Abyssinian cats ideal weight and nutrition
The ideal weight for Abyssinian cats is 8 - 12 lbs (3.5 - 5.5 kg). For the suggested daily intake of dry food, consult the table below:
Table 1.1 - Abyssinian cats daily food intake
In order to maintain the active nature and lean muscular build of Abyssinian cats, their nutrition must contain high quality protein and reduced fat, as well as Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) to produce muscle tissue over fat and L-carnitine to utilize fat reserves as an energy source. Fortunately, nowadays most cat meal companies have developed special formulas for active cats. You might want to try meals designed specially for Siamese cats. After all, Siamese and Abyssinian cats share the same requirements.
When you introduce Abyssinian kittens to your home let them find their own way out of the basket and allow them to explore one room at a time. Make sure that all doors and windows are shut, to prevent them from escaping.
Abyssinian kittens are very often frightened by children or other pets that are new to them. Children should therefore be recommended to be quiet and wait for the kitten to adapt to the new environment, while other animals should be introduced later, gradually and one at a time. Remember that adult cats might attack to the baby cat, since they confront it as a competitor and therefore as an enemy.
Talk to your kittens and encourage them to play with a toy but do not overwhelm them with extreme attention.
Abyssinian kittens need warmth. If there is not some form of heating in the room at all times, buy a heated bed from a pet shop.
During the first month of their life, Abyssinian kittens should be breastfeeding. This is why you shouldn't separate them from their mother before they are one month old.
At the age of one month Abyssinian kittens can start eating kitten food. In the market you will find a wide range of kitten meals, however we recommend dry kitten food. This comes in small kibbles that encourage kittens to crunch and help them develop stronger gum and teeth.
For the suggested daily intake of kitten dry food, consult the table below:
Abyssinian cats grooming
Abyssinian cats generally have smooth fine hair, so grooming and maintaining the coat is not an issue and they do a good job of keeping themselves clean. You will want to occasionally brush them, as it will help with shedding.
Tapeworms are parasites that live in the small intestine of cats. They will cause severe diarrhea, poor or extreme appetite, avitaminosis, lethargy, coughing and abdominal distention to your cat.
To find out more, check our tapeworm treatment guide.
When a cat grooms itself by licking its own fur, it will swallow some of its own hair. Most of the hair passes all the way through the digestive tract with no problems. But if some hair stays in the stomach, it can form a hair ball.
Find out more in our hair ball treatment guide.
Even clean cats can pick up fleas, especially during the summer months. They get fleas through the contact with infested pets or through the contact with fleas in the environment (e.g. from an infected bedding).
Find our more in our flea treatment guide.
Abyssinian cats care
You should clean your Abyssinian cats ears once a week to keep them clean and prevent infections. Consult your vet on choosing the proper cat ear cleaning solution and use it to remove the excess of wax, debris and dead tissues.
Their teeth should be checked periodically and brushed with special wipes to prevent teeth and gum diseases. In the market there are also a lot of cat toys, specially designed to remove food wastes and prevent teeth irritation.
A litter tray must be available at all times and kept in the same place. Solid matter and wet lumps should be removed from the tray frequently and the litter renewed when necessary. The tray should be washed and disinfected frequently. Rinse thoroughly after disinfecting and allow drying before use. Abyssinian cats are very fussy and will not use a dirty tray.
Never give cats any drugs that have not been prescribed for them; many human drugs are poisonous to cats. Seek veterinary advice immediately if you suspect any form of poisoning.
Make sure that cat toys or parts of them cannot be swallowed. Plastic bags and rubber bands can be extremely dangerous, since they do not show up on an X-ray.
Abyssinian cats health
Abyssinian cats live 12-15 years and are generally healthy cats.
However, Renal Amyloidosis has been associated with Abyssinian cats and is thought to be genetic. This is a rare disease caused by deposits of abnormal proteins in the kidneys, resulting in decreased function and eventual organ failure. There are a number of tests veterinarians use to diagnose amyloidosis, such as measuring the amount of protein in urine and urinalysis to determine uremic poisoning. Blood chemistry panels may also be administered to help identify the levels of chemicals, minerals and proteins in the feline bloodstream.
Currently, there is no cure for amyloidosis, however treating the symptoms of the disease may help an affected Abyssinian cat lead a longer, more comfortable life.
Some Abyssinian cats are also prone to gingivitis, a gum diseases brought on by poor dental hygiene and viral infections. Common signs are bad breath and a red line bordering the teeth. Early treatment prevents the development of more serious periodontal disease.
