How To Identify Guinea Pig Breeds
This serves as your basic guide to guinea pig breeds.
Hi. My name's Marie. I'm the deputy manager of the Small Animal Department of Wood Green Animal Shelters in Cambridge here.
I'm going to advise you how to care for guinea pigs. There are many types of guinea pigs and they come in all shapes, sizes and colours. You can have your different varieties of long coats, wiry coats, smooth coats and even the mix and match coat as well.
The quite common longhaired one is the Peruvian. These types of guinea pigs will need regular grooming and they'll also need a small haircut every 2 or 3 weeks just to prevent the coat from dragging along in the bedding and from getting wet and knotted as well. You also have the different type of guinea pig here which is the Rex breeds.
These are lovely nature types of guinea pig. Their coats are really quite coarse and wiry and their whiskers are often quite curly. They're really gentle-natured and they're a lovely breed of guinea pig.
This one is Swiss guinea pig. He is a mix between a Rex and a longhaired Texel guinea pig. Texel guinea pigs are similar to the longhaired like this but their coat's quite curly.
These are lovely characters as well and they mix really well with other guinea pigs. We also have here the smooth coat. Smooth coats come in all colours.
You can have Selfs which would be as solid, cream or solid ginger, you could have an Agouti which would be a flex of brown and black, and you can also have Roans and Dalmatians where they'd be back and white spotted. This female in here is a crossbreed. She is a Peruvian and smooth coat so her coat is fairly short towards the top and long towards the back.
Most guinea pigs you will find often have a bit of a mix of different breeds in them. Guinea pigs generally don't get matted coats. However, they will require a bathing at least 3 or 4 times a year to protect their coats and any skin issues and keep their coats in really nice healthy conditions.
All breeds of guinea pigs can be mixed together. It's mainly about their coat types and the colours that they are. It doesn't really affect their behaviours towards each other.
Another type of guinea pig is the Abyssinian. This is a rosette type of coat. These can often be quite dominant characters and sometimes they can squabble, so careful pairing with those is always wise.
Although again, generally, they're really sweet-natured breeds of guinea pigs. So when choosing them, make sure you do handle all the guinea pigs that maybe your local shelter got and find something that's going to suit you. Always keep guinea pigs as pairs.
All breeds of guinea pigs need companionship with their own kind. Minimum of 2 but ideally go for 3 or 4 guinea pigs as a small herd because they'll feel much more confident that way. And that's how to identify guinea pig breeds. .