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Abyssinian Cats 101: What Makes This Exotic Breed Unique

A Guide to the Gorgeous Abyssinian Cats of Ethiopia

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Abyssinian cats photo

Is the Abyssinian Right For You?

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    Abyssinian cats are intelligent, curious, and good for pet parents who want an affectionate cat.

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    Abyssinian kittens are very active and grow into lively adult cats.

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    Most Abyssinian cats aren’t exactly “lap cats,” but they do enjoy attention.

HISTORY

One of the first breeds of domestic cat, many people think the Abyssinian cat to be Egyptian in origin. However, their true origin is still shrouded in mystery. The name Abyssinian implies some relationship with the ancient civilization of Abyssinia, or modern day Ethiopia, yet none of these theories can be confirmed. We do, however, know that this breed didn’t make their way over to Great Britain until the 1860s, where they became popular as a domestic breed. Since then, the Abyssinian cat has become known as one of the finest specimens of all the short-haired breeds.

quick facts

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    Size

    Medium

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    Lifespan

    9 - 15+ years

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    Hair Length

    Short

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    Litter Size

    An average of 6 kittens

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    Male Weight

    8 - 12 pounds

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    Female Weight

    8 - 10 pounds

APPEARANCE

The Abyssinian cat is medium sized with trademark large ears and unusual "ticked" fur. Ticking is the term for the way each individual hair changes color from the base to the tip, getting gradually darker. Along with their unique fur and large ears, Abyssinian cats have almond shaped eyes, ovular paws, and a regal posture befitting their intelligent, inquisitive nature.

PERSONALITY

Abyssinians are known as exceptionally human-centric cats. They may not crawl up on your lap, but they always want to be where the people are. While they might not warm up to strangers, Abyssinians are definitely one of the most loyal breeds, sticking to their parent like glue. Also, watch out! Being one of the smartest breeds, you might notice that your Abyssinian is starting to train you to do their bidding.

color

The Abyssinian can be found in red, blue, fawn, or ruddy.

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health concerns

Normally a healthy breed, the cat is likely to cross their twenties fairly well. However, there are certain hereditary ailments that they are prone to like:

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