- Are Maine Coon Cats Good with Dogs?
- Five Reasons why Maine Coon Cats are a good match for Dogs
- Five Reasons why Maine Coon Cats (or any cat) might not be a good match for Dogs
- Dog Breeds that get along with Maine Coon Cats
- 10 Dog Breeds that get along with Maine Coon Cats
- 1. Basset Hound and Maine Coon Cats
- 2. Beagle and Maine Coon Cats
- 3. Bichon Frise and Maine Coon Cats
- 4. Bulldog and Maine Coon Cats
- 5. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Maine Coon Cats
- 6. Collies and Maine Coon Cats
- 7. Coton de Tulears and Maine Coon Cats
- 8. Irish Setter and Maine Coon Cats
- 9. Golden Retriever and Maine Coon Cats
- 10. Labrador Retriever and Maine Coon Cats
- Dog Breeds that might not get along with Maine Coon Cats
- 10 Dog Breeds that might not get along with Maine Coon Cats
- 1. Australian Cattle Dogs and Maine Coon Cats
- 2. Bedlington Terrier and Maine Coon Cats
- 3. Greyhound and Maine Coon Cats
- 4. Jack Russell Terrier and Maine Coon Cats
- 5. Samoyed and Maine Coon Cats
- 6. Scottish Deerhound and Maine Coon Cats
- 7. Shih Tzu and Maine Coon Cats
- 8. Siberian Huskies and Maine Coon Cats
- 9. Whippet and Maine Coon Cats
- 10. Weimaraners and Maine Coon Cats
- Introducing a Maine Coon Cat To A Dog: Checklist
- Step 1: Consider carefully and match up the characteristics and personality traits of both Maine Coon and Dog breed
- Step 2: Prepare your living space for your new dog
- Step 3: Acclimatising to Cat and Dog Scents
- Step 4: The first meet between Maine Coon and Dog
- Step 5: Monitor and allow further exploring
- Important Considerations
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Are Maine Coon cats good with dogs? If you have read my previous guide to the Maine Coon cat, then you will know that they are gentle giants with a king, warm-hearted personality. The male Maine Coon tends to be a little more outgoing in comparison to his female counterpart, however, both are equally as charming and warm-natured.
There is no doubt the Maine Coon cat is unique to other cat breeds with their dog-like behaviour and so in many ways, this does make them an ideal companion for a dog.
However, this answer is not so straight forward which is why I have written this complete guide to providing a detailed insight on whether Maine Coon cats are good with dogs.
Are Maine Coon Cats Good with Dogs?
The answer to this question is not straightforward when we think of the many dog breeds out there, their personalities, and their natural instincts. Not to mention other factors that we will explore such as the health of both cat and dog.
Five Reasons why Maine Coon Cats are a good match for Dogs
So we know the beloved Maine Coon cats have many desirable traits that make them the perfect companion. Let’s dive in.
1. Maine Coon Cats have a Dog-like Personality
First, let’s explore some of the nicknames given to the Maine Coon breed. They are often referred to as ‘gentle giants, ‘dogs of the cat world‘, and you might hear them being called ‘little lions’. I have never met a cat more intelligent than the Maine Coon: sorry other cat breeds!
Maine Coon cats are very intelligent. They are easy to train, if they love water then they probably already know how to turn the kitchen faucet on! It doesn’t take them long to learn how to walk with a leash. My Maine Coon Ragnar loves to, and he is very obedient when we are out together.
They know how to hunt, and on the opposite end of that, they are excellent fetchers, and will play that game with you all day! Dogs will love a cat that plays fetch!
2. Maine Coon Cats are Curious
Maine Coon cats are natural hunters and on the opposite end of that, they are excellent fetchers too. They will play that game with you all day; Lagertha does! Certain dog breeds will love a cat that plays fetch! The great thing about the Maine Coon cat is that will remain kitten-like its whole life. They will always be a source of entertainment, and even for those reasons alone, they make a perfect companion for a dog.
3. Maine Coon Cats know how to Socialise
Maine Coon cats love to be in the company of their humans and pets. They make great additions to the family, big or small. This can be a very positive trait if you are considering introducing one to a dog.
You might find that a Maine Coon kitten is rather shy at first, but they soon grow out of this. With a little daily interaction, petting, and handling, they will soon be socialising with the whole family.
My two Maine Coon cats were introduced to my sister’s two Coton de Tulear dogs. It only took a couple of visits for them to familiarise themselves with each other, and now they love each other’s company; and a bit tantalising.
4. Maine Coon Cats are Affectionate
The Maine Coon cat is great at sensing emotions, and this makes them not just a great companion for humans, but for dogs too. Most Maine Coon cats like to cuddle, and you might find it with dogs too.
Some Maine Coon cats might choose a favourite human (or dog) and follow them about everywhere in the house. It is not uncommon for them to have chosen their favourite person from a young age.
5. Maine Coon Cats love to talk – with dogs too.
There is no chattier cat breed in this world than the Maine Coon. They have a variety of dulcet tones that are pleasing to the ears of both humans and dogs. Some of the sounds they make include chirping, trilling, chattering, and purring.
My experience with my sister’s dogs is that they love this. Ragnar especially loves to communicate with her dogs, and likewise, they love to communicate back. It is very sweet to observe and a pro.
Five Reasons why Maine Coon Cats (or any cat) might not be a good match for Dogs
As with any benefits come negatives. Despite the Maine Coon cat breed being a perfect companion, they are a cat, and their behaviour towards a dog can be dependent upon a variety of factors.
1. They speak a different language
Cats and dogs communicate in an entirely different languages which can make for some difficulties. As with my Maine Coons, they like to greet each other through nose touches, headbutting each other, and rubbing their bodies against each other. Dogs greet each other by circling around one another, sniffing genital areas and tail wagging. Minimal eye contact is a sign they mean no harm.
The difference in language between both cats and dogs can often be where much difficulty lies between them. This is rarely a problem, but with certain breeds, it can be and the Maine Coon is no exception.
2. Maine Coon Cats have Sound Aversion
Maine Coon cats have a fear of loud noises. My Maine Coon cats certainly do. They are not a fan of the hoover, hate it when the window cleaners come around and don’t get me started on fireworks. Obviously, every Maine Coon is different, but this sound aversion can be an issue with dogs around.
Dogs can be loud, and hyper and this can sometimes be a problem for cats. However, with the right steps to introduce and let them adjust, this is an issue at the beginning of the relationship.
3. Maine Coon cats are not good for High prey Dogs
Some dogs have a very high prey drive, and this is an important factor when considering bringing the two together. Dogs with a high prey drive or high predatory instinct find it more challenging to bond with a Maine Coon cat, although not impossible if both are introduced at an early age.
High prey dogs seek out, chase, and capture their prey. However, the Maine Coon cat is no small feat as we know. Nonetheless, Maine Coon cats are very sensitive and in any situations that put them through stress, you should avoid them.
4. Your Maine Coon cat might suffer from Separation Anxiety
Separation anxiety in Maine Coon cats (and all cats) is the most common form of anxiety. Maine Coon cats that have experienced a history of being abandoned, rehomed, or perhaps had an owner that has passed away are likely to suffer from separation anxiety. Signs of this in a Maine Coon include excess meowing, moaning, and crying for their owners, especially when they leave a room or the house for a period of time.
How this affects their relationship with dogs relates to feeling threatened especially if a Maine Coon is further bullied by a dog. If your Maine Coon suffers from separation anxiety, they need all the attention in the world.
5. It’s just a cat thing
Sometimes, cats and dogs are just not a good match. Both Maine Coon cats and dogs have their own natural instincts which can pertain to antagonistic interactions. Any behaviour like growling, hissing, or swatting is a sign of this instinctual behaviour and may be a sign they are not suited.
However, don’t let this deter you without doing your research first as there are solutions and some dog breeds the Maine Coon cat is perfect for.
Dog Breeds that get along with Maine Coon Cats
The reasons listed above should have provided you with an introduction to the pros and cons of bringing both Maine Coon and dog together.
However, we know this is entirely dependent on what breed of dog you are considering, and this is why is it incredibly important to carry out thorough research prior. There are over 360 official dog breeds in the world according to the Governing Body of Canine Registries.
The last thing you want is to introduce a dog to a Maine Coon cat that has all the opposite traits of your Maine Coon cat and causes tension and upset in your homes. Please research carefully before making a decision.
10 Dog Breeds that get along with Maine Coon Cats
1. Basset Hound and Maine Coon Cats
You can’t get a dog more mellow than the Basset Hound which makes them a perfect companion for the Maine Coon cat. Like the Maine Coon, the Basset Hound is loyal and patient, not to mention cute with those long floppy ears. Basset Hounds are also slow to move with their shorter legs and long body. This is an ideal situation for living with a Maine Coon companion as they won’t come across as intimidating. Definitely a great match for both Maine Coon and Basset Hound.
2. Beagle and Maine Coon Cats
While Beagles were born to chase, they are friendly dogs and are more open to sharing their space with cats, including the Maine Coon. Beagles love the interaction with both humans and other pets which makes them another perfect option for Maine Coon cats. They share the same curiosity and with a little planning, they can very quickly be living in harmony.
3. Bichon Frise and Maine Coon Cats
A tiny ball of fluff, the Bichon Frise a both gentle and playful. What more do you want when bringing a dog companion for your Maine Coon cat? They are well-raised and great with kids, and there is a high chance that a Bichon Frise and your Maine Coon cat will become best of friends. Another great option for your Maine Coon.
4. Bulldog and Maine Coon Cats
The Bulldog is lazy, and loves nothing more than a nap, just like the Maine Coon. While they might not become friends as quickly as the Basset Hound or Beagle, the Bulldog is laid back and wants nothing more than harmony. English Bulldogs tend to be better suited toward cats but with a little space and an early introduction, the two can soon off to a great start and a friendship that will last a lifetime.
5. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Maine Coon Cats
This beautiful dog breed was born to love, loyal and affectionate just like the Maine Coon cat. There is probably no person or animal in the world the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel doesn’t get along with. Not only do they come in toy dog size, but they are good at providing emotional support as therapy dogs, to patients in hospitals. They are naturally warm-hearted dogs, and as such make a perfect companion for your Maine Coon cat.
6. Collies and Maine Coon Cats
You might initially wonder how a Collie can be a good companion for your Maine Coon with their boundless energy and herding instincts. But don’t worry, the last thing they are going to do is herd your Maine Coon cats!
On the contrary, they are super affectionate and have a loyalty to their humans on par with the Maine Coon cat. They are incredibly sweet and just as smart as the Maine Coon which makes them a great match.
7. Coton de Tulears and Maine Coon Cats
Where do I start with this amazing dog breed! If you have read this guide so far, you will know my sister has two Coton de Tulears: Casper and Bonnie. They are the sweetest dogs, just your typical happy-go-lucky dogs. They are super affectionate and are prone to separation anxiety like the Maine Coon cat because they love nothing more than family, both humans and other pets.
Both my two Maine Coon cats were introduced to the Coton de Tulear breed and it did not take long at all before they were best friends. Also, the Coton de Tulear is such a beautiful, fluffy dog. You won’t be disappointed.
8. Irish Setter and Maine Coon Cats
If introduced at an early age, the Irish Setter and Maine Coon relationship can be a great thing to observe. The Irish Setter is naturally well-bred and very sociable. They are also affectionate, loyal, and intelligent just like the Maine Coon Cat. They can be an excellent option for Maine Coons especially if they are raised with them.
9. Golden Retriever and Maine Coon Cats
Ahh, the beautiful Golden Retriever. This breed is probably one of the best options for your Maine Coon cat because they are loyal, friendly, sweet, intelligent and full of empathy. They are great with kids and great for Maine Coons. They can be quite goofy at times, just like the male Maine Coon which will be an enjoyable sight to watch.
You can rest assured that a Golden Retriever will accept the Maine Coon as part of the family and vice versa. A hyper dog, it can benefit from learning not to chase a Maine Coon kitten. Overall, they are a well-suited match.
10. Labrador Retriever and Maine Coon Cats
Similar traits to that of the Golden Retriever, the Labrador is a great companion for your Maine Coon cat. They are gentle, friendly, affectionate, loyal, and accommodating. The Labrador Retriever is well-behaved and has a low prey drive. They have a soft mouth so don’t worry about them biting on your beloved Maine Coon. They are great family pets which makes them another great option for your Maine Coon cat.
Dog Breeds that might not get along with Maine Coon Cats
As with the breeds that get along with Maine Coon cats, there are some breeds that may not as well-suited. Some dogs have a naturally high prey drive, and this is the last thing your Maine Coon cat will want. Some dog breeds are also not naturally sociable like others.
However please take this advice with a pinch of salt, as some of these breeds, with the right upbringing, could turn out to be great companions for your Maine Coon cat
It is important to do your research and weigh up the pros and cons, as the last thing you want or your Maine Coon wants is to be unsettled, and in a great deal of distress because of the wrong match.
10 Dog Breeds that might not get along with Maine Coon Cats
1. Australian Cattle Dogs and Maine Coon Cats
The Australian Cattle Dog will chase anything that moves. They are excellent problem solvers, and no small animal will go unnoticed. They have a strong prey drive and prefer to live in a cat-free environment. A peaceful alternative may be possible if they are brought up from an early age with Maine Coons. Otherwise, this might be a risk not worth taking.
2. Bedlington Terrier and Maine Coon Cats
Despite being affectionate and good-tempered, the Bedlington Terrier was bred to make excellent watchdogs. They are super alert which makes them excellent hunters and it’s not likely they will let a cat roam free. The Bedlington Terrier is not the best option for your Maine Coon cat.
3. Greyhound and Maine Coon Cats
The Greyhound possesses speed and excellent hunting skills, not to mention its size. A Greyhound can be dangerous around your Maine Coon and other cats especially if left alone together. Greyhounds have a very strong prey drive however this is much stronger outdoors than indoors. If you really want to bring the two together, then this is an option that must be done from a young age so they can grow and socialise together.
4. Jack Russell Terrier and Maine Coon Cats
I grew up with a Parson Jack Russell Terrier named Harry and he was a great family pet. However, we didn’t have any cats and had him from a pup. This breed has endless energy. It was the original Fox terrier of the 18th century and will lure your Maine Coon into a corner. They have an incredibly strong hunting ability with a history of killing small animals such as rodents, rabbits, cats, and mice. Socialising from an early age is a must if you are looking to bring one into your family.
5. Samoyed and Maine Coon Cats
If you are planning on introducing a Samoyed with your Maine Coon cat, then you are going to have to work hard on their impulse control.
Again, this breed has a very high prey drive due to their upbringing as herding dogs. Their instinct is to chase small animals and kill them and so in a house, they may choose to nip and chase. This will more than likely be too much for your Maine Coon cat to handle.
6. Scottish Deerhound and Maine Coon Cats
A hunting dog before anything else, the Scottish Deerhound was bred to hunt deer in the Scottish Countryside. This breed has incredible hunting instincts and will chase after any animal smaller than them. This is not to say they are not friendly dogs, in fact, they are known for being sweet and very independent. But their instincts can take over and so they may not be the best choice for your Maine Coon cat.
7. Shih Tzu and Maine Coon Cats
The Shih Tzu dog like the Maine Coon cat likes a lot of attention but if it does not get this, it can turn jealous. They might not be best pleased if they see you giving all your attention to your Maine Coon. However, if socialised from an early age, they can be trained to get along well with other cats.
8. Siberian Huskies and Maine Coon Cats
Huskies are a breed that doesn’t tend to get on well with other cats. With a strong prey drive, it is important they are supervised if left alone with Maine Coon cats. This is not to say it is impossible for them to co-exist together peacefully. After all, the Siberian Husky is a great family pet and is very tolerant of children. However, socialisation classes are advised if you are planning on introducing one to a Maine Coon cat.
9. Whippet and Maine Coon Cats
The whippet is impressively fast and likes to chase smaller creatures meaning no exception to your Maine Coon cat. The whippet can run at a speed of up to 35 mph. The Maine Coon temperament is the opposite of the Whippet, and as such can be problematic in your home. I am not saying that Whippets don’t make friendly pets but training a Whippet puppy will be more manageable.
10. Weimaraners and Maine Coon Cats
The Weimaraner is fast, agile and has excellent hunting ability. It was born to be aggressive so that it could successfully hunt smaller animals like rabbits and squirrels. The breed is highly intelligent and loves nothing more than to play fetch and have a swim at the beach. If not exercised enough, this can lead to them being unhappy but with the right environment and care, they can get along with other pets. Socialisation is encouraged from an early age otherwise this breed can be an issue for your Maine Coon cat.
Obviously, as I mentioned at the start, there are over 360 official dog breeds, and therefore too many to go through here other than the most common. Please feel free to get in touch if you have a question about a dog breed that isn’t mentioned here.
Introducing a Maine Coon Cat To A Dog: Checklist
If you are planning on introducing your Maine Coon cat to another dog breed, then please follow my 10-step guide to ensure a peaceful transition.
Step 1: Consider carefully and match up the characteristics and personality traits of both Maine Coon and Dog breed
This is the first step to carry out before even bringing home a dog. It is important to take into consideration the personality and characteristics of your Maine Coon. Ask yourself the following:
- Is my Maine Coon outgoing or reserved?
- Does my Maine Coon suffer from separation anxiety?
- Does my Maine Coon frighten easily by loud noises?
- Is my Maine Coon cat sociable?
- Is my Maine Coon young or old?
- Does my Maine Coon have any health conditions that might make it vulnerable around a dog?
- Was my Maine Coon socialised around other kittens and puppies?
You should then carry out thorough research into dog breeds, so you can pick the best match for your Maine Coon cat. The last thing you or your cat and future dog want is an environment of stress and mismatch. Consider the following questions when looking for a dog breed:
- Does the dog’s personality match that of my Maine Coon or will there be conflict?
- Is the dog breed friendly and will it provide a source of company for my Maine Coon, anxious or not?
- Is the dog breed known for being noisy e.g., barking loudly, running around a lot?
- Is the dog breed good for sociable/non-sociable Maine Coons?
- Does the dog have a high prey drive?
- Is the dog breed likely to have a negative impact on my Maine Coon’s health conditions?
- Is the dog breed too large for my Maine Coon?
- Was the dog breed socialised around other puppies or even kittens?
Asking yourself some of these questions will ensure you are well prepared for picking a dog breed that is well suited to your Maine Coon cat.
Step 2: Prepare your living space for your new dog
Preparing a couple of areas in your house so that both your dog and Maine Coon each have their own personal space is important. Both cat and dog will appreciate this, and it will encourage them to get on better knowing they have their own little space to call home.
When preparing their own space, you might want to consider the following:
- Ensure the litter box is in a convenient and accessible position for your Maine Coon and away from the dog’s area.
- Have separate and fresh drinking water available daily for both Maine Coon and dog.
- Ensure both Maine Coon and dog have their own beds and that they are kept away in their own dens.
- Provide Maine Coon and dog with their own toys to play with.
- Ensure your cat has access to height, whether this is a cat tree or shelves on the wall. They will feel safe at height if the dog is too hyper for them, or if they need a break.
- Calming products for your Maine Coon such as a Calming vest, collar or pheromone diffuser might come in handy at this time.
Step 3: Acclimatising to Cat and Dog Scents
Firstly, put your new dog into his/her own space away from your Maine Coon. The last thing you want is any surprise attacks. Both cat and dog will be nervous so keeping them in separate spaces at first is advised.
Then you will want to let both Maine Coon and dog acclimatise to their own scents without any physical contact first. This might be swapping blankets and letting them sniff away and observing how they react to it. It might take some time for them to be comfortable with the other’s scent. I would recommend doing this over a few days.
Step 4: The first meet between Maine Coon and Dog
Once step 3 has been complete and you are confident that both Maine Coon and dog are used to the other’s scents without contact, you can then introduce them to each other. Only proceed to this step if you are confident your dog is leashed trained and can remain obedient. It is also important to keep your dog on a leash for a couple of weeks in Maine Coon’s presence. The key is short but regular meetings between both and keeping your dog on a leash will allow you to have control if anything gets out of hand.
Giving commands to your dog such as ‘sit’, and ‘stay’ are recommended and likewise, rewarding the dog for any good behaviour towards Maine Coon is key to the start of a successful relationship between the two. Likewise, if the dog does anything it shouldn’t a firm ‘no’ should be said and remove both Maine Coon and the dog temporarily.
During this process, you will want to ensure that both pets receive equal attention and rewards for showing good behaviour towards each other. If anything does get out of hand, remain calm and discourage any aggression shown by either. Observing and listening out for signs of aggression include hissing, growling, and swiping.
Step 5: Monitor and allow further exploring
Taking this process slowly is the best method for ensuring that both Maine Coon and dog are off to the best start. It can be a nerve-wracking experience when they behave in an aggressive manner toward each other but rest assured this is normal, and it’s just their instincts coming out. It would be the same for bringing in another cat to your house.
The key is to repeat stages 3 and 4 until they exert positive behaviour towards each other. This process might take a few days or weeks depending on the dog breed, how much introductory interaction they get with each other, and paying close attention to both positive and negative behaviour so you reward where appropriate.
Before you know it, your Maine Coon and the new dog will be best friends if you have considered all the best options for both.
When you are going through the process of getting your pets used to each other, it is important to ensure that:
- Safety should come first. Your Maine Coon is unlikely to harm or attack your dog however your dog is more likely to attack your Maine Coon. All it takes is for a dog to pick up your Maine Coon by its next and shake it.
- Make sure your Maine Coon does not feel trapped at any point, therefore letting them run off if they choose to.
- Do not let your dog chase your Maine Coon.
- Don’t ignore your Maine Coon; they still need your attention and don’t want to feel left out.
- Don’t progress too quickly; slow gradual introductions will result in the best outcome.