Last Modified

March 9, 2023 by Umair Shahid

 Are you looking for a vocal and friendly guinea pig? Oh yes, then Abyssinian should be your right choice.

I have almost all breeds of Guinea pigs. But when it comes to friendly and lively nature, Abyssinian tops.

This guinea piggie is unique among the guinea pig population. Unlike other guineas, it has a long body and a small face.

Rosettes are the thing that makes them unique. Now you are wondering how? The fur of Abyssinians is only three to four cm long.

This fur then forms a rough spiky pattern. This pattern is called rosettes. These rosettes are spread all over the body.

Each Abyssinian has six to eight rosettes. These swirls make the Abyssinians more attractive.

Abyssinians are lively pets. They are bolder, louder, and quirkier.

When I enter my house after work, my Albo makes loud noises and cheers me up. He is very friendly.

But my Albo doesn’t want to cuddle. These Abyssinians don’t like cuddles and being held.

Abyssinians come in a variety of colors. This breed is also the most popular and recognized.

These are not pigs. They are rodents like mice and rats.  

Abyssinians guinea pigs are perfect for those who don’t want a common piggie but also don’t want something unusual.

Abyssinian-guinea-pigs

History of Abyssinian guinea pigs

Abyssinians guinea pigs are one of the oldest breeds. They have been known for centuries.

 Their origin is so back known that nobody is sure where they came from.

Some geologists Wiz guess that they may come from Abyssinia. But it makes no sense because they are not found in that region.

All domesticated Abyssinians that you see today originated from South America.

 That’s the reason some old tribes worshipped these pets. The first Abyssinian guinea pig that reach Europe was in the 16th century.

Abyssinian’s appearance

These piggies have a very striking appearance. Unlike other breeds, they have long bodies, small faces, and broad heads.

Their ears are petal-shaped and they droop toward the ground.

Some species of this breed also have small mustache hair over their nose.

The coat of the Abyssinian guinea pig is spotless. They are famous for their unique, rough, and swirl pattern fur.

The amazing fact is the Abyssinians only have an even number of rosettes.

They have rosettes on their right and left shoulders. Furthermore, two or four swirls in the back. And one on each side of the buttock.

The edge of each rosette tells where the swirl starts or ends. Abyssinians guinea pigs with less than eight rosettes are also wonderful pets.

Don’t judge their cuteness based on the number of swirls.

My Abby has perfect eight rosettes. That’s the reason I take him in shows.

Behavior

Most guinea owners and breeders think that out of all the breeds, guinea pigs are the most mischievous ones.

This means that they are very naughty. But I think this is their curious nature that puts them in trouble always.

There is no proper evidence of this of course. But being the pet owner of a Guinea pig for so long, I seem to agree as everyone does.

But don’t scare to own them. They have a unique yet Amazing personalities. All breeds of Guinea pigs enjoy the company of humans.

But particularly Abyssinian breeds love to remain in the company of us. Moreover, they are very energetic, especially the young ones.

Furthermore, it’s easy to make a strong bond with them than with other breeds.

Surprisingly! They are very responsive to the training. They learn things quickly.

My female Abyssinian Scarlet learned how to back jump into her cage on command. It looks very amazing and pretty. I love her!

Colour Variety

These piggies just like other breeds also come in a number of colors. Some are multi-colored even.

Brindles

Brindles have a distribution of red and black hair mixed with each other. They are further classified as dark and light brindles.

This entirely depends upon how much red and how much black is present. It is also dependent on the shading of the coat.

Tortoiseshells

Tortoiseshells have patches of colors all over the body. They mostly appear as patches or spots of red or black color. They are present everywhere on the body with any symmetry.

Roans

Roans have a coat that also contains a mixture of white colors. They are further classified as strawberries and blue roans.

Strawberry roans have a coat of red and white hair. While blue has a coat of black and blue hair.

Selfs

Selfs only have the sole color. This means that only a single solid color is present on the body. This can be completely white, black, red, or some other rare colors also.

Albino

This type looks most beautiful according to my opinion after the Himalayan. The guinea pig is all white with red eyes.

Himalayan

It is similar to a pure white albino but it has dark ears, nose, and feet.

Agouti

Some people’s personal favorite type. This is the typical salt and pepper color combination.

Dutch

It is the classical two-colored combination

Dalmatian

Yes, you are thinking it right. It is exactly like the dog breed.

