Yorkie Terriers are popular for their elegant, long, and silky coats that come in a variety of colors and coat patterns. Parti or random white is one of the coat patterns (combination of colors) of the terrier varieties.
You can know a parti Yorkie for its white coat with random and irregular/asymmetrical patches of secondary dark-colored patches. The secondary color can be black, blue, or brown/chocolate and golden tan/blonde. For a dog to be considered parti, white should be on at least half the coat.
Most parti Yorkshire Terriers are tricolor (3 colors) with golden-tan markings on the eyebrows, ears, and cheeks. White is predominantly on the tail-tip, underbelly, chest, legs, neck, chin, and face as a stripe between the eyes (blaze). Black, blue-gray (silvery), or chocolate markings mostly appear on the back, around the eyes, head, and ears.
The distribution and size of the white patches are variable and unique to each Yorkshire Terrier hence no two are alike.
There are 3 main parti variations;
- Black Parti Yorkies (Black, tan and white)- Has a white background color with black and tan/blonde markings.
- Blue Yorkies (Blue, tan, and white)- Has a white base color with blue and tan/blonde patches.
- Chocolate/brown Parti Yorkies (Brown, tan and white)- Has a white base color with chocolate and tan/blonde markings. This color variation is not recognized by AKC.
Keep these basics in mind as you scroll through the rest of the article.
Parti Yorkie Genetics
The parti pattern is caused by a piebald gene (sp) found on the S/white spotting locus (locus is a specific gene location on a DNA strand). This gene blocks pigment-forming cells from reaching certain areas, particularly on the underside, tail tip, and legs resulting in a white appearance. Any part of the body that is affected by this gene will be unpigmented and white.
Only 2 alleles (gene variants) on the S-locus can be tested for;
- S (solid color)– A Yorkie that is SS at the S-locus has no white markings.
- sp (piebald)– Has white ranging from moderate to extensive white cover. This gene seems to exhibit incomplete dominance which means that the extent of white is dependent on whether the dog inherits one or two copies of the dog. A dog with one copy of this gene (Ssp) will have moderate white markings on the underside, legs, full or partial collar, and face with a dark-colored saddle on the back. 2 copies of the gene (spsp) cause the white to extend to the further and may break the saddle or result in a dog that is almost entirely white.
The white Yorkie is likely the result of two copies of the piebald gene which causes the dog to be almost 100% white with color remaining on some parts of the head, especially the ears, and sometimes on the muzzle and base of the tail. This is because the interaction of white spotting alleles is complex and warrants more research as they may be other factors behind the various patterns caused by piebald.
The dog may also have dark-color patches or spots (ticking marks) anywhere on the white coat caused by a separate ticking gene.
Parti Yorkie Vs Biewer
The Parti Yorkshire Terrier is often confused for the Biewer Terrier, especially to the untrained eye.
However, the Biewer Terrier (also known as Biewer Yorkie or German Terrier) is classified as a separate breed. It was a result of breeding a black Parti Yorkie with other dogs by Mr. and Mrs. Biewer in the 1970s creating a new breed
All Biewers are tricolor and have undocked/full-length tails, unlike Yorkies that are either bicolor or tricolor with often docked tails. Biewers can also be registered as Parti Yorkshire Terriers but not the other way round.
Parti Yorkie Vs Yorkie
The Parti Yorkie is a purebred Yorkshire Terrier with a color scheme that includes white.
Parti Yorkshire Terriers have always been part of the Yorkie family but were once shunned as white on the coat is considered a fault. This is because several breeders believed that the white markings were the result of genes left from the Maltese during breeding back in the 1800s.
The Parti coloration was only accepted into AKC in 2000 and interest in pattern has grown since.
Parti Yorkie price
The cost of a Parti Yorkie will range from $1500 to as high as $5000 depending on your location, the breeder, demand, and the line of dogs.
Ensure your puppy is from a reputable breeder but you may be lucky enough to find an older dog in a shelter for adoption.
Do parti Yorkies have health problems?
No health issue is associated with the parti coloration.
However, a parti dog can suffer some of the health complications common with the Yorkshire Terrier breed such as;
- Teeth loss
- Progressive retinal atrophy
- Patellar luxation
Do you plan on getting a Parti Yorkie? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.
There you go, WOOF!