Maine Coons are one of the most popular cat breeds out there, so today, we’re going to share some Maine Coon cat facts. Discovering the secrets behind this beautiful cat breed, will help you understand why these large cats have captured the attention of cat lovers for decades. This is a one of a kind breed with a personality that is larger than life.
Maine Coons are different from every other cat breed, and are available in 74 different colors. Their mysterious history is rife with speculation. Maine Coons are the largest domesticated cat breed, with distinctive physical traits i.e. lion-like mane of fur and long bushy tail. Unusually gentle and calm temperament.
Do you have a Maine Coon cat of your own that you want to learn more about, or are you just fascinated by the breed?
20 Amazing Maine Coon Cat facts
Read on to discover some Maine Coon fun facts and information:
1. Unlike Any Other Cat Breed
The magnificent Maine Coon cat breed is one of the most popular and beloved cat breeds in the world.
A 2015 poll ranked Maine Coons as the third most popular cat breed, to own, in the United States.
Maine Coons used to be rare in 1950s, and almost became extinct! Thankfully they made a comeback in 1985, and are now highly popular. Discover more about this intriguing Maine Coon cat fact in my article ‘Are Maine Coon Cats Rare?‘.
Coveted for their stunning physical appearance, as well as their gentle and playful temperament.
Maine Coons are incredibly large cats with huge paws, tufted ears, long, uneven fur, and feathery tails. They have a ruff of longer fur around their necks, which gives them the appearance of a small lion. Maine Coons are muscular cats with broad chests. Their rugged appearance makes them look both hardy and powerful.
The average lifespan of a Maine Coon ranges between 12 and 15 years, so you can be sure that this breed will stick around for a long time! There are now stats showing the percentage likelihood that your Maine Coon will live past 10 years of age. Click here to find out more!
2. Mysterious Maine Coon Origins
Every cat breed has a unique origin story, but the legacy of the Maine Coon cat is really quite special.
The Maine Coon cats heritage is shrouded in mystery, and intrigue.
There are a lot of myths and legends surrounding the origins of Maine Coon cats, although nobody knows exactly how they came to be.
The breed was first discovered in Maine in the early 1800s, where they were used by farmers and sailors to catch mice and rats.
One popular legend is that Maine Coons were the descendants of six royal cats brought to America by Marie Antoinette, although there is no factual evidence to back this claim.
Others enthusiasts believe that early Maine Coons were brought over by Vikings.
While we may never know the true origins of the Maine Coon cat, we sure are grateful to have these beautiful cats around!
3. Largest Domesticated Cat Breed
One of the most unique traits of Maine Coon cats is their size.
Maine Coons are the largest domesticated cat breed in the world!
This pedigree cat breed takes longer to grow to full size than other cat breeds. In fact, most Maine Coons aren’t fully grown until they reach two years of age.
The average cat weighs roughly 8 to 10 pounds. Maine Coons, by contrast, weigh nearly double that! While female Maine Coons weigh between 8 and 12 pounds on average, the male of the species reaches a staggering weight of between 15 and 25 pounds!
Maine Coons don’t just weigh more than the average house cat, though. Most domestic cats reach a height between 9 and 10 inches, but the average Maine Coon has a height between 10 and 16 inches!
Finally, while most cats grow to a length of 18 inches, Maine Coons can reach an amazing 40 inches in length.
There’s so much to say, when comparing the majestic Maine Coon cat breed with that of a ‘normal’ cat breed. If you are keen to learn more, make sure you read my article.
4. Unusually Long Maine Coon Tail
Maine Coons have a lot of unique physical characteristics, and their beautiful tails are no exception.
Maine Coon cats have unusually long tails. Their tails are also unusually feathery and bushy.
While the average cat’s tail measures around 12 inches long, Maine Coon tails are usually around 16 inches long!
The Maine Coon’s thick coat is usually enough to keep them warm in harsh and cold weather, but their tails serve as an extra barrier to the cold.
If the temperature becomes uncomfortably chilly, Maine Coon cats can rely on their bushy tails to wrap around their bodies, to keep them nice and warm!
5. Official State Cat of Maine
True to their name, Maine Coon cats were first found in Maine, United States.
According to the government website for the state of Maine, the Maine Coon cat is this regions official state cat! (source)
Maine Coon cats were incredibly popular in New England during the early 1800s. This hardworking breed was used by humans to catch mice and rats on ships, and on farms.
The Maine Coons gentle personality also made them ideal family companions.
In 1895, however, America was introduced to the Persian cat, and the Maine Coon was slowly forgotten. The breed grew less and less popular over time, until it was almost extinct.
In an effort to save the breed, Maine Coons were named the official state cat of Maine in 1985. Consequently, the breed soared in popularity once more, bringing this regal cat breed back from the brink of extinction.
6. A Cat Breed Built for Winter
Having originated from a state known for its brutally cold, freezing winters, the Maine Coon cat breed would unlikely have survived if it weren’t for their specialized physical traits.
Everything about them is perfectly built for winter. Their thick coat doesn’t just help to trap heat; it is also water-resistant, so that melting snow can slide right off their pelt instead of freezing them right to the skin.