Abyssinian’s distinctive coat

The hair of the guineas of this breed is straight and coarse. They stand up to a height of 1.5 inches all over the body.

The Abyssinian coat is because of the dominant gene. This means that breeding a smooth-haired guinea with the Abyssinian would produce partial baby Abyssinian.

Due to this cross-breeding, some of the babies have one or two rosettes. This is because the dominant gene is mixed with the recessive one.

Those Abyssinians who are bred from two pure parents Abyssinian have more rosettes. This is because of the dominant rosette gene.

 This type of Abyssinian is used to compete in shows.

Diet

Their food requirement is the same as the other breeds of guinea pigs. And they also have some dietary restrictions.

Timothy hay is the most essential one. Moreover, you should provide unlimited fresh, clean, and slightly green hay.

They also require plenty of vegetables. You should feed them a cup daily. High-quality pellets with fortified vitamin C are also necessary.

They require one-fourth cup of Pellets daily. Fruits should be served as treats to guinea pigs. Excessive treatment can be led to digestive issues.

High-quality fruits like strawberries are best as they can also provide vitamin C.

Exercise

All guinea pigs need a lot of exercises to stay healthy. The RSPCA says that guinea pig remains active for 20 hours per day. They sleep only for a few minutes.

The animal humane society recommends a cage of a minimum size of 24 inches by 35 inches.

These creatures can’t climb, so they don’t require a lot of platforms to exercise.

 There should be a hiding place under their raised feeding platform. So that they can go and hide when they feel overwhelmed.

However, open space is always preferable to anything else.

Training

Abyssinian pigs are small and intelligent creatures. They can be easily trained. Training helps your pet to engage in exercise.

This in turn makes a stronger bond with your pet. To train an Abyssinian is so easy that you only need to repeat a word again and again.

Then when they perform the task, award them with a treat.

Care guide for an Abyssinian guinea pig

This common and friendly breed doesn’t require your extra time. It is quite easy to care for an Abyssinian.

They require the same care as other breeds in terms of feeding, housing, and exercise.

See also  Will an Abscess Kill a Guinea Pig? ( Vet's Opinion)

Attention

I have felt this situation myself, sometimes when I remain busy throughout the day my Abby bored easily.

They like to have more attention actually. They can be bored easily when there is no companion or pet owner near them.

Because of loneliness, they can be moody and depressed. If their basic attention needs are not fulfilled, they will be anxious.

Moreover, the same will happen if you don’t allow them to go outside. Or if you give them a boring diet.

The best solution to entertain them is to involve other petting also. Moreover, you should pay more attention to them.

Give them another guinea pig with which they can play and talk. Moreover, provide them interesting diet.

Allow them to spend time outside the cage. Guinea’s toys can also be helpful in this regard.

Heat

All the breeds who have long hair have problems in summer. The same is true for Abyssinians.

Imagine yourself wearing a fur coat on a hot summer day! So, on particularly hot days provide them with refrigerated foods and cold water.

Moreover, it’s a good idea to provide them with a bath and fan to cool them.

Bathing

Most guinea pigs don’t like bathing. For this purpose, heat water to a lukewarm temperature.

Allow the guinea pig to put its feet in the bottom of the tub. And now fill the tub to chest height. It won’t cause any trouble for your pet.

Use fragrant-free shampoo and soap. After that, wrap him in the towel. And Place it in front of the fan to cool in hot weather.

Mostly, Abyssinian guineas don’t like bathing. Instead, they prefer grooming themselves. They like the smell of their own.

If your piggie smells too strong, then bath it to remove excess skin build-up.

Brushing

Another good way to keep your pet happy and clean is to brush their hair. You can use a soft brush or a toothbrush even.

My piggie like the feeling of this kind of grooming. It happily sits in front of me for hours.

Normally, this is not included in the care guide. Because they don’t get knots. The only place where they can get knots is on their rear.

But brushing your pet’s hair may reduce fungal infections.

Keeping your Abyssinian clean will make it more attractive and happy.

Health issues

Abyssinian guinea pigs are more prone to health issues than other breeds. A few are discussed below.

Pneumonia

According to VCA Hospitals, guinea pigs are most affected by pneumonia. It is caused by bacteria like streptococcus and Bordetella.

Some piggies are carriers of these bacteria but are asymptomatic.

