Raising Texel Guinea Pigs: A Care Guide

 Although it has gained popularity quickly in recent years, the Texel guinea pig is a new breed of cavy. Their lovely, long, curly coats, amiable, submissive disposition, and patient demeanor all contribute to this. Due to their beautiful coat, they require a little bit more special care than other Guinea kinds, making them a little bit more of a duty.

Raising Texel Guinea Pigs: A Care Guide
Raising Texel Guinea Pigs: A Care Guide

 If you want to learn more about this unique cavy breed, you've come to the right place! In this article, we are going to take a closer look at this long-haired guinea pig and give a general overview of what it is. Let's start!

Quick Facts About the Texel Guinea Pig

 The Texel guinea pig, also affectionately known as "Shirley Temple" because of its long, curly coat, has to be one of the cutest guinea pigs around. Here are some quick facts about the Texel guinea pig:

- Species name: Texel guinea pig

- Family: Cavia porcellus

- Level of care: Intermediate

- Temperament: Gentle, affectionate, calm, friendly

- Color Form: Solid, Patterned, Mix

- Lifespan: 5-10 years

- Size: 8-10 inches

- Food: Guinea pig food and timothy hay

- Minimum enclosure size: 30 × 60 inches

- Speaker Setup: Fairly Simple

- Compatibility: Moderate

The story of the Texel guinea pig

 Unlike the American guinea pig, which is arguably one of the oldest and best-known breeds of guinea pigs, the Texel is a relatively new guinea pig to the neighborhood!

 This curly-haired cutie was born in England in the 1980s after a Silkie guinea pig was crossed with the British guinea pig, Rex.

 Later a few more breeds were added to the gene pool, however, we don't know which or how many crosses were used to create this little darling of England.

 Needless to say, it didn't take long before this Silkie lookalike with her '80s glam perm won the hearts of cavy lovers everywhere. The American Cavy Breeders Association also gave it official recognition in 1998.

The appearance of the Texel guinea pig

 To put it another way, the Texel would be a star if guinea pigs were celebrities! When it comes to size and weight, this particular pig is similar to other breeds, although it can be described as a bit large.

 But that's where all the similarities end. What sets the Texel guinea pig apart from most other breeds is its long, curly coat. Even the fur on her head and around her face is curly, hence the nickname Shirley Temple.

The color variations of the Texel guinea pig

 When it comes to color variations, Texel comes in a wide variety of colors, depending a lot on genetics. The most common colors are plain white, gold, black and brown, but it is not uncommon to come across a patterned Texel that is a mixture of one or more of these colors.

Texel guinea pig personality

 The Texel guinea pig is not only stunning to look at, but it also has the temperament and personality to match. Docile, calm, gentle, and lovable are just a few adjectives used to describe this breed, which is another reason why they are so popular.

 For the most part, Texel guinea pigs, like other long-haired breeds, love to be handled and like to have their hair combed out. However, mistreat them or treat them a little too roughly, and they'll let you know they're not happy with a bite or bite.

 Personality-wise, Texel Guinea Pigs can be a little mischievous, so it's best to watch them closely and never leave them unattended when running around or enjoying time outside their hutch.

Caring for a Texel Guinea Pig

 The Texel guinea pig, like all breeds of guinea pigs, needs to be cared for properly in order for it to live a long and happy life.

 Cage size, diet, dental care, grooming, and mental and physical stimulation are just a few things you need to keep in mind when caring for a Texel. , or any other breed of guinea pig, as a pet. To help you get it right, in this section we look at the best way to care for your Texel guinea pig.

Cage size

 The general rule of thumb when it comes to a guinea pig's hutch is that the bigger the better! Although smaller and slightly stockier than their short-haired counterparts, your Texel guinea pig needs a large cage. There should be enough space for them to play and socialize together.

 But it is also important that they have compartments or nest boxes where they can relax away from their pig pals. Separate dining and sleeping areas are also essential.

Hutch configuration

 Having the appropriate hutch size is one thing, but making sure it is set up properly is equally crucial. Hutch essentials include hay (and lots of it), ceramic bowls, splashproof water bottles, hay racks, nests, and tunnels plus all the necessary cleaning supplies.

 And don't forget the bedding. Even though guinea pigs don't sleep much, they still need a comfortable place to nap. Hay and wood shavings are popular choices, but there are different types of bedding to suit your needs and budget.


 Because a guinea pig's teeth continue to grow, hay is an essential part of a guinea pig's diet. Not only does this provide them with the fiber they need, but it also helps keep their teeth short.

 Texel guinea pigs, like other guinea pigs, also need fiber-enriched pellets or nuggets, as well as fresh vegetables and fruits.

 Be careful though! It's crucial to only feed Texel guinea pigs twice a day because they enjoy eating. These pigs, given the chance, will happily nibble if there is food around. This can lead to weight issues and other long-term health issues.


 Like all guinea pig breeds, a Texel guinea pig needs plenty of exercises to stay healthy. For this inquisitive breed, physical activity is just as important as mental stimulation. Without it, these guinea pigs can experience boredom, stress, anxiety, and even depression.

 In addition to a spacious cage, Texel guinea pigs should have access to a good-sized enclosure where they can feed, play, and spend time outside of their hutch.

 Social interaction with their humans is also important to this adorable breed. Spend as much time with them as possible and make sure they have enough boredom-busting items to keep them busy.


