Maine Coon Cat: Breed Profile, Characteristics & Care

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The History, Care, and Useful Facts of Pet Ownership

The Maine Coon cat is the oldest native cat breed in the United States, having been bred here since the 1800s. The Primarye Coon cat is well-built and robust, and it is well-known for its gigantic size, shaggy coat, and enormous tufted ears that resemble bobcat ears. The Maine Coon, though it may appear intimidating to some, is essentially a gentle giant with a laid-back personality. Although the only colors and patterns offered for Maine Coons are chocolate, lavender, and the Himalayan (pointed) pattern, brown tabbys are arguably the most recognizable.


Breed Overview

  • OTHER NAMES: Gentle Giant.
  • PERSONALITY: Amiable, gentle and dog-like.
  • WEIGHT: Average of 9 to 18 pounds; males can weigh 20 pounds or more.
  • LENGTH: About 19 to 30 inches. 
  • COAT LENGTH: Heavy and shaggy. Silky with coat falling smoothly.
  • COAT COLOR: Solid (white, black, blue, red and cream), tabby (classic, mackerel and ticked), bi-color (black and white, blue and white, red and white, cream and white), parti-color (tortoiseshell and blue-cream), parti-color and white (calico, tortoiseshell and white, blue-cream and white), shaded and smoke, and shaded/smoke and white.
  • EYE COLOR: Varies according to coat color, but may be green, gold, green-gold, copper, blue or odd-eyed.
  • LIFE EXPECTANCY: 12 to 15 years.
  • ORIGIN: United States.

Information on the Maine Coon Cat

The intelligence, sociability, and gentleness of the Maine Coon cat are attributes similar to those of a dog. Due to their confidence and laid-back nature, Maine Coons make excellent playmates for sensitive children. They coexist nicely with other household pets like dogs and other cats who get along with cats. Maine Coons are gregarious, inquisitive creatures that tend to gather in the middle of every interesting scene in the house. The Maine Coon is a chatty cat that uses a variety of soft and melodious meows, chirps, and trills to communicate. They respond well to encouraging training methods and alluring food incentives. They are relatively easy to train and enjoy picking up new skills. In contrast to popular thought, Maine Coons like water and will swim, bathe, play, and even dip their food in it.

Affection Level  High
Friendliness High
Kid-Friendly High
Exercise Needs Medium
Playfulness Medium
Energy Level Medium
Intelligence High
Tendency to VocalizeHigh
Amount of SheddingMedium

History of the Maine Coon Cat

The Maine Coon naturally developed in the Northeastern United States. Despite various urban myths to the contrary, the Maine Coon is a wholly domesticated cat that originated from cats brought to America by immigrants. The breed evolved into a large, fairly strong animal with a shaggy coat. These qualities were crucial for the cats to survive the harsh winters in the area. Although Maine Coon cats were undoubtedly well-known throughout New England, they were most common in the state of Maine. Beginning in 1818, farmers began showcasing their best “coon cats” at the Skowhegan Fair, the nation’s longest-running agricultural fair, beginning in the mid-1860s. Here, competitors for the title of Maine State Champion Coon Cat faced off against the forerunners of the modern breed of Maine Coon.


A female brown tabby Maine Coon named Cosey won the first cat show in the United States, which took place on May 8, 1895, at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The Cat Fanciers’ Association’s earliest stud book and breed registration, which date back to 1908, recognize the Maine Coon as a foundation breed (referred to as “Maine Cats”). Large, well-tufted ears, a pronounced square snout, and high cheekbones are all features of the head, which is slightly wider than it is tall. The Maine Coon was selected as the official feline in 1985.

Maine’s Coon Cat Care

The Maine Coon cat’s long, shaggy coat is silky and just a little oily, making it water-resistant and able to repel snow and rain, keeping the cat warmer and dryer in inclement weather. The cat’s long coat doesn’t shed a lot as long as you thoroughly brush and comb it on a regular basis, at least once every week. To maintain the coating feeling and looking clean, take regular baths. Most Maine Coons enjoy playing in the water, so getting washed shouldn’t bother them. Once a week to twice a month, trim your Maine Coon’s nails, and once a week, check inside their ears and clean them if necessary using a pet-safe ear cleaner. If there is any redness or significant debris in the ears, a veterinary examination must be scheduled.

The Maine Coon has moderate amounts of energy. They enjoy playing (many Maine Coons are reported to love games of fetch just like a dog). Keep your Maine Coon entertained with cherished toys like feather teasers or other games to keep him engaged both mentally and physically. It’s a common habit that helps the body and mind to scratch. To guarantee that your Maine Coon scratches in the appropriate locations and away from the sofa, create appropriate scratching areas in your home with vertical scratchers (such as tall poles or cat trees) and horizontal scratchers that rest flat on the ground (like cardboard or sisal scratchers).


Common Health Problems

Some purebred cats are more likely to have particular genetically linked health issues. Maine Coons are predisposed to illnesses such hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, spinal muscular atrophy, and hip dysplasia (a genetic disease that causes degeneration of the spinal cord and atrophy of the muscles in the hind limbs). Breeders can use a genetic test that is readily available to prevent breeding carriers or cats with spinal muscular atrophy. Ethical Maine Coon breeders have their adult cats examined for these and other health conditions before breeding them.


The Maine Coon is a strong, resilient cat that is perfect for a workplace. The Maine Coon will always be proportionately balanced and even in size. The Maine Coon has a long, rectangular body and a broad chest. Its paws are large and rounded, and the toe tips are hairy. The breed is also recognized by the International Cat Association. A ruff is present on the chest of a Maine Coon cat’s thick, shaggy coat. The breed comes in a broad variety of hues and patterns, with the exception of chocolate, lavender, and the Himalayan (pointed) pattern.

Food intake and diet

As opposed to receiving measured meals twice a day, as is the case with other strongly developed breeds, free feeding Maine Coon cats—food is left in the dish at all times—is an effective way to minimize weight gain in these cats. To maintain a slim physique is advantageous for all cats. In Maine Coons, who are predisposed to hip dysplasia, maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent the onset or worsening of joint issues. For advice on what to feed or how much to eat each day, consult your vet or breeder.

Locations where a Maine Coon Cat Can Be Bought or Adopted

The Maine Coon is one of the most popular pedigreed cat breeds in the US, and there are several excellent breeders from which you can purchase a kitten. Lists of Maine Coon cat breeders can be found on the websites of The International Cat Association and The Cat Fanciers Association. You might also be able to find adult Maine Coon cats or Maine Coon hybrids in zoos and breed-specific cat rescue organizations if you have a soft spot for rescuing animals.

Summary of Breeds

The Maine Coon cat provides good company because of its loving, steady demeanor. In addition, Maine Coons are amiable and easily trained, and many of them have accreditation as therapy cats that visit patients in nursing homes and hospitals. Maine Coons aren’t normally lap cats, but they do love you and want to be close to you. Despite this, they don’t cling excessively. Because of their comical demeanor and inclination to get into everything, Maine Coons are entertaining to watch. The majority of Maine Coons do not reach their full size until they are 4 years old because they mature slowly.


  • Calming, leisurely, heartwarming, and enjoyable
  • Having good relationships with both children and other animals, such as dogs


  • Not much of a lap kitty or cuddler
  • Every week, the coat needs to be brushed and combed.
  • Performs poorly when left alone for an extended period of time.

Breeds of Cats Not Listed Here and More Research

If you like the Maine Coon, you might also like these cat breeds:

  • Turkish Van, Siberian Cat, and Norwegian Forest Cat

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