The Maine Coons semi-water repellent fur is likely why this particular cat breed is not phased by water. In fact, their love playing with water! Click here to read more about the Maine Coons love of water.
Here is a great example of how much Maine Coon cats love water. This cat is literally swimming with its owner!
Another Maine Coon fun fact, is that their ears are thick-furred and tufted, to protect them from the cold!
The iconic large paws of a Maine Coon also serve a special purpose. They are wide and flat, serving as a sort of “snow shoe” to help them walk on top of snow, instead of sinking into it.
As you can see, this hardy cat is perfectly built for winter, making Maine Coons unique from other cat breeds.
7. One of the Most Expensive Cats to Buy
Maine Coon cats are one of the most expensive cat breeds to own in the world. This is likely due to their huge popularity, and the fact these gentle giants are not massively common.
The average Maine Coon cat price is around $1,000!
When it comes to Maine Coon cats of rarer and more sought-after coat colors and patterns, the price rises even more. For example, the rare and beautiful silver smoke Maine Coon can cost as much as $2,200 (source).
Click here if you want to learn more about Maine Coon cat colors.
Whilst a Maine Coon cat is well worth the price, not everybody can afford to buy one of these specialised cats. Some people are lucky enough to find a purebred Maine Coon available for adoption at a more reasonable price, but this is a rare occurrence.
If you are not too sure how to adopt a Maine Coon cat, make sure you read my article on Maine Coon Adoption.
8. There Are 75 Maine Coon Colors!
While many cat breeds, such as Siamese, Russian Blues, and Bengals, are only available in certain coat colors or patterns. Maine Coon cats, however, come in every possible coat color.
In fact, there are over 75 possible coat colors and pattern combinations available.
Some colors and patterns are rarer than others. For example, solid orange, silver, gold, and white are some of the rarest Maine Coon colors, because they are the most difficult to breed.
Here’s why the white Maine Coon is so hard to breed.
Maine Coon cats also come in a variety of eye colors, including green, gold, copper, and sometimes blue.
Certain Maine Coons may even have eyes that are two different colors, also known as odd eyes!
To learn more about the endless Maine Coon colors, read my article ‘Maine Coon Colors‘.
9. The Chilled Maine Coon Temperament
When discussing the uniqueness of Maine Coon cats, most people turn to their distinctive physical characteristics. However, the temperament and personality of a Maine Coon is just as special as their unique appearance!
Maine Coons are known for their playful nature. While many cat breeds grow more calm with age, Maine Coons retain a kitten-like playfulness throughout their lives. They are also very gentle cats, and they coexist well with other cats, as well as children and dogs.
Maine Coons are also extremely intelligent. While this can sometimes lead to a lot of mischief, it also makes them easy to train. Some people are even able to teach their Maine Coons to do tricks!
For full details on the Maine Coon personality and characteristics, make sure to take a look at my article. Just click on the link above!
10. Maine Coon Nicknames
The distinctive nature of Maine Coon cats has earned them many nicknames. They are often referred to as the “Gentle Giants” of the domestic cat world.
They are the largest cat breed in the world, but they also have a kind and gentle personality.
They are also called “Mini Lions” by many enthusiasts, both due to their size and the distinctive ruff around their necks, which makes them resemble the famous big cat.
The Maine Coon breed is also called the “dog of the cat world.” Their playful nature and intelligence gives them a temperament similar to dogs.
Many Maine Coons are extremely loyal to their owners, and some are even known to play fetch!
I absolutely love watching this Maine Coon kitten playing fetch. If you don’t believe me, make sure you watch this cute video:
11. Maine Coons Can Talk!
While Maine Coons don’t say words the way humans do, they are so vocal that many owners refer to their frequent noises as “talking.”
Maine Coons aren’t afraid to discuss what they want. If your Maine Coon wants to go outside, or is trying to let you know that they would like to be fed, they’ll be sure to let you know with plenty of adorable noises.
Here is a short video of our male Maine Coon called Pippin, chatting away to his dad:
If you aren’t a fan of vocal cats, then the Maine Coon might not be for you. However, most Maine Coon owners agree that their vocal nature is part of their charm!
12. Maine Coons Don’t Meow
While Maine Coons make lots of interesting noises, this particular cat breed are unusual because they don’t often meow.
Instead, they use other noises from their vocal repertoire, such as chirps and trills. Maine Coons are capable of meowing, but for whatever reason, they usually prefer to make other sounds.
Most owners are delighted by the adorable noises their Maine Coons make, and this is just another part of what makes this breed so unique!
Crazy, isn’t it?!! … Find out more about why Maine Coon cats talk so much by reading my article ‘Why Maine Coon Talking Is A Thing‘.
13. Maine Coons Are Great Climbers
If you’re considering getting a Maine Coon of your own, you’ll need to purchase a cat tree, or else your cat will manage to get in all sorts of trouble! These are my tried and tested favourite cat trees, ideal for the gigantic Maine Coon cat.
Originally an outdoor breed, Maine Coons have a deep instinct to climb.
