact, it can make an SDS Pet even worse!

Proper training can do a long way in preventing Small Dog Syndrome

Stronger discipline by itself can actually make Small Dog Syndrome WORSE

How to Conquer Small Dog Syndrome

  • with a sharp verbal correction, let your dog know incessant barking and yapping are not OK. Or withdraw your attention to make your point.
  • don’t let your small dog sit on you to “claim you.” As the owner, you set the time for snuggles.
  • ensure your little dog has his own bed and designated quiet area; a corner or a crate with an open door works well.
  • don’t encourage hysterical behavior by comforting your dog; just ignore the bad behavior.

Small dog sydrome is definitely made much worse by carrying your small dog everywhere – in your arms, a purse or whatever! It’s a DOG – let ’em walk on the ground!

Some truly spoiled dogs featured on BoredPanda.com

See more.

Small Dog sydrome is a little like a Napoleon Complex. So does your Morkie have a Napoleon Complex?

The Napoleon Complex is named after Emperor Napoleon I of France (1769 – 1821). A French statesman and military leader, he rose to prominence during the French Revolution and led several successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars (France vs. Great Britain) 

Portrait of Napoleon

Common folklore about him suggests that Frenchman Napoleon compensated for his lack of height by seeking power, war, and conquest. His enemies, the British, mocked him as being small and short-tempered.

It turns out Napoleon was of average height for the time (5′ 7″ or so), but the term Napoleon Complex stuck. Today it’s the theory that says people overcompensate for short stature with aggressive social behavior and an attempt to dominate others.

dog dressed as napoleon

Ever thought of having a portrait painted of your Morkie?

This fabulous example, a pet dog portrayed like Napoleon, was done by SplendidBeast.com  Check them out – the artwork is fabulous.

Does your Morkie have small dog syndrome, or a Napoleon complex?

small dog syndrome or napoleon complex

Want to take better care of your Morkie?

Check out this COMPLETE HANDBOOK for raising a happy, healthy Morkie. From puppy to senior. Includes potty training, feeding, common health concerns, obedience, vaccinations and much more.  Charts, photos, illustrations and easy-to-read text.

Read it on your smartphone, computer, laptop, iPad or reader.

ORDER this invaluable e-book today 

Or read more about the MORKIE MEGA GUIDE e-book.


Order today and take better care of your Morkie

From getting a Morkie, to common health concerns, what to feed your Yorkie-Maltese mix, which deadly vaccinations to avoid — and much more! 

Over 300 pages of vital information.

THE Comprehensive Guide to Morkies

Some superstar MORKIES

Some superstar MORKIES

Maltese and Yorkies have been favorites of celebrities and stars – even royalty – for centuries. Queen Elizabeth I had a Maltese in the 1500s, and Yorkies were on trend in Victorian England. Now, their offspring, Morkies, are finding favor with today’s rich and famous. 

Who Doesn’t Love a Morkie?

Britney Spears, an avowed animal lover, has always taken comfort in her pets.

So how perfect is it that she’s had a Yorkie, a Maltese – AND NOW HAS A MORKIE!

Here’s the superstar with her little Maltese, Bit Bit who has always been her great consolation and joy, through divorces, meltdowns and scalp shaving! It’s reported that Britney has a Chihuahua, a Maltese, 3 Yorkies and now a MORKIE.

So far, paparazzi are identifying Britney’s new dog simply as a “Yorkie mix.”


World famous rapper and Toronto sun Drake is pictured here with his new Morkie; in the other picture, he is seen with his massive “American Bully” called Winter, at Langdon Hall outside of the city.

No word on how the two dogs get along.

Jessie Tyler Ferguson

Jessie has been a Morkie fan since he got Leaf in 2010. Since then, he’s appeared as a spokesperson for Purina ONE’s adoption program.

Ferguson Mikita with their dogs

Ferguson with husband Justin Mikita, pictured in front of their new home with Leaf and Sam.

Steven Tyler

The legendary rocker brought his little guys Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid to “Late Night with Seth Meyers” recently, where he explained that after seeing the two dogs for the first time he just felt like they looked like the classic Western movie.

Steven tyler and his two dogs

Tiffany Haddish

Actress, singer, model, comedian, and author Tiffany Haddish explains how her new baby got the name “Sleep.”

“I always name my pets after things I LOVE, so naturally this dog is called Sleep. See Haddish’s complete interview here on YouTube, including how the dog has saved her from having “at least 5 kids.”

Jann Arden

Singer-songwriter Jann Arden with her Morkie named Midi, who joined Jann in 2008. In an interview with the Toronto Star, the singer admitted that Midi (it’s a musical term) is not a big music fan and in fact, does not like Jann’s singing. Not at all.

Johnny Depp

Johnny Depp and his then-wife Amber Heard paid a $1,000 fine after pleading guilty to making a false customs declaration that she had no animals or other livestock, during their working visit to Australia.

Australia’s deputy prime minister, Barnaby Joyce, has said the government will examine whether Johnny Depp committed “perjury” by smuggling dogs into the country while knowing it was illegal. On a radio talk show, the bombastic mayor even threated to “execute” the Yorkies because of the threat they could pose to Australia’s large herds of cattle.

