Can You Run With a Yorkie?

Getting your Yorkie the right amount of exercise is crucial to maintaining their health. However, every dog’s needs can vary quite a bit! A 55 pound Labrador is going to need a lot more vigorous exercise than a Chihuahua. 

Sometimes, exercising feels more difficult for a small dog than for a large breed dog. So how do we make sure that our small breed dog is getting appropriate exercise to keep them safe and to keep them healthy? Also, can you exercise with a small breed dog the same way you can with a large breed dog? Can you run with a Yorkie? 

can you run with a yorkie
Can you run with a Yorkie?

If you’re searching for ideas on how to safely and appropriately exercise your Yorkie, you’ve come to the right place!

Question: Can You Run With a Yorkie? 

Obviously, Yorkies are capable of running on their own. It may not be fast, but those little legs can get going! We see Yorkies run all the time, to their food bowls at mealtime, to the back door for a potty break, and even to you for a greeting after you arrive back home. Taking them for a run with you, now that’s a different story. 

As far as exercise needs, the AKC states that Yorkshire Terriers require moderate exercise. Moderate exercise may raise quite a few questions, so what exactly does that mean? 

Since running is not in the cards with a Yorkie, here is a breakdown of some of the acceptable activities you can engage in with your Yorkie.

are yorkies hyper
Adopting a Yorkie? Expect an energy packed puppy that LOVES to play and run. They do tire out (eventually)

What Kinds of Activities Can I Do Safely With My Yorkie? 

While running may not be your best bet at safe exercise with a breed as small as the Yorkshire Terrier, there are many other ways you can get your pet the appropriate exercise. You can even partake in them! Probably keep the speed to a minimum! You’ve got the advantage with the long legs that they don’t have!


While running might be a little too intense for a Yorkie, you can definitely take them for a well-paced walk. Not a jog necessarily, but a decently paced walk. No need to walk excessively slow-paced. However, you should always pay attention to how well your dog is keeping up to make sure you aren’t dragging them along at an uncomfortable pace. 

Remember that a short walk is ideal for a Yorkie. There is no need to go trekking miles and miles.

The main point of walking your Yorkie is to get them some time outdoors to explore a little bit with some guidance in a safe setting. Always pay attention to the way your dog is reacting to the physical activity. Not every dog has the same endurance level, and for dogs that haven’t gotten a consistent exercise schedule, it may take some time to build that up. 

a tiny yorkie puppy
The tiniest of Yorkie puppies!

Backyard Play 

Another great way to get those legs moving and that mind going is to use toys to play with your Yorkie in a safe, enclosed space, like a backyard or a dog park. 

If you do opt to take your pup to a dog park, make sure they have an updated shot record and that you put them around other dogs around the same size. If you have never taken your Yorkie to a dog park before, make sure you use slow introductions to the new setting and the other dogs. Always pay attention to your dog when at the dog park. 

You can allow your Yorkie to engage with other dogs under your supervision and let them chase and play there. If your dog is more of a solo player, you can always bring them to a private enclosed space, like a backyard or a field. 

You can use tennis balls, small frisbees, rope toys, and many other kinds of dog toys to engage in play with your dog. Many owners find playing with their dogs one-on-one a rewarding bonding experience. It’s great for both pets and pet parents! 

yorkie ears
Black and Gold Yorkies often fade to Blue and Gold as they age. Look at those perky upright Yorkie ears!

Training Exercise 

Another great way you can get your Yorkie some exercise is by working on training them. Training is not only great physical exercise but great mental exercise as well. It’s always beneficial for your dog to have both! 

You can try teaching your dog tricks or even doing tasks with agility work. Training is also an excellent way to bond with your dog and give them the physical and mental exercise that they need. 

You can start simple with commands like “sit” and “stay” and work your way up to fun or more challenging tricks such as “rollover” or “shake.” It’s fun for your pet to please you, and as a pup owner, it can feel so rewarding to teach our pets new things and watch them learn and grow.

Check out training resources on our site for awesome skills to work on with your pup! 

yorkie playing tug of war
Yorkies are strong minded and intelligent. They thrive when trained correctly.


While running with your Yorkie isn’t an option, there are so many other different and creative ways that you can get your pup the right exercise. Here is a quick little roundup of some great ways to get your Yorkie moving (safely)! 

Try incorporating these fun exercise methods into your daily routine with your pup. The best option is to make a healthy combination of exercises to keep your dog engaged and excited! 

Wrap Up 

Yorkies may not be a breed designed to be your jogging buddy. However, there are countless ways to engage in fun and rewarding exercise with your dog. Whether you decide to play a rousing game of tug-of-war, engage in a simple game of fetch, or work on agility training, know that you are doing what’s best for your dog’s mental and physical health. 

We hope you try out some of our suggestions for exercising your Yorkie. Let us know what kinds of exercise your pup loves most!