If you opt to keep your Maine Coon cat indoors, make sure to provide them with plenty of enrichment. Having wasted far too much time buying every cat toy on the market, I’ve now settled on which are the best Maine Coon cat toys available to buy.
These are my absolute 5 favourite Maine Coon cat toys, reviewed personally by Pippin, our Maine Coon cat!
This energetic breed loves to be in high places, so it’s a good idea to make sure all of your cupboards, counters, and high places are cat-proofed before getting a Maine Coon.
If a Maine Coon is left outside on their own, their instincts can cause them to climb up a tree and get stuck.
14. Maine Coons Love Water
Everybody knows that cats hate water. At least, almost all cats hate water. The Maine Coon is one exception!
The Maine Coon has a thick coat that is water-resistant, which means that swimming isn’t as likely to get their skin wet as other cats.
This crazy cat breed loves the water, and your Maine Coon will gladly join you for a dip in the lake… or your bathtub!
If you are interested in discovering why Maine Coons love water so much, take a look at my article ‘Maine Coons Obsession With Water’.
15. One Maine Coon Is A Filmstar!
A Maine Coon cat starred in Harry Potter!
Fans of Harry Potter will be pleased to learn that a Maine Coon played a starring role in the series.
The popular movies actually included three cat characters:
Professor McGonagall – A human who can turn into a cat
Crookshanks – Hermione’s pet
Mrs. Norris – The cat of Hogwarts’ caretaker, Mr. Filch.
While Professor McGonagall was played by a silver tabby whose breed is unknown, and Crookshanks was played by a Persian cat, Mrs. Norris was played by a Maine Coon cat. Well, actually, Mrs. Norris was played by a total of six different Maine Coon cats!
Even though Maine Coons are easier to train than most cat breeds, it’s still an arduous process. Instead of training one cat to do all of the tricks required for filming, the crew taught six different cats just one or two necessary tasks.
16. Some Maine Coons Have Extra Toes!
Some Maine Coon cats are polydactyl, which means they have an extra toe.
The extra toes served Maine Coons well in the harsh winters of Maine, as it made their paws wider so it was easier to walk on snow.
Professional breeders, however, consider polydactyl cats to be undesirable, and in most cases, the mutation has been bred out.
The polydactyl Maine Coon is a fascinating subject. Find out everything you need to know about the unusual ‘extra cat toe’ by reading my article ‘The Polydactyl Maine Coon Cat‘.
17. A Maine Coon Cat Has Been Cloned!
The first commercially produced clone of a cat was a Maine Coon by the name of Little Nicky.
A Texas woman named Julie was devastated when her 17-year-old cat died in 2003, so she paid $50,000 to have him cloned.
After providing the DNA of her deceased cat, a new “Little Nicky” was born. According to Julie, the cloned cat didn’t just look like Little Nicky; he also shared many of the same personality traits!
18. Take Your Maine Coon For A Walk!
Most people think that taking your pet for a walk is just for dogs. Maine Coons, however, love the outdoors, and are intelligent enough that they can be trained to walk on a harness!
Many breeders and owners regards letting a Maine Coon cat roam freely outdoors to be dangerous. Outside poses all sorts of threats, including other cats, cars, and dogs.
Letting a Maine Coon cat outside is a very emotive subject, so make sure you are equipped with all the Maine Coon cat facts first, before making a decision. Reading my article ‘Can Maine Coon Cats Go Outside‘ covers the main factors to consider, before making your decision.
Still, going outside is a great form of enrichment. By walking your Maine Coon, you can give your cat a fun experience without the danger.
19. World Record Breaking Cat Breed
Maine Coons are known for their amazing size, but did you know they’ve also broken world records?
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the world’s longest domestic cat was a Maine Coon by the name of Stewie, who measured a total of 48.5 inches long! Sadly, he died in 2013.
The world’s longest living cat today is still a Maine Coon, however. His name is Barivel, and as of 2018, he measured 47 inches long!
20. Maine Coons Are Obligate Carnivores
Maine Coon cats are obligate carnivores which means that all of the nutrients they need can only be found in meat.
Make sure your Maine Coon is enjoying the best diet, by following these tips.
While some carnivores are able to get their necessary nutrients from other sources, the nutrients that Maine Coon cats need to survive can only be found in meat.
Obligate carnivores also require a much higher amount of protein than other animals.
There are tons of fascinating Maine Coon cat facts, because this breed is one of the most unique cat breeds in the world.
Every cat breed has its own special characteristics, but Maine Coon cats are even more distinctive than most domestic cat breeds.
While there are tons more Maine Coon cat facts and information to discover, we made sure to hit on the most interesting and important facts about Maine Coon cats.
Are Maine Coons Related To Raccoons?
Despite their name, Maine Coons are not actually related to raccoons. While they do have a bushy tail and originally had dark coats, raccoons are so different from cats that they cannot breed.
Are Maine Coons Part Lynx?
While Maine Coons have tufted ears, similar to Lynx cats, the two are not related in any way. Lynx cats are so genetically different from domestic cats that it is impossible for them to breed.