One of Johnny Depp's Yorkies

Johnny Depp’s Yorkies are called Pistol and Boo.

Johnny Depp and his Yorkie
Johnny Depp's Yorkies

Emily Rossum

Actress, television director, and singer-songwriter, Emily Rossum is pretty busy on the hit TV series Shameless but she’s never too busy for her rescue Morkie “Cinnamon.”

Rossum is a big believer in animal rescue and she walks the talk. In addition to Cinnamon, Emmy is also ‘mom’ to a Chihuahua named Sugar and a Lhasa Apso mix named Pepper.


molly simms and her yorkie

Molly Sims and Chloe and Poupette the Yorkies

Molly Sims and her pair of Yorkies, Chloe and Poupette. She takes them everywhere – along with her baby – in their own doggy stroller!

molly simms and yorkies
Whitney Houston with her yorkie

Whitney Houston and Doogie the Yorkie

The late Whitney Houston loved her little Yorkie Doogie. When the singer passed away, daughter Bobbi Kristina took over care of the Yorkie and added two more of her own. Whitney’s sister now looks after the remaining dogs.

yorkie celebs ozzie osbourne and his wife

More Yorkie Celebs

Left to right. Academy Award-winning actress Natalie Portman; Rocker Ozzie Osbourne and wife Sharon with their baby; tennis superstar Venus Williams.


People have loved the Maltese dog temperament for CENTURIES! Yes, that’s how long the Maltese Dog has been a favorite of kings, queens, the rich and famous and everyone else too.  Maltese are playful, charming, and adaptable toy companions according to the American Kennel Club (AKC). You can read all about the breed standards of the Maltese dog, and the Maltese dog temperment here.

The Maltese is another breed that doesn’t shed because it doesn’t have fur; it has hair like  us. So the occasional hair will fall out, or come out in a comb, but Maltese (and Yorkies) don’t shed huge amounts of fluffy undercoat. They’re ideal for someone with dog hair allergies.

The Maltese dog has a stunning pure white coat (no other colours are allowed) that grows to the ground. It’s elegant and lovely.

Many people prefer the Maltese dog with a puppy cut or shorter hair. This is also adorable, and makes them look very puppy like.

A full grown Maltese weighs less than seven pounds, and stands about 8 to 10″ high at the shoulder. 

Maltese dog with a puppy cut.

The Maltese is loved for its beautiful coat but some people prefer the Puppy Cut.

beautiful show dog Maltese dog

Famous Maltese dog owners include Aristotle (2,600 years ago!), Marie Antoinette and Queen Elizabeth the 1st. Closer to our own time, Frank Sinatra gave a gorgeous Maltese to Marily Monroe and Elvis bought several for varoius girlfriends. One of the most devoted Maltese dog fans was movie star Elizabeth Taylor who had two Maltese dogs over the years and took them everywhere. 

Marilyn Monroe and her Maltese dog
Elvis and a maltese puppy
Elizabeth Taylor and her maltese dog
famous dogs

Beware of these toxic foods for dogs

Beware of these toxic foods for dogs

Keeping toxins away from your pet can make the difference between life and death. Here are 7 toxic foods that your Morkie should definitely avoid, so please keep them out of sight …. Pet poisonings are a nightmare. You know something is drastically wrong with your Morkie, but you don’t know what because he can’t tell you. Your dog may be staggering, having explosive diarrhea or vomiting sessions, or convulsing uncontrollably.  Exactly what are the foods that are toxic to dogs? Among others, here are the top 7.

7 Foods that are toxic to dogs

1. Chocolate, coffee, coffee beans and caffeine

  • chocolate contains two deadly toxins for dogs: theobromine and caffeine
  • both stimulate the central nervous system, and in turn, the heart
  • symptoms include restlessness, excessive thirst, uncontrollable peeing, and vomiting
  • any delay in treatment can result in seizures, coma, and even death

2. Xylitol

  • this artificial sweetener is rising fast in the list of things that can kill your Morkie
  • it’s used in sugar-free gum, candy, bread, and other baked goods and even toothpaste
  • in dogs, Xylitol leads to a life-threatening drop in blood sugar; symptoms include lethargy, inability to control movements, collapsing and seizures

3. Onions, chives, garlic and leeks

  • these plants are all part of the Allium family and often – but not always – make dogs very sick
  • symptoms can include vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and loss of appetite
  • eventually, affected animals develop anemia and becoming weaker and weaker
alcohol is toxic for dogs

4. Ethanol which is found in alcohol

  • an alcoholic beverage can be the culprit of alcohol poisoning in your pet
  • but so can rotten fruit like apples (which are turning into alcohol), uncooked pizza dough, antifreeze, perfume, and mouthwash, because all contain ethanol
  • a dog or cat who has ingested ethanol will be very lethargic and his breathing rate can slow to dangerously low levels

5. Grapes, raisins, currants

  • these foods have been reported to cause kidney failure in dogs, but not all dogs
  • those animals who ARE sensitive to grapes and raisins have died after just a handful
  • diarrhea, loss of appetite, lethargy and abdominal pain are just some of the symptoms of grape/raisin poisoning

6. Hops

  • hops, used to brew beer, are made up of several compounds including resins, essential oils, and tannins which can cause high fevers in pets
  • anxiety, rapid heart rate, panting vomiting, and seizures can also result when a dog eats hops (or gets into beer)
macadamia nuts are one of the toxic foods for dogs

