9 Long-haired Guinea Pig Breeds (Plus Tips to care for their Long Hair)

If you are thinking about keeping a guinea pig as a pet, you can wonder whether you want a long-haired or short-haired breed.

Depending on the guinea pig breed, some will have short, curly coats while others have longer, smooth and luscious locks – and they can of course come in a variety of shades.

Are you curious to find the different breeds of guinea pigs? What specific breeds could be readily available in your locality for acquisition? What more do you know about long-haired Guinea Pigs?

This post will enlighten you on the different breeds of long-haired guinea pigs, their variable sizes, special features they possess, and their care and maintenance practice.

What Guinea Pigs Have Long Hair?

A guinea pig is a small furry, short-eared, tailless rodent belonging to the taxonomic genus called Cavia. They first originated in South America some thousands of years ago. 

They were raised solely for food but today they serve a more economic purpose attached to their physical features which make them fit to be used as pets in many homes today.

The domesticated Guinea Pigs are a special group of creatures and the only class of Rodentia that can provide companionship to humans. Ecological studies have revealed a special class of long-haired guinea pigs. 

These long-haired guinea pigs are considered superb in the preference of guinea pets because they are loving, playful, curious, inquisitive, and relaxing due to their long smooth fur. These hairs grow from infancy.

Hence you may consider getting one into your family. However, just like every other domestic pet, guinea pigs require some special care, to meet their nutritional needs, housing, and general husbandry practices.

9 Long Haired Guinea Pig Breeds

There are total 9 breeds of long haired guinea pigs which includes Abyssinian guinea pig, Peruvian guinea pig, texel guinea pig, silkie guinea pig, coronet guinea pig, lunkarya guinea pig, sheba guinea pig, alpaca guinea pig and merino guinea pig. 

The table below makes a list of various breeds of the long-haired guinea pigs available within the space of research findings:

BreedAverage size Type of long haircost
Abyssinian Guinea Pig8-12 Inches
Rosettes$15 – $75
Peruvian Guinea Pig10-14 Inches
Rosette$20 – $40
Texel Guinea Pig8-10 inches Curly$20-$75
Silkie Guinea Pig8- 16 inches silkie/sheltie $10-$40
Coronet Guinea Pig8- 16 inchesSilkie$25- $50
Lunkarya Guinea Pig4-12 inchesLunkarya sheltie$10- $50
Sheba Guinea Pig7-12 inchesTousled/ Rosette$15- $40
Merino Guinea Pig4-11 inches Curly$30- $70
Alpaca Guinea Pig8-12 inches Rosette$30- $45
List of long-haired guinea pigs

Abyssinian Guinea Pig

Abyssinian guinea pigs  originated from the Andes mountains of South America. It is one of the most popular pets around the 16th century. The average adult size of these pigs is 8-12 inches weighing 800-1400 grams.

The Abyssinian Guinea Pig has various colors of black, brown, albino, and rano. They have long bodies with small faces coated by furs. Its total rosette is about 6-8 in number. 

They are very friendly and easily socialized, loving, gentle, calm, and easy to be trained. 

They feed majorly on hay and green vegetables. Sometimes, they suffer some ailments usually common among scurvy, diarrhea, pneumonia, urinary problems, etc.  

Peruvian Guinea Pig

The Peruvian Guinea Pig is one of the oldest breeds of long-haired guinea pigs. They were believed to have been discovered in South America via France some 100 years ago.

They are the most haired among the other breeds of guineas. Their colors are Agouti, tricolor, bicolor, and solid. They are beautiful and sometimes described as eye-catching guinea pigs. 

Peruvian guinea pigs are known to be very playful, curious and show a high level of assertiveness.

Due to their long hair, this breed of guinea pigs requires a daily routine of careful inspection, brushing, grooming, and bathing. Sometimes, first-time guinea pig owners are encouraged not to begin with Peruvian Guinea Pigs. 

When feeling bored, these creatures tend to chew the hairs/furs of their companions. 

