There are tons of interesting, funny, and unique facts about the Maine Coon that all contribute to them being amazingly unique cats.
So keep reading to discover the best facts about Maine Coon cats!
The best Maine Coon cat facts include their love of water, ability to swim; obsession with human companionship, and film star role in ‘Harry Potter’. Maine Coons are famous for being the State cat of Maine, and the biggest and longest cat breed in the world. Their mysterious origins have left owners, vets, and historical scholars alike intrigued.
If you love Maine Coons and want to know a little bit more about them, then you have come to the right place.
Maine Coons are a unique and interesting domestic cat breed that has a very different history from the majority of other cats.
While this article aims to share some of the Maine Coon cat breeds’ most interesting facts, it may also leave you even more in awe of the mysterious lives of these large cats.
Stick with us to uncover some of the coolest Maine Coon facts that you may not be able to find anywhere else!
35 Best Facts About Maine Coon Cats
The Maine Coon is one of the most famously misunderstood domestic cat breeds in the world. As well as one of the largest!
While we have some general ideas about the Maine Coon cat origins, we are not 100% certain where the Maine Coon may have come from.
But, there are some things we do know!
Take a look at our 35 best facts about Maine Coons below:
1. The State Cat Of Maine
Did you know that the Maine Coon is the state cat of Maine?
These iconic kitties cemented themselves in the local community and have helped put Maine on the map for people the world over.
While Maine might be well known in the United States, outside of the United States is a different story. This is because not many people are even aware it exists.
However, given how wildly popular the Maine Coon cat is, there is a good chance that people have started to take notice.
2. A Maine Coon Cat Has Been Cloned!
When we think about Maine Coon genetics we normally think about the physical features that are iconic of the breed.
What we do not often think about is their genetic makeup in a more scientific sense.
Someone who was thinking a little more about their genetic makeup was Julie from Texas.
She had a 17-year-old Maine Coon called Nicky who she loved ever so dearly. Unfortunately, Nicky passed away. But not before she managed to make a genetic clone of Nicky.
The clone was named Little Nicky and cost $50,000 to create. Little Nicky is the first commercially cloned cat (source 1).
3. They Produce Less Fel d1 Protein
Did you know, one of the biggest contributors to the allergic reactions people experience from cats does not come from their hair at all?
It is the protein in their saliva that causes most people to flare up rather than hair and dander.
This protein is called “Fel d1” and is far less present in big, long-haired, cats like the Maine Coon.
Maine Coons are not hypoallergenic but they are certainly better than most cat breeds for people with sensitive noses!
Learn more about how hypoallergenic Maine Coon cats are, in this article.
4. They Have A Very Mysterious Origin In Folklore
The Maine Coon is one of the most mysterious cat breeds. Simply because we don’t know very much about them.
How were Maine Coons created? Where did they come from?
Have you heard the bizarre Maine Coon folktale that Maine Coon cats originate from a pairing of wild cats and raccoons? If not, read this guide.
You might wonder where this myth came from…
The truth is that Maine Coons and Raccoons share these physical features.
Thus, people assumed such similar physical traits resulted from mating between raccoons and long-haired domestic cats.
Let’s put the record straight, this myth is nonsense and has been scientifically disproved.
5. Some Maine Coons Have Human-like Faces!
Maine Coons have quite unique faces, as cats go, which is part of the reason people love the breed so much.
However, someone who has taken this a step further is a lady by the name of Tatyana Rastorgueva.
Tatyana has been selectively breeding Maine Coons for over 20 years in an attempt to make them look as human-like in the face as possible.
And, to be quite honest, she has done a surprisingly good job of it!
Her Maine Coons have such unique faces that they almost look like their own species.
Some people find it cool! Others find it unsettling!
It’s up to you whether or not you’d have one of Tatyana’s cats for yourself (source 1).
6. Maine Coons Are The Largest Domestic Cat Breed
Maine Coons are not just one of the largest domestic cat breeds in the world. They are the largest.
Maine Coon size is just about the most iconic thing about these cats.
Sure, their tufted feet and pointed ears might make them stand out amongst other cats. But, it is their bulky size and impressive length that truly make them special to behold.
There is some debate about whether the Maine Coon is technically the largest domestic cat breed in the world. However, there is no arguing the fact that they are the longest.
It all depends on how you define large!
7. Maine Coons May Have Come From Royalty
There is a rumor that Maine Coons may have originated from the last queen of France, Marie Antoinette.
Marie attempted to flee France after they abolished the monarchy, intending to head to America for sanctuary. However, she was captured before they could set sail.
The ship she intended to flee on reportedly fled without her, and on it, carrying her prized Angora cats.
It is these cats that some people claim are the forefathers of the Maine Coon.
It is probably nonsense, but it’s a fun origin story nonetheless!
8. The Oldest Ever Maine Coon Was 26
The oldest pet Maine Coon (at least that we have a record of) was a 26-year-old cat who lived in Portland, Oregon.
Given that Maine Coons are only expected to live to an average of 12-15 years old, this is quite an impressive feat.
It is also proof that Maine Coons, despite their size, can live to be far older than even ordinary house cats!
To put this into perspective, a 26-year-old Maine Coon is double its life expectancy. It’s like a person living to be over 160!
9. Maine Coons Are Water Addicts
Maine Coons can absolutely, inarguably, be considered true water addicts!
To say Maine Coons love water is an understatement. They simply adore it, and cannot get enough of the stuff!
Maine Coons are huge water lovers and are unique in their desire to play in the water and have a bath.
The stereotype of a cat that is terrified to touch water does NOT apply to Maine Coons.
10. Mrs. Norris From Harry Potter Was A Maine Coon
Did you know that Mrs. Norris from Harry Potter was actually played by three different cats over the years?
All of them Maine Coons!
It is pretty hard to get a cat to do what you want when you are filming. Especially when there is a tight schedule.
Even something as simple as walking down a corridor can be a troublesome task. With Maine Coons, their trainability makes the task a lot easier!
Most of the scenes with Mrs. Norris are played by a Maine Coon called Pebbles.
11. Maine Coons Are One Of The Easiest Cat Breeds To Train
Maine Coon cats are one of the easiest cat breeds to train.
The reason for this is that their well above-average intelligence makes them quicker at picking up what it is we are trying to convey to them.
Plus it allows them to have better mental recall when trying to replicate the trick down the line.
Combined with their strong affection for us, Maine Coons can be considered people pleasers and genuinely want to make you happy.
Even if that means performing silly little tricks time and time again for our entertainment.
12. Maine Coon Cats Can Be Service Animals
The Maine Coons exceptionally friendly and gentle nature makes them ideally suited to being a service animal for people in need.
One famous service animal was Stewie, who has now sadly died. He was also famous for being the longest domesticated cat in the world!
Learn more about how Maine Coon cats can be service animals, in this article.
13. 75+ Color Combinations And Coat Shades Of Maine Coons
Maine Coons, while sharing many similarities, do come in all shapes and sizes.
They vary in height and length greatly and you will even find that siblings may have vastly different looks from each other. After all, some Maine Coons even have human-like faces.
When it comes to coloring, Maine Coons come in as many as 75 different color combinations from tabbie to blue.
You can bet that their proclivity for coming in such different colors has added to their mystique and intrigue over the years. After all, no two Maine Coon are exactly alike!
14. Maine Coons Are Guinness World Record Breakers!
To this day, Maine Coon cats have won various different awards.
But, the records that stand out the most are their Guinness World Records for being the biggest cat and longest cat in the world.
15. A Maine Coon Is The Longest Cat In The World!
Did you know that two Maine Coon cats own the record for being the ‘longest domestic cat in the world’, according to the Guinness World Record books?
Barvivel is currently the living longest domestic cat in the world, which literally makes him the world’s biggest house cat!
According to the record book, Barivel measures a huge 120 centimeters in length and lives in Italy!
