Toy of the Week: Yappy (Yorkshire Terrier) by Ty

It’s a popular thing these days for pet owners to celebrate their “Gotcha Day”, the day they obtained their beloved pet by posting pictures of their pet online.

Our Yorkies were not our first pets. That distinction belongs to a few goldfish we received as prizes at the school fair. When those fish died, we went to Richway and bought more fish. Eventually, Mom refused to buy us any more fish. I was content just watching the fish in the bowl, but my brother found that boring.

Why did I choose this toy?

One summer when I came home from Girl Scout Camp, I had just put down my my bags. Mom told me we were leaving to pick up the puppy she bought for us. She already bought a sewing machine with most of the money she got from the high school color guard uniforms and had just enough money left over to get the puppy from a breeder. 

My brother and I sat in the backseat and Mom put a laundry basket between us with a towel over the top. I remember it being a pretty long car ride on a very warm day. Mom found the dog in a classified ad in our newspaper and called the breeder. 

In addition to a couple of Yorkies, the breeder had some long-haired chihuahuas. They were cute, but Mom had her heart set on a Yorkie since we pet-sat one that belonged to some family friends. She also liked the one Eva Gabor holds in the opening of the Green Acres theme. 

Mom and I had also both read Gilda Radner’s book before Radner passed away. Mom mailed away for this plush Sparkle keychain from Gilda’s Club. 

Comedy actress Joan Rivers and best selling novelist Amy Tan also owned Yorkies. Rivers named hers Spike and she sold a pin made to look like Spike on QVC. Spike was often visible under the table while Rivers did her presentations. Spike was usually sleeping under the warm lights. 

For the ride home, Mom placed the puppy (Mom had already named her Buttons) in the laundry basket. Our job was to keep Buttons from jumping out, which seemed easy at first, but we didn’t realize the Yorkie we watched for our friends was already an older and more mature dog. 

A Yorkie puppy has a lot more energy than a seven year old Yorkie. Their bark is also considerably more shrill. From the time we got her into the car to the time we got her home, Buttons was barking and trying to jump out of the laundry basket and we were trying to keep her in there. 

She was a very smart dog and even though we bought her plenty of toys, her favorite things to play with were anything made out of paper. This dog could and would literally eat your homework. She particularly loved my mom’s patterns and socks. She always took her loot to the same place: a couch in our playroom. We would take out the treat box and shake it to attempt to entice her into dropping the stolen item, but she never made things easy for us. 

Another thing Buttons liked was sitting in the papasan chair I received for Christmas during my junior year of high school. Sometimes she sat with me while I read a book or listened to music. She also enjoyed sitting on the recliner downstairs while we watched television. 

Yappy (Yorkshire Terrier)

She also managed to slip her leash and run around the neighborhood. One year, she got out on Christmas Eve. We referred to it as “caroling” when she did it at Christmastime. Usually, my dad was the one who managed to chase and catch her and bring her back home. Buttons would get as far as a neighbor’s yard and get scared. 

Buttons lived to be about thirteen years old. We lost her to cancer. A couple of years later, someone my dad knew from work knew someone whose Yorkie had an unplanned dalliance with another Yorkie who came to visit. Dad’s friend knew we had lost our Yorkie and offered us one of the puppies from their litter. 

There was also a neighbor who found a stray that looked like he had been dumped. The dog had similar coloring to Princess, but it wasn’t a Yorkie. He was about fifteen pounds, which was way too heavy for a Yorkie. It was a Lhasa Apso. We put up some Lost Dog signs, but the Lhasa Apso was never claimed, furthering our hunch that the dog had been dumped. 

We tried a bunch of different names for him, but the one he seemed to respond to was Tigger. He had this cute little bounce in his gait and there was a little bit of an orange tinge to his fur in bright sunlight. Of all of the places to nap, Tigger would usually curl up on or next to a nest of electrical cords. I actually have a video clip of Tigger curled up on a cord nest. This is a screenshot from that video.

We took Tigger in about two months before our parents went to the Carolinas to pick up Maverick. My brother and I didn’t go with them because we both had college classes and were both working retail part-time. 

All three of our dogs could jump up and walk along the back of our living room couch. Not only did they nap there, they would also look out the windows and monitor the cul-de-sac. Yorkies are funny because they have the agility of cats but the friendliness of dogs. When they jump up and down stairs, they kind of have a rabbit-like hopping motion. 

It was a different experience having two male dogs after having one female.  

I had the privilege of naming the new Yorkie puppy and based on the previous experience we had with the breed, I suggested Maverick.

My Yappy Yorkie

The sad irony is that we lost Maverick Independence Day weekend of 2018 when his ego wrote a check his body couldn’t cash. He tried to jump onto the couch as he did when he was younger, but fell off and hurt his back. He lived well into his teens. 

When was this toy line produced? 

Ty Warner founded his namesake company in Oak Brook, Illinois in 1886. The company is best known for producing Beanie Babies, those tiny bean bag animals that were everywhere in the mid-to late 1990’s. 

I had several Beanie Babies, but I’ve given them all to my older niece who loves plush animals as much as her younger sister loves dolls. 

On Ebay, Yappy the Yorkshire Terrier is listed as having been from 1997. 

Was there a Cartoon? 

Oddly enough, there was never a Beanie Baby cartoon, but there was a television commercial for a bank that centered around a child losing their Bernie (St. Bernard) Beanie Baby. The voice over on the commercial sounded like George Clooney. I remember rewinding and watching that commercial as often as I could when it aired and decided I needed that specific Beanie Baby. 

Who was the villain?

There were no villains because it was a line of lovable and huggable plush animals, made to hug and provide comfort. 

Where/When did I acquire this toy? 

I bought Yappy at a toy store while I was in Texas visiting my friend, Jill. We were at the mall seeing Muppets From Space. I had been feeling homesick and missed Buttons, so I bought Yappy to cuddle at night and also on the plane. 

Do I still have this toy or any of its accessories? 

I still have the toy. It didn’t come with any accessories, but there is a price sticker on it. Apparently, I paid $9.95 plus tax for Yappy at whatever mall toy store I found it in. I searched Yappy to get the year they were produced and there is one in new condition being offered for $14.99. 

Did anything surprise me while researching this toy? 

Not really. Ty is a pretty well known company and plush animals have always been popular with young children. I am a little surprised that the current price to buy a new one is so low. 

In addition to Sparkle and Yappy, we also found this toy dog which was made for Target’s knock off version of American Girl sized dolls. 

Yappy (Yorkshire Terrier)

Yappy (Yorkshire Terrier)

Also, last week’s Toy of the Week, B.B. Moonlight, appears to have bonded with Sparkle. Sparkle is just the perfect size for B.B. to cuddle.

Miss a week? Check out all the toys featured in Toy of the Week

About Karen Flieger 75 Articles
I was born in the late 1970’s, spent my childhood in the 1980’s, and my pre-teen and teen years in the 1990’s. I graduated from Kennesaw State University in 2001 with a B.A. in English. I collect various forms of media (books, music, movies, and television shows) as well as plush toys, dolls, and Funko figures.

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