Maine Coons are not a naturally smelly cat breed. Therefore, if you notice your treasured Maine Coon smells bad you need to act quickly to stop those stinky Maine Coon odours! Determining why does my Maine Coon smell involves considering many more factors than you would first assume. I was intrigued to learn more about this subject, so have shared my findings with you since I stumbled upon some surprising causes.
Maine Coon cats are not smelly felines. If you Maine Coon smells, check your cat for the following 11 issues:
- Underlying health conditions
- Changes in diet
- Infected anal glands
- Tooth decay
- Feces stuck in fur
- Urine on fur
- Ear infection
- Skin odour
- Food residue stuck to fur
- Cat Farts
- Cat Spraying
Owners should never ignore Maine Coon smells, since the situation might be more serious than you first think. Follow our easy tips to put an end to foul smelling Maine Coon odours.
11 Reasons Why Your Maine Coon Smells
Maine Coons are not a naturally stinky cat breed. Instead, they are fastidious self-groomers that like to keep themselves very clean. In fact, these felines consider cleanliness very important.
Maine Coons will groom their fur on a regular basis, and become visibly stressed if they are not able to keep their bodies and fur clean at all times. Owners should therefore watch out for visible signs that their cat is distressed, e.g. a Maine Coon pulling their matted hair out, from the roots since they are unable to keep the matted fur clean.
Unwanted Maine Coon smells and odours can be somewhat off putting, and potentially damage the relationship between an owner and their attention thirsty Maine Coon. Therefore, if you notice that your treasured feline companion has started to tang, and you no longer enjoy cuddling up close with your previously sweet smelling feline friend, it’s time to act.
Take a look at the table below for the most likely causes of Maine Coon smells, so that you can quickly determine the steps you need to take to stop your Maine Coon smelling.
|Health Issues||Not all health issues are visible. There are a range of underlying medical conditions that can causes Maine Coon odours|
|Dietary||A cat’s diet plays a huge role in the smells they produce. Cats can react differently to certain food types|
|Anal Glands||Excited or scared Maine Coons might release unwanted odour from their anal glands. Anal glands can also become infected, leading to smells|
|Tooth Decay||Tooth decay is very serious. Maine Coons teeth need to be brushed regularly|
|Feces In Fur||Cats feces has become stuck in their fur|
|Urine on fur||Feline not self-grooming enough|
|Ear Infection||Yeast or bacterial infections in cats ear causes unwanted odours|
|Skin Odour||Cat wounds that become infected will smell|
|Food Residue||If a cat is unable to groom themselves, they may get food residue stuck in their fur|
|Farts||Yes, on occasion cats will fart!|
|Cat Spraying||Non-neutered cats will spray home, to mark their territory|
As you can see, there are many different reasons why a once sweet smelling Maine Coon might start to smell bad. Keep reading to find out more about each issue, and the action you need to take:
1. Check For Health Issues
Despite being a very hardy cat breed, Maine Coons are still prone to developing harmful health issues that might cause Maine Coon smells to occur.
Since not all health conditions are immediately visible to the human eye, certain health problems sometimes go undetected for long periods of time, before outward signs and smells are displayed. Owners should therefore ask a veterinary professional to assess their Maine Coon for signs of underlying health issues, to rule this possible cause out.
The top 7 health conditions associated with the Maine Coon breed, include:
- Hip Dysplasia
- Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
- Spinal Muscular Atrophy
- Periodontal Disease
- Polycystic Kidney Disease
For more information on these key Maine Coon health issues, read my in depth article.
2. Maine Coon Diet
The diet you feed your Maine Coon will play a huge role in the smells they emit. Owners should therefore take a closer look at their cats diet, and consider the following:
- Have you recently switched cat food brands?
- Does your Maine Coon eat a raw food diet?
- Is there ash in the cats food?
- Does your cat eat too much protein?
Maine Coons are obligate carnivores, so require a high protein diet since this is closest to what the breed would have eaten in the wild. Their food should also be low in carbohydrate, grain-free, and contain a medium level of fats and fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6. These are my favourite Maine Coon dry foods.
Wet food should not be fed to a Maine Coon cat more than 2-3 times a week, since it has been linked to dental issues.
Owners should also research the increasingly popular Maine Coon raw dietary plan, to determine if this diet would be appropriate for their cat. I have spoken to some owners that report a raw food has reduced their Maine Coon poop smells!
Ultimately, every Maine Coon cat is different, so there is no one size fits all solution in this matter. Owners should therefore take a closer look at the ingredients list on their cats food, to ensure they are feeding their Maine Coon the best diet they can afford. Keep note of the adjustments you make in your cats diet, and determine if these changes have an impact on the Maine Coon smell.
3. Odours From Maine Coons Anal Glands!
Whilst this isn’t the nicest subject to talk about, it is an important one for Maine Coon owners to consider if they are keen to stop their Maine Coon smelling.
Maine Coon cats naturally produce a fishy, musky smell from their anal glands, which is not usually noticed by owners when the cat is fit and healthy. If a Maine Coon becomes excited or scared though, they might emit some unpleasant smells from their two anal glands (source).
Another factor to consider, is that a Maine Coons anal glands can easily become infected. It is important that owners seeks immediately veterinary professional assistance if an infection is suspected, because the cats glands may leak or develop an abscess that causes a Maine Coons rear end to start smelling (source).
Signs of anal infection include:
- Maine Coon overgrooming their bottom
- Cat struggling to poop
- Feline dragging their rear end along floor
- Excessively licking and biting their bottom
4. Check For Tooth Decay
Owners tend not to realise that they need to brush their Maine Coons teeth, since the idea itself sounds bizarre! The fact of the matter though is that a Maine Coon cat cannot clean their own teeth, so it is the responsibility of every owner to keep their cats teeth clean for them.
