Guinea Pig Breed Menu



Breed Organizations

The American Cavy Breeders Association
American Rabbit Breeders' Association
The British Cavy Council

Scientific Name
Cavia porcellus
Life Expectancy
4-8 Years
Other Common Names
Crested Sheltie
Breed Appearance
This breed originally came from Claire White of Masquerade Stud in England around the mid 1970's. They were originally called the Crested Sheltie but its name was changed in 1979 to Coronet. It was developed by crossing the Sheltie (a Silkie) with an American Crested. On the other side of the ocean, (in the United States) around the late '70's and early '80's, Coronets were being developed from several sources. The Pankratzs of California were developing them from pet quality crested Americans with longer rump hair, which were in turn bred to top quality silkies; and also from Jennifer Lin of Washington. After all this time, the Coronet was finally recognized by the ARBA on February 1, 1998. It has long soft flowing fur with a crest on the top of its head. It is often described as a Silkie with a crest and can be shown in a variety of colors

Breed Standard - ACBA
-The Coronet cavy is characterized by it's long, soft, dense coat and a crest (or coronet) on top of it's head.
-The coronet must be evenly centered, and should have a pinpoint center.
-Unlike the White Crested, the Coronet may have white on any part of it's body, and comes in all of the recognized colors.

Guinea pigs can learn complex paths to food, and can accurately remember a learned path for months. Their strongest problem solving strategy is motion. While guinea pigs can jump small obstacles, they are poor climbers, and are not particularly agile. They startle extremely easily, and will either freeze in place for long periods or run for cover with rapid, darting motions when they sense danger. Larger groups of startled guinea pigs will "stampede", running in haphazard directions as a means of confusing predators. When excited, guinea pigs may repeatedly perform little hops in the air (known as "popcorning"). They are also exceedingly good swimmers.

If handled correctly early in their life, guinea pigs become amenable to being picked up and carried, and seldom bite or scratch. They are timid explorers and often hesitate to attempt an escape from their cage even when an opportunity presents itself. Still, they show considerable curiosity when allowed to walk freely, especially in familiar and safe terrain. Guinea pigs that become familiar with their owner will whistle on the owner's approach; they will also learn to whistle in response to the rustling of plastic bags or the opening of refrigerator doors, where their food is most commonly stored.

Guinea pigs should be kept in pairs or, preferably groups, unless there is a specific medical condition that requires isolation. Lone guinea pigs are more likely to suffer from stress and depression. Domesticated guinea pigs come in many breeds, which have been developed since their introduction to Europe and North America. These varieties vary in hair and color composition. The most common varieties found in pet stores are the English shorthair (also known as the American), which have a short, smooth coat, and the Abyssinian, whose coat is ruffled with cowlicks, or rosettes. Also popular among breeders are the Peruvian and the Sheltie (or Silkie), both straight longhair breeds, and the Texel, a curly longhair.

Cavy Clubs and Associations dedicated to the showing and breeding of guinea pigs have been established worldwide. The American Cavy Breeders Association, an adjunct to the American Rabbit Breeders' Association, is the governing body in the United States and Canada. The British Cavy Council governs cavy clubs in the United Kingdom. Similar organizations exist in Australia (Australian National Cavy Council) and New Zealand (New Zealand Cavy Club). Each club publishes its own Standard of Perfection and determines which breeds are eligible for showing.

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