However, if the pet becomes weak or stressed. The bacteria become active and disease develops.

The infection can also spread quickly to the other mate. Symptoms include cloudy discharge from the eyes and nose, sneezing, and breathing difficulties.

With proper veterinary treatment, most guinea pigs make full recovery.

Diarrhea

Abyssinians are also susceptible to diarrhea. There is a balance of good and bad bacteria for the proper functioning of git.

When the balance disrupts and normal flora decreases, severe diarrhea and dehydration develop.

Your pet can also stop eating, appear depressed, and can have a low body temperature.

If your piggie develops diarrhea, immediately consult your pet. Never try anti-diarrhoeal medicines of humans on your guinea.

Scurvy

Scurvy is another common disease in Abyssinian guinea pigs. Vitamins are essential for bones, joints, and gums. It is also important for wound healing.

Guinea pigs cannot synthesize their own vitamin C so they must have to take the vitamin C from their diet.

Abyssinian guinea pigs should ideally have 10 to 50 mg of vitamin C daily.

Along with their essential diets like fruits and vegetables, pellets fortified with vitamin C are also necessary.

Pellets must be used for 90 days. After this, the vitamin content in them destroys rapidly.

Lack of vitamin C can cause poor coat conditions, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and hemorrhages.

 Moreover, ulcers on the skin or gums, swollen joints, or feet can also occur.

FAQs

Q How much space does an Abyssinian guinea pig needs?

Due to their natural nature of curiosity, and because they are energetic they need a lot of space.

You should provide the space as much as possible. Not only do they require a spacious room in the hutch but also need a space to run.

Q Are Abyssinian guinea pigs friendly?

Yes without a doubt. Out of all the breeds, the Abyssinian is the friendliest one. They are vocal, outgoing, and charming.

They love their pet owners. They make great pets. They require continuous attention. Otherwise, they can get bored easily.

Q Are Abyssinian guinea pigs rare?

Abyssinian guinea pigs are one of the common breeds. These are the type of Guinea pigs that have distinctive hairstyles.

 They have natural rosettes and come in a variety of shades from albino tHio Dalmatian.

Q What is the price of an Abyssinian guinea pig?

The price of Abyssinian guinea pig varies from $15 to $75. It depends upon the color and breeding of the animal.

Pure Abyssinians with eight rosettes are more expensive.

Conclusion

Abyssinian guinea pigs are one of the most friendly guinea pigs. They have a lively nature. They are louder and quirkier.

Unlike other breeds, they have long bodies, small faces, and broad heads.

They are unique because of their too beautiful rosettes. In rosettes, the hair or fur of Guinea is arranged in a swirl pattern.

They have a friendly nature but they don’t want to cuddle. They also don’t like being handled.

They are not pigs actually. They are rodents like mice and rats.

All the domesticated guinea pigs nowadays originated from South America. The first Abyssinian guinea pig came to Europe in the 16th century.

They have long bodies, small faces, and broad heads. They have petal-shaped ears drooped towards the floor.

They have rosettes all over the body. Mostly they have an even number of rosettes.

Rosettes are present on the right and left shoulders. Some on the back and one on each side of the hip.

They are very friendly towards their pet owners. They are the most mischievous guinea pigs.

Because of their curious nature and energetic body, they got into trouble. They can be trained easily. This makes the bond even stronger.

They come in a variety of colors like brindles, tortoiseshells, selves, albino, roans, Himalayan, agouti, Dutch, and Dalmatian.

The fur coat of the Abyssinian guinea pig is 1.5 inches long. The coat is because of the dominant gene.

Partial Abyssinians have two rosettes and don’t have eight rosettes.

Eight rosette guineas compete in shows.

They require Timothy hay, vegetables, and pellets. Pellets should be fortified with vitamin C.

Vitamin C must be present in their diet. Fruits should be served as treats. Otherwise, it will be led to digestive problems in them.

I would suggest you go for Abyssinian guinea pigs. These are beautiful and can compete in shows.

Moreover, they are very friendly and intelligent. They can be easily trained. They don’t require high maintenance.

https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/139416

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/030098588702400408

Author

I am a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and have a keen interest in animal health care. Working as a veterinary content writer, I intend to stay with professional approach in producing quality content. I like research-based reading and currently seeking my veterinary profession. My hobbies are travelling to exotic places and observing nature to the fullest.

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