7. Macadamia nuts

  • good for humans, macadamia nuts can be deadly for dogs
  • even a few can lead to weakness, especially in the hind legs which can collapse
  • within 12 hours of eating macadamia nuts, dogs can suffer from shaking, fever, abdominal pain, and stiffness
  • although there are very few deaths associated with dogs eating macadamia nuts, your Morkie CAN become very, very ill eating them

If you suspect your Morkie has eaten any of these foods, call your Vet right away, and try to get your Morkie to vomit


If you think your Morkie has been poisoned by one of these toxic foods, and you’re SURE he hasn’t ingested something caustic like bleach, weed killer, rat poison, etc., get him to throw up.

Mix water and hydrogen peroxide and force into his mouth with an eyedropper or turkey baster.


The leading cause of poisoned pets is, by far, human medications – prescriptions or over-the-counter drugs that we take.

This is followed by foods that are toxic to dogs (but not humans or other animals), household items like cleaning supplies, glue and paint, followed by “Rodenticides” – that is, anything used to kill rats and mice are extremely toxic for pets and can cause a slow, agonizing death.

Insecticides are the next leading cause of pet poisoning. Ant traps, bug sprays and powders are all responsible for serious illness.

Certain plants like sago palm, lilies, marijuana, holly and others, and finally, garden products including weed killer and fertilizer.




The Humane Society’s full list of plants poisonous to dogs

Prepare an anti-poisoning kit for your pet

Full list of medications deadly to dogs

What your dog can and cannot eat. Dangerous ingestibles.

Can a hawk pick up a dog?

Can a hawk pick up a dog?

Can a hawk pick up a dog?  It’s no urban myth; small dogs and cats are being grabbed by predatory birds.  Although it’s relatively rare, it does happen. Often the hawk or owl quickly drops the pet, realizing it’s far too heavy to carry. But sometimes, it doesn’t turn out well. So can a hawk pick up a dog? YES! It’s relatively rare but it does happen.

The sad truth is: large raptors, such as Red-tailed Hawks and Great Horned Owls, can attack and kill small pets. Typically these predator birds eat rodents, birds, rabbits, snakes, and insects, but we need to keep our small dogs like Morkies safe. You might be thinking that even if a hawk attacked your dog, they wouldn’t be strong enough to pick up your pup. In fact, hawks can pick up small dogs and carry them away, just like other prey.

You might be thinking that even if a hawk attacked your dog, they wouldn’t be strong enough to pick up your pup. In fact, hawks can pick up small dogs and carry them away, just like other prey.

Recent reports of hawk attacks on small dogs

Lori Timczyk with her daughter Jessica, 15, and Rocky, their 4-pound Yorkshire terrier who survived an attack from a hawk.  2015, near Pittsburgh .



Little dog attacked by hawk

Little Nappi was attacked by a hawk in her own yard according to owners.

dog attacked by hawk

In Southfield, Michigan, a large hawk picked up this family dog Benny. Fortunately, the bird dropped the little dog and his owner  found him and rushed him to a Vet. However, Benny suffered a half dozen puncture wounds, bruises and a fractured jaw

bonnie the dog after the hawk attack

Super disturbing incident in Ireland!

This instance, in the news January, 2017, is particularly horrible because the owner actually set his bird of prey on the tiny Pomeranian on purpose! The dog owner said his two children were left “hysterical” while watching their beloved pooch Bonnie being pinned to the ground for five minutes with the Harris hawk’s talons embedded in her head.

Finally after about 5 minutes, the bird owner called off the attack. When the dog owner tried to get his address, the bird-brain guy set his hawk on them again!! Unbelievable.

Little Bonnie, after being attacked by a bird of prey WHICH THE OWNER SET ON HER PURPOSELY!

predatory birds

Which birds are the most dangerous?

There are a number of birds of prey, or ‘raptors’ which could harm your Morkie or other small pet. But the two most dangerous are the Red-Tailed Hawk and the Great Horned Owl.

In general, red-tailed hawks are considered one of the most dangerous hawk species in the US.

The red-tailed hawk’s range and numbers make them one of the most frequently encountered raptors in North America. Weighing around 3 pounds, they’re also among the biggest hawk species, meaning they’re more likely to see your small dog as potential prey.

Other notable hawk species that may go after your dog as prey include red-shouldered hawks, Harris’s hawks, and northern goshawks.

coyote vest for dogs

Coyote vest for dogs can protect against predatory birds. There’s a wide variety of choices on Amazon.

Although chances of a hawk or owl attack are pretty miniscule, it never hurts to take precautions, especially if you live in the country.  Here are some tips –

Keep your pets leashed and supervise them while they’re outside.  Putting your Morkie outside? Stay with your pup. Owls and hawks aren’t the only dangers – coyotes are encroaching on developed areas more and more. And… what about the low life scumbags who target and steal small dogs so that they can resell them?


  • Don’t feed your Morkie outside. He won’t be as aware of what’s going on, and food could attract predators.
  • Never disturb nesting birds or their offspring. Raptor birds are protected by law.
  • Avoid feeding ground birds and low feeders like doves and quail. They attract predatory birds.