Regular tooth brushing is necessary to remove food residues from a cats teeth which quickly turn rotten if not removed. This can lead to the following Maine Coon teeth issues:
- Tooth resorption
- Periodontal disease
If you’ve noticed that your Maine Coons mouth and breath have started to smell, it is important that you intervene immediately. Cat tooth decay is far more dangerous than you might first think, and can even be life threatening if the cats bloodstream becomes infected.
Whilst some Maine Coon teeth issues are reversible, others are not, therefore a veterinary professional needs to investigate how serious the issue is straight away.
For more useful information on this important subject, take a look at my article: ‘Interesting Maine Coon Teeth Facts‘.
5. Feces Stuck In Cat Fur!
Maine Coons are fastidious self-groomers, however, sometimes their long-hair just gets in the way and feces can become stuck in the fur around their rear end. Whilst most cats are able to remove this themselves, others may struggle to, due to health issues such as arthritis, or obesity. These particular conditions make it harder for your Maine Coon to reach and clean their rear end.
If you notice that your Maine Coon smells of poop, check their rear end and carefully wipe away any signs of feces with a damp cloth. Then ensure that you groom your Maine Coon more regularly, to prevent further issues occuring. Our Maine Coon loves these grooming brushes.
6. Can You Smell Urine On Cats Fur?
Not all Maine Coons are able to groom themselves correctly, due to varying factors such as old age, obesity, health issues etc. Your previously fastidious self groomer might therefore be struggling to clean the urine off their rear end fur.
The ability to groom is extremely important for a feline, thus difficulties in self grooming can cause your Maine Coon cat extreme distress. Therefore, if an owner suspects the Maine Coon smell to be linked to urine, it is vital that they intervene asap. Owners can help keep their cats rear end clean, and free of urine by wiping and bathing their cat regularly.
7. Are Your Maine Coons Large Ears Infected?
For those of you who suspect that the Maine Coon smell is being emitted from your cats large ears, you might be right! This is because Maine Coons can develop yeast or bacterial infections in their ears which emit a tangy odour. Their large ears can also become infested with ear mites, which give off an undesirable odour.
Yeast ear infections are often caused by cat allergies, and thought to give off a musty smell, whereas bacteria ear infections tend to smell sweet, or just plain smelly. If you think your cat’s ears are infested by ear mites, look for stinky dark substances in their ears.
Ask a veterinary professional to look at your Maine Coons ears, for signs of an infection.
8. Does Your Cats Skin Smell?
One of the most common causes for Maine Coon cat smells, relates to a cats skin. Therefore, if you notice your cats body emitting a smelly odour that never used to be there, carefully check your Maine Coon for signs of skin infection i.e. abscess or infected bite wounds.
Please keep in mind that not all skin issues will be immediately visible to an owner. Owners should therefore consult with their local veterinary professional to rule out the possibility of an underlying medical issue e.g. immune disorder, parasites, allergy, or cancer.
9. Is There Food Residue In Cats Fur?
Food residue might become caught in a Maine Coons thick, dense, long hair. If not removed, this residue turns rotten and subsequently starts to smell.
Whilst Maine Coon cats are well known for being very clean felines, certain health issues might prevent or restrict them from keeping their fur as clean as they might like. Owners should therefore ensure that they groom their Maine Coon regularly, particularly if they have a known health issue restricting their cats physical movements e.g. arthritis.
10. Your Maine Coon Farts!
When a Maine Coon farts, you know about it! Thankfully this isn’t as common as it is in dogs, since cats do not usually suffer from flatulence issues.
If you notice your Maine Coon farting more than usual therefore, take a closer look at their diet to determine if this is the possible cause. Consider the following:
- Have you recently altered your cats diet?
- If you own an outdoor Maine Coon, have you seen evidence of them eating live prey?
- Did you give them a new brand of cat treats?
11. Don’t Forget To Neuter Your Maine Coon
Although this is not directly linked to a Maine Coon physically smelling, I thought my readers might find it interesting to read because this subject is commonly linked to Maine Coon smells.
If you don’t plan on breeding your Maine Coon cat, make sure to neuter them at the appropriate age. This is important because a non-neutered male Maine Coon will start spraying your home to mark their territory. The smell emitted is appalling, and you really don’t want your Maine Coon to get into the habit of spraying your home – prevention is definitely better than a cure in this matter!
Tips To Stop Your Maine Coon Smell
Here are a few quick tips that my readers have suggested, which have helped reduce their cats Maine Coon smell:
- Use a larger litter tray: The Maine Coon is an extra large cat, that requires more space to move around whilst they go to the toilet.
- Bathe Maine Coon: Many owners bathe their Maine Coon cats, to keep them smelling pleasant. Make sure to only use shampoos specifically designed for use on cats.
- Brushing Maine Coon: Regularly grooming Maine Coon helps to keep cats thick fur clean, and in a healthy condition.
- Trim fur around Maine Coons rear end: Reduces the amount of feces and urine caught in cats fur.
- Use cat safe sprays: Various cat sprays exist, to add a pleasant smell to cats fur.
- Remove ash from cats diet: Some cat kibble is known to contain ash, which can cause some Maine Coon cats to smell.
Why does my Maine Coon smell?
As you will have seen, there are a mass of reasons associated with Maine coon smells. Owners should therefore watch their cat closely to identify the most likely cause of the unwanted Maine Coon odours, then implement the appropriate solution.