Jarkie

fast facts

About Jarkie

Height
8-10 inches
Weight
4-7 lbs
Lifespan
12-15 years
Group
Not applicable
Best Suited For
Seniors, families with older children, couples, people who live in an apartment
Temperament
Sweet, clingy, affectionate, stubborn, smart, energetic, curious, playful, lively
Comparable Breeds
Japanese Chin, Yorkshire Terrier
Jarkie Basics


The Jarkie is a sweet, sassy pooch with a lot of energy. These compact canines will charm you with their goofiness and attitude- they tend to forget that they’re pint-sized. An affectionate hybrid, Jarkie will want to be by your side every second of the day and won’t do well with owners that work long hours. These designer dogs are very clingy and will act like a typical velcro dog.


While the Jarkie himself is not a purebred dog, his parents are. This designer dog is a cross between a Yorkshire Terrier and a Japanese Chin. These are both toy size dogs that make fantastic companions, especially for seniors or empty nesters who need a fur baby to spoil. Needless to say, their mixed breed offspring will be the same- the best of both worlds.


The low-shedding, soft coat and petite stature make Jarkie appealing to apartment dwellers and people with mild allergies to dog fur. But the unique parentage of this mixed breed dog makes him much more special- and once you get to know him, you’ll realize all of the amazing qualities and fun quirks they have. So, without further ado- let’s meet the charming Jarkie!


The Jarkie is a sweet, sassy pooch with a lot of energy.


Origin

It’s impossible to determine the real origin of the Jarkie. As a mixed breed dog, this hybrid doesn’t have a well-documented history. Before the 1980s, when people started intentionally crossbreeding purebreds and calling them designer dogs, mix litters were usually a product of unplanned mating of purebred dogs. So, it’s possible that there were Japanese Chin and Yorkie mixes around way before anyone gave them a name and the status of a designer dog breed.


As for the origin in terms when the Jarkie became a result of intentional breeding efforts, it’s not clear when this happened. No breeders claim the creation of these spunky mixes and their history remains a mystery. The best guess anyone can have is that the Jarkie was also a result of the designer dog craze that took the United States by the storm in the 1990s and still lasts today. As this is a fairly rare breed, it’s probable that it’s also very recent and made in the last 15 to 20 years.


Pedigree


This designer dog breed has a mixed lineage- one parent is a purebred Yorkshire Terrier, the other a purebred Japanese Chin. The Jarkie is, in a way, a mix of opposites. The Yorkie had its start as a vermin hunter during the Industrial Revolution whereas the Japanese Chin enjoyed being a favorite lapdog of Asian royalty in its early history. But, despite their differences in their status when they started off, both breeds came to be bred for companionship and became treasured family pets. While the Jarkie might not have official pedigree papers to flaunt, his impressive lineage does speak volumes about his qualities.


In the majority of cases, Jarkie is a 50/50 percent mix of the two breeds. They are first generation hybrids, so it’s hard to predict the appearance and temperament of each individual puppy. The influence of one parent might be stronger, or they could be one of a kind dogs with traits evenly inherited from both mom and dad. Either way, their ancestry ensures they’ll always be sweet, spirited, lively little dogs. Multigenerational crossings help make the developing breed more uniform by introducing more of one parental breed or other unrelated Jarkies into the gene pool. However, multigenerational Jarkie mixes are not common as it is still a very rare and recent breed.


Food/Diet


The Jarkie might be small, but he needs to eat well to stay healthy and happy throughout his life. Dogs are omnivores, and while it enables them to eat more foods, it also means they need a bigger variety of nutrients to thrive. Fiber from plants, healthy fats, meat-based protein, and an array of vitamin and minerals- Jarkie will need a well-balanced diet that includes all of this. Most pet owners turn to high-quality dry food to meet their dog’s complex nutritional needs, and Jarkie will also do well on this meal plan.


Kibble, if chosen properly, can be the perfect food for your petite companion. As a small breed dog, he will be more prone to obesity and teeth plaque build up. Feeding kibble improves oral health and makes it easier to control the portions and their caloric value. There won’t be overfeeding if you stick to the manufacturer’s recommendations and split their daily dose of kibble into two meals.


Just make sure to opt for premium dry food made from natural ingredients. Usually, a toy or small breed formula has all that Jarkie needs as it suits their size and activity level. It’s also a good idea to consider your pet’s age before choosing their food. Puppies will have different needs than adults or senior dogs- it’s important to account for this.


Not unlike many toy breeds, the Jarkie can be a bit difficult to potty train.


Training


This designer dog breed is moderately easy to train, If you had any previous experience with basic dog training, you’ll do just well with your new Jarkie pup. However, that’s not to say that you won’t have to put in any effort into your training sessions. The Yorkie and Japanese Chin mix is an intelligent dog, but he can often be stubborn or have a short attention span. To be able to train them with success, you will have to have the right approach. Positive reinforcement methods work best- little surprise there, as treats and excited praise motivate even the most willful pooches. It’s better to train Jarkies in multiple shorter sessions than in one longer, as they tend to lose interest quite fast, especially if things get monotone. Be firm and consistent, and you’ll see results really fast!


