So you have an adorable pet cat to play with and cuddle with, but you want to know more about him. What kind of cat is he? With many different cat breeds and types, it’s sometimes tricky to tell which is which. But if you have a large, fluffy and friendly cat, it might be a Maine Coon.
For instance, cats with long and shaggy fur are mistaken to be Maine Coons simply because people don’t know what sets this breed apart from the litter.
Maine Coons are affectionately referred to as “gentle giants” because they are huge and have strong characteristics. Over the years, the way they originated remains a mystery, apart from the known fact that they originated from the state of Maine in the US.
The large domesticated breed is known for its distinguishing features that sets it apart from the rest of the feline family.
Maine Coon Cats’ Physical Attributes
- Body and Build. Maine Coons have a very distinct and intense appearance. They have a strong build with an elongated rectangular body. This kind of breed is heavier than other cat breeds because they are big boned and muscular.
- Shaggy Fur. Maine Coons are covered with long, thick fur that is water-resistant. They shed quite a bit, and their fur changes from season to season, sometimes getting a bit frizzy. These cats are dressed for the winter during the cold months, with their fur noticeably thicker compared to during the summer season. Some Maine Coons even have what looks like a “lion mane” because of the thick fur surrounding their necks.
- Ears. Maine Coon cats’ ears are easy to recognize and unique to their breed. They are very large and quite pointy. What’s even more noticeable is how their ears are exaggerated by distinctive tips, just like a lynx. Their big size overall also contributes to them having bigger ears than other cat breeds.
- Eyes. Maine Coons’ eyes are larger than the average cat’s. Some describe their eyes as intimidating or intelligent looking. It seems like the might know something we don’t.
- Tails. They are very proud to walk around the house with their tails wagging in the air. Like the rest of their bodies, tails of Maine Coon cats have long, thick fur. Their thick and furry tails are what they usually use to gain attention and show affection to their owners.
Maine Coon Cats’ Personality Traits
Like humans, cats’ personalities vary according to type and breed, making them even more interesting.
Maine Coons are smart cats with the ability to adapt well to many lifestyles and personalities because they enjoy human company. Not only are they friendly to humans, but they can also get along easily with other cats in the home.
Maine Coon cats are known to remain kittens at heart. Sometimes called the “dogs of the cat world,” they are loyal and playful by nature. They could very well be a dog lover’s first cat, as they share the same craving for human interaction.
They don’t mind getting picked up for cuddles, and may even ask for them when they’re in the mood.
While these are common in most Maine Coon cats, it is also worth noting that male breeds have a tendency to be more clownish than the female ones, who lean more towards the serious side.
Common questions on how to tell if your cat if is a Maine Coon
Are Maine Coon cats aggressive?
No. They are not aggressive at all, making them perfect for beginners wanting to take care of cats. Also referred to as “soft and tender giants,” they are known for their gentle, friendly and loving personalities, despite their size. However, it is not impossible for a Maine Coon to suddenly show aggressive behavior if it suffers a health problem or something else triggers it.
Are Maine Coon cats high maintenance?
Because Maine Coons are covered with long thick fur, it is easy to think that this huge cat breed is high maintenance. On the contrary, they are no means hard work, as long as they have vaccinations, eat healthy and get plenty of exercise, which is only essential for their health since most Maine Coons are kept indoors.
Also, there is no need for them to bathe everyday, only when absolutely necessary. The love water though, so bathing them shouldn’t be a problem though, when the time comes.
Do all Maine Coons have an M on their forehead?
Basically, no. It has long been a myth that cats having this distinct mark are all Maine Coons. Not all Maine Coons have an M on their forehead. You can find other types of tabby cats displaying Ms on their forehead and plenty of M-less Maine Coons. However, there is no denying that this specific mark adds to their unique appeal.
If your cat matches many of the telltale characteristics mentioned above, there’s a good chance that you have a gentle and cuddly Maine Coon. No matter how they came to be, Maine Coon cats are beautiful huge animals. Their unique looks and personality add color to the world.
However, we should also remember that no matter the breed, Maine Coon or not, your amazing furry friend deserves all your love, attention and appreciation.