Choosing an Abyssinian - Page 2

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Choosing an Abyssinian

By: J. Anne Helgren

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Abyssinians aren't for folks who want decorative cats that sit around looking lovely, or for those who crave a contented lap cat. Courageous, curious and high-spirited, Abys give new meaning to the word "active." Abyssinians perform antics for your amusement, earning them a reputation as the clowns of the cat kingdom. They perch on shoulders, crawl under covers and sit beside you purring loudly before dashing off to make flying leaps at the tallest bookcases. They are natural athletes, and no closed room or cupboard is safe from their agile paws and inquiring minds.

When restrained, Abys tend to become struggling bundles of fur with more than the usual number of elbows. However, that's not to say that Abyssinians are not affectionate. Abys are loving and loyal, and are most happy when involved in every aspect of your life. The Aby becomes your friend, your confidant and your devoted companion who loves you unconditionally. She is there to comfort you when you're feeling down and there to share your joy when you're happy. And she is certainly there to share your food at dinnertime. All that activity burns a lot of calories.


The Abyssinian's coat is easy to care for; a good brushing once or twice a week to remove dead hair and a claw clipping every three to four weeks will keep your ruddy buddy looking great.

Association Acceptance

  • American Association of Cat Enthusiasts (AACE)
  • American Cat Association (ACA)
  • American Cat Fancier's Association (ACFA)
  • Canadian Cat Association (CCA)
  • Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA)
  • Cat Fanciers' Federation (CFF)
  • The International Cat Association (TICA)
  • United Feline Organization (UFO)

    Special Notes

    Abyssinians are generally healthy but are prone to gingivitis. If not treated, the more serious periodontitis can develop, causing tissue, bone and tooth loss. Untreated, dental disease can undermine the cat's overall health. With routine tooth brushing, regular checkups, and periodic professional teeth cleaning, the problem can be minimized. Amyloidosis, a disease thought to be hereditary that affects the kidneys, and PK deficiency, which causes anemia, have been found in some Aby lines.

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