When you imagine a guinea pig, you probably picture the typical short-haired American guinea pig. But what about those with curly or straight long hair? Most people would probably just assume their owners let them grow out their hair, but that’s certainly not the case. There are actually several breeds of domesticated guinea pigs in the world. However, I’ll be going through the most popular ones today, which you can find at your local pet store.
Probably one of the most popular long-haired pig, the Abyssinian is a wonderful pet to have. This breed has long swirls, which actually make them perfect as a show pig. And yes, there are competitions for guinea pigs.
But due to the nature of the Abyssinian’s hair, this type of guinea pig is a bit harder to take care of. I would not recommend this for a child, unless someone more responsible is willing to take on the responsibilities of grooming.
This is the most common breed of them all, at least in North America. Hence, the name “American.” But the biggest reason why the American is the most popular one isn’t because it’s extra cuddly or cute. It’s because it’s the easiest one to take care of, making them perfect for little children.
However, if you have plenty of time to dedicate into a pet, I would suggest something more rare, such as the Abyssinian.
This particular breed is similar to the Abyssinian. However, the one major difference is that it has long straight hair instead of long curly hair. Of all the different guinea pig breeds, the Peruvian seems to have the longest hair.
And like with any long-haired guinea pig, the Peruvian requires some time for tedious grooming. Combing the straight hair is recommended every day to prevent any tangles, which could cause discomfort to your pet.
Also called the Sheltie, The Silkie guinea pig is similar to the Peruvian. The main difference is the hair around the area of the head. The Silkie has it’s head hair slicked back. The hair of the Silkie is also much softer than that of any other breeds, making them great for entertaining little children.
But of course I wouldn’t recommend this for a child to take care of. Make sure there is a responsible person handling all the grooming required to maintain a healthy Silkie.
The Teddy guinea pig actually looks like a stuffed animal, probably because of it’s dense and short coat that you would see on a teddy bear. They don’t have hair as smooth and soft as the Silkie, but they make great pets for kids to care for.
A unique feature found in only the Teddy is the “upturned nose,” which makes them resemble a stuffed animal even more.
Unlike other breeds of long-haired pigs, the Texel has long curly hair all throughout the body. This means, curly hair is apparent on their backs and their bellies, which make them popular for owners who want to show off their pet at competitions.
Once again, I would only recommend this for responsible adults, and specifically owners that want to showcase their guinea pig.
The White Crested
Perhaps the easiest to spot out, the White Crested has a white spot on top of the head. It resembles a white crown, hence the name. Other than the particular mark, this breed is very similar to the American. They are essentially American guinea pigs with a hint of originality.
The short hair requires minimal grooming and make them a popular choice among children.