The Abyssinian Cat

Abyssinian portraitPortrait of an Abyssinian Cat

The Abyssinian cat is lean and elegant with just a touch of wild. 

Very active, bright and curious, Abyssinian cats desire feedback, interaction and even some training. 

The Abyssinian is an excellent family pet, but can be a bit of a pest for those who are looking for more of a cuddle buddy or a couch potato. 

Why? Because they are always interested in what is going on and particularly in what You are doing!  

The breed may have originated in Ethiopia, as the word "Abyssinian" refers to a region in that country, but the development of this cat into a treasured house pet occurred in Egypt many centuries ago, and representations of these sinewy and beautiful cats can be found on ancient ruins dating back to the time of the Pharaohs. 

On the more gruesome side, many cats of exactly this type were mummified and buried along with their owners in the tombs of Egypt, so that the departed might continue into the afterlife with their favorite companions - Yikes!

Abyssinian CAT-STATS

Abyssinian cat with descriptive wordsHow Do You Describe an Abyssinian Cat?
Abyssinian Cat-Stats

Abyssinian Standing

Abyssinian Cat Personality

abby scratching post

The personality of the Abyssinian cat is bright, bold and inquisitive. They aren't usually lap-cats though, more like ride on your shoulder cats - as long as you are going somewhere. 

Sometimes these complicated kitties give mixed signals because many Abyssinians don't like close cuddling and being picked up, yet they want to be with you, and even very close to you, but not restrained. 

Ultimately, these lean, athletic, neatly turned out cats are very active, very friendly and very smart. 

The Abyssinian is recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA), the world's largest cat organization, and is one of the most popular pure-bred or "pedigreed" domestic cat breeds. 

They are pleasant, playful and refined and are believed to be one of the oldest cat breeds in the world. 

Why? Because mummified cats of exactly this type have been found inside the great pyramids!

Abyssinians come in a variety of shades from lilac to chocolate brown but ruddy, sable and buff colors are most common. The coat is ticked, meaning individual hairs are banded with color. 

These are slender, medium-sized cats with short coats that require little grooming, and have few breed-related health issues.

Because they are so active and really desire interaction the Abyssinian is a superb family cat that does well with considerate children and can become very attached to all members of the family.

This is an expressive, dynamic and very lovely breed. -Abyssinian Cat Facts

blue abyssinian recliningBlue Abyssinian Reclining
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Abyssinian Kittens

Group of Abyssinian KittensGroup of Abyssinian Kittens!

Even as far as kittens go, Abyssinian kittens are particularly active.These adorable kittens are notorious for literally "bouncing off the walls" and watching them play is a sheer delight. 

They are so busy, bold and daring they may put themselves in precarious situations until they learn their limitations. 

Kitten-proofing is definitely recommended for anyone considering adopting or purchasing an Abyssinian kitten. 

High furniture should be off limits, caution should be taken when holding these wriggly little youngsters, particularly when carrying them across hard wood or tile floors, and spaces under counters and doors should be blocked off as they have a very strong urge to explore.

In Appearance, the Abyssinian kitten is basically a miniature adult. They tend to grow at an average rate and reach mature height at about 6 months, filling out and maturing to full size and weight at about one year old.  

Because this is a very popular cat, breeders of pedigree Abyssinian kittens can be found relatively easily, and the price is usually affordable for a pure-bred kitten.

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Abyssinian Cat Breed Standard

Abyssinian face

Head Shape: The head of the Abyssinian cat should be a mild wedge shape with no pronounced "stop". The skull should be rounded and in general proportion to the body. The muzzle is delicate but well formed. Not pointed or foxy in appearance. Adult males sometimes have additional jowling.  The ears are large, alert and moderately pointed, broad at the base and well cupped. The eyes are almond shaped, large and expressive, with a slight upward slant. The eyes have darker skin on the lids which gives a mascara look, and is highlighted by the fact that the fur around the eye itself is lighter than the rest of the face. There are dark, vertical "pencil marks" above the eyes. Accepted eye colors are gold, green or hazel. 

Body and Tail: Graceful, lean and of medium length. Muscular but never course. The cat should be solid to the feel with well-sprung ribs and a slightly arched back. There should be no pronounced tuck-up of the belly when viewed from the side. The legs are muscular and of medium length without coarseness. The feet are compact, well-knuckled and oval in shape. Five toes in front and four in back. The tail is relatively thick at the base, long in proportion and evenly tapered. 

Ruddy AbyssinianRuddy Abyssinian

Coat: The fur is dense, fine and lustrous. Medium in length and close to the body but not slick. Ticked with at least four alternating light and dark bands of color on each strand of hair. 

Color: Ticked pattern with shading in tones of ruddy, fawn, brown and blue. The tail may be tipped with black. No defined or outlined patterns, only shading.

Overall: The ideal Abyssinian is a medium sized cat with an exotic appearance. They should have an athletic, lean and lithe quality and be graceful and quiet in movement. The ticked coat with individual bands of color around each strand of hair gives a shimmering, almost iridescent appearance. This cat should be bright, active and friendly in personality.

A Few More Abyssinian Cat Facts

Abyssinian cat loungingAbyssinian cat lounging
  • Abyssinian cats are highly intelligent 
  • The Abyssinian Cat is one of the oldest cat breeds in our history. 
  • Images of Abyssinians can be found on pottery and jewelry dating back thousands of years. 
  • If King Tut had a cat, it was probably an Abyssinian!
  • Abyssinian cats are notorious for learning how to open drawers , cupboards and doors!

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Beautiful Abyssinian CatBeautiful Abyssinian Cat

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