Prior to Barivel was Stewie who held the title for being the longest cat in the world at 48.5 inches.
16. Bushy Tail
Another fun fact about Maine Coon cats is that they have really bushy tails that are often as long as their bodies.
They use their thick bushy tail to keep them warm during the cold winter months.
Their tail is similar to raccoons, and both species can have a black ring around their tails too.
Added to this, they are both great climbers, cat lovers around the world ask if Maine Coon cats are part raccoon?!
17. Maine Coon Cats Have Semi-Water-Repellent Fur
Many cat lovers have speculated that one of the key reasons why water does not phase the Maine Coon cat breed is because they have semi-water-repellent fur.
Please note, that websites stating the Maine Coons fur is ‘waterproof’ are factually incorrect.
A Maine Coon will definitely become soaked if sitting out in the rain for too long. Not that they would mind!
18. Close Bonds With Their Humans
Maine Coon cats form very close bonds with their owners, making them one of the most loyal cat breeds around.
Like many cats, the Maine Coon is curious.
But in the case of the Maine Coon, they have high social needs so want to spend as much time with their owners as they can.
They are not necessarily needy by nature, they just like to know what you are doing and be nearby you, even if only on the other side of the room.
19. Labeled the ‘Dog Of The Cat World’
These large cats share many personality traits with dogs, making them one of the most dog-like cat breeds in existence.
They love to play with their owners, fetch a piece of string, or chase the laser light.
Given their immense size and stature, plus higher than average levels of intelligence, the Maine Coon has been given the nickname ‘dog of the cat world’.
This is mainly because they act like dogs i.e. come when called, play ball, and will happily go for walks with their owner if trained whilst still a kitten.
20. The Book Of The Cat
Maine Coon cats have been around for many decades, and grow increasingly popular as the years roll on.
Looking back into their history we found that this large cat breed was first mentioned in a book written in 1861, named ‘The Book Of The Cat’.
According to the website Feliway, ‘Captain Jenks of the Horse Marines was a black and white Maine Coon (source 1).
21. Best Cat Winner
In the first big cat show held in Madison Square Garden in 1986, United States, a brown tabby Maine Coon cat named Cosey (or Cosie) was awarded the ‘Best Cat’ winner (source 1).
22. Gentle Giants
Another cat nickname that Maine Coons have been honored with is that of ‘gentle giant’.
This is because Maine Coon cats weigh up to 25 lbs, yet have the kindest, most gentle personalities.
They are not aggressive in nature at all, unless something like this has happened to them.
23. Slow Growth Rate
One less commonly known Maine Coon cat fact is that Maine Coons have an exceptionally slow growth rate.
Unlike normal cats that reach full-size by 2 years of age, a Maine Coon will not be fully grown until 3-5 years of age.
This lack of knowledge has resulted in many obese Maine Coon cats since owners have started overfeeding their cats, panicking that they are not as big as they expected them to grow.
24. Better In Pairs
It is better to purchase or adopt Maine Coon cats in pairs, as this cat breed is prone to loneliness and has high social needs.
Adopting two Maine Coons means that the cats can play with each other, and always have a companion alongside them should you work away from home.
25. Need High Levels Of Protein
Maine Coon cats are obligate carnivores.
They need to consume high levels of protein in their diet to maintain their strong muscular build and fuel their high energy levels.
26. Great Climbers
Maine Coons are great climbers, so make sure you have purchased an extra-large cat tree that they can climb up and down, like these.
Cat trees are particularly important for Maine Coons that live indoors since they need multiple ways to burn off excess energy.
A cat tower is the ideal way to exercise your Maine Coon cat, whilst also giving them a safe place to retreat to when they want to rest in a high place.
27. Maine Coons Are A Hardy Cat Breed
Maine Coon cats are thought to have evolved naturally in the cold state of Maine, United States.
This breed has not been interbred with other cat breeds, which has enabled this strong muscular cat breed to evolve naturally and become one of the healthiest cat breeds.
28. Maine Coon Health Problems
Thankfully the Maine Coons history and natural evolution mean that they are not prone to suffering from a great deal of health issues.
