Named after the llama-like animal, the Alpaca guinea pig was bred and discovered in England when a Texel and an English Peruvian were bred together, eventually creating this now seperate breed.
The Alpaca has mid-length or short wavy, coarse, curly, dense, textured fur that grows to be long and no bangs in the front. It's hair on it's head falls backwards. It has two rosettes near it's rear and swirls on the head.
They do not come in seperate satin or ridgeback varieties, but they could be bred to. Some Alpacas are satin but not a seperate breed like the American/English/Shorthaired, Teddy and Abyssinian satins.
Any fur/eye colours and patterns.
Health & Care
Being a longer-lived breed, Alpacas have a lifespan of about eight years. Because of their coats, they will need to br groomed and bathed. Like all guinea pigs, it needs a proper diet with a lot of vitamin C.
Alpacas need to be kept in a clean and tidy enviroment so they don't pick up any unwanted debris that could get matted in their pelts. They also need fur trimming on a monthly basis around the rear and legs where dirt and other debris can get stuck. They shouldn't go outside because they can get dirty. When the fur begins to drag on the ground, it also needs trimming. In summer and the warmer months it is especially important to trim them down.
Alpacas need to be bathed once a month. Make sure the water never goes above their heads. The water should be only up to their paws, if anything. Do not pour water over them while they are in whatever you are using to bathe them. They will need to be frequently brushed and groomed; daily brushing and detangling is needed. Make sure that you are brushing the correct way. The nails will need to be trimmed about once a month.
Like all guinea pigs, the Alpaca needs to be healthy, having all limbs, ears, eyes and teeth intact and free of injury and illness as well as having even colourations with no random markings and claws and toes on one paw all being the same colour to enter a show. Fixed (spayed or neutered) Alpacas will be disqualified.
Personality & Overview
Alpaca guinea pigs aren't officially recognised by the ARBA and ACBA but is by the BCC. It is recognised by the NSW cavy club though the Alpaca has longer hair.
Because of their daily grooming needs, Alpacas are likely to bond with their owners quickly. They are known and beloved for their affectionate nature.
Overall, Alpacas are a rarer, high maintenance breed with curly, coarse fur with rosettes that can come in many colours. They are known for their loving temperament but are not suggested for first-time owners.