Guinea pigs are popular pets. If you’re considering getting a guinea pig as your next companion, one of the most important decisions you’ll make is choosing which breed you want. There are many different breeds, all with their own appearance and characteristics. Finding out which breed is the best fit for you is important because these animals have quite a long lifespan which makes making the right choice all the more crucial.
Today, I’m going to give you a complete overview of the Texel Guinea pig. I will discuss its appearance, history, behavior, how to care for it, and much more. Let’s dig in!
Texel Guinea Pig Fact Sheet
|Name||Texel Guinea Pig|
|Size||8 to 10 inches|
|Temperament||Patient, sweet, calm, friendly|
|Diet||80% hay, 20% nuggets/veggies|
Texel Guinea Pig History
The Texel Guinea pig is a relatively new breed. It originated in England in the 1980s as a result of cross-breeding the British Rex with the Sheltie guinea pig.
The fact that it’s a mixture of the British Rex and the sheltie means that it has long, curly hair.
The Texel Guinea Pig was recognized in 1988 by the American Cavy Breeders association as a new breed.
Texel Guinea Pig Size & Appearance
The Texel Guinea Pig is a long-haired breed that boasts luxurious curls making it really stand out from other breeds.
What’s interesting is that while this is a long-haired breed, the hair on their face is quite short – usually about half an inch in length.
Their coat comes in many different colors and can be solid, mixed, or patterned, giving prospective Texel owners a wide range of options when choosing their guinea pig.
The Texel’s appearance is often compared to that of the Sheltie (Silkie) and it’s true that they have a lot in common. After all, the Sheltie is one of the ancestors of the Texel. The main difference in appearance between the two is that the Sheltie has straight hair, while that of the Texel is curly. The Texel has curly hair because of its Rex admixture.
Texels might look large, but that’s just because they have so much hair! In reality, they’re usually the same size as other breeds, if not a little smaller. They are about 8 to 10 inches fully grown, with males being slightly bigger than females.
Texel Guinea Pig Personality & Temperament
Texel Guinea Pigs are very calm, agreeable, and patient animals. They do not get angry or aggressive as long as you treat them right. They also love interacting with humans and need quite a lot of attention and playtime. They’re also not opposed to being held and handled.
Texel Guinea Lifespan
Just like other guinea pig breeds, the Texel has quite a long lifespan. They live for 5 to 7 years, so if you’re planning on adopting one of these into your home, keep that into account.
Making sure that you feed your Texel the right diet, as well as giving him proper care, socialization and exercise can help to extend your furry friend’s lifespan.
Texel Guinea Pig Care
Texel Guinea Pigs need a lot of grooming. Their curly, long coat might look stunning, but maintaining it is quite time-consuming. They need to be brushed at least once a day, and some owners say even that is not enough and groom their Texel multiple times per day.
Make sure that you have the time available to do this because it really is necessary. If you do not groom your guinea pig frequently enough it can result in knots in their hair and unwanted smells, among other things.
If you do not have the time to brush them at least once a day, it’s better to choose a short-haired guinea pig instead as these breeds are lower maintenance.
It’s also recommended to trim their coat on a regular basis, especially around the genitals to avoid urine and feces getting stuck in their long hairs.
Unlike short-haired guinea pigs, the Texel will need a bath around once a month to keep their coat clean and in optimal condition.
Bathing your guinea pig is not particularly hard, just follow these steps:
- Before starting, spend some time holding your cavy to get them relaxed and calm.
- Prepare the bath in the sink or in the bathtub. Use warm, shallow water, make sure that your guinea pig can stand in it and that their nose and mouth are not in the water. About 1 inch of water is plenty.
- Wash your guinea pig with some special guinea pig shampoo.
- Rinse your guinea pig with some fresh, warm water.
- Wrap them in a towel for a few minutes to get rid of the majority of the water (make sure to not wrap their head in the towel so that they can breathe).
- Once they’re not dripping with water anymore, you can use a blowdryer on a medium-cool setting to dry them further. Make sure to keep the blowdryer moving and not to keep it on the same spot for too long otherwise it can get too hot. Also, make sure to avoid their ears as these are extra sensitive.
- Once your guinea pig is dry, keep them in a warm place for at least a few hours.
The diet of the Texel Guinea Pig is no different from that of other breeds. The majority (around 80%) of their daily food intake should be Timothy hay, with about 10 to 20% consisting of fresh fruits and veggies. Also, since guinea pigs are incapable of synthesizing their own Vitamin C, they need to get it in their diet. If your guinea pig does not get enough vitamin C in their diet it can lead to scurvy. If you think that your cavy is not getting enough of this vitamin, you can give them vitamin C supplements.
They also need an abundance of fresh water. Make sure to change their water daily and clean out the water bottle every time you refresh the water.
The teeth of guinea pigs grow 24/7. Because of this, they need to chew in order to grind them down to manageable levels. If they do not grind them down, they can grow too long and cause health issues. In order for them to be able to grind them down, it’s important that they always have access to chewing toys.
You can buy these chew toys from many online pet stores such as Chewy or Amazon.
Just like other breeds, Texel Guinea Pigs need a clean and dry living space. When it comes to space, bigger is better. There’s really no such thing as a cage that’s too big. Guinea pigs like to run and play around and the more space they have available to do this, the better. The minimum recommended size is 7.5 square feet for 2 guinea pigs.
Make sure to clean their cage often (including the bedding). If you do not, there’s a very high chance that the dirty bedding will get stuck in their long coat which can lead to health issues.
Texel Guinea Pigs for sale
If after reading all of this you’re convinced that a Texel Guinea Pig is the right breed for you then you might be curious how much it’ll cost, where to buy one, and whether you should get one from a breeder or a pet store.
Texel Guinea Pigs are quite popular and because they’re in such high demand it can sometimes be challenging to find one that’s for sale. I recommend buying one from a breeder, that way you can be sure that you get a high-quality animal that’s been treated and raised right.
Finding one for sale and the price of buying one depends on where you live. In some countries they’re more readily available and cheaper than in others. A good way to get in contact with a reputable guinea pig breeder is to ask your veterinarian or look online. Make sure to always check the reviews of the breeder to ensure that they properly care for the animals and adhere to proper breeding ethics.
On average, you can expect to pay around $40 for a Texel Guinea Pig but you also have to keep in mind the recurring costs (food, vet care, toys, etc) which costs around $40 a month.
Another good option is to look around in shelters. This is usually cheaper and by doing so you’re rescuing a guinea pig.