This section is from the book "British Dogs, Their Points, Selection, And Show Preparation", by W. D. Drury. Also available from Amazon: British Dogs: Their Points, Selection And Show Preparation.
Nowhere in England are dog shows so popular as in the counties of Lancaster and York and their immediate borders; and here the Yorkshire Terrier, a manufacture of comparatively recent years, finds its greatest number of admirers. The dog long went by the name of Rough or Scotch Terrier. To call them Scotch Terriers was a misnomer, the true Scotch Terrier being a much rougher, shorter, and harder-coated dog, of greater size and hardiness, and altogether a rough-and-tumble, working vermin-dog, with no pretensions to the beauty and elegance of the little "Yorkshire swell." At one time the Kennel Club classed the Yorkshire Terrier as "Rough- and Broken-coated," Broken-haired Scotch and Yorkshire Terriers," and still more recently as "Toy Terriers (Rough)." It was not until 1886 that the name by which they are universally known received the hall-mark of authority.
That the Yorkshire Terrier should have been called Scotch by those who, although they may have the credit of producing this dog, probably did not know of the existence of the real Scotch Terrier as a breed, suggests that at least a Terrier of Scotland has had something to do with his manufacture. Mr. Dalziel's theory respecting the origin of the Yorkshire Terrier was that the dog was what gardeners call "a sport" from some lucky combination of one of the Scotch Terriers - either the genuine Skye or the Paisley Terrier - and one of the old, soft, and longish-coated Black-and-tan English Terriers, at one time common enough, and probably one of these with a dash of Maltese blood in it.
However first obtained, we have at least got them now, and most owners are satisfied if they can claim a strain of the blood of the famous Huddersfield Ben, who combined in himself the blood of three illustrious predecessors - Walshaw's Sandy, Ramsden's Bounce, and Inman's Don - and was bred by Mr. W. Eastwood, of Huddersfield, more than thirty years ago.
Although the Yorkshire Terrier is essentially a toy dog, many of them are not wanting in pluck, and some of the breed have proved good rat-killers. Probably these belonged to a day when diminutive-ness and length of coat were not the chief characteristics; for the older dogs were larger altogether than those of the present day. Many of them are veritable little spitfires, as sharp as needles, and, by their alertness, make excellent house-dogs. Those seen at exhibitions are shown at their very best, and in parade uniform; for all that are purely bred do not prove to be fit for competition at a show. Much depends, too, on the care taken of the dog, and his preparation for show'; but some well-bred specimens cannot be got into good coat, are wanting in colour, and always look scrubby and ragged.
Artificial means are used to encourage and stimulate the growth of the hair. The four feet are kept encased in boots, made of soft linen or rag, so that, even should the dog scratch, the claws being covered, the coat is neither broken nor pulled out. The diet is also regulated, and the general health carefully guarded, with a view to obviate heating of the blood and skin disease. Various preparations are applied to the skin to stimulate the growth of the hair, and concerning these nostrums much mystery is often affected. The following will be found a very safe and efficacious preparation: Olive oil, 30Z.; castor oil, 30Z.; palm oil, 10z. ; vaseline, 10z.; tincture of cantharides, 1dr.; oil of rosemary, 1dr. Mix the first two together, and add the rest while simmering over a fire. Cocoanut oil and paraffin oil in the proportion of two-thirds of the former to one-third of the latter is also a capital application for promoting growth of hair and rendering the coat soft and silky; and when the dog is at home, and in preparation for a show, he may be advantageously dressed with it daily.
It may be well to say, in respect of the liniment for which a recipe has been given above, that as some dogs are much tenderer in the skin than others, its effect should be watched, and if undue irritation is produced by it, it should, for use on such dogs, be weakened by mixing with it a portion of plain olive oil; and the bottle should always be well shaken before using its contents. Lanolin has also been highly spoken of as a coat grower. One often sees mercurial preparations suggested as coat-growers, but constantly used, they are harmful and likely to salivate the dog on whom they are applied.
When born, Yorkshire Terrier pups are black-and-tan, and a story is told of a celebrated judge who, having had a bitch about to become a mother presented to him, when the pups came duly to hand drowned them "right off," and wrote to his friend that there must have been some mistake, as the pups were as black-and-tan as Manchester Terriers!
In regard to the colour of puppies and the change that takes place in the second coat, a well-known lady fancier (Mrs. Troughear) said the best puppies to select are those with a loose, open, and perfectly straight coat, of a glossy black colour, the black extending well down the legs, and the muzzle and feet slightly tanned. Some puppies commence to change colour after the third month, but the change is a very gradual one, and it is not as a rule until they are nearly twelve months old that the coat increases in length and density. Others do not develop the desired colour till eighteen months or two years old; and the latter keep their colour much longer than those that change from the puppy colour earlier.
The time to apply the grease is when the coat begins to lengthen and thicken. It must not be applied too liberally - just a little in the palm of the hands will suffice, and in a downward direction. The moustache and fall must also be treated. If grease were applied too freely, the coat would probably mat in places, and the finger and thumb would then have to be carefully used in order to remedy the condition. To brush or comb a coat in such a condition would be fatal. The washing (and also the drying) of Yorkshire Terriers is a big business, and must be undertaken at least once a week. The coat must not be treated after the manner adopted when washing the hardier Terriers. The cleansing process must be carried out with the "lay" of the coat; and similarly, too, must the drying, which is largely effected by brushing and the judicious use of soft, warmed towels. The fall should be tied up over the head and the body coat over the back. Skin disease is the great enemy of the Yorkshire Terrier fancier, and scurf must be guarded against, or it will cause irritation and scratching. A little minced meat, fowl, or fish freed from bones is good fare for a Yorkshire Terrier, especially when combined with stale brown bread, or Toy dog biscuits finely broken and covered with gravy or broth from a sheep's head. Chopped green vegetables also tend to keep the blood cool and pure.
Fig. 119. - The Yorkshire Terrier.