Keeping your Morkie safe from predators like birds and coyotes

can a hawk pick up a dog vert photoAlthough chances of a hawk or owl attack are pretty small, it never hurts to take precautions, especially if you live in the country.  Here are some tips –

Keep your pets leashed and supervise them while they’re outside.  Putting your Morkie outside? Stay with your pup. Owls and hawks aren’t the only dangers – coyotes are encroaching on developed areas more and more. And… what about the low life scumbags who target and steal small dogs so that they can resell them?


  • Don’t feed your Morkie outside. He won’t be as aware of what’s going on, and food could attract predators.
  • Never disturb nesting birds or their offspring. Raptor birds are protected by law.
  • Avoid feeding ground birds and low feeders like doves and quail. They attract predatory birds.

Remember this scene from The Proposal?

This is Sandra Bullock from the hilarious movie, The Proposal (2009). Bullock, a self-absorbed executive, is on her cell phone and doesn’t notice that a hawk has just swooped down to grab her American Eskimo dog. Luckily she grabs the dog back.

Scene from The Proposal with Sandra Bullock

Dog mom gifts for Morkie Mommies!

Dog mom gifts for Morkie Mommies!

Here’s a whole collection of fabulous MORKIE MOM GIFTS – the perfect gifts for dog lovers on your list!

Dog mom gifts for Morkie Mommies! Jewelry!

Time for a beverage; these gifts for dog lovers are the best!

Dog Mom Shirts and Hoodies

morkie mom shirt

Dog Mom gifts for around the home

Perfect gifts for dog lovers

morkie sign

Top it off with a Dog Mom cap - the perfect gift for dog lovers

Find the best Dog Mom Shirt for Morkie lovers

Can dogs get Covid?

Can dogs get Covid?

Many people are panicking over their pets and coronavirus – “can my dog give me coronavirus?” “Are dogs carriers of coronavirus?” … and lots more. Here’s the good news – you’re safe!

The bad news is one dog DID test “mild positive” for coronavirus in Hong Kong. The good news – it’s a real exception and is probably related to the fact that this dog’s owner has coronavirus. Experts assure us the HUMAN probably passed some of the viral bacteria to the DOG’s mouth.

It’s highly, highly unlikely that your pets can carry the virus or have it. This strain — COVID-19 is spread between people.

According to the World Health Organisation, there’s no reason to panic about pets as possible victims or carriers of the coronavirus, since there’s no evidence that they can be infected.

Most viruses cannot be spread between humans and animals

The Centres of Disease Control and Prevention noted that there had been no reports of animals being infected in the US.

And the well respected World Organization for Animal Health confirms:

The current spread of COVID-19 is a result of human to human transmission. To date, there is no evidence that companion animals can spread the disease. Therefore, there is no justification in taking measures against companion animals which may compromise their welfare.

The most important factor for all of us, is to simply wash our hands with lots with soap and water.

Protect your Pets

Dogs and cats should also “socially isolate say” experts.

  • don’t let them interact with people outside your household
  • keep yourself and your dog at least 6′ from other people and dogs
  • avoid dog parks or public places where there are large numbers of people, even if they are maintaining the 6′ distance

Coronaviruses are a group of related viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds.
Their name comes from the Latin corona, meaning crown or hearth because of the fringe of large, bulbous projections that make it look like a crown.

COVID-19 is the name of the disease caused by the SARS-CoV2 virus.
COVID-19 is an acronym that stands for coronavirus disease of 2019.
A “novel” coronavirus means that it is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.


Morkie in a white hat

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), no animals in the United States have been identified with the virus, except zoo tigers,  below, and there is no evidence that dogs or other pets can contract or spread COVID-19. 

Caring for your Morkie when YOU are sick

  • if you think you have COVID-19 or it’s been confirmed by a test, restrict contact with your pets and other animals
  • ask another member of your household to take care of your Morkie
  • no snuggling, kissing or petting until you are all clear
  • don’t share bedding or food
  • cover your face around your pets and wash your hands well after ANY contact with your pet

If you are sick with COVID-19 and you’re worried your Morkie is sick too, CALL YOUR VET RIGHT AWAY. Do not go to the clinic – call first.

What about the dog in Hong Kong that test positive for COVID-19?

The Hong Kong government reported that an apparently healthy dog belonging to an infected person tested “weakly positive” in March. The dog was 17 years old and did die later.

Two cats in New York become the first confirmed cases of pets to test positive in the US. They’re expected to recover.

dogs don't need masks

Should my pet wear a mask?

No. There’s no scientific evidence that face masks protect pets from infectious diseases or air pollutants, and masks have the potential to be unnecessarily scary or uncomfortable for pets.

Should I get my pet tested for COVID-19?

At this time, testing pets for COVID-19 virus is unwarranted, as there is currently no indication that apparently healthy and unexposed pets should be tested for the virus.

Dogs CAN get certain types of coronavirus.

Dog Coronavirus

Veterinarians say there are a number of coronavirus strains that affect dogs, and they’ve been around for years, but those that affect your pet aren’t the same as the one affecting people now.

Canine coronavirus is not the same as COVID-19, known as the coronavirus, being transmitted from person-to-person right now.

