Amongst the domesticated cat breeds, there is a cat breed that has unusual agility and activeness and is also one of the top 5 cat breeds of the world. The Abyssinian cat breed is a distinctive cat breed with a ticket coat and sharp cunning eyes. With its funny actions and loving nature, the Abyssinian makes the excellent choice to join a family.
History of the Abyssinian Cat
The origin of the Abyssinian cat breed is still very blurred and confusing. Mainly, four types of believes or theories exist related to the origin of the Abys cats.
- Some people relate their origins to Egypt at the time of Pharaoh.
- Some relate it with the result of a crossbreed done by Britain. The silver and brown tabbies were crossbred with the cats having a coat with patterns.
- It is also believed that the Abyssinian cat breed, also known with the name ‘Abys’, got its name from Abyssinia which is now known as Ethiopia. Ethiopia is considered as the land of origin of this breed.
- A genetic study that took place in 1871 suggested that the Abyssinian cats originated from the coastal regions along the Indian Ocean.
The Abyssinian cat breed started getting imported from Britain by the American breeders in the year 1900. World War 1 and 2 wiped out all the cats of this breed from Europe, but it kept on growing in America and then spread in the whole world. Today, the Abys are one of the top 5 cat breeds of the world.
Height & Weight
The medium-long body of the Abys cat is 12 to 16 inches tall and weighs about 8 to 12 pounds. This is not considered as a large cat breed.
The life span of an Abyssinian cat is 12 to 15 years long.
The Abyssinian cats bear a medium-large muscular and athletic body that is neither stocky nor svelte body type. They look like a cat that physically lies somewhere between a Persian cat and a Siamese cat. The head over the arched neck is rounded wedge-shaped with fine plate edges.
They have pointed large ears that remain alert. Their eyes are large and almond-shaped and legs are slim with fine bones. Small oval paws are compact and it seems as if they walk on the tip-toe. A thick and long tapering tail swishes behind them.
The beautiful almond-shaped, large, and expressive eyes of the Abyssinian cat are neither oriental nor round, but oval in shape. Their eyes are mainly found in 2 colors. Green and golden.
Coat and Patterns
The Abys have a silky smooth coat that has a fine texture and lustrous sheen. The short to medium coat is resilient to touch. They have a ticked hair coat that makes them look like a wild cat. This coat also has bands of colors to give a shining and warm look.
The coat of the Abys cat is available in black, brown, ruddy brown, cinnamon, fawn, blue, and red. In some countries like Australia and England, chocolate, lilac, and silver-colored Abys are also accepted.
Personality and Temperament of the Abyssinian Cat
Abyssinian cats are intelligent and highly energetic. They are social, loving, and affectionate but do not like to be picked up too often. They are highly spirited and curious at times and want to be set free. They are not the usual lap cats. They like to sit near the owner and follow them at every corner of the house.
The Abyssinian cat is also called the clown of the cat kingdom. It is because it is an amusing cat that enjoys itself and entertains others with its antics. These are the happy cats and love to be involved with the family members, especially at mealtime.
The Abys are the natural athletes and can jump to every high place of the house. They do not have high vocals and tend to purr if they want to communicate. They cannot live alone for long and get bored. These cats are not suitable for those with a busy work routine.
Health Problems of the Abyssinian Cats
Abys have a smart and athletic body that keeps them healthy. However, this cat breed is prone to some diseases as well.
This dental disease is common in Abys cats. During this disease, the tissues that hold the teeth get infected. Regular brushing and care can help prevent this disease.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy
This is an eye disease that affects the eye-sight and can turn the cat blind.
This is a neurological disease that makes the skin abnormally sensitive and causes itching and hair loss. It is also known as rolling skin syndrome and twitchy cat disease.
It is a hereditary disease in which amyloid proteins deposit on different body organs. In Abys, it deposits on the kidneys and causes kidney failure.
Patellar luxation is another hereditary disease that dislocates the kneecap. The cat suffers from pain and faces trouble while walking. It can be fixed by surgery.
Nutrition of the Abyssinian Cat
Good quality cat food with plenty of water intake will be good for Abys’ health and growth. The cat food containing proteins like amyloid must be avoided to protect the cats from renal amyloidosis.
Feed the cat twice a day and do not leave the food in the cat bowl for the whole day.
Care of the Abyssinian Cat
To keep the Abyssinian cat in good health and physique, some tips can help take care of this cat breed.
- To protect the Abys from itching and hair loss, groom its dense ticked coat weekly.
- In the shedding season, a bath will help to clean the fallen hair easily and quickly.
- Periodontal disease is common in Abys. Brush their teeth daily to avoid this disease.
- The pointed ears of Abys can catch dirt and debris easily. Check and clean their ears weekly with a wet cotton cloth.
- Take care of its nutritional requirements. Feed it only twice a day.
- To utilize the excessive energy and power of this athletic cat breed, surround it with lots of cat toys, puzzles, teasers, and engage it in physical activities like fetch and chase a laser mouse.
- If you don’t want your Abys to get hurt, provide a cat tree to climb over it safely.
- Provide a fellow cat or any other pet if you have a busy schedule. If will keep the cat engaged and it will not feel alone.
- The litterbox must be clean and tidy so that the Abys can use it happily.
- Keep the Abyssinian cats indoors. It is safer for their health and life.
Friendliness of the Abyssinian Cat
The Abyssinian cat is an active and strong cat that is also very social. It likes to play and communicate with its family members. The Abys is not scared of other animals, not even a dog. It also goes well with other cats, cat-friendly dogs, parrots, bunnies, and other pets.
It remains happy until someone does not pick it up. They like adults more than the toddlers who can match their level of activeness and playfulness.
The Abyssinian cat is a wonderful wild-looking cat with a ticked shimmered coat. It is a good companion to keep if you have plenty of time to spend with it while playing and taking care of its needs.