Abyssinian cats history
Most breeders claim that Abyssinian cats are the most ancient of breeds and that they were worshiped as gods by the Ancient Egyptians. Others believe that they were imported to England by Captain Barrett Leonard when he returned from service in the Abyssinian wars in the 1860's. However, there is no record of any Abyssinian cat imported in England, so there is no doubt that Abyssinian cats were developed there.
The British breeders began the new breed’s development with the British Shorthair. The earliest records indicate that the main requirement for the breed was a ticked coat. In the beginning there was a great range of colors, extending from the wild silver agouti ticking to an intense yellow ticking. However it is more than obvious that the silver color predominated in the early Abyssinian cats; names such as Aluminium, Quicksilver, Silver Memelik and Silver Fairy hardly could have been given to ruddy-colored cats.
In the beginning, Abyssinian cats were, thus, silver cats accompanied by remnants of tabby markings. At a time when silver and brown tabbies were truly popular in England, breeders tried to produce a totally distinctive cat. They introduced a little red to warm up the coat and they bred out the tabby markings. This kind of work took a long time and required great effort.
The first Abyssinian cats registrations occurred in 1896, while 12 more Aby registrations followed during 1900-1905. Soon, a male and female Abyssinian were imported in the US.
World War I caused a considerable delay in the establishment of the Abyssinian cats, as the nucleus of the new breed was small in both the United States and Britain. Just when the period of intensive breeding began in the United States in 1938 to 1939, the great tragedy of World War II occurred. By the end of the war, only 12 or so Abyssinians were left in England.
In 1950 Abyssinian breeders increased and hard efforts were made during the next years to restore the breed’s glory. In January 1989 the Cat World Magazine devoted itself to the Abyssinian cats indicating the great popularity of the breed at that time.
Nowadays, the Abyssinian cats are recognized by all associations, while many of them are devoted to the promotion, protection and preservation of the Abyssinian breed.
Abyssinian cats personality
Once you have acquired an Abyssinian cat as a companion, you will never be able to complain that no one understands you.
Abyssinian cats are extroverted, extremely active, playful, willful and intelligent. They adore toys and can play for hours with their favorite ball. Surprisingly, some of them play fetch.They are very people oriented and extremely good at training people to do just what they want them to do.
Abyssinian cats need a great deal of interaction with the family to remain happy and can get depressed without daily activity and attention. They generally get along well with other cats, although they need their space and the females can sometimes be irritable around other cats. They love exploring and playing and make excellent hunters.
Abyssinian cats breed standards
According to the Fédération Internationale Féline, Abyssinian cats possess a wedge shaped head of medium proportions and soft and graceful contours. Their nose is of medium length. When viewed in profile the head shows a soft curve, with neither a stop nor a straight nose. Their muzzle is not sharply pointed nor square. A shallow indentation forming the muzzle is desirable, however a pinch is a fault. In addition, their chin is firm and well developed.
The Abyssinian cats' ears are relatively large and pricked. They are broad at the base and slightly rounded at the tips. They bear a thumb print and desirably tufts of hair at the tips. They are set well apart and should follow the head wedge.
Their eyes are also set well apart. They are almond shaped and of large size. Their color should be either amber, green or yellow. The color should moreover be pure, clear and intense, brilliant and expressive.
Their body is of medium length, firm, lithe and graceful. Its musculature is well developed, however without coarseness. The neck is also graceful and the tail fairly long, broad at the base and tapering. The legs in proportion to the body are slender and elegant, ending up to oval paws.
The Abyssinian cat coat finally is soft, silky and fine in texture, however dense to the touch and with a lustrous sheen. It is medium in length but long enough to accommodate two or three dark bands of ticking.
When describing the Abyssinian cat coat color, we do not only refer to the body color but also to the ground color. The ground color is underside of the body, the color of the chest and inner sides of the legs which should be in harmony with the upper parts of the body.
So the acceptable coat colors of Abyssinian cats are the following:
Body color: warm ruddy brown/red brown with black ticking
Ground color: deep apricot/orange
Body color: warm blue-gray with dark steel blue-gray ticking
Ground color: pale fawn/cream
Body color: bright warm copper red with chocolate-brown ticking
Ground color: deep apricot
Body color: dull beige with deep warm cream ticking
Ground color: pale cream
Body color: pure silver-white with black ticking
Ground color: pure silver-white
Body color: pure silver-white with dark steel blue-gray ticking
Ground color: pure silver-white
Body color: pure silver-white with red-brown ticking
Ground color: pure silver-white
Beige fawn silver
Body color: pure silver-white with deep warm cream ticking
Ground color: pure silver-white