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Maine сoon

One of the largest domesticated cat breeds in the world. Despite their sizes, they are sweet and affectionate pets.

Energy level
Level of affection
Level of friendliness
Intelligence
Health
Independence
Popularity
Care
Weight
Weight:
female: 4—7 kg
male: 8—12 kg
Height
Height:
female: 30 cm
male: 40 cm
Hair
Hair:
long
Care
Care:
requires little time
Lives
Lives:
inside
outside
Gives birth to
Gives birth to:
4—6 kittens
Origin
Origin:
United States
in 1878
Life span
Life span:
12—15 years

Personality

Maine Coons are gentle and independent at the same time. Their behavior depends on their mood. They might not let anybody come close, but then come themselves for a portion of affection. Maine Coons can feel the mood of a person. If the owner feels sad — they will express their support by paying attention. The cats treat strangers negatively. They need time to get used to guests in the house.

Maine Coons get along well with other animals. They behave affectionately while playing with kids. Maine Coons don`t need much attention. Being alone for a long time is not a problem for them. While no one is at home, the cat can sleep for the whole day. Because of their sizes, Maine Coons don`t climb on cupboards, but usually walk on the floor. 

These big cats are smart. They can remember commands just like dogs. They understand changes in intonation of the owner`s voice and accept remarks. Maine Coons don`t meow, but make sounds similar to birds` singing. It is surprising, because the thin voice of the pet does not correspond to its big sizes.

Appearance

Maine Coons are big cats. They can grow and develop until 5 years old. The largest representatives of this breed grow up to 9 kg and 120 cm in length.
Color
Color
Hair
Hair
Head
Head
Eyes
Eyes
Ears
Ears
Neck
Neck
Paws
Paws
Paws
Tail
Long, from 10 to 15 cm. Soft and silky. The undercoat is tight. 
Maine Coons can be of all colors, apart from chocolate, lilac, and himalayan. Popular colors for this breed are brown and smoke tabby. 
Maine Coons have an elongated skull, long nose, and high cheekbones. 
Eyes are rounded, wide-set. Their color corresponds to the coat color. The most common are: green, golden, blue. Some cats can be seen with two different colored eyes. 
Ears are large and wide at the base. Often described with tufts or fur at the tips. There is long fur inside the pinna.
The neck is muscular, of medium length. The neck ruff is covered with long fur that reaches ears.
Maine Coons have the largest paws. Muscles are well developed. Hind legs are longer than front ones, which allows them to jump high. 
The tail is long and wide at the base. It is covered with thick coat.

Basic Care

Maine Coons don`t require much time to be groomed. Their soft and long fur can be brushed once a week. Much attention should be paid to their belly and sides. The undercoat is especially thick in these areas, that`s why it might get matted. Maine Coons like water. You can wash your pet once a month using special soaps. Maine Coons`s claws grow quickly and should be trimmed once a week. Otherwise, your pet will damage flooring and furniture. 

Obviously, Maine Coons eat much. Their diet should include many proteins and nutritional minerals. They can be fed with dry or canned food, but their high quality is important. From natural food to give: boiled chicken or beef; boiled seafood; eggs; dairy products. 

Maine Coons are innate hunters. These pets need free space. The best conditions for comfortable living of Maine Coons are in a country house. However, the breed gets used to living in flats well. You simply should create some space for them to play and relax.

Health and Illnesses

Maine Coons can live up to 15 years if treated well. They have strong immune system. These cats are inclined to some hereditary health issues that that can also be diagnosed in humans and other animals. The most common are: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, spinal muscular atrophy, hip dysplasia, and polycystic kidney disease.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a serious heart disease. It causes enlargement of muscles that regulate blood pumping, thus disturbing blood circulation. It`s impossible to diagnose the disease at a young age. Main symptoms include: dyspnea, weakness, and lack of appetite. You should immediately take your cat to a vet if you notice these symptoms.

Spinal muscular atrophy is a hereditary disease that leads to degeneration of muscles and paralysis. Symptoms: weakness of muscles and immobility. The disease can be diagnosed from the age of four months old.

Hip dysplasia is a hereditary defect that changes structure of tissues and affects joints and bones. Pet`s muscle fibers get large and transform into arthrosis. If your cat starts moving less and limping — you should take it to a vet. 

Polycystic kidney disease leads to formation of cysts on cat`s kidneys. The development of cysts might lead to renal failure. Symptoms: lack of appetite, depression, and vomiting. 

To control health of your Maine Coon you should take it to a vet once every few months. Taking bad care of the pet might also lead to: gum diseases, urolithiasis (kidney stone disease), and problems with digestion.

History of the Breed

The history of Maine Coons is based on few legends. The most popular one suggests that huge cats living in the USA were ancestors of Maine Coons. The name of the breed can be translated as «Maine racoon». Maine as from the state called Maine, Coon — as the legend suggests — because of crossbreeding a cat and a racoon. 

In 1861 a Maine Coon called Captain Jenks took place in shows in New York and Boston. Having caused much delight, it started making the breed more and more popular. However, 35 years later, Maine Coons became unnoticed because of rising popularity of Persian and Siamese cat breeds. The breed of Maine Coons survived thanks to farmers, who kept these pets because of their hunting skills and large sizes. 

In 1953, an official club of Maine Coons was opened. In 1967, the standard for the breed was registered, and one year later, the first association was formed — MCBFA (Maine Coon Breeds and Fanciers Association). The peak of their popularity started in the 1990-s. In 2002, WCF decided to start crossbreeding Maine Coons with the following breeds: Norwegian Forest cat, Turkish Angora, and Siberian cat. Maine Coons are now one of the most popular cats in the world.