Often considered the original “all-American breed,” but with a possible French connection, the Maine Coon is generally regarded as the largest breed of cat. A big, friendly purring machine, it makes a super pet.Origin
The generally accepted story is that the original Maine Coons were seen in Maine, hence the first part of their name. These cats had broadly striped tails reminiscent of the tail of the raccoon, which gave rise to the other part of their name. Some people believe another story: that Maine Coons originated in France and came to America with Marie-Antoinette during the French Revolution.Appearance
Looking at a Maine Coon cat is similar to looking at a small dog that is sturdy and bulky with big paws. Its physical features are very appropriate considering that it is a cat used to harsh winter conditions. Its water-resistant fur is particularly long, thick and shaggy. It features a long, bushy and strong tail that allows it to remain afloat when in water. The tail is long enough to a point where it is able to curl it around its shoulders or face for warmth. Its large hairy paws have traditionally aided the cat to walk on snow.
Maine Coon features a medium-sized head. The muzzle appears squared and can be broad in males. The cat has high cheek bones with the nose medium in length.
Maine Coon's body is large with the chest being broad. The overall body is muscular. The body is long and rectangular in appearance.
Although the cat's hair is characteristically long, the length is not uniform over the whole body. The hair is soft and lies very close to the body.
You can find a Maine Coon cat in such solid colors as black, white and red. The Maine Coon is also available in over seventy five colour combinations including shaded white, shaded silver, blue-silver, cameo, cream cameo, silver tabby, brown tabby and blue tabby among many others.
The breed develops very slowly. A Maine Coon cat takes between four and five years to attain its fill size. This is when it attains body length of up to 120 cm (47 inches) including the tail, which can measure about 36 cm (14 inches). A mature cat stands at between 10 and 16 cm (3 – 6 inches).
A male Maine Coon cat weighs between 7 and 12 kg (15 lbs – 26 lbs). Females weigh less, which can be between 5 and 9 kg (11 lbs – 19 lbs).
GCCF Group: Semi-Longhairs
Maine Coon cats are easy-going and gentle. They are one of the most loving cats. They form a very strong attachment with their owners. They get along very well with children.
Unlike some cat breeds, the Maine Coon cat breed is not demanding. It prefers human companionship instead of seeking for attention. It also prefers to sit or lie next to you instead of on your lap. The breed particularly likes water not to swim in but for play. This is one cat breed that enjoys play activities right into old age.
Although big in size, the Maine Coon has a very soft voice. It communicates by producing different sounds; meowing, purring, cheeping and trilling. One unique habit you are most likely to note about the cat is that of giving you a soft head butt.
Maine Coons are traditionally cats used to cold climate. They however thrive in all climatic conditions so long as they are kept indoors.
Intelligence here refers to your Maine Coon's capacity to solve problems, learn and adapt to its surrounding. From the onset, Maine Coons adapt to new environments very easily so long as they are well treated and provided for. Kittens in particular get used to new environments very fast because they set out to explore any new environment they are introduced to.
The Maine Coon is one of the most intelligent cats. This is one reason why they are very efficient at hunting. The cat easily gets accustomed to routines at home and will do everything to please its master by sticking to a set routine. It is also because of their high intelligence that Maine Coons are easy to train.
The cat has very high memory, which contributes to its level of intelligence. The play activities the cat engages in do not only serve as its way of life or behavior; it learns a lot from such activities and it is only appropriate that you have many but different cat toys. Play activities help them in exercising their minds and in honing their natural skills.Suitability as a pet
With its friendly and playful nature, the Maine Coon makes an ideal pet for any family, as long as time is spared to groom the coat. Ideally, the Maine Coon loves the outdoors and so is best suited to a home with a yard, but is equally happy with apartment life, provided the owners are not away for long periods of time.