Peruvian

Peruvian Breed Profile

Fur Long, straight
Rosettes Two on the hips
Characteristics Center parting, bangs
Lifespan 4-6 years
Suitable for Experienced owners

Breed Characteristics

Peruvian guinea pigs are curious, cheerful and attentive. They have the longest fur out of all guinea pig breeds. It can grow up to 20 inch (50 cm) in length. They’re kind of the “hippies” of the guinea pig world. Their coats are especially soft, silky, dense, smooth and bouncy. Peruvians have long hair on their heads, so it’s not always easy to see which end is which (just kidding - if you know your guinea pigs, you’ll know). Even though their hair doesn’t quite fall into their faces, it does frame their features.

These guinea pigs have a parting on their backs that divides their delicate locks along the spine line so that they fall down to the sides. Two whorls, or rosettes, on the hips force the fur forwards, creating the characteristic bangs for a cheeky look.

Peruvians that are shown at pet shows often have such long fur that it can be split up into lots of individual strands and these can be wrapped in tissue paper. This prevents them from getting dirty before their big event. “Normal” Peruvians kept as pets are regularly trimmed to keep it clean.

Peruvian Guinea Pig Peruvian Guinea Pig - Photo: lostbear/Shutterstock

Fur Care

The Peruvian guinea pig’s fur requires a lot of grooming. It should be brushed with a soft plastic brush (such as a doll brush) to remove any dirt, as a metal comb is too rigid and could pull out fur. You should also trim their fur once or twice a month. To make sure the guinea pig isn’t subjected to this stress too often, you can give it a generous trim to around half the length.

Cutting Guinea Pigs Hair

If you’re using scissors, you of course have to be especially careful. It’s best to take the time and remain calm. If you’re stressed or rushing, the guinea pig will notice and could make sudden movements that could be dangerous for it. If you’re still a little inexperienced or know that you don’t have steady hands, it might be best to ask someone for help.

How to Keep Them

As a long-haired guinea pig, the Peruvian is not suitable for keeping outdoors. Their fur will get wet and dirty.

Did You Know?

The Peruvian was the first long-haired guinea pig to be recognized by the American Rabbit Breeders Association (USA). Erm, hold on. Rabbit? Yes, the name is a little misleading but the association covers guinea pigs as well as rabbits.

Peruvian Guinea Pig Peruvian Guinea Pig - Photo: Aun-Juli riddle/Shutterstock