The Maine Coon: Size, Origin, and More!

While Maine Coons are highly people-orientated cats, they are not overly dependent. They do not constantly pester for attention, but prefer to be where their owners are, investigating whatever activity they’re involved in.

Maine Coons are known for their sweet and gentle nature. They generally get along well with children and dogs, as well as other cats. They are not known to be climbers, preferring to keep their feet on the ground.

Read on to learn more Maine Coon facts and discover what makes this breed unique.

Maine Coon facts

• Country of origin: United States
• Maine Coon size category: Extra Large
• Coat length: Medium
• Average life expectancy 12 – 15 years

Maine Coon key characteristics:

• Needs regular grooming
• Requires significant space
• Likes to have company

Life story

Find out how to care for the Maine Coon in each stage of its life.

Maine Coon kittens

When it comes to the Maine Coon’s growth, kittens often don’t reach their full size until they are over three years old – however, the majority of their skeletal growth occurs during their first 15 months.

After this point, they spend the remaining months as kittens building muscle. The Maine Coon’s development means that these large kittens will require a lot of space to explore and allow them to burn off their energy.

Maine Coon food for kittens: ROYAL CANIN®’s Feline Breed Nutrition Maine Coon Kitten

Maine Coon adults

Maine Coon adults are one of the largest domesticated cat breeds in the world. Their long, thick coats add to their imposing stature and make regular grooming vital.

Fully grown Maine Coon adults have a double coat, with a fine, soft undercoat covered by medium length outer hairs. For your Maine Coon, grooming is recommended on a twice-weekly basis to keep their coats healthy and free of tangles and loose hairs.

When it comes to the Maine Coon’s size, they can measure almost 1 metre from head to tail end and can be three times heavier than ordinary cats. Due to the Maine Coon’s size, they require a lot of space and all cat trees and scratching posts must be suitably sturdy.

Adult cat weight

Male weight: 6 – 10kg
Female weight: 4 – 7kg

Maine Coon food for adults: ROYAL CANIN®’s Feline Breed Nutrition Maine Coon Adult

Health and sensitivities

Although known to be relatively healthy cats, the Maine Coon’s size brings some specific sensitivities and it is important to know how to properly support your Maine Coon’s health at every stage of their life.

Healthy Joints

As a large and active cat, the Maine Coon’s joints have to work hard and this can lead to wear and tear. It is important that the Maine Coon’s weight is managed to avoid becoming overweight. A diet enriched with EPA/DHA can help to support healthy bones and joints.

Cardiac health

The cardiac condition Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy can be a concern for this particular breed. This is another reason why monitoring your Maine Coon’s weight is important. A diet which includes taurine and EPA/DHA helps to maintain healthy cardiac function.

Ageing

Due to the Maine Coon’s size, they have a below average life expectancy making it even more important for them to have regular check-ups with a vet from around the age of 7 years – where the earliest signs of ageing will start.

The Veterinary surgeon will be able to advice on any nutritional changes or health concerns that ageing may bring.

Maine Coon food for ageing cats: ROYAL CANIN®’s Feline Health Nutrition Senior Ageing 12+ or Senior Ageing Sterilised 12+

The Maine Coon’s origin

The Maine Coon’s origin is not precisely documented and there are many myths about them. One of the oldest breeds in North America, the Maine Coon is generally regarded as a native to the state of Maine.

A widespread (though biologically impossible) myth is that the breed originated from mating semi-wild domestic cats with racoons. This belief and the cat’s appearance, led to the adoption of the name Maine Coon.

Another popular theory is that the Maine sprang from the six pet cats which Marie Antoinette sent to Wiscasset, Maine when she was planning to escape from France during the French Revolution.

Most breeders today believe that the Maine Coon’s origin came from mating between pre-existing short-haired domestic cats and overseas longhairs. It would have been natural selection caused by the environmental conditions which produced the large, muscular and dense-coated cats able to survive harsh winters in New England.

The Maine Coon’s history suggests that it was mentioned for the first time locally in the 1850’s in the state of Maine. First recorded in cat literature in 1861, with a mention of a black and white cat named “Captain Jenks of the Horse Marines”, Maine Coons were popular competitors at early cat shows in Boston and New York.

A brown tabby female named “Cosie” won Best Cat at the 1895 Madison Square Garden Show.

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