Why is my Yorkie Acting Strange [Walking Weird?]

Yorkies are small dogs. They can be slightly fragile dogs, and acting strange is their way to let you know there’s trouble in paradise.

why is my yorkie acting strange
Why is my Yorkie acting strange? Why is my Yorkie walking weird?

These cuddly and affectionate dogs may walk weirdly when they are in pain, and their strange behavior is often a sign of a much bigger problem.

Let’s talk about Yorkies, their normally amazing temperament, and the reasons why they may act strange or walk weirdly. 

Your Yorkie is Suddenly Acting Scared

Many people think that smaller dogs are naturally more scared but if your Yorkie is acting more scared than usual, their behavior may indicate a looming issue. 

a yorkie puppy
Even super cute Yorkie puppies can act hyper

Intruder Alert 

Your Yorkie may be afraid because of a stranger in your house or an intruding animal in its space. Whatever the case may be, a keen detective eye and a bit of investigation are what you need. 

For instance, one day, my Yorkie refused to enter the bedroom. 

No matter how many treats I left in there, she’d bark right in front of the door and make a hasty retreat. It turned out a squirrel had climbed through the open window and was underneath the bed. 

There are many reasons why your Yorkie is afraid, so take a minute to find out if something in the house may have spooked your dog. You will need to examine your Yorkie to ensure no injury or illness, even when there are no symptoms. 


Because of their tiny bodies, Yorkies are prone to hypoglycemia, especially Teacup Yorkies and Designer Yorkies. Although manageable, hypoglycemia in a Yorkie breed can be fatal. The low blood sugar levels will cause your dog to shiver like they’re cold or scared. 

Make sure your Yorkie is eating correctly with a nutritious snack between meals to keep the dog active and energized.  

yorkie height
Yorkies truly are small dogs. They often stand as small as 8 or 9 inches to the shoulder when fully grown.

Difficulty Maintaining Body Temperature 

Yorkshire terriers are vulnerable to extreme temperatures. These dogs do not have the extra protection of fat commonly found in large dog breeds, making it difficult for your dog to regulate its temperature. Treat your Yorkie with love and affection by making sure your dog wears a warm sweater, especially during the chilly winter months. 

Your Yorkie is Acting Drunk 

If your Yorkie is acting like they took a trip to the bar downtown, don’t take such weird behavior for granted. A punch-drunk attitude in a Yorkie is often a sign of a severe health issue. 

chocolate yorkie
A Chocolate Yorkie (aka a brown coat Yorkie)


A stroke in humans and dogs alike will halt the flow of blood to the brain. A dog stroke will make your Yorkie lose its sense of balance, appearing like the dog is tipsy. 

Middle-aged and advanced Yorkies are more likely to suffer from a stroke, but this doesn’t mean a younger Yorkshire terrier cannot fall prey to this health issue. 

You can find out more about recognizing a dog stroke from the American Animal Hospital Association. 

The part of the brain affected will determine the severity of the condition. If your Yorkie is displaying any of these signs, it may have a dog stroke: 

  • Tilting head 
  • Loss of vision [remember dogs have great day and night vision]
  • Fits and seizures 
  • Frequently falling 
  • Inability to recognize its human 
  • Bowel or bladder incontinence 


Your home may be littered with unforeseen dangers making it possible for your dog to eat something they shouldn’t. From poisons to artificial sweeteners in biscuits or desserts – they are lots of toxic consumable that can make your Yorkie act weird.

It doesn’t matter if your Yorkie never steps outside the house; if they are acting drunk, making snorting or hacking sounds, including heaving or vomiting, your dog may be poisoned, and you’d need to take it to the vet as soon as possible. 

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

Head Wound

Yorkies are a fragile breed, and even the slightest fall can cause a severe head injury. All manner of weird behavior may simply be the result of a bump with the furniture. 

Even if you didn’t see your dog hit its head, if your Yorkie shows signs of uncontrolled shaking, tilting their head at a funny angle, or a loss of balance, you should have the dog examined immediately. 

Your Yorkie Is Weak and Tired 

Like us, dogs can have mood swings, and even the sweetest and most playful Yorkies have their off days. However, many cases of lethargy often point to a health condition. 

Your dog may be tired due to heart issues, anemia, liver problems, or something as simple as tick bites!  Even unusual weather can easily throw your dog off balance.

Other possible reasons for a tired Yorkie may include: 

red yorkie and golden yorkie
Differentiating between red, tan, and golden Yorkies is… difficult.


Yorkies are a boundless bundle of energy when they are young, but they tend to slow down a bit as they get older. 

While the gradual need for rest and sleep may skip your notice, you shouldn’t take this situation lightly. Make sure you see the vet as soon as possible if your dog is finding it hard to stay on their feet or is tired all the time. 

Black Gums 

The color of a Yorkie’s gums is an indicator of its oxygen intake. Bubbly pink gums mean your dog is healthy and receiving enough oxygen. 

Black gums often signify breathing difficulty, and that’s one reason your dog is lethargic. If your dog has trouble breathing, you should take the dog to the vet as your Yorkie may be suffering from a red blood cell disorder or heart and lung disease. 

Night Disturbance

You might wake up in the dead of night to find your Yorkie quiet and awake. An injury or health condition may prevent your dog from sleeping and is worth checking out. That said, your dog might be awake because of an external distraction like siren noises or animal sounds.  

Sometimes, it’s really just nothing. 

Especially if your dog is eating and drinking as they should and going to the bathroom regularly. Give your Yorkie lots of love and wait a day or two before going to the vet. 

Your Yorkie Is Acting Strange After Grooming

yorkie in a grass field
Yorkies love to get outside and play. They will get knots, eye stain, and sometimes smelly ears.

Your Yorkie’s behavior may change after visiting the groomer. If this is the case, the groomer’s routine may have caused some degree of discomfort. It might be the performance of a new trim or the groomer in question.

Yorkies are picky dogs and may prefer a certain gender over another. It can even be a matter of the groomer’s scent or their method of grooming. Whatever be the case, make sure to have a word with the groomer.

Yorkshire terriers do not easily embrace change and if your groomer tried a new haircut your dog dislikes, revert to the old one.  That said, your Yorkie may continue to act strangely after multiple visits to the groomer, and don’t hesitate to find a replacement.

Your Yorkie Is Acting Aggressive

Yorkies are generally sweet-natured and calm. However, your dog can be downright aggressive for a few reasons.

a black yorkie
A Yorkie with a predominantly black coat stands on a wooden floor.

Pent up Yorkie

Is your Yorkie getting any exercise? Yorkshire terriers need an outlet to release pent-up energy. If your dog is barking more than usual or pacing about the house frequently, a walk or two might do the trick! Taking your Yorkie out to the park will help the dog to de-stress and relieve boredom. 

Old Age

Older Yorkshire terriers have less tolerance for tasks, noise, people, and situations that were okay before. The gradual loss of sight and sound may cause your dog to be less willing to engage and grumpy. Give the senior Yorkie some space, and the issue will most likely resolve itself.


A pregnant Yorkie will have some unique behaviors! Expect nesting, extra tiredness, and a whole lotta eating. Learn everything about Yorkie pregnancies here.

Final Thoughts

You know your Yorkie better than anyone and if they seem to be moving weird or acting out of character, there’s likely a reason. Listen to your instinct; if something seems off, go ahead and make an appointment with your trusted vet.