The Maine Coon Cat
Maine Coon Breed Information, Description, History and Photos of Cats and Kittens.
About the Maine Coon Cat
Known as the Gentle Giant of the cat world, Maine Coons are extremely intelligent cats and show lots of “dog like” behaviors. The Maine Coon has a soft voice, ranging from a soft trill to a nearly-silent squeak.
Many Maine coons use their paws to eat food and drink water. This raccoon like habit, combined with the fact that a large brown tabby Maine coon somewhat resembles a raccoon, led to its name.
Temperament of The Maine Coon Cat
The Maine Coon has a gentle, easy going disposition and this cat breeds affectionate nature makes it an ideal companion. As a pet they tend to be loyal to their owners and can sometimes choose just one family member to be their “special person”.
Appearance of The Maine Coon Cat
Maine Coon Cat is a very large breed of cat, and North America’s only native long haired breed. It is a muscular cat with a long body, heavy bones, and large round paws. A full-grown Maine coon male weighs from 5 to 8 kg (12 to 18 lb); females are smaller. Maine coons do not reach their full size until they are four or five years old. In 2010, the Guinness World Records accepted a male purebred Maine Coon called “Stewie” as the “Longest Cat”. He measured 48.5 in (123 cm) from the tip of his nose to the tip of his tail.
The Maine coon has a long, shaggy coat; large ears; a long, square muzzle; and a long, full plume of a tail.
Maine Coon Colors and Patterns
Maine coons come in a wide range of colors. The most common Maine coon color is the brown tabby, which is brown with black stripes). Here are some photos of various Maine Coon Colors:
Special Care Of The Maine Coon Cat
Maine Coons are generally a healthy and hardy breed and have adapted to survive the New England climate. Health problems such as feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), hip dysplasia and Polycystic kidney disease (PKD), are seen in the breed. However, diligent screening methods by breeders can help to reduce the frequency of these health problems.
Maine Coon cats are suitable for
Maine Coons are a very easy going breed and will fit in happily to almost any household. They love company so other pets are usually welcomed. Although Maine Coons are a very large breed, they adapt to living in small apartments as well as larger homes.
History of the Maine Coon Cat
Although the Maine Coon’s exact origins and date of introduction to the United States are unknown, many theories have been proposed. The breed was popular in cat shows in the late 19th century, but its existence became threatened when long-haired breeds from overseas were introduced in the early 20th century. The Maine Coon has since made a comeback and is now one of the most popular cat breeds in the world. The Maine coon probably developed by natural selection in response to New England’s harsh climate.
Maine Coon Breed Standard:
General Statement: The Maine Coon is a solid, rugged cat and is America’s oldest natural longhaired breed. Type must not be sacrificed for size, nor size for type, the optimum being a large, typey cat. Females are somewhat smaller than males, and allowance should be made for the slow maturation of the breed.
Head: Medium in length and width, with a squareness to the muzzle. Allowance should be made for broadening in males. Cheek bones high. Nose medium in length with a gentle, concave curve and no break or bump. Chin firm and in line with upper lip and nose.
Eyes: Large, wide set, slightly oblique setting. Eye color can be shades of green, gold, or copper, though white cats may be blue or odd-eyed. There is no relationship between eye color and coat color. Clarity of eye color is desirable.
Ears: Large, wide at base, moderately pointed and well tufted. Set high on head approximately an ear’s width apart. Lynx-like tipping is desirable.
Body: Muscular, medium to large in size, broad chested. Body is long, with all parts in proportion, creating a rectangular appearance. When viewed from the rear, there is a definite squareness to the rump. Neck medium-long.
Legs and Paws: Legs substantial, wide set, medium in length, contributing to a rectangular appearance. Paws large, round, well-tufted (five toes in front, four toes in back).
Tail: Long, equal to body in length (distance from end of rump to shoulders), wide at base and tapering. Fur full, long, and flowing.
Coat: Fur on shoulders is short, gradually increasing in length along back and sides, ending in full britches and long, shaggy belly fur. Fur is soft but has body, falls smoothly, and lies close to the body. A slight undercoat is carried. A full ruff is not expected; however, there should be a frontal ruff beginning at the base of the ears.
Coat Colors: All recognized colors. White trim around the chin and lip permitted except in solid color cats.
Disqualifications: Buttons, lockets, spots, overall even coat, short cobby body, crossed eyes, kinked tail, incorrect number of toes.
Penalties: Delicate bone structures, untufted paws, poor condition, nose break or bump, undershot chin, short rounded muzzle.
Colors: The following colors are among those recognized by most registering associations:
- White, black, blue, red, cream.
- Silver (chinchilla & shaded), blue-silver (chinchilla & shaded), cameo (shell, shaded, & smoke), cream cameo (shell, shaded, & smoke), black smoke, blue smoke, shaded tortoiseshell, shaded blue tortie, shaded torbie, shaded blue torbie.
- Silver tabby (all patterns), blue-silver tabby (all patterns), cameo tabby (all patterns), cream cameo tabby (all patterns).
- Shaded brown or golden tabby (all patterns), red tabby (all patterns), cream tabby (all patterns), brown tabby (all patterns), blue tabby (all patterns).
- Bi-colors (solids with white), Parti-colors – tortoiseshell, torbie (patched tabby), calico, blue cream, tabby with white and other colors with white.
References and Further reading: