Get to know the Abyssinian Cat Breed

Resembling a petite modern cougar, the Abyssinian retain their wild cat looks from the Felis Lybica, the oldest wildcat ancestors to be domesticated. They are athletic, alert, and intelligent domestic cats with muscular bodies. Although very active and energetic, this friendly feline loves attention from its parents and other pets in the house. Any cat lover with a dynamic personality and lifestyle will love this fascinating purebred.

Considered highly friendly, they do best in the company of other Abys and other house cats with similar temperaments to match their high activity levels. They do well with cat-friendly dogs and other pets such as ferrets and large parrots. Known as great at training others to do what they want them to do, they tend to be agenda-driven and natural-born leaders. Nevertheless, their sweet personality and curiosity make them great companions.

In general, they have a lifespan of 9 to 15 years. They are medium-sized cats with muscular and slender bodies. Abyssinians will generally keep their weight under control with daily activities.



The story of the Abyssinian is an interesting one.
Some claim that they are direct descendants of the sacred cats of Ancient Egypt, calling them “Cats from the Blue Nile.’ They believe Abyssinians descend from the spiritual feline of Egyptian Pharaohs. Others say that British soldiers from Ethiopia, formerly known as Abyssinia, returned from the Abyssinian war in 1868 to England with a cat named Zula.
One thing is sure; they are among the oldest types of domesticated cats. Studying their origin, genetic research points to the coastal location of the Bay of Bengal in India as a possibility.

The first documented appearance was in 1871 at the Crystal Palace feline program, taking third place at the exhibition. In the 1900s, Abyssinians were imported to the U.S. and quickly became one of America’s favorites and new breed.

The breeding program started in the 1930s. But only after WW2 did they grow in appeal. Abyssinians have been popular in many cat show ever since.

Personality & Temperament

Any parent of the lovely breed will be quick to tell you all the great things about them. They are genuinely spectacular companions and will be involved in everything in their environment. Abys tend to have the best view in the house, which is to say above the fridge, doors, and bookshelves.
They are extremely curious, interested and retain their instincts. They are brilliant and social. They get along with other active pets as playing is a significant part of their daily routine. A tall cat tree and scratcher are ideal for these lovelies, and a place to watch a bird feeder through the window is a must.
They tend to be loyal, caring, affectionate, and playful with their parents. Although not usually considered lap cats, they love to cuddle on their terms. You might often find them in the same room you’re in and sometimes under the covers near you. The soft and peaceful voice will charm you for treats every time.



The Abyssinian has a distinctive body shape.

Adult males weigh 8-10 lbs, and females weigh about 6-7 lbs. They are medium-sized, muscular, athletic, and slim, giving them the appearance of being fit. Their slender legs are firm, and their paws are oval-shaped.

Their most distinctive feature is their ticked coat. These shorthair felines fur have about 4-6 bands of alternating colors per strand of hair. The standard Aby coat is called Ruddy. They have a darker shade along the spine and soften more under the body, including the neck, belly, and inside legs. The recognized coats are Ruddy, Cinnamon, Chocolate, Blue, Lilac, and Fawn.

What sets them apart, however, is their unique facial features. They have big large almond-shaped eyes, contoured by a dark “eyeliner” surrounded by a lighter color, with an iris of gold, amber, or green. The muzzle is rounded and, combined with all its facial features, gives the appearance of a small and very well-drawn face. The big ears are also a distinct trait that gives Abyssinians the nickname “bunny cat.”

A good breeder does their best to avoid healthy hereditary problems in their catteries. They can still develop particular conditions and diseases.

Some of these health issues are:

Early gum illness 

Hyperesthesia syndrome 

Patellar luxation 

Progressive retinal atrophy 

Pyruvate kinase shortage 

Renal amyloidosis


Caring for your Abyssinian

A kitten needs complete and balanced foods to support its natural growth, especially for its first year. A high-protein diet will support your Aby’s high activity levels. An abundance of available water will help to keep hydrated and prevent certain diseases.
You may also consider offering your companion high cat trees and perch for observation quarters and scratching their territory. We recommend you to have a range of toys to keep them stimulated and occupied. The best is also to offer puzzle toys to help sharpen their intelligence.
As for grooming, weekly brushing is the norm, and best to start the habit at an early age.
Overall, an Abyssinian is a family member who grows and genuinely cares for everyone in it.

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