7-12 lbs
Silky Terrier

The Silkese is a toy sized hybrid that resulted from crossing a Silky Terrier with a Maltese. The Silkese has long silky fur that comes in a variety of colors like black, brown, white, golden, and a combination of these. They are generally around 8 to 10 inches tall and weigh up to 14 pounds. They are great family dogs and get along well with children as they are playful, affectionate, and active. Being a small dog, they don’t require lot of physical activity; daily playtime will keep them happy. 

Date of Origin
Maltese, Silky Terrier

Silkese Health

Average Size
Male Silkese size stats
Height: 9-12 inches Weight: 9-14 lbs
Female Silkese size stats
Height: 8-10 inches Weight: 7-12 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
Minor Concerns
  • Diabetes
  • Portosystemic Shunt
  • Legg-Calve Perthes Disease
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Epilepsy
  • Collapsed Trachea
  • Reverse Sneezing
Occasional Tests
  • Eye Examination
  • Ear Examination
  • Urinalysis
  • Blood Count

Silkese Breed History

The Silkese is a designer dog that resulted from breeding a Silky Terrier with a Maltese. There’s little information regarding this designer-dog's origin. The Silky Terrier's origins are traced back to 1890 in Australia. This breed resulted from crossing Australian Terriers with imported Yorkshire Terriers. In 1906 in Sydney, New South Wales, a breed standard was established. And in 1909, another standard was developed in Victoria. These standards had several differences, until 1926 when a newly negotiated breed standard was established. These dogs were initially called the Sydney Silky Terrier, then in 1955 the Australian Silky Terrier, which remains the official name in Australia. In the United States the breed name was changed to Silky Terrier. This breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1959. The Maltese is one of the oldest toy breeds. Their history goes back over two millennia. Even though they have an ancient history, there’s little information about this breed’s origin. There are several theories about this dog's origin. Some believe they come from Malta, others from Italy, and another theory is that they originated in Asia. In early Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures, these dogs were depicted by artists, writers, and poets. Even Aristotle mentioned these dogs. It is known that the Greeks built tombs for their Maltese and the Egyptians represented similar dogs on artifacts, which indicates an appreciation for the dogs. Amongst the Egyptians, and later on the Europeans, it was believed that the Maltese were able to cure people, so they would place a Maltese on the pillow of diseased people. The dogs were then called “The Comforter”. By the 15th century, this breed was a favorite with the French aristocrats. The breed arrived in Great Britain during Henry VIII’s reign and by the end of the 16th century they had become the chosen dog for royal and noble ladies. This breed was Queen Elizabeth’s favorite, as well as Mary Queen of Scot’s, and Queen Victoria’s. These dogs were often portrayed in paintings of beautiful ladies, from artists such as Goya and Sir Joshua Reynolds. Later on, in the 17th and 18th, breeders almost ended the Maltese, by trying to breed them as small as a squirrel. In order to retrieve the breed, it was necessary to mix them with mini Spaniels, Poodles, and East Asian miniature dogs. Thus, several new breeds resulted. The Maltese we see today was developed by English breeders. In the U.S., Maltese became well known in the late 1800s. The Maltese was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1888.

Silkese Breed Appearance

The Silkese is a teddy-bear-like toy dog with long, silky, straight fur. He comes in a variety of colors like brown, golden, cream, black, gray, and a mix of any of these. He can weigh up to 14 pounds, and can be between 8 to 12 inches tall. They have small, dark-rimmed eyes; their ears are furry and can be droopy or sometimes pointed. Their head is slightly rounded, and their muzzle is flat, ending in a rounded black nose. They have a robust complexion even though they are small, with square shoulders and a lovely curly tail. Their gait shows an attitude of spunk and determination.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Silkese eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Silkese nose
Coat Color Possibilities
black Silkese coat
gray Silkese coat
brown Silkese coat
white Silkese coat
cream Silkese coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Silkese straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Silkese Breed Maintenance

