Meet Maine Coons

I have kept cats all my life and first encountered Maine Coons some years ago. I fell in love with them, their size, good nature, endearing personalities and boundless enthusiasm... for everything. There is never a dull moment with Maine Coons in your life!

Myths and folklore

Whilst the actual origins of Maine Coons are unknown, they are essentially an American breed. Many myths and folklores flourish around their beginnings. From shipwrecks involving Marie Antoinette, the Queen of France to Captain Charles Coon, an English seafarer who kept long-haired cats aboard his ships that mated with the American feral cats when he anchored in New England. Other rather genetically challenging theories are that they are the mix of semi-feral domestic cats and racoons, or bobcats. The more accepted theory is they are the mixture of local American short hair domestic cats and the long-haired cats brought over to the New England shores by English seafarers, or the Vikings, as the Maine Coon has a similar look to the Norwegian Forest Cat. Their first noted appearance was in in a literary work in 1861.

Breed Description

Maine Coons are one of the largest domestic breed and can acheive weights around 20lbs plus for males and females, up to 15lbs. Both males and females have long tappering tails, bushy and flowing. The body is rectangular in shape with strong, defined facial features, namely their distinctive strong jaw and full whisker pads. They are muscular and solid creatures, but remain extremely agile and acrobatic. They are slow to mature, reaching full size at around five years old, most domestic cats mature in one year.

The original breed colour is the brown tabby but the rainbow of colours range through blues, reds and creams, silvers tortoiseshell and solid blacks through to solid white.

The original environment of the Maine Coon defines their appearance with long, rugged, dense fur which varies in length, needed for surviving harsh North American winters and snow. Their tufty paws and Lynx like tipped ears are extra insulation, along with their long proportioned flowing tails, all providing extra warmth.

Temperament

Maine Coons are extremely intelligent, friendly, loyal and chatty with a distrinctive trill and 'burrrp' voice, as opposed a traditional 'meow'. Known as gentle giants they are athletic and love to climb and explore. It is advisable to keep Maine Coon cats indoors at all times or alternatively provide access to a solid, escape proof outdoor enclosure, along with indoor heavy based scratching poles as a necessity. Another alternative is to fit a secure garden system to protect your Maine Coon.

Are Maine Coons for you?

Maine Coons are very adaptable and will be happy with single person homes or in families, with or without other animals, providing the animals are accepting of cats. They do like company whether it be human or another cat or dog, and even though they are a large cat, they can happily live in apartments as well as they can in family homes.

Useful resources

Maine Coon characteristics

Largest domestic breed

Incredibly long whiskers

Long, smooth, dense layered coat

Can have impressive ruffs

Large Lynx like ear tufts

Rectangular and muscular body

Deep, powerful chest

Big, round tufty feet

Bushy large tails

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Maine Coons
Maine Coons are one of the largest breeds of domestic cat, known as gentle giants with above average intelligence. Always playful, inquisitive, loyal and affectionate, relaxed, clownish, yet dignified. They are chatty and thoughful, making ideal companions and family pets.
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