Guinea Pig Wikia
A silkie guinea pig
Rarity Somewhat uncommon but still popular
Grooming High

The Silkie, also called the Sheltie, is a breed of longhaired guinea pig. Although popular pets and show animals, Silkies may be somewhat harder to find than some other breeds.


Silkies were discovered in the 1970's in the United Kingdom when a Peruvian was bred with an American Shorthair, likely for experimental purposes.

Silkies get their name from their long and silky hair. However, they are known as Shelties to people in Europe. The reason for this is still unknown.


Of all breeds, Silkies are known for their gentle and laid-back personality. Because of this, they may take longer than other guinea pigs to warm up to new people.

Physical Characteristics

Silkies have long, smooth coats that flow back over the body. They must never have any rosettes or hair growing towards their face, nor should the hair have a part. From above, Silkies resemble a teardrop shape. The coat is generally accepted to have a somewhat longer sweep of hair in the rear.

It is also possible for Silkies to be found in the Satin variety.


Silkies come in a wide variety of colors.


While Silkies, with their soft coats and docile personalities, make good pets for children to play with, they are probably not the best pets for children or first-time guinea pig owners to own. Their long coats require frequent grooming, often daily, in order to prevent tangling. However, for someone with experience in guinea pig care, the Silkie could make a wonderful pet.