The Silkese requires a high amount of grooming due to their long, delicate fur. These dogs get tangles and mats easily, and it is very important to eliminate them as soon as they occur in order to avoid skin irritation and issues with pulling. Daily grooming will help avoid these mats and tangles, plus will eliminate dead, loose hair. Occasional trimming is required to keep a healthy, beautiful coat. They tend to get dirty easily, so frequent bathing is sometimes required; they may need a weekly bath. It is important to try to work out the mats and tangles with your fingers, and brush your hybrid before his bath. Failure to do so may mean the tangles become even harder to remove. Weekly ear checks are suggested - clean the ears with a cloth, ensuring all moisture is removed. If a bad ear odor is present, they should be checked by a veterinarian. The nails should be trimmed once or twice a month and the teeth brushed daily.

Brushes for Silkese
Pin Brush
Slicker Brush
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
Silkese requires daily brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Silkese Temperament

These little dogs are cheerful and affectionate. The Silkese loves to learn new things and are good at obeying, which makes them easy to train. It is important to train them well, since they can become controlling, bossy, and wary of other people and animals otherwise. They are great family dogs and get along really well with children and seniors as long as their is regular interaction. They love spending time with their families and enjoying fun playtime. These dogs are very curious and like to dig and have a tendency to bark at other animals and strangers. It is highly likely that they will inherit the prey hunting instinct from the Silky Terrier. 

Silkese Activity Requirements

The Silkese is a toy hybrid, and because of their small size they do not require extended walks or vigorous physical activities. They do well indoors and in small apartments. Nonetheless, these small dogs are active and playful, so playtime and short walk a couple of times per day will keep them healthier and at their happiest. A short, not so fast-paced, walk will do perfectly; 45 minutes of daily exercise will suffice. These dogs also enjoy being outdoors and digging, taking them to a park or a yard will keep them entertained and content. It is important to not expose these dogs to extreme cold or hot temperatures, since they are sensitive to temperature extremes.
Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
7 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
45 minutes

Silkese Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1.5 cups
Daily Cost
$0.70 - $1.00
Monthly Cost
$20.00 - $30.00

Silkese Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Silkese size stats at six months
Height: 8.5 inches Weight: 9.5 lbs
Female Silkese size stats at six months
Height: 7.5 inches Weight: 7.5 lbs
12 Months
Male Silkese size stats at 12 months
Height: 10.0 inches Weight: 11.0 lbs
Female Silkese size stats at 12 months
Height: 8.5 inches Weight: 9.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Silkese size stats at 18 months
Height: 10.5 inches Weight: 11.5 lbs
Female Silkese size stats at 18 months
Height: 9.0 inches Weight: 9.5 lbs

Silkese Owner Experiences

18 Months
1 People
House & Yard
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She is my first silkese and love her to bits she is full of life and love good with kids makes a great little gard dog
2 months, 3 weeks ago
13 Months
3 People
House & Yard
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She is very affectionate and loves to cuddle. She was easily trained but is petty when she doesn’t get her way. She loves to play fetch. She does good with children but licks a lot. She humps peoples legs to get attention.
7 months ago
9 Years
4 People
House & Yard
He is very friendly loves kids and seniors. Very nosy and curious. Great little watch dog. However, he can be noisy with barking at everyone who passes the yard. He hears very well. Biggest issue is severe atopic dermatitis. Very affectionate and loyal.
1 year, 2 months ago
18 Months
4 People
House & Yard
Better then any other dog I've had before. She is great.
2 years ago
1 Year
4 People
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The first of this breed we have owned. Jinxy is very cute and playful, & romps through the house with her best friend, a decidedly weird black cat. She digs holes, hides her treats in the sofa, and enjoys chasing birds, though of course never catches any. She is fussy about where she eats her food. We wish we knew how to train her NOT to bark at people walking past our house. Jinxy has brought such happiness, and we hope she will be with us for many years.
2 years, 8 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd