Table Of Contents
  1. What is a Maine Coon cat? 
  2. What I will cover in this Guide
  3. The History of the Maine Coon cat
  4. The World’s Most Famous Maine Coon Cats
  5. History of Maine Coon Cat Shows
  6. Maine Coon Physical Characteristics, Traits and Personality
  7. Common Maine Coon Health Issues
  8. Maine Coon Nutritional Needs
  9. Maine Coon Lifespan
  10. Maine Coon Grooming
  11. How much is a Maine Coon Cat?
  12. Conclusion

What is a Maine Coon cat? 

I’m sure if you have found this guide, then something you have been asking yourself is, “What is a Maine Coon cat?”

It is a question I was asking myself many years ago before I brought home my first Maine Coon. I understand there is a lot of overwhelming information on the internet, and so I have brought that information into one place. 

This is a detailed and informative guide, so you don’t have to pull your information from various resources. Please feel free to save or pin this URL, so you can read the guide at your own leisure. 

Whether you are looking to adopt a Maine Coon, or are simply interested in learning more, you will not be disappointed reading this guide. .

Summary: What is a Maine Coon cat?

Ragnar the Maine Coon outside on a leash marching across a tree trunk
Ragnar the Maine Coon

The Maine Coon cat originated around the late 1860s. A domestic beauty, they have a double layer of fur that is silky and smooth to touch and a soft flowing coat that just makes you want to touch it all the time. The Maine Coon cat has a defined bone structure that gives them that ‘big cat’ look, not to mention their rounded glowing eyes, giant ears and tufts of hair. The Maine Coon also loves nothing more than to chirp at the birds. They have a great nature, and it is no wonder they are called the ‘Gentle Giants’ of the cat world.

What I will cover in this Guide

I will provide insight on everything I know and have learned along the way, of that about the Maine Coon cat including (but not limited to): 

  • The history of the Maine Coon cat
  • Famous Maine Coon cats
  • Features, characteristics, cute sounds and all that jazz
  • Health and nutrition
  • Maine Coon care 

Firstly though, let’s explore the history of the Maine Coon cat. If you love legends, myths, and folklore, then you will love the story the Maine Coon cat has to bring.

The History of the Maine Coon cat

There are many folk tales surrounding the Maine Coon cat. Perhaps this is because their ancestral origins are unknown but it is that what makes their story even more interesting; it comes with legends, myths, and tales of folklore. Let’s explore the facts from fiction. 

A photo of Ragnar the Maine Coon sleeping with a pair of glasses on
The mysterious history of the Maine Coon breed

Is the Maine Coon part Racoon?

The short answer: No. However exciting this theory is, it is not plausible. The Maine Coon cat does not share similar enough DNA to reproduce with a Racoon. Some may argue that it is possible however scientists have confirmed it is not biologically possible. 

Earlier Maine Coons once shared similar colourings and patterns to that of the Racoon, such as the brown bushy tail, and a tabby-like pattern. They are also superior climbers which may have also given rise to this theory, not to mention, their fascination for water. Maine Coons like to scoop up food and dunk it in water, similar to the behaviour seen in that of a Racoon. They can do this because of their large dexterous paws. So it is very plausible why many believe this theory. 

However, it is more likely that the Maine Coon cat descended from the Bob Cat or Norwegian Forest Cat. 

The Maine Coon cat descended from Queen Marie Antoinette

This is one of the most famous tales from Maine, USA. Queen Marie Antoinette of France was executed in 1793 during the French Revolution. Prior to her death, she attempted to flee France, sailing on Captain Clough’s ship along with her beloved Turkish Angora cats. Sadly, the ship sailed without her as she was captured, but her prized possessions made it to Wiscasset in Maine, where they interbred, into the Maine Coon cat. 

Maine Coon cats are part Viking

This would be amazing.

I guess I have a bias toward this theory as my two Maine Coons are called Ragnar and Lagertha, named after the famous Viking warriors. If you are into Viking folklore, you will know what I am talking about. This tale tells the story of how the Maine Coons are descendants of cats that were present on Viking boats during the 11th century as they highly resemble the Norwegian Skogkatt- or as we know it, the Norwegian Forest Cat.

Maine Coon cats descended from the American Bobcat

Like the previous story involving the Norwegian Skogkatt, another legend is that the American Bobcat interbred with domestic cats brought to North America by sea and voila, the Maine Coon was born. It is very likely this tale surfaced due to the similarity with their large, tufted ears, like that of a Bobcat’s. 

As the country became more developed, sailors would return with more longhaired cats which then continued to breed with the local shorthaired cats, populating the Eastern seaboard which resulted in a game of “survival of the fittest.” 

It was the cats that survived the harsh conditions of the New England winters that would go on to produce the next generation of kittens, and after nature played her part in combining all the genetic material from these breeds, that would result in the Maine Coon kitten being born. 

There was no doubt that Maine Coons would find their way into settlers’ homes with their good looks, charm and intelligence, especially as they were also seen as good workers or mousers. 

Stories of the Maine Coon continued to grow during the 1860s as Farmers would boast about the great nature, intelligence and power held by the Maine Coon. 

The World’s Most Famous Maine Coon Cats

From 1895 to 2022, many famous Maine Coon cats have made a name for themselves. It is no wonder, due to their size, striking beauty, lion-like maine, and friendly, playful nature. Below, I will cover some of the most famous Maine Coon cats to date ranging from the earliest on record to the largest Maine Coons recorded. 

Cosey, the Maine Angola

Around 1860, farmers of Maine, USA began exhibiting Maine Coon cats at informal cat shows. Back then, they were knowns as “Maine cats”, “Coon Cats” and “Maine Angola.” This is the same lot of farmers who took in Maine Coons to be mousers and bragged about their impressive traits.  

It is one particularly famous Maine Coon that today has caught the attention of the Maine Coon internet fan base and beyond. Cosey was the first female Maine Coon to win at one of the earliest American cat shows in 1985, at Maddison Square Gardens in New York. Cosey was owned by Mrs E. N. Baker. 

It is this show in 1985 that many believe to be the most significant cat show in history as it marked the beginning of the development of the Cat Fancy in North America. Cosey was given a silver collar marked with “National Cat Show”, and this silver ribbon was purchased by the Cat Fanciers’ Association. It is housed in the CFA Central Office within the Jean Baker Rose Memorial Library. 

Stewie the Maine Coon

Stewie (Mymains Stewart Gilligan) was the world’s longest domestic cat according to the Guinness Book of Records, measuring an impressive 48.5 inches when fully stretched out. Stewie was a certified therapy cat in Oregon and frequently visited local senior centres. 

To this date, he is still believed to hold the record for the longest domesticated cat. Stewie sadly passed away in 2013. 

Barivel the Maine Coon

Another Guinness Book Record holder, Barivel the Maine Coon measures 47.2 inches long, and currently holds the record for the longest living domestic cat. Barivel was born in 2816, and resides in Italy with his family. He enjoys going out on walks on his own and also has his own Instagram page.  

History of Maine Coon Cat Shows

I touched on the history of cat shows previously, when discussing the rapid growth of the Maine Coon cat breed in America. Let’s go into a little more detail. 

The First Documented Cat Show – 1870s

Perhaps the first documented cat show was during the 1870s when a woman known as Mrs E.R Pierce, co-owned a black and white Maine Coon cat named Captain Jenks of the Horse Marines. Mrs E.R Pierce documented the early history of domestic cats in the United States, particularly the Maine Coon cat. This included names and dates of all cat shows that took place along the Eastern seaboard, including the names of the winning cats. 

The 1895 cat show in New York where Cosey won her first National Cat Show silver ribbon, did not develop into the high-status show that was intended; but the Boston show circuit did. 

Cat Show Fever Hits the Cat Fancier’s Association

It wasn’t until the beginning of the 20th century that “show fever” hit the Cat Fanciers’ Association, with cat shows spreading throughout the Northeast, Midwest, and West Coast of America however this would go into decline rapidly as other longhaired pedigree cats came into the limelight. Maine Coon cats quickly disappeared from the ranks of the registry and shows and slipped into the background, some declaring them extinct.

And in 1974, the Maine Coon cat was accepted for provision status after Mrs Jean Rose announced to the Cat Fanciers’ Association that they had a Maine Coon cat club and had fulfilled the requirements for its’ recognition as a provisional breed. They had the standard, breed club and 133 registered cats.

To this present day, Maine Coons are (not surprisingly to us Maine Coon owners) increasingly popular around the world, and are regular participants in cat shows around the world. In 2019, the Cat Fanciers’ Association named that the fifth-most popular cat breed. 

The Rise of the Cat Fanciers’ Association

The Cat Fanciers’ Association was founded in 1906, in the United States and it is currently the world’s largest registry of pedigreed cats. It is also known as the most prestigious pedigreed cat registering association in North America. 

Below is a list of current CFA recognised pedigreed cats:

  • Abyssinian cat
  • Balinese
  • Chartreux
  • Devon Rex
  • Egyptian Mau
  • Havana Brown
  • Japanese Bobtail
  • Khao Manee
  • LaPerm
  • Maine Coon
  • Norwegian Forest Cat
  • Osicat
  • Persian
  • Ragamuffin
  • Scottish Fold 
  • Toybob

Maine Coon Physical Characteristics, Traits and Personality

Lagertha loves to play fetch!

Now that we’ve covered the history of the Maine Coon cat, let’s move on to their characteristics and traits, the special markers that make them the intelligent, beautiful, and warm-natured cats they are today. (You might be interested in my other blog which explores whether Maine Coon cats are lap cats and how they show affection).

I will explore their physical characteristics and traits including size, colouring, markings, ears and tufts to their metabolism, senses, personality, sounds and habits. 

Maine Coon Size and Build

Maine Coons cats are the biggest domestic cat breed today. Being native to Maine, USA, they faced harsh winters and had to develop that soft but rugged coat to protect themselves. 

Maine Coons can grow up to 16 inches in height which tops the standard for domestic cats who typically grow up to a maximum of 10 inches in height. 

As such, this adds to their already large build. Typically, the Maine Coon takes an average 3-5 years to fully grow. You won’t miss a Maine Coon when you see one due to their rectangular-shaped muscular bodies, and broad chest. But they have hearts full of gold and are very endearing, so don’t let their size full you. 

Maine Coon Muzzle/Chin

The Maine Coon chin is visibly square and blunt-ended when viewed on a side profile. It is normally medium in length and in comparison to the rest of its body, giving a well-balanced and proportioned look. 

Maine Coons have a strong chin which is firm and in line with their cute little nose. 

Maine Coon Weight

Entirely dependent on the genetics of your Maine Coon, their weight can vary, but normally you can expect them to weigh in heavier than your typical domestic cat. 

The accepted standard size of a Maine Coon cat ranges from 11 to 25 pounds, with males typically being heavier. 

Maine Coons do grow at double the rate of normal domestic cats, and can easily grow at an impressive 2 pounds per month during a growth cycle. With their size, can come health complications if not monitored correctly which I will discuss shortly. 

Maine Coon Length

Are you surprised to learn that the Maine Coon cats are the longest out of all other cat breeds? Of course not, especially if you’ve read about the record-holders above! 

The Maine Coon cat on average grows to lengths of between 10 and 16 inches, however, it is not uncommon for them to grow to 40 inches and beyond. Their tails are extra impressive and can grow up to 14 inches in length and normally equals the length of their body, so during the cold winters, they can keep themselves warm. 

Maine Coon Colours and Patterns

Maine Coon cats come in all sorts of colours and patterns – up to 84- but all are equally as beautiful and striking. 

Maine Coon cats are typically categorised into colour groups: 

Solid

This Maine Coon has a strong solid colour with no patches, stripes, or other colour combinations. They can come in white, black, blue, cream or red. White solids are one of the rarest Maine Coons with their god/goddess-like beauty.

Smoke 

These cats have solid colours with a slight fade to their undercoat. Normally the top quarter of their fur has colour and the fur closest to their body is white or a paler colour. 

Tabbies

Tabby Maine Coons have tabby markings or stripes on the upper fur and undercoat. They can come in classic, mackerel or ticked tabby. 

Tabbies with White

Same features as tabby but with white chest and paws- like my Ragnar . 

Tortoiseshell

Shortened to ‘Tortie’, their coat includes black on the base with patches of rich red and cream- like my Lagertha . 

Bi-Colour

White mixed with another colour. The white is normally on their legs, belly and chest and mixes with some shade of red, black cream and blue. 

Parti-colour

A part-coloured Maine Coon can have more than one colour including tortoiseshell and calico. It is not uncommon for them to have two different colours that are found within another classification. 

Shaded

A white undercoat and another colour over most or all of the body. 

Maine Coon Eye Colours

The Maine Coon eye colour comes in all shades of green, gold, copper, and green-gold. Maine Coon cats that come in white may have blue or even odd eyes. You might even see a Maine Coon with eyes that are orange, amber or yellow in colour. Maine Coon eyes are round almond-like shape and clear and uniform which gives them a bright look. They are wide-set and high on the face. 

Maine Coons are not born with these eyes colours, however. Maine Coon kittens are born with dark blue eyes and will always change to one of the standard colours unless they have solid white or part white colouring. 

Maine Coon Ears

A striking feature very much common and pointed out within the Maine Coon breed is their large, tufted ears. According to the CFA, Maine Coon ears are large, well-tufted, wide at the base and tapers to a point. They are set approximately one ear’s width apart. 

Maine Coons show signs of ear tufts from an early age, which makes them even more adorable in comparison to their tiny bodies. They are not just adorable to look at, but functional too in that they keep dust and debris out of their incredibly delicate and sensitive ears. 

The Maine Coon Personality 

The Maine Coon cat has a wonderful personality, which makes them one of the most sought-after pets today. They are unique and will make a perfect companion. The males are known to be a little more outgoing than the female if that is what you are looking for, but both are equally wonderful and will provide you with many happy memories. 

Dog-like behaviour

It is very common to hear from owners and Maine Coon enthusiasts that the breed is very dog-like. This is very true; they are dogs of the cat world. If you come home, they will be the first to greet you, or if you are getting up in the morning, they will run up the stairs to say hello.  

This is a sign of their loyalty and love to their owners and not one you commonly come across in cats which makes the Maine Coon cat even more special. 

Curious Did Not Kill the Maine Coon Cat

Maine Coon cats are very curious, they like to follow their owners everywhere, and want to know what they are doing. If they follow you around the house while you are doing the housework, then that is their way of helping you.

They must investigate everything so just be patient and let them do their thing. 

Expect a very sociable Maine Coon 

The Maine Coon cat breed loves to interact with humans, so expect them to be the centre of attention when you have visitors round. 

Maine Coons cats are very gentle in nature, hence the nickname “Gentle Giants.” They get along with everyone, including other animals and so are a great option when looking for a pet. They have long been regarded as a great companion, due to their natural ability to make friends easily. 

The Sounds of the Maine Coon Cat

There is no doubt that the Maine Coon cat is probably one of the most vocal. They love nothing more than to talk away with their humans, or you might find them chirping, chattering, and even trilling at the birds. 

We can’t forget the most common sound we associated with cats; purring. Maine Coons purr when expressing a range of emotions, but the most likely reason is to let you know they are content. Their purring is also very therapeutic. The purr vibrates within a range of 20-140Hz, which is within the perfect range for reducing stress and anxiety. 

Affectionate in Nature

Last, but certainly not least, the Maine Coon cat is incredibly affectionate. It has long been established that cats can sense emotions and Maine Coons are no exception. The Maine Coon cat loves nothing more than jumping up on the sofa and cuddling up to their favourite humans. 

Despite Maine Coons having very different personalities, they are the perfect breed if you are looking for that particular trait in a cat. They are also very vocal in letting you know when they want attention. Ragnar loves to make a cute little chirping noise when he is getting tired and wants to come up for some snuggle time. 

If a lap cat is what are looking for, then the Maine Coon cat is the perfect option. 

Common Maine Coon Health Issues

So we already know that the Maine Coon is a large cat, in fact, the largest of any other domestic breed. With this, they are prone to more complications which is why it is super important to understand these health conditions. I will explore these further in other blogs but for now, let’s look at the most common. 

Weight Management

Excess weight in Maine Coon cats is one of the most likely causes of other life-threatening diseases such as diabetes and arthritis. Research suggests that overweight cat can reduce their lifespan by two years, and arthritis much sooner. Therefore, it is important that Maine Coons are fed a nutritious diet and given plenty of exercise to avoid any weight issues. 

We know that Maine Coons are large cats, and sometimes there might be a tendency to overfeed them if they are not within the average size of a Maine Coon. This is not the right approach; every Maine Coon cat is different.

If they have that balance between a healthy diet, and exercise, you can avoid many of the health complications associated with the breed. 

Hip Dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia is more commonly seen in dogs, but unfortunately, it is something that affects many Maine Coons, and some from a young age. It is a degenerative disease and causes the malformation of the hip joint which can then lead to arthritis. 

A normal functioning hip bone should be rounded and sits in a socket-like structure to allow it to operate smoothly, with plenty of joint fluid, cartilage, and support of the muscle. A Maine Coon cat with hip dysplasia will have a hip joint that is irregular in shape and does not sit properly in the socket. This can then result in cartilage eroding, inflammation, and pain. 

Some early signs of hip dysplasia in Maine Coons include:

  • Joint pain in the hip
  • Stiffness in moving, loss of motion
  • Limping that gets worse
  • Trouble jumping
  • Tiredness
  • Irritability
  • Muscle loss in their rear legs

Fortunately, there are preventative actions you can take now, and treatments available to combat this condition. Firstly, ensuring your Maine Coon’s weight is managed through reasonable exercise, and a healthy nutritious diet will do wonders. 

Secondly, your vet can diagnose this condition by taking a radiograph. Medications can be prescribed as a first option to manage pain and inflammation. Other, more invasive options include surgery; the most common being a femoral head and neck excision. 

Your vet removes the deformed head and neck of their femur, and this allows the muscle to rebuild into an almost makeshift hip joint. Your Maine Coon can then go on to live a normal life and be pain-free. 

Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy is the most common heart disease in cats, especially Maine Coons. The disease causes the heart wall to thicken abnormally which causes multiple problems, preventing the normal function of the heart which leads to heart failure. 

The Universities Federation for Animal Welfare states that around 30% of Maine Coon cats have a genetic mutation, and around 34% of Maine Coons in the UK carry the mutant gene. 

Responsible breeders should carry out genetic testing for common conditions and share their results so at least you know in advance and can make an informed decision. Your vet may also carry out genetic testing. 

What are the symptoms of Feline Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy?

Many Maine Coons with this disease do not show signs, which can make it difficult to spot the symptoms. However, by being aware of this disease, and the common symptoms, it allows you to be more in tune with your cat so you can spot the signs. 

They include:

  • Fast and abnormally strong heartbeat. Your vet may also spot this when your Maine Coon is in for a health check-up. 
  • Hear an abnormal noise or murmur in the heart; this is more likely to be heard by your vet. Murmurs indicate abnormal blood flow. 
  • Decreased activity and appetite because of heart failure in your Maine Coon. This is often due to the build-up of fluid in their chest cavity. 
  • Difficulty breathing because blood cannot get into the left ventricle pools causing it to dilate which puts more pressure on the pulmonary veins that carry blood from the lungs. Cats do not vent like dogs; If your cat is showing signs of panting, then they requires immediate medical attention. 
  • Clotting or thromboembolism. A clot that forms in the left atrium can detach and cause blood loss to another part of your Maine Coon’s body. The most common place for a blockage to occur is the largest artery. This causes sudden problems with your Maine Coon’s back legs, often paralysis. 

Patellar Luxation 

Patellar luxation is the fancy term for meaning ‘out of place.’ The knee joint in your Maine Coon allows them to perform incredible acts of agility such as jumping up at high heights, pouncing, and crouching. 

A luxating knee joint is one that slips off to the side as a result of an underdeveloped stifle; the complex joint in the hind legs. Maine Coons with this condition often do not show until it has advanced. Having your cat x-rayed is the easiest way to determine this, and better when they are around 6 months of age. 

Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)

Polycystic Kidney Disease also referred to as PKD is also another hereditary condition where several cysts form in the kidneys of Maine Coon cats. It is very likely that a Maine Coon kitten will have been born with this condition, but the cysts will develop in size with time. 

PKD can compromise their delicate kidney tissue until it no longer functions properly. This can lead to renal failure. Renal failure affects Maine Coons when their kidneys cannot perform the basic function that is cleansing waste from the blood and regulating hydration. 

Young kittens are prone to renal failure if they inherit kidney defects such as PKD and so screening is important from the onset, especially prior to surgery or anaesthesia. Your vet can advise on this and should advise screening. 

Spinal Muscular Atrophy

Spinal Muscular Atrophy, commonly referred to as SMA is another genetic disorder in Maine Coon cats. Although not fatal or painful as such, it does spinal cord neurons that control the muscles in their limbs, decline. 

Maine Coon cats affected by SMA will likely develop an unusual gait, or limp. Clinical signs of this condition do tend to appear by 3 to 4 months of age.  

Again, your breeder should provide evidence of any genetic defects, such as DNA testing which will identify if the defect is present in your Maine Coon cat. 

Periodontal Disease 

Periodontal Disease or gum disease is another common health condition affecting cats, particularly Maine Coon cats. The disease affects the health of your Maine Coon’s teeth and mouth. 

Research suggests that up to 8 in 10 Maine Coon cats will develop dental issues, and so it is important to help look after the health of your cat’s teeth and mouth. 

Periodontal Disease typically follows several stages: 

Gingivitis 

This occurs when your Maine Coon cat’s gums become inflamed. They will often look bright red, swollen and painful. Plaque is often accompanied which leads to inflammation further down the line. 

Periodontitis 

Periodontitis soon follows Gingivitis and if untreated, will weaken the tissue around your Maine Coon’s teeth. This can also weaken their jawbones. Tooth loss, halitosis, and loss of appetite are all common signs of this stage of the disease. 

Stomatitis 

At this stage, even more swelling and inflammation become apparent which can cause lesions to appear in the gums of your Maine Coon cat. It can even cause them more distress. 

Taking care of the oral hygiene of your Maine Coon cat is crucial to avoiding any of the complications that arise due to periodontal disease. 

Maine Coon Nutritional Needs

There is a lot of debate out there regarding the nutritional needs of a cat however the National Library of Medicine confirms that the ancestors of cats, including Maine Coons were obligate carnivores. What this means is that their prey contained minimal amounts of carbohydrates. 

Much like humans, cats evolved as hunters and consumed very minimal amounts of carbohydrates in their diet. However today it is more common for cats to be fed more carbohydrates than they should. This is detrimental to the health of a cat, leading to weight gain and diabetes. 

Learning about the nutritional needs of your cat, and balancing out points of view against valid research, will allow you to make the best-informed decision for your cat. 

To ensure a healthy balance in your Maine Coon’s diet, they do require:

  • High amounts of protein
  • Moderate amounts of fat 
  • Minimal carbohydrates
  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Fatty acids
  • Amino acids 

Dry Food

Dry food is an inexpensive option and one that is favoured by many Maine Coon owners. Dry food typically contains 6-10% of water and is mixed with ingredients including:

  • Meat, poultry and/or fish derivatives 
  • Grain or grain derivatives
  • Fibre 
  • Milk product
  • Vitamin and mineral supplements

Dry food is coated in flavour enhancers to make it more appetising to your Maine Coon. Dry food can be less appetising to a cat due to the lack of nutritional ingredients in a balanced diet. It can also be less digestible. 

It is important to weigh this up when feeding your cat, and best not to feed your Maine Coon of a diet solely on dry cat food.  

Semi-Moist Food

Meat and meat derivatives form the main ingredients of semi-moist food. It contains approximately 35% moisture. Other ingredients found in semi-moist food include:

  • Grains
  • Cereal
  • Grain by-products
  • Preservatives
  • Soybean 

Often more appealing to a cat than dry food, it can also become less appealing if dried out. It is also important to be aware of the key ingredients that form a nutritious diet for your Maine Coon, and many of the ingredients found in dry and semi-moist food contain carbohydrates, grains, and a minimal amount of protein and fats. 

Canned Food

With an estimated moisture content of 75% +, canned food is a more favoured source of dietary option amongst Maine Coon owners. Canned food tends to contain meats, meat derivatives, and other by-products of the main ingredients. 

Again, feeding your Maine Coon solely on canned food is not nutritionally complete, and so it is important to ensure your Maine Coon has a balanced diet. 

Raw Food

We are very much in a raw food movement when it comes to the nutritional health of our beloved felines. That, brings arguments for something that doesn’t come with a lot of backed research; yet. However, the raw diet favours many Maine Coon owners, including myself, due to the many benefits including:

  • Grain-free
  • High in protein
  • Resembles the diet cats would have eaten in the wild
  • 100% human-grade meat ( Brand dependent)
  • Finely ground bones added to raw meat
  • Vitamins and minerals 
  • Forms a complete balanced meal 
  • Solid poops, no stink!

Obviously, I have a bias towards feeding raw, but it is years of experience feeding wet and dry to a Maine Coon I previously had who had constant tummy issues regardless of what brand I switched her to. 

Obviously, there are some concerns that are floating about amongst vets and researchers, and they typically fall into the pathogen issue. Although isolated cases, it is important if you are considering a raw food option for your cat, that you go for a brand that freeze-dries food, to ensure that any pathogens or bacteria are killed off. 

There is also the issue of feeding a cat raw food in a house full of humans, especially babies. It is important to avoid any form of contamination, and so ensure surfaces are wiped clean, and bacteria-free to avoid this. 

I now feed Ragnar and Lagertha a complete balanced raw food diet. They do not have any tummy issues, no smelly poops, they both have a thick and luscious coat on them and are full of energy. 

Fresh-Cooked

Perhaps another up-and-coming food option for your Maine Coon is that of the fresh-cooked meal. It claims to provide the benefits that come with raw, but without the dangers that raw food comes with. 

There are brands out there that provide fresh-cooked options and ensure they are completely safe to feed your Maine Coon. 

Below are some of the reasons, many Maine Coon owners opt for freshly cooked cat food:

  • Quality real meat
  • Source of protein
  • No grains
  • Ideal for cats with sensitive stomachs
  • Vitamins and minerals 
  • Freshly cooked with no risks that raw carries

Hopefully, you have a rounded view of the different options of nutrition for your Maine Coon, and can understand the benefits and risks with each of them. I do advise doing some research and investigating research papers, or recent studies, so you have the comfort of knowing it is backed up by scientific proof. 

The great thing is, there is plenty of healthy and full-balanced options out there for your Maine Coon, you just have to find them. 

Maine Coon Lifespan

Data suggests that the average lifespan of a Maine Coon cat ranges from 10 to 15 years. However, as we know, Maine Coon cats come in all shapes, sizes, and health conditions, and so their life expectancy is entirely dependent on that. 

Factors that affect the lifespan of a Maine Coon Cat

It is important to keep your cat healthy and stimulated. Below are some tips to prolong the lifespan of your Maine Coon:

  • Provide them with a healthy balanced diet full of protein, fats, nutrients, and minerals. 
  • Ensure they have plenty of exercise, whether that is indoor or outdoor. 
  • Look after their oral health to prevent gum disease which could lead to other ailments. 
  • Help your Maine Coon avoid stress; acute and chronic. Lack of attention is a big factor that can cause stress in your Maine Coon. A happy Maine Coon equals a healthy Maine Coon. 
  • Indoor cats live longer than outdoor cats because they are in a safer environment. Indoor Maine Coons can still get the benefit of the outdoor by leash training them so you can take them out in the garden. You can even purchase cat pens. There is no reason why your indoor cat can’t enjoy some fresh air. 
  • Clean their cat litter daily. Doing so will prevent the build-up of dangerous bacteria which can lead to health problems. Your cat will also not enjoy having to go into a dirty cat litter. 

Being aware of and trying to implement some of these tips will ensure you are giving your Maine Coon cat the best opportunity for a long and happy life. 

Maine Coon Grooming

Ragnar the Maine Coon getting his monthly bath

If you are considering adopting a Maine Coon, be prepared for daily cleaning of your house, more so than you normally would do. When you have not one but two Maine Coons with a luscious coat, you’ll know what I mean!

Brush Your Maine Coon

Maine Coon cats require brushing on a regular basis. Due to their thick coat, they tend to shed and matt easily. By brushing them, you can easily manage this.  

There are many brushes available to purchase but remember to consider the size of the brushes, and the texture of your Maine Coons coat.

It is best to pick a time when your Maine Coon is relaxed so you can brush him or her at ease. They might even enjoy it and start cleaning themselves at the same time. If they are not used to being brushed, ease in slowly. 

Trimming Your Maine Coon Cat’s Coat

The Maine Coon coat is prone to matting, and even with regular brushing, matts can gather, especially in places where they sweat, such as under their armpits where the foreleg meets the body. 

There are de-matting tools available on the market that can help break up the matted clumps, and some come with electric blades. Your Maine Coon might not like this as it can be quite loud, and so the best advice is to ensure you brush your Maine Coon cat daily to prevent any mats from forming. 

Clipping Your Maine Coon’s Nails

Generally, cats are very good at maintaining their nails especially if you have plenty of toys for them to scratch away at. It can be a nuisance however if they choose to scratch away at your sofa or pluck away at your carpet. 

You can trim your cat’s nails so that they don’t get stuck in fabrics, clothes, carpets, and other materials. Please make sure that if you are clipping your own Maine Coon’s nails, you don’t clip too much of their nail, and only the hooked ends. Start slowly. 

If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, your vet should provide a nail clipping service.  

Bathing Your Maine Coon Cat

Bathing your Maine Coon cat can help keep on top of their shedding cycles and clean their fur from dust and dander. Although Maine Coon cats are supposed to love water, not all enjoy a bath and so it is important to ease them in gently and ensure they are rewarded. 

You can fill the bathtub with like warm water (away from them) so they don’t get scared by the noise of the running taps. Gently place your cat a few inches into the water. If there are two of you, then it’s always better to have an extra pair of hands. Rub the shampoo into their coat and bring to a lather but be sure not to get any soap in their eyes or ears. Wash the shampoo out and wrap them warm in a towel to get rid of the extra water. 

It is important not to over-bathe your Maine Coon cat. Once a month is enough. If you over bathe them, they run the risk of not being able to regulate their body temperature. Also, it can be a stressful experience for them, and they are very good at cleaning themselves so don’t bathe more than necessary. 

How much is a Maine Coon Cat?

Purchasing a Maine Coon cat is not cheap, especially if you are buying a kitten from a breeder. A kitten from a reputable breeder will be purebred which means their gene pool/lineage has been documented on a breeding register. 

If you are in the UK, you can expect to pay anything from £800-£1000, potentially more for Maine Coons are those that come in white, ginger, or black. 

If you are purchasing from a breeder, your Maine Coon should come fully vaccinated, and possibly microchipped, saving you some extra money. It is important to discuss this with the breeder prior to make sure you know upfront the typical cost you are likely to pay. 

Please do your research when looking for a breeder. There are many ‘backstreet breeders’ out there who will offer kittens at a cheaper price. Paying more for a Maine Coon that comes from a line of healthy well-bred lineage is always a better option. Always ask for proof of their family tree. A certificate should be provided if you are buying from a registered breeder. 

I paid £800 for Ragnar and £850 for Lagertha. They are absolutely worth the money, and worth saving up for. 

Conclusion

I hope this guide has provided you with enough information to take away on the amazing Maine Coon breed, whether you are looking to welcome one into your family, or just interested in learning more.

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