There is no evidence that dogs or other pets can contract or spread COVID-19.

Canine coronavirus is a respiratory disease, and it is highly contagious. But it is relatively mild and shows up as a single incidence of vomiting, or a day or two of diarrhea. Fever is rare. Often, there are no symptoms at all.

The treatment is usually to keep your sick dog isolated from other dogs, and keep his area clean, especially clean of poop since that’s one way it is spread. After a couple of days, your dog should be fine.

The main thing to watch for is dehydration resulting from diarrhea.


  • relatively mild, sometimes has no symptoms at all
  • it is no longer recommended – in fact it is actively advised that you DOI NOT get this vaccination for your dog because of the side effects
  • it is more harmful to dogs than helpful
  • it will not affect people or help them in any way
  • Vets may recommend it form time to time as a high-profit vaccination
  • at this time there is no vaccine for COVID-19
smart little morkie

Here's everything we know about COVID-19 and companion animals

Cases remain rare. It appears transmission of the disease from human to animal is low, with a tiny number of cases reported since the outbreak’s early days. Importantly, there is no evidence pets can transmit to their owners. The World Health Organization says there’s “no evidence that a dog, cat or any pet can transmit COVID-19.”

One veterinary laboratory distributed 4,000 tests for cats and dogs; the results came back that ZERO were infected with COVID-19.

yorkie maltese emergency planningThere IS a COVID danger for pets like Yorkie Maltese dogs

The AVMA or American Veterinary Medical Association tells us that the primary concern is for humans and that any concern for animals and COVID-19 is around:

  • Shortage of drugs and medical supplies for animals – because it’s all being bought up in a panic, for people, and
  • A possible shortage of pet food in your own home, if the event quarantining comes to North America.

They remind us that as always, we need to include our animals in emergency preparedness planning, keeping a two week supply food and medications on hand for everyone in our home.

Looking for more information?

Want to take better care of your Morkie?

Check out this COMPLETE HANDBOOK for raising a happy, healthy Morkie. From puppy to senior. Includes potty training, feeding, common health concerns, obedience, vaccinations and much more.  Charts, photos, illustrations and easy-to-read text.

Read it on your smartphone, computer, laptop, iPad or reader.

ORDER this invaluable e-book today 

Or read more about the MORKIE MEGA GUIDE e-book.


Order today and take better care of your Morkie

From getting a Morkie, to common health concerns, what to feed your Yorkie-Maltese mix, which deadly vaccinations to avoid — and much more! 

Over 300 pages of vital information.

THE Comprehensive Guide to Morkies

Morkie Temperament: What are Morkies Really Like?

Morkie Temperament: What are Morkies Really Like?

i love new yorkiesEvery now and then, a dog or a breed comes along that just steals your heart. For many people, that dog is the Yorkshire Terrier. In fact Yorkies are the #6 most popular pure breed dog in America and in some cities, like New York, they’re #1.

The Maltese dog on the other hand, is not as popular. Maltese ranks as the 29th most registered breed in 2014, behind uncommon dogs like the Pomeranian, Havanese and the Pembroke Welsh Corgi.

Both the Yorkie and the Maltese are wonderful companion animals, with plenty in common, but enough differences to make their offspring – the Morkie – a very interesting little pup too.

Yorkies are smart, feisty little terriers, in brown and tan. They are relatively new as far as pure breeds go, developed in northern England in the 1850s to work in coal mines and factories to catch and kill rats and mice.

Maltese on the other hand, are an ancient breed, developed strictly as lapdogs since the time of Aristotle. Their most treasured qualities are their affectionate, loving nature and beautiful, pure white coat.

If you decide to go with a Morkie, you’ll find the characteristics, looks, behaviour and health of both parents, the Yorkie and the Maltese, apparent in the Morkie. But since the Morkie is so new, you don’t really know which breed’s qualities will dominate, and even which parent the Morkie will most resemble physically.

yorkie plus maltese equals morkie

Every breed has its pluses and minuses

What behaviors are so built-in to Maltese and  Yorkies that they never change? In other words,


What’s bred-in-the-bone?

Bred-in-the-Bone is a very old expression meaning something is deeply instilled or firmly established, as if by heredity. When speaking about people, we might say his loyalty is bred-in-the bone.

It also means persistent and habitual; for example, he’s a bred-in-the-bone conservative. You’ll hear similar expressions like these:

  • the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree
  • blood will tell
  • he’s a chip off the old block

Bred in the bone = Deep-seated and can’t be changed

This doesn’t mean that the characteristics above can’t be changed; nor does it mean that EVERY Maltese dog will be a sweet, loving dog for example. Training and environment also have a very big part to play in how a dog behaves.

But generally speaking, the REASON the dog was originally bred, will come through loud and clear in their everyday behaviour, even if that original reason isn’t valid any more.

Maltese - what's bred in the bone?

  • pampered lapdogs
  • super sweet
  • very affectionate
  • generally calm, quiet although they do have a very playful side
  • loves to sit with ‘their people’
  • will bark to warn you that someone is approaching

Yorkie - what's bred in the bone?

  • explorers and hunters
  • love chasing small animals and toys
  • very alert and inquisitive
  • despite their small size, can be aggressive and feisty

One more thing.... the size debate

The Maltese is a sturdy little Toy dog that ideally weighs no more than 7 or 8 pounds when fully grown. Males should be 8” to 10” tall at the shoulder, while females should be 8” to 9” tall.