 Unlike the American guinea pig and other short-haired guinea pigs, the Texel breed with its long, curly coat needs regular brushing to avoid tangles and mats. Our top tips for keeping your pig's coat in pristine condition include:

  • You should brush your long-haired guinea pig at least once a day. This will avoid mats and knots.
  • Use a soft brush or plastic comb to untangle tangles and remove excess hair.
  • The long coats of Texel guinea pigs need to be trimmed regularly. Unfortunately, this breed's curly coat tends to collect all kinds of mud, including poop and pee.
  • Regular checks around the ears for wax buildup, dirt, mites, or lice are also an important part of caring for your Texel guinea pig. Dirt and wax should be removed with a damp cotton swab and guinea pig ear cleaner. To clean the area around the ears, gently wipe it.
  • If you suspect there is a blockage inside the ear, take your guinea pig to the vet immediately. Never try to remove anything from inside the ear with a cotton swab, as this can cause serious internal damage.
  • Keep your guinea pig's nails trimmed. If they get too long, your guinea pig won't be able to walk or move around. Overgrown toenails can also cause drone foot, a painful and sometimes fatal infection.
  • You will also need to wash your Texel guinea pig every three to four weeks.


 Guinea pigs are susceptible to a few health issues, which are not always easy to spot. As a prey animal, a guinea pig will hide injury or illness for as long as possible. Unfortunately, that means you might not know something is wrong when it's too late. The most common health issues for Texel guinea pigs, as well as other breeds of guinea pigs, include:

  • Pneumonia.
  • Teeth or dental problems.
  • Bladder infections.
  • Bladder stones.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Tumors and abscesses.
  • Vitamin C deficiency.
  • Bumblefoot.
  • Flying Strike.

Texel Guinea Pig Health

 In addition to these general health concerns, this long-haired breed has more specific needs compared to short-haired cavy breeds. These include:

  • Skin problems.
  • Eye infections (Entropion).
  • Weight issues.
  • Heatstroke.

Let's examine each of them in more detail.

skin problems

 Keeping this breed's long coat tangle-free and matt-free is key to preventing various skin problems. Not only can Texel guinea pigs smell if they aren't bathed regularly, but their hair can get knotted and tangled if they aren't brushed at least once a day.

 Daily brushing and frequent trimming are crucial when caring for a Texel. Not only does it keep their coat shiny and healthy, but it also prevents skin problems such as parasites and mites.


 Entropion, an eye infection, is another condition that affects Texel Guinea Pigs frequently, along with Rexes and Teddies. Although this condition is painful, antibiotic eye drops can be used to treat it. If the condition is more serious, your veterinarian might advise surgery.


 We mentioned earlier that Texel guinea pigs love to eat, and given the chance, they will devour just about anything and everything.

 Always make sure your pig gets a well-balanced diet with plenty of fiber and vitamin C. Avoid too many sugary treats, as this breed struggles to break down sugar.

Don't overfeed them and save fruit and snacks for special occasions.


 All guinea pigs are sensitive to temperature extremes. Keeping Texel guinea pigs cool during the hot summer months is key to preventing dehydration and heatstroke.

We recommend placing ice capsules in their hutch and running area when temperatures soar.

Frequently Asked Questions About Texel Guinea Pigs

 Being a relatively new breed, we regularly get questions from our readers about Texels. Some of the most typical questions are listed below:

How long do Texel guinea pigs live?

 The Texel guinea pig has a lifespan of five to ten years, like the majority of other breeds. Remember, however, that genetics, diet, and overall health all play a role when it comes to your pig's lifespan.

How big are Texel guinea pigs?

 Appearance can be deceiving when it comes to the size and weight of a Texel guinea pig due to its long, curly hair. As a general rule, however, an adult Texel should weigh between 700g and 1200g, or 1.5 to 2.5 pounds.

Like other breeds, a male or boar is usually larger and weighs more than a female or sow.

What distinguishes a Silkie from a Texel guinea pig?

 Both the Texel and the Silkie are long-haired breeds, so it's easy to confuse the two. The texture of their coats, however, is where they differ significantly. A Silkie's coat is long and straight, unlike the distinctively long curly coats of Texels.

Are Texel guinea pigs good "starter" pets?

 Because it requires more care than other guinea pig breeds, the Texel guinea pig is best suited for experienced guinea pig owners.

 It takes a lot of time and dedication to care for Texel guinea pigs, especially when it comes to grooming. Like other long-haired guinea pigs, this particular breed is considered to be quite high-maintenance.

Are Texel guinea pigs affectionate?

 Texels are extremely affectionate and love to be cuddled. They also like to be groomed, which is a good thing. Of course, the more you interact with your pig, the more comfortable it will be.

 Keep in mind, however, that each guinea pig has its own personality and one may be more affectionate than another.

What can I feed my Texel guinea pig?

 The dietary needs of a Texel guinea pig are the same as those of all other breeds of guinea pigs. Timothy hay is a must, as well as guinea pig pellets or nuggets and fresh vegetables rich in vitamin C.

Be aware that Texels struggle to digest sugar, so it's important to limit sweet fruits and treats.

Does a Texel guinea pig bite?

 If handled gently, Texel guinea pigs should not bite. However, if they are mistreated or feel threatened, they will give you a bite.

 Make sure you always grip and hold your guinea pig properly to avoid unnecessary injury (to you and your guinea pig).

How much do Texel guinea pigs cost?

 Due to their popularity, Texel guinea pigs cost a bit more than some of the more common breeds. You can expect to pay between 20 and 65 dollars for this long-haired breed.

Where can I get a Texel guinea pig?

 Texel guinea pigs are a little harder to find than some other guinea pig breeds. Instead of purchasing a pet from a pet store, we advise finding trustworthy breeders. The best option, however, is to adopt rather than shop around.

 Local rescue shelters such as the RSPCA and Blue Cross always have pigs in need of homes, as do smaller charities like the National Animal Welfare Trust and Animal Rescue and Care.

Does my Texel guinea pig need a companion?

 All guinea pigs are social creatures and require company. It is advised to keep two or more guinea pigs together. Without friends, guinea pigs can experience loneliness, boredom, depression, and anxiety.