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The Maine Coon cat is known for its large size, easygoing
temperament, and rugged appearance. This native New England breed
is well-adapted to that harsh climate, with a heavy, shaggy coat,
bushy tail, and tufted ears and toes. Maine Coons have a long, rectangular
body, square muzzles, and an overall look of a sturdy cat who
is a great hunter and hard worker.
The Maine Coon personality is laid-back, gentle, loving, and communicative. They often take the role of "supervisor" in their homes, making sure nothing passes without keeping tabs on progress.
Despite its name, the Maine Coon cat is not a
relative of the raccoon. The name reflects the resemblance of
a tabby Maine Coon's tail to that of a raccoon. Cross-mating between
raccoons and cats is genetically impossible.
Though the brown tabby pattern is perhaps the
best known, Maine Coon kittens are available in a variety of colors and
patterns. (The mythology that "you can tell a Maine Coon because of the "M" on the forehead" is wrong; the "M" is simply a feature of tabby patterning. There are Maine Coons without the M, and plenty of non-Maine Coons who have it).
first Maine Coon recognized in cat literature as such was in 1861,
with a black and white cat named "Captain Jinks of the Horse
Marines", after a popular song of the time. In 1895, a brown
tabby named Cosie was the winner of the Madison Square Garden
show. The fifth cat registered in the new CFA in 1908 was a Maine
Coon named Molly Bond.
Unfortunately, the popularity of the Maine Coon
breed declined shortly after this until the 1950s, due to the importation
of more exotic-seeming cats such as the Persian and Siamese. After
the 1950s, the popularity climbed until today; the Maine is now
one of the world's most popular cat breeds, second only to the
Maine Coons can grow to be quite large; it is
not unusual to find males who weigh over twenty pounds. Females
are generally somewhat smaller than males, though still considerably
larger than the average housecat.
Photo © Chanan
Associations: The Maine Coon is accepted
in all major cat registries.
Books about Maine Coons from amazon.com
Maine Coon Breed Information
Maine Coon Historical Links
Maine Coon Cat Clubs/Associations
Maine Coon Video:
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