Grooming Needs: Depends on coat type - occasional to a few times a week
Activity Level: Moderate
Social Needs: Very social - needs to be around people and/or pets
Associations: Maine Coons are accepted in all USA/Canadian cat registries. In TICA, there is a separate division for polydactyl (multi-toed) Maine Coons.
About The Maine Coon The "Gentle Giant" of cats, the perenially-popular Maine Coon is a large, sturdy cat with a shaggy coat, bushy tail, and tufted ears and toes. Their coat types can vary considerably within the breed, depending on the undercoat. Many have long, silky fur that requires little regular maintenance, and others have cottony undercoats that mat easily and may need thorough combing out a few times a week to keep mat-free. They are a slow-maturing breed, not reaching full size until about age four.
Maine Coons are adaptable and laid-back, accepting of nearly everything that comes their way. They're a good match for homes with pets and children, as they will find their place easily. Maine Coons often take the role of "supervisor" in the home, making sure nothing passes without keeping tabs on its progress. They aren't generally lap cats, but love being near their favorite people. There is no such thing as privacy when you are owned by a Maine Coon!
They can get quite large, but don't confuse size with quality -- bigger isn't always better. Very large cats (over 20 pounds) can develop joint issues, particularly with hip problems, so be sure to work with a breeder who screens all breeding cats for hip dysplasia. It's also important for all breeding Maine Coons to be screened for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), an inherited condition that results in thickening of the heart muscle.
Did You Know? There are two prevalent myths about Maine Coons that should be dispelled. The first myth is that you can tell a Maine Coon by the "M" on the forehead. This is simply a feature of tabby patterning; not all Maine Coons are tabbies. The second myth is that they are descended from matings of cats and raccoons. They got their name for the resemblance between a Maine Coon's tail and that of a raccoon. Cross-breeding cats and raccoons is genetically impossible.