The Maine Coon Cat
The Maine Coon cat breed is one of the oldest natural breeds in North America and there are many legends that surround it. One legend is that this cat breed had its origins due to matings between raccoons and semi-wild, domestic cats. This is of course biologically impossible. Another theory is that this cat breed originated from six cats that Marie Antoinette sent to Maine when she was planning her escape from France.
Maine Coon Cat
Today, most breeders believe that the Maine Coon originated from matings between shorthaired domestic cats and longhaired cats introduced to New England by seamen and Vikings.
The Maine Coon cat breed was first introduced in 1861 in cat literature when mention was made of a black and white cat named Captain Jenks of the Horse Marines. Early cat shows in New York and Boston saw the Maine gain popularity and in 1895, a brown tabby female named Cosie won the Best Cat at the Madison Square Garden Show.
This cat breed has a semi-longhair coat that is water-resistant and heavy. The coat is longer on the stomach, britches and ruff and shorter on the back and neck. A long, bushy tail is one of the distinctive traits of the Maine Coon.
The coat is smooth and easy to maintain. A weekly brushing is all that is needed to remove loose hair and keep the coat in top condition .
The Maine comes in almost all patterns and colors with the most common pattern and color being the brown classic or mackerel tabby. Silver patterns, solid patterns, tabby patterns and tortoishell patterns are found as well. All the colors and patterns may have white markings, which is known as particolor.
Another of the distinctive features of the Maine Coon is the eyes which are large and expressive with eye color ranging from gold to green.
Mature males weigh between 13-18 pounds and mature females weigh between 9-13 pounds.
Personality & Temperament
The Maine Coon cat is an affectionate, people-orientated cat that will make an excellent companion for large families.
They are sociable and loving towards other pets and children.
It is not an overly-dependent cat breed and certainly not a lap cat. They can be quite happy entertaining themselves for a while but also enjoy "assisting" you with your tasks.
You will have to make time daily though for a cuddle and play session and games such as fetch are a favorite amongst this cat breed.
This long haired cat is not a loud cat breed and will communicate with you by chirping and trilling in a soft voice that does not quite go with a cat of this size.