The Yorkshire Terrier is very similar; an ideal dog is a minimum of 5 pounds according to breed standards, and not over 7 or 8 pounds.

Smaller than that is NOT ideal and in fact, you want to beware of breeders who offer “teacups.” A Maltese, Yorkie or Morkie that weighs less than four pounds when fully grown is a runt. That dog is more prone to genetic disorders and is at a higher health risk in general.


Holiday safety tips for your Morkie

Holiday safety tips for your Morkie

The festive season means time to enjoy family. But keep these holiday safety tips in mind when it comes to your Morkie. Rich foods, certain decorations and more can mean a trip to the Vet.

holiday hazards for dogs

The Top Ten Holiday Hazards for your Morkie


  1. Raisins and grapes
  2. Nuts
  3. Toxic holiday plants
  4. Tinsel
  5. Electric cords, lights
  6. Wrapping paper, ribbons, ties
  7. Onions, chives, garlic
  8. Chocolate
  9. Turkey, bones and fat
  10. Tree preservative

Raisins and grapes are very toxic for dogs. Although scientists don’t know exactly why, this phenomenon is well documented. Dogs of any age or breed can be affected. Grape/raisin toxicity can lead to suddenly kidney failure in some dogs, but not all.

Just another reason to ban fruit cake from your home.

Toxic holiday plants – two of the worst are holly and mistletoe which can cause gastrointestinal problems, difficulty breath and even heart failure!


Nuts. Most nuts are not good for dogs and some are downright dangerous. Macadamia nuts and black walnuts can be lethal in large enough doses. Others like peanuts (not salted, roasted or spiced) and plain cashews are “OK” for dogs in small amounts, but really, they’re best avoided since they’re also a choking hazard for a small dog like a Morkie.

Tinsel and other ornaments – eeewwww, shiny object! Tinsel can be sharp, and if it wraps itself around the intestines or balls up in the stomach, it can mean major surgery to save your pet’s life.

Turkey bones, fat and skin should be kept well out of reach of pets. Cooked bones especially, revery dangerous. After they’re eaten, bones can break off in shards and puncture an animal’s intestines.

Turkey itself can be quite fatty for a dog, unless you stick to a plain piece of white meat with no skin and no gravy. Otherwise your Morkie could get an upset stomach or even a bout of painful pancreatitis.

Onions are, surprisingly, quite toxic for dogs and cats They contain an ingredient called thiosulphate which can damage red blood cells and lead to anemia. In the same family, garlic, chives and leeks should be avoided as well. Some experts say that garlic, prepared properly for dogs, isn’t dangerous and in fact, is good for your pet. But the benefits don’t seem worth it.


Chocolate contains the toxin theobromine. We can easily metabolize theobromine, but dogs process it much more slowly, so it builds up to toxic levels in their system. A small amount can cause major gastrointestinal distress; and a large amount, can even lead to death.

Wrapping paper, ribbons, ties are all attractive to dogs, and all can get lodged in your dog’s stomach or intestines, causing illness and pain.

Electric cords, lights. Curious puppies and kittens can get caught up in the excitement of lights, and bite through, burning themselves and shorting the wires. Keep them out of reach, and/or tape them down.

Tree water. Commercial preservatives typically contain some kind of fertilizer, some type of sugar, and fungicides. Some contain other ingredients such as aluminium sulphate.

The amount that a child or pet could consume isn’t poisonous, but will cause a stomach upset and vomiting.

Christmas tree preservatives aren’t necessary, according to experts – just fresh water is all you need to minimize needles dropping and keep the tree from being super dried out. If you really want to add something, try 1/4 cup corn syrup mixed into 1 quart of water. Keep the tree basin filled.

And a big danger during the holidays

morkie running in field good quality photo

Running away. With people coming and going, the doorbell ringing, and lengthy goodbyes at the door, your Morkie has plenty of chances to sneak out and dash off into the night. Keep him in another room or safe in a carrier cage or kennel while your guests are coming and going.

Can dogs eat turkey?

What to do if your Morkie does eat turkey bones

Don’t panic.

Don’t try to make your dog throw up; better, say experts, to let the bones work their way through….UNLESS your dog is pacing, upset, choking, gagging or licking his lips a lot (a sign of anxiety). In that case, contact your Vet or an Emergency Vet right away.

If he seems alright, feed only soft foods for the next few days, such as rice or white bread. Keep him calm and quiet, and monitor his poop for the bones or bone fragments. 

Keep your dog calm and quiet for the next few days. Monitor his poop carefully for bones or bone fragments. 

If your Morkie has any of these symptoms, contact your Vet immediately:

  • difficulty going poop
  • black or bloody stools
  • vomiting
  • no appetite
  • diarrhea
  • seems to have abdominal pain.  

More tips and ideas for the holidays, including gifts for dog lovers.

7 Tips for Picking Healthy Dog Food

7 Tips for Picking Healthy Dog Food

Do you know how to find the best dog food for your Morkie? What to look for and what to avoid? Here are 7 handy tips to guide you in picking healthy dog food for your Morkie –whether it’s dry food (kibble) or canned.

