When you don't go to a breeder to purchase your kitten or full-grown cat, it can be very difficult to tell if your cat is a Maine Coon or not. Many cats with long, shaggy fur are mistaken for Maine Coons, simply because many people do not know that physical attribute of Maine Coons.
Do keep in mind that even if your cat does have some of the traits, it may not be a purebred Maine Coon, and can be a mixture of a few different breeds. Of course, this does not make your kitten or cat any less special, and no matter what your cat turns out to be, he or she will still be a furry friend that you can love and adore.
This article will cover some of the basic traits that Maine Coons have, and how to tell if your cat is a Maine Coon, or a mixture of this breed and another breed (or multiple breeds, which is also a complete possibility.)
Physical Traits of the Maine Coon Breed
Maine Coons are a very distinguishable breed when the cat has a variety of different traits that all match the normal physical attributes of other cats that are Maine Coons.
1. Most of the time, cats that are pure Maine Coons will have a rectangular body, meaning that the size and shape of the muscles throughout the body gives them a strong, rectangular shape, rather than an oblong or very sleek build. This can be different if your cat is a mixture, but most of the time a cat with Maine Coon in the heritage will have a very strong build.
2. The fur of your cat will be medium to long, and quite shaggy. Most of the time, this fur will shed all over the house if your cat is an indoor cat, and will grow thicker in the Winter and thin out slightly during the Summer months. This may vary once again if your cat is a mixture, and the long fur may change during the Summertime, but this does not necessarily mean that your cat is not of this breed.
3. Most cats of this breed will have a mane around the neck that is longer than the rest of the hair covering their bodies. This mane will become thicker in the winter months and is much easier to see when it grows longer, although the Summer months do not completely get rid of the long hair around the neck area.
4. Maine Coons will have a long tail covered in thick, long fur. They usually hold their bodies and tails very proudly, and are usually more docile and calm around people, unlike many other breeds. Of course, some cats are simply born wary of humans, and this cannot be changed, no matter how friendly you are to your fluffy friend.
5. The eyes of kittens and cats in this breed are usually large, and are said to have a very intelligent look to them. This may mean that the eyes of the cats are simply large and the size gives them an intelligent look, or perhaps they know something that they aren't sharing!
6. Personality is also a big factor of the breed, as most cats in this breed are very outgoing and fun-loving. From the time that they are kittens, they are hunters and love to play with strings and whatever else they can find. This makes them great for mousing and hunting birds, although you may end up with quite a few different kinds of animals on your doorstep. Do be aware that they love to leave you little "gifts"!
So, if your cat doesn't match each and every one of these personality and physical traits, it may still be a pure breed of Maine Coon, or you may have a mixture of this breed and a few others. If your cat has many different characteristics and matches none of these traits, it most likely is not a Maine Coon, and is simply a different breed altogether.
However, if your cat matches at least 3 to 4 of these traits, then there is probably some type of Maine Coon in his or her background. Think about what other breeds your kitten or cat may be, and look up other breeds that are similar to your own predictions.
If there are many traits in your cat that match another breed, but there are characteristics that the other breed has, there is a good chance that your kitten or cat is a mixture of the two breeds, and may have other breeds in him or her as well.
Your furry friend is still incredible, no matter what the breed, so if you did not find out that he or she is a Maine Coon, don't despair! They will love you just the same.