Not unlike many toy breeds, the Jarkie can be a bit difficult to potty train. Start with that first and be persistent. In addition to training, socialization is also a crucial part of your new pet’s upbringing. Expose them to contact with people outside the family and introduce them to other dogs and cats early on. This is how you ensure your puppy grows up to be a friendly, easy-going pooch.


Weight


Both of Jarkie’s parents are toy breed dogs, so he’ll also be quite petite. On average, these designer dogs weigh between 4 and 7 pounds.


Temperament/Behavior

Each Jarkie is one of a kind. Their temperaments vary as much as their appearance, and a lot about their personality will depend on their owner. With training and socialization, these pint-sized designer dogs will be affectionate, friendly, and sweet. They will be distrustful of strangers but once they get to know a new person, they’ll turn into cuddle bugs. These dogs are extremely attached to their family, and will always be close by no matter what you’re doing. A Jarkie will expect to be a part of every activity! Unfortunately, their affectionate and needy nature makes them prone to separation anxiety. If you’re a single working long hours, it’s best not to choose this hybrid. They do best in families where someone is always around to pamper and spoil them.


While very small, Jarkies are full of energy. They are smart and curious and want to see what the world has to offer- which is why they can get in trouble sometimes. The Yorkshire Terrier vermin hunting genes combined with the acrobatic skills of the Japanese Chin make their mixed breed offspring quick to bolt after a squirrel or a bird, even if it takes tree climbing to get to their prey. For that reason, you shouldn’t let these dogs off leash in unsecured areas.


Common Health Problems


This is a relatively healthy designer dog breed. However, just because Jarkie is a mixed breed dog, it doesn’t guarantee that he’ll be prone to fewer issues than his purebred parents. The concept of hybrid vigor is falsely applied to designer dogs- it all depends on their breeding. If you get a puppy from a puppy mill, pet store, or dubious backyard breeder, it’s certain to be sick and ridden with genetic issues. A reputable breeder, however, will carefully select his breeding stock and offer a health guarantee for his puppies.


In any case, though, Jarkie will be prone to some issues that plague his parents- the question is only if it’s more or less risk. These conditions include patellar luxation, progressive retinal atrophy, heart issues, tracheal collapse, and Legg Calve Perthes disease. In addition, he will be prone to early tooth loss as all small breed dogs and diabetes as a result of obesity, so make sure that your pet lifestyle supports their overall health, too. Feed a well-balanced diet, offer enough exercise, and maintain good dental hygiene.


Life Expectancy


The average lifespan for this hybrid breed is between 12 and 15 years.


Exercise Requirements


These mixed breed dogs are full of energy, but their small size makes it easy to meet their activity needs. Jarkie can comfortably exercise indoors and be content- a few rounds of zoomies around the living room and your knackered pooch will nap for the whole afternoon. Of course, just because their petite stature allows them to exercise indoors doesn’t mean that being cooped up inside will do them well. Like all dogs, Jarkies also need to go outside for fresh air and walks to stay healthy and content. Usually, 30 to 60 minutes of deliberate exercise is enough for this hybrid, and at least half of that should be time spent in the outdoors. Be it a visit to a local dog park, a game of fetch in the backyard or simply a walk on a leash- it’s all the same.


Another important exercise requirement for the Jarkie is their need for mental activity. It’s not only about physical exercise for these smart cookies! Unless challenged, they will grow bored and destructive, so make sure to offer them enough entertainment. If they don’t have a four-legged companion to keep them on their toes, offer puzzle toys that will engage their bright mind.


These designer dogs are full of energy, but their small size makes it easy to meet their activity needs.


Recognized Clubs


The American Kennel Club doesn’t recognize the Jarkie as an actual breed, nor do any major canine organizations. However, there are canine clubs that recognize Jarkie and those include American Canine Hybrid Club, Designer Breed Registry, Designer Dogs Kennel Club, Dog Registry of America, and International Designer Canine Registry. Impressive for a rare and recent hybrid!


Coat


Not unlike his parents, the Jarkie will have soft, silky hair. It’s usually medium to long and doesn’t shed too much. However, since they have fine hair, these dogs need regular brushing to prevent matted coat and tangles. The color combinations for the Jarie are many- you can never know what shades you’ll see in one litter, let alone the whole breed. Their coats are mostly two-colored, and they can sometimes inherit the distinct face marking of the Japanese Chin.


Puppies


Jarkie puppies are adorable and tiny- which also means that they’re very fragile. Even adults can be injured easily in ruff play, let alone a Jarkie baby, so make sure to be extra careful around them. Play gently, watch your step, and never leave them playing with young kids without supervision. Of course, their fragility won’t mean that these puppies are docile and calm! They are energetic and curious and will want to explore everything. At few weeks of age, start with some basic training and advance from there. Timely obedience training and socialization will be crucial for the forming of your pet’s personality.


Photo credit: pakornkrit/Shutterstock

Angela Vuckovic
Angela Vuckovic

A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.

More by Angela Vuckovic

Popular Pet Guide
Next