Why can’t we just trust manufacturers?

Commercial dog food is a multi-billion dollar industry; it is much bigger than baby food. In 2015, we spent $60.28 billion on our pets in the U.S. Pet food alone represents $23 BILLION in sales per year, compared to baby food, at $1.25 billion.

The pet food industry is one of the most profitable in the world. And it’s growing by leaps and bounds every year.

With a profitable market this size, it’s all about marketing pet food, not necessarily making excellent dog food.

Like cigarette makers in the 1950s and 60s, pet food manufacturers:

  • lie to us about what’s in their products
  • use terrible ingredients
  • spend tons of money on advertising
  • ignore existing regulations without any penalty
  • “regulate” themselves
  • know full well that what they make is killing our pets

So, unfortunately, you must do your own research to find a reliable and good-quality dog food manufacturer. 


wet or dry dog food?


Weigh the pros and cons of kibble versus canned dog food

Canned dog foods typically have much less grain and carbs than kibble, which needs these ingredients to bind the product together.

Canned food can have fewer preservatives since the canning process takes care of that; however, canned food typically uses a lot of thickening agents such as carrageenan, which has been associated with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), acid reflux, and intestinal ulceration.

Most dog food cans today are lined with Bisphenol-A (BPA), declared a toxin in many parts of the world.

Kibble costs less per serving and is more convenient to use; however it less protein-dense, so your Morkie must eat more to get the same benefits.


which food is better?

Diet Rotation

You wouldn’t want to eat the same food, day after day, year after year. Neither does your dog. Plus, no single brand is perfect. The answer is diet rotation.

It’s simple. Every few months, slowly change your Morkie’s food (dry, moist or canned) to another brand or another type within the same brand.
Do the changeover slowly, so you don’t trigger GI upsets and diarrhea. Add about 1/4 new to the old food for a week, increase it weekly until it’s all-new food.

Tip #1 Read the label

Whether you’re buying dried food (kibble) semi-moist or canned dog food, start with the label.

It looks imposing – dozens and dozens of ingredients listed in tiny type. But start with the first 5 or 6 ingredients. They form the bulk of the product by far.

You can also take a look at the ingredients above the fat ingredient. Again, it’s the bulk of the food and the most important.


If you can decode the label, you’re well on your way to providing better food for your Morkie.

All of the ingredients must be listed in order. Focus on the first five; this is where the bulk of the nutrition comes from.


average number of ingredients in dog food

Tip # 2: Look at the first 5 ingredients... or the ingredients above the fat

For example, look at the ingredients in Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Healthy Weight kibble, a top-quality product:

By either measure, we can see that this is quality food.

First 5 Ingredients 

  1. Deboned Turkey
  2. Turkey Meal
  3. Chicken Meal
  4. Peas
  5. Dried Ground Potatoes

Ingredients above the fat line:

  • Deboned Turkey
  • Turkey Meal
  • Chicken Meal
  • Peas
  • Dried Ground Potatoes
  • Pea Fiber
  • Ground Flaxseed
  • Tomato Pomace
  • Chicken Fat


  • a NAMED meat, like chicken, beef, salmon, etc.
  • a NAMED source of fat, such as chicken fat, beef fat, etc.
  • Foods that are made with fewer ingredients – instead of a lot of additives and preservatives, the food will often have more carbohydrates, although not necessarily grains. As you might expect, these foods can be costlier than ‘regular’ foods on the market.
  • Potato or sweet potato as a filler in the top 5 ingredients are acceptable; one or the other.

    Foods that contains grain are ok just as long as there is only one of these grains in the Top Five.


  • generic descriptions like meat, poultry, and fish
  • “meat byproducts” 
  • Avoid all dog foods with animal digest, including a named meat digest.

  • Avoid food with “meat and bone meal” even if the meat is named.

  • CORN in the top 5 ingredients

  • Avoid dog foods with more than one carbohydrate in the first 5 ingredients.
  • Avoid dog foods with a generic fat source, rendered fat or beef tallow.
  • Avoid food with BHA, BHT, Ethoxyquin, and PG (Propylene Glycol).
  • Avoid food with added sugars and watch for its other names.

Small dogs don't need fillers in their food

Do dogs need carbohydrates?

Meat is a quality, complete protein. It contains all ten essential amino acids — nutrients dogs cannot live without. Plus, dogs can easily digest it, especially compared to plant proteins like corn or grain. But high quality, meat-based proteins are also the single most expensive ingredients in dog foods. So manufacturers use grains and other carbohydrates as fillers that also deliver some protein.

The problem is, dogs don’t need corn, or wheat, barley rice, soybean meal, dried beet pulp, and potatoes. Carbohydrates aren’t necessarily bad for your dog, but they’re just not needed for good nutrition. For a small dog like a Morkie, food with too much corn or grain can fill him up before he gets enough quality meat protein.

Kibble has to have some form of carbohydrate in the recipe to bind it together, but grains shouldn’t be at the top of the ingredients lists.

The best compromise especially for kibble 

Avoid dog foods with more than one carbohydrate in the first 5 ingredients.

Here are the first 5 ingredients in a popular —  but very poor quality — kibble, Alpo Prime Cuts Savory Beef Flavor. As you can see there’s virtually no ‘meat’ in this food.