Texel Guinea Pig

Texel guinea pigs originated in England in the early 1980s. They are 7 to 12 Inches in size and one of the most adorable, gentle, calm and affectionate breeds.

They have stout bodies and broadheads. Their soft and thick furs are curly and arranged around their bodies. This breed usually has shorter hair on their faces and longer curls at the back of their ears and along their lower jaws.

Texel guinea pigs need a considerable amount of labor to maintain. Thus this breed of guinea pigs is not advisable to be housed for kids or adults who cannot provide their quality time in grooming them properly. 

Silkie or Sheltie Guinea Pig

Willie guinea pigs originated in the UK in the 1970s by crossing the long-haired Peruvian and the Self Black. They are 8-16 Inches in size.

These breeds are also known as shelties, they are of various color combinations including black and white, agouti, and Himalayan. Their bodies are extremely smooth and of silky coats.

Silkie guinea pigs are known for being so gentle and calm which makes them fit for children. They have lovely styled hair at the back like that of a human. 

Silkies feed and enjoy more natural vegetables and pellets. One of the most significant diseases common to them is lack of hair due to lack of adequate Vitamin C since their bodies cannot synthesize Vitamin C.

Coronet Guinea Pig

This creature is a product of cross-breeding between the American crested Guinea pig with a Silkie Guinea pig in England in the mid-70s. However, in 1998, the American Rabbit Breeders Association officially recognized Coronet as a significant breed of Guinea pig. 

The size of an adult Coronet varies between 8 and 16 inches weighing between 1.5 – 3.0 pounds.

Coronets have short forehead rosettes and long flowing coats. The coat is however a genetic trait of its pedigree (ancestor).

They are very playful, fun-loving, and easily socialize type pigs. They are easy-going which makes them stable and comfortable, willing to settle for any situation.

Coronets pose some difficult challenges in their care and maintenance practices. Just like the Silkies, they require a great deal of daily brushing, regular trimming, daily ear checkups, monthly nail trimming, and regular bathing. 

Lunkarya Guinea Pig 

The Lunkarya Guinea Pig was first discovered in Sweden. A product of a genetic mutation of a Peruvian pig by some breeders. Its name is a combination of Lunday visit (surname of the people who discovered and developed the breed) and ryn (meaning sheep in Swedish).

An outstanding feature of this breed of guinea pigs is its unkempt appearance. Its body is colored by a long and disheveled coat. 

The hairs which sprout out in what looks like spikes are dense and of coarse texture. The hairs on a Lunkarya’s coat are of equal length except those of the face which are shorter.

These animals are healthier in warm environments. They are also prone to some common diseases such as pneumonia, in-grown nails, diarrhea, and the general deficiency of Vitamin C in meals. They feed on hay, vegetables, pellets, and fruits.   

Lunkarya breeds are social breeds and prefer to live in their herds/companions. Also, they are gentle, quiet and also enjoy the company of other pigs. 

Sheba Guinea Pig

The breed of Sheba Guinea Pigs originated in Australia in the 1960s. It emerged as the product of the crossing made between the long-haired Peruvian Guinea Pig and the short-haired Abyssinian guinea pig.

These creatures are rosette, solid and tricolored. They are also referred to as bad hair day because their shaggy coat gives them a striking appearance.

They are known for chewing their companion’s coats whenever they feel bored and not attended to. 

Sheba Guinea pigs are very social and playful although they appear nervous sometimes.

These creatures do not constantly grow their hairs which makes their maintenance practices less difficult or tedious. They can sometimes fall ill to pneumonia and scurvy. 

Also, it is not advisable to feed them with excess fruits and vegetables as it could lead to obesity and diabetes. Too much-wet food can also cause diarrhea which eventually results in dehydration. 

Alpaca Guinea Pig

Alpaca guinea pigs are mild and affectionate. They mostly enjoy the company of people and cage mates. They love being cuddled as pets by human beings. 

The average adult measures 8-12 Inches in length. Alpaca breeds are known to exhibit a high level of intelligence shown in accurate recognition of symbols and navigation of paths.

