Guinea Pig Breeds   There are many different breeds of guinea pigs from long haired to shorter haired varieties. Some owners suggest that a particular breed of guinea pig may have a different personality compared to other types. Please see our comprehensive guide below to accurately recognise the different markings and distinguishing characteristics of guinea pigs to see what breed of guinea pig you have. It is important to note that we promote adoption of guinea pigs. Please read our Why Adopt article on why we strongly recommend adoption rather than purchasing a guinea pig. Guinea pig breeds are split between the following types: Smooth Coat Long Coat Rough Coat Hairless Colourations
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Smooth Coated Breeds 
Name
Characteristics
Fun Facts
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Short, smooth fur. Often one colour. Also referred to as the American or           English short hair. Does not require regular grooming or           trimming unlike long haired breeds.  
Short Haired
     Oldest breed of guinea pig           First domesticated in      5000BC      Originally known as the      English Guinea pig and the      American Guinea pig in the      1960’s          
American Crested
Resembles the English Crested guinea           pig Has a single rosette on the crown of           its head which is a different colour to            the rest of its body. They usually have a white crest but it            can differ.
Ridgeback
Has a raised “ridge” on its back coat Is not a common breed of guinea pig Can be any colour
Long Coated Breeds 
Sheltie
Name
Characteristics
Fun Facts
Has a long coat of fur which does not           sweep over the face No rosettes The coat does not have a part in the           middle section Hair has a longer length in the rear           compared to the front Has a very silk like coat and can also           be referred to as a “silkie”
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Peruvian
Has a  long sweeping coat which           extends to the face in a “fringe” They have rosettes They have a part They are usually born with two rosettes with the hair extending forward and one extending the hair towards the rear in maturity
One of the oldest breeds First seen in Paris in 1886 MUST be groomed daily
Texel
Similar to a Sheltie with the coat being curly instead of straight Can be any coat colour Can have a part in the middle but usually has no part
Alpaca
Similar to a Peruvian with a curly coat. Has two rosettes at the rear Heavy textured coat Not a common breed
A recognised breed in 1973 Often seen as lap pigs, mellow and docile MUST be groomed daily
  Originated in England     MUST be groomed daily
Coronet 
Similar to a Sheltie with a long silkie coat Has one rosette at the top of its head where the hair grows downwards
Sheba
A long haired coat with numerous rosettes Also called the “Sheba Mini Yak” The rosettes push the coat upwards creating an appearance of hair in all directions.
  Originated in Australia     MUST be groomed daily
Merino
A long haired curly coat with a rosette on its head. Also called the “English Merino” The rosette or crest is positioned evenly between the ears and eyes
Lunkarya
Rough and coarse coat structure which causes a myriad of curls and waves They can have rosettes which are underneath the coat, and are not plainly visible usually two on the rump Dense thick undercoat. Coat falls in “corkscrews” Variation of a Peruvian guinea pig
Originated in Europe in 1986 The coat cannot be combed out and does not lie flat Can be any colour     
Rough Coated Breeds 
Abyssinian
A short coated guinea pig with many rosettes across the body Usually 8 to 10 rosettes Hair can be any colour or variation
Teddy
A thick dense coat which is even. The coat will tend to stand on end giving a puff like appearance Can have longer fur over the ears Straight Whiskers
Rex
A short coat with a crimped erect fur over the body The fur can be slightly wavy in appearance Curly/crimped Whiskers
Hairless Breeds 
Baldwin
Completely hairless except for the nose and paws, the hair may fall out completely Have wrinkles and folds of skin even on the head The skin is marked as per the coat colour would be  
Born with hair which falls out at 2 months of age
Skinny
Completely hairless Skin is marked as per the coat colour would be
Originated in Canada in 1982 A genetic mutation caused the lack of fur
Colourations 
Himalayan
A short white coat with dark chocolate or black coloured fur on the nose, ears and feet Usually have red eyes An albino guinea pig with pigmentation
Self
A short coat which is all of one colour Black, chocolate, red and white shades Can have red or dark eyes
Tortoiseshell
A short coat which has red, black and white patches on the body A central line is formed when the patches meet Smooth coat Patches are usually one solid colour
Agouti
A smooth coat with a base colour of black or chocolate. The coat then has a “ticked” colour throughout the fur. Shades of ticking can vary with the most common being seen as gold, silver and cinnamon The stomach usually has the base colour
Dutch
A smooth coat with a white band on the back with a distinct upside down “V” in white on the face. White on the chest and front paws
Brindle
Magpie
Specks of red and brown in a continuous even pattern throughout the coat
Roan
Black and White coat with a distinct patching of colours. Usually has black ears. Harlequin guinea pigs are the coloured version of the Magpie Derived from Roans, brindles and Dalmatians
  Harlequin
A short coat with a crimped erect fur over the body The fur can be slightly wavy in appearance Curly/crimped Whiskers
Swiss
Werewolf
Originated in America
Originated from English Peruvian Guinea Pigs
Originated in England in 1970 Recognised breed in 1998
Dalmatian
Specks of black on a coat of white fur.
A specked coat of fur similar to an Agouti. Coat has a solid underlayer and a top layer of fur tips that are white in colour Commonly referred to as a “dappled” coat 
Roans should not be bred with another roan or dalmation breed. Roans and dalmatians have a 25% chance of producing microthalmic babies or commonly known as lethal whites.
Dalmatians should not be bred with another roan or dalmation breed. Roans and dalmatians have a 25% chance of producing microthalmic babies or commonly known as lethal whites.  
Primary black coat with specks or bands of orange/white. Colours fade near the rear and have increased bands Coloured variation of the Magpie Derived from Roans, brindles and Dalmatians
Roans should not be bred with another roan or dalmation breed. Roans and dalmatians have a 25% chance of producing microthalmic babies or commonly known as lethal whites.
Roans should not be bred with another roan or dalmation breed. Roans and dalmatians have a 25% chance of producing microthalmic babies or commonly known as lethal whites.
A variation of a Baldwin Guinea pig Some of the hair will grow back very fine Born without hair to hairless parents the fur will slowly grow back on their bodies
Not a recognised breed Only a variation of a hairless guinea pig
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