Ugh – check these First Five ingredients

  1. Ground yellow corn
  2. Corn germ meal
  3. Beef and bone meal
  4. Soybean meal
  5. Beef tallow

Tip #3: Avoid these Top Three Offenders 

Watch for these ingredients on the label – none belongs in your pet’s food and some can even shorten his life.

1. The word “meat” or “meat by-products” near the top of the ingredient list

If it’s called just ‘meat’ (not beef, lamb, etc.) then the animal parts used can be obtained from any source, so there is no control over quality or contamination. Any kind of animal can be included in meat and meat by-products: including the infamous “4-D animals” (dead, diseased, disabled, or dying prior to slaughter), goats, pigs, horses, rats, misc. roadkill and animals euthanized at shelters.

These “4-D” animals were only recently banned for human consumption and are still legitimate ingredients for pet food.

2. BHA, BHT, and Ethoxyquin

Watch out for:

  • Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA),
  • Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT ) and
  • Ethoxyquin (an EPA-regulated pesticide)

These are all highly carcinogenic or cancer-causing additives that are used to preserve the dog food for long shelf life. Besides cancers, these chemicals have been linked to thyroid, kidney, reproductive and immune-related illnesses.

3. Corn

There is no nutritious value in any dog food that lists corn as the first ingredient. It is a useless filler that is a known cause of allergies and is difficult for dogs to digest.

And in the wild – ever see a wolf break into a cornfield to steal a cob or two?

Should you pick organic dog food?

When you see ‘organic’ or ‘natural’ on your Morkie’s dog food label…

It does NOT mean:

  • Humanely raised
  • Chemical or drug-free
  • Raised without pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics antibiotics

Claims made such as original, natural, prime cuts, tasty, organic and more, mean nothing; there’s no legal standard for the wording that describes pet foods.

Some of the most appealing and popular dog foods are the worst nutritionally. And they are the most secretive, from an ingredients standpoint.

Instead, vague terms cover up a host of grisly ingredients.

What does “organic” mean on a dog food label?

curious morkie

There's meat and then there's "meat." And they are worlds apart

Look very carefully at how the main protein source is described

You would expect food that’s called “chicken” and lists “real chicken” as the main ingredient, would include chicken. Not so fast.

The food can be made up of chicken by-products, which is essentially slaughterhouse waste. Beaks, heads, and feet. But the picture on the left is the one that will appear on the package.


whats really in dog food

Tip #4: Avoid food with meat by-products - whether the meat is named or not

Meat by-products can include organ meat, most of which is just fine for dogs. Lungs, spleen, brains, kidneys, and liver may not be to our tastes, but they provide excellent nutrition for dogs.

HOWEVER, meat by-products can also include NON-MEAT ingredients such as horns, feathers, feet, hides, beaks, hooves and teeth. Ugh. They won’t even put this stuff in hot dogs and bologna.

Whether the meat is named or not, this ingredient should be avoided.

Pictured above: a sample of chicken by-products; this carcass is covered in skin cancer tumors. It is allowed in dog food as a “chicken by-product.”

Tip #5: Avoid food with meat MEAL

Meal refers to an ingredient that’s been through the rendering plant or other high level processing. There is some controversy about whether or not we should be feeding our dogs meal, since it’s a lower quality protein, usually found in cheap dog foods. (The quality of protein is measured by scientists as “biological value” – the ability of the food to deliver protein’s ten amino acids.)

There are two kinds of meal:

  • Named meat meal: beef meal, chicken meal, lamb meal, etc.
  • Generic meal: meat meal, poultry meal, fish meal

Meal is a highly concentrated protein powder; if it’s from a named source, its acceptable, or just “OK,” say many experts. Others are against named meat meal, because of the chance it can contain noxious ingredients.

Bear on mind, even though the meat is named, it could come from a carcass that failed USDA inspection. If it is called simply “meat meal,” it can contain shocking ingredients, including intestines with feces, road kill, and more.

Tip #6: Avoid food with meat AND BONE MEAL

Avoid food with meat AND BONE MEAL even if the meat source is named

AAFCO — the Association of American Feed Control Officials — defines this ingredient as “rendered product from mammal tissues, including bone, exclusive of any added blood, hair, hooves, horn, hide trimmings, manure, stomach and rumen contents.”

Whether it’s from a named meat, or is generic ‘meat,’ the main drawbacks of MEAT AND BONE MEAL are:

  • it’s harder to digest.
  • it’s a lower quality protein.
  • there is some scientific evidence linking bone meal to cancer.

Plus, in Meat and Bone Meal, there’s no way to determine the amount of bone versus ‘meat.’

Tip #7: Avoid food with ANIMAL DIGEST

Animal digest is a highly processed product that is used to flavor dog food that doesn’t have much taste otherwise. Even when it is identified, for example, Chicken Digest, the dog food may taste like chicken thanks to the digest, but it does not have to contain chicken.

Then why’s it there? Manufacturers like Purina brag that their product is “highly palatable” or in other words, it tricks dogs into thinking their food has a great flavor. Animal digest, a highly processed mess of mysterious animal parts, is what delivers flavor.

Download this free one-pager “Pick This Not That”

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Want to take better care of your Morkie?

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