Alpaca guinea pig is an offshoot of the Peruvian guinea pig although they are sometimes mistaken for the Texel breed due to some similarities. The difference is that Alpaca guinea pigs have long fur and bangs that hang forward unlike the Texel.

This breed of guinea pigs is usually scarce and can cost $100 for a sizable one.

They are fed more green vegetables and pellets. It is also advisable to train them to be able to perform a few tracks due to their brilliant nature. 

Merino Guinea Pig

Like the Texel guinea pig, a Merino guinea pig has long curly hair. Its coat is soft and looks like spring of many colors. They are among the smallest breeds of guinea pigs. Their hairs are long and curly. 

Adult guinea pigs measure up to 4-11 Inches. Merino guinea pigs are well known for their calm and lovely nature which accounts for why they are a popular breed of guinea pigs. They love adequate companionship. 

To buy a Merino guinea pig, one should budget around $30 to $70. Remember that it is advisable to get two guinea pigs to prevent the incessant loneliness of one.  

The Merino guinea pigs are of high maintenance relative to other domestic pets, hence it is not advisable to be raised by a first-timer. To prevent excrement, it is advisable to trim their hairs occasionally. Also, try bathing them at least once a month.

Tips to Care Long Haired Guinea Pig

The long-haired guinea pigs are special breeds of the Cavies with their distinct features and characteristics which make them suitable to be adopted as pets. 

However, they require intensive care and attention to ensure they serve a better lasting purpose to the user. 

Below are some basic helpful cares that can be given to them:

Regular Grooming and Cleaning

Unlike short-haired guinea pigs, these long-haired breeds require proper care and attention to ensure their mouth is kept healthy (free from germs), shiny and to prevent Urinary Tract Infections. 

Brushing your guinea pigs correctly is very important to ensure you don’t hurt them by pulling the hair. Use a soft-bristled brush, gentle stroke, comb, and towel. 

Proper grooming and cleaning are achieved daily, weekly, or monthly following the steps below:

Daily: Brush coat with a soft-bristled brush to loose hairs.

Weekly: Check coat for any matts and trim if needed.

Monthly: Trim coats to maintain shorter length and prevent the hair from dragging on the floor. 

Ware Manufacturing Small Animal Grooming Kit

Trim Long-Haired Guinea Pig’s Hair

It is advisable to brush your guinea pig correctly as you should not hurt them by pulling them from their hairs.  

If you leave your guinea pig with long hair too long then it will be soiled. While pooping the long haired guinea pigs hair will be dirty and wet too which can cause them serious skin infection.

The brush or comb should not feel too harsh on your guinea pig as they have a very delicate skin. The safest tool to brush or comb your guinea pig is round tipped hair scissors. Never choose a sharp scissor to brush their hair as it can cause an injury.

Different breeds have different hairstyles like some guinea pigs have smooth and silky hair. While, few breeds have cowlicks on their head or on their body.

Bathing Your Long-Haired Guinea Pig

This is another proper and adequate care that can be given to promote adequate grooming of the guinea pigs. Bath guinea pigs when their Long coats are soiled badly or if you’re showing the pet for confirmation. 

It should be done with a hairdryer, genuine safe shampoo, and warm water. It should be done with extreme care to ensure it doesn’t get chilled or overstressed. 

J·R·LIGGETT’S Small Animal Liquid Shampoo Great for Sensitive Skin

Wrapping Up

To a prospective guinea pig owner, I hope you’ve got lots of all the information you need to explore the world of long-haired guinea pigs, their domestication, and husbandry. 

More to an already owned rearer, some grooming guides here are worth reassuring to help boost the growth and proper care of your lovely pet(s) at home.

It is very imperative to note that raising long-haired guinea pigs requires deliberate efforts to keep them always gloomy since they share some privacy with men.

Long-haired guinea pigs are of immeasurable value to man because of their friendly dispositions calmly and gently unlike other household pets. 

Raising them should be within the caution that they are to serve mild domestic purposes and not for security reasons.

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