The main Maine Coon health problems are as follows:
- Spinal Muscular Atrophy
- Hip Dysplasia
- Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
- Polycystic Kidney Disease
29. Some Maine Coons Are Banned!
Whilst Maine Coon cats are legal to own worldwide, certain Maine Coon colorings are not permitted within the breed.
If you look at the major cat associations, such as CFA, you will find that the following Maine Coon colors are not permitted:
These are the approved Maine Coon colors and patterns.
30. Maine Coon Cats Don’t Meow!
If you have never met a Maine Coon you might be shocked to hear that this cat breed DOES NOT meow!
Instead, the Maine Coon cat is known for being massively vocal but using the following weird Maine Coon sounds:
Learn more about the unusual Maine Coon noises, in this cat guide.
31. They Look Like Mini Lynx Cats
One of the quick ways to identify a Maine Coon cat is by its impressive ear tufts.
Many people have asked if Maine Coons are part lynx since they share the same fur tufts of hair on the top of their ears.
The quick answer to this query is no, and this is why.
However, don’t be fooled as it is possible to own a purebred Maine Coon that does not have the popular lynx tips.
In fact, if your Maine Coon does not grow lynx tips by the age of 2 years old, they will never grow them. Lynx tips, therefore, are just a guide.
32. Popular Cat Breed
As if by magic, the popularity of this large domestic cat breed just continues to rise.
We do not have a definitive study confirming Maine Coon cats are one of the most popular cat breeds to own.
However, there is anecdotal evidence to suggest this breed sits within the top 3 desirable cat breeds to own in the US!
33. Maine Coon Cats Are Famous!
Over the last few years, countless Maine Coon cats have risen to fame, seemingly overnight.
For example, Kusa won the heart of the internet when his owner shared a photo of her holding him on her popular Instagram account. He looks HUGE!
Read more about Kusa the Maine Coon cat in my No.1 article.
Other famous Maine Coons include Barivel who won the Guinness World Record for being the ‘Longest Living Cat’ in the world. Meet him, here.
Gorgeous Bao Zi is another example of a Maine Coon that grabbed the attention of the internet.
In 2023 he was a 6-year-old mixed Maine Coon cat.
He enjoys traveling the world with his owners, and has visited more US States than I have!
Learn more about Bao Zi, in this article.
34. They Walk With Their Tail Held Up High
If your Maine Coon cat is walking towards you, and they are excited to see you, they will walk towards you with their tail held up high!
Maine Coons that become particularly excited will shake their tail as they approach you too. In my experience, this is the cutest thing ever, and Bali our male Maine Coon does this all the time!
When our eldest Maine Coon cat Pippin damaged his tail canal from an awkward jump, he was unable to hold his tail up and it was the saddest thing to see in the world.
The cat surgeon was not certain his tail would ever heal and talked about amputation.
Thankfully, after three months his tail healed and his tail resumed looking like a flag pole! Sadly, Pippin died early at the age of 10 years from his medical issues and now rests in peace.
You can follow Pippin’s story on Maine Coon Central’s Youtube Channel, here.
35. The ‘M’ On A Cat’s Forehead Doesn’t Mean Your Cat Is A Maine Coon!
Contrary to popular belief the ‘M’ marking on a cat’s face does not automatically mean that you own a Maine Coon cat!
In fact, the marking is actually just a normal tabby marking.
Learn more about this fun Maine Coon cat fact, in this article about it.
Hopefully, you found these best facts about Maine Coons as interesting as we did here at Maine Coon Central.
The Maine Coon is such an interesting cat breed that while many of these facts may give you a little bit more to go on about the Maine Coon; it likely has also just led to even more questions!
Such as, where did the Maine Coon actually come from? Why have they remained so true to their physical nature when other domestic breeds have not?
100 Maine Coon Facts
There are hundreds more amazing Maine Coon facts out there just waiting to be uncovered. You can find a ton more information about Maine Coons here on Maine Coon Central!