The Difference Between Biewer & Parti Yorkshire Terriers

Yorskhire terriers are usually tan and gray.
Yorskhire terriers are usually tan and gray. (Image: Jupiterimages/ Images)

The Yorkshire Terrier is an old breed from northern England originally used to catch rats. The Yorkshire Terrier is an American Kennel Club recognized breed that is very popular in the United States for its small size and loyalty. Yorkies, as they are known, are high energy, brave and smart small dogs.


The Parti Yorkshire and Biewer Terrier have a similar history stemming from puppies born with two recessive color genes. The Biewer Terrier was created in Germany in the 1980s by a Yorkshire Terrier breeder who liked the white, tan and gray coats of puppies with the recessive genes. The breeders, Gertrud and Werner Biewer, wanted to the show the dogs and set out to create a new breed so that the color pattern might be recognized by an official dog club. The Parti Yorkshire began in the United States in a similar manner but was only bred for the color and still mixed with normal colored Yorkshire Terriers. While the color was selected there was no concerted effort to make a distinct breed in the United States.


The Parti Yorkshire and Biewer Terrier look very similar and in some instances identical. Warnings regarding unethical breeders passing a Parti for Biewer are issued by knowledgeable breeders. Both the Parti Yorkshire and the Biewer Terrier have a gray, white, and tan coat but the patterns are different. Parti Yorkies have a random coat pattern while Biewers have a pattern selected through breeding. Biewer Terriers have a white body and tail with gray or steel-blue hair in the middle of the back, a marking called a saddle. The Biewer head is tan and gray like a regular Yorkie. The Parti Yorkshire sometimes has the same pattern as the Biewer but is not specifically bred for the pattern. Although the colors are the same as the Biewer, the markings vary.


The Biewer tail is exclusively white as per the breed pattern standard and is not docked. The breed standard was set as a law in Germany banning cropping and docking was passed, and the standard was changed to include a long tail. The Parti Yorkshire most often has a docked tail where allowed because it is the breed standard. It is still always the owners decision, but if the dog is meant to be shown, the breed standard has to be followed.


Neither the Parti Yorkshire nor the Biewer Terrier have yet to be recognized in full by the most important international kennel clubs. The Biewer Terrier is a recognized breed in many European countries because it was developed there and has a more active community and stringent breed standard. In the United States, the Biewer is not accepted by many clubs and is not a show dog. U.S. breeders continue to cross breed the Biewer with Yorkshire Terriers. The Parti Yorkshire can be registered with the American Kennel Club but is not a recognized show breed.

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