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Abyssinian

Abyssinian

Regal and highly intelligent, the Abyssinian is best described in one word: busy. Not a lap cat, this insatiably curious breed is always on the move, except when eating or sleeping. A fascinating, gorgeous breed, the Abyssinian is a natural athlete, with a muscular body and no fear of heights. The Aby is an affectionate, loyal, people-oriented companion that is well-suited for families with children older than 6.

DID YOU KNOW? The Abyssinian, one of the oldest cat breeds, was named for cats exhibited in shows in England in the late 1800s that were thought to have come from Abyssinia, the former Ethiopia.

The need-to-know
  • Highly active and inquisitive cat
  • Friendly but independent cat
  • Somehow talkative cat
  • Average build cat breed
  • Requires grooming once a week
  • Outdoor cat
  • Great family cat
Abyssinian Body

Pet Card

  • Living Considerations: Not hypoallergenic
  • Size: Small to medium, with males weighing 3 to 4.5 kilograms and females weighing 2.5 to 3.5 kilograms
  • Coat: Medium
  • Temperament: Energetic, active
  • Grooming: Monthly
  • Shedding: Yes
  • Vocalisation: Quiet
Abyssinian is lying on the couch

Personality

The Abyssinian cat is quiet, intelligent and curious and is said to enjoy human company and become attached to its family. It enjoys space and activity, is a good climber, and will appreciate a garden full of trees and high places. Abyssinian cats are playful but tempered with some sense so are not too wreckless!

Abyssinian is watching at the window

History and Origins

Country of Origin: Abyssinia (Ethiopia)

Other Names: Abys, Bunny cat

The Abyssinian cat resembles the African wildcat, ancestor of the domestic cat. The history of the Abyssinian cat in the UK is a little obscure, but it is likely that it was brought back via army personnel from Abyssinia (now Ethiopia), in the 1860s. The early Abyssinian cats were crossed with British Shorthairs, and later with oriental breeds. Long-haired Abyssinian kittens have been found in litters for many years, and since the 1970s they have been developed as a separate breed called the Somali.

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