Learning how to adopt a Maine Coon cat is a very different process from learning how to buy one from a breeder.
Most prospective cat owners naturally assume they should get their Maine Coon from a breeder, but it is also possible to adopt one.
You can find Maine Coon cats to adopt at your local animal shelter. While purebred cats are difficult to find at shelters, they are far cheaper than Maine Coons bought from a breeder. If you have your heart set on adopting a Maine Coon cat, regularly check the sites of local animal shelters to see if one is up for adoption.
While it is harder to find Maine Coons up for adoption than it is to buy one from a breeder, there are a lot of positive aspects to adopting rather than purchasing.
Read on to find out how you can adopt a Maine Coon, as well as why you would want to in the first place.
What Is Maine Coon Adoption?
You may be wondering if it’s even possible to find Maine Coons in a shelter, and why you would go to the trouble of adopting one if you can simply buy one from a breeder.
The main reason someone would want to adopt a Maine Coon is that purebred cats are expensive.
At an animal shelter, however, every cat costs the same adoption fee, making it a more affordable alternative.
Of course, you are far more likely to find a purebred Maine Coon from a breeder than you are in an adoption shelter.
Most cats listed as Maine Coons in shelters are only partly Maine Coon, rather than purebred.
Many shelters aren’t cat breed specialists, so would just think they have a long-haired cat in their shelter, rather than a Maine Coon specifically.
However, you shouldn’t give up hope! Even though it is rare, you can sometimes find a purebred Maine Coon at a shelter.
Maine Coon Adoption Vs Buying A Maine Coon From A Breeder
If you are still deciding whether you should adopt a Maine Coon from a shelter or buy one from a breeder, here is a list of pros and cons of both to help you choose.
1. The Pros Of Adopting A Maine Coon:
It will be far less expensive to adopt a Maine Coon than to buy one from a breeder.
Life in a shelter is stressful for any cat, and by adopting a Maine Coon, you will ensure that your new friend will have a kind and loving home for the rest of their life.
Maine Coons adopted from shelters will already be microchipped, have all of their vaccinations, and most will already be spayed or neutered.
2. Downsides To Maine Coon Adoption
Before rushing down to your nearest shelter in hope of finding a Maine Coon kitten or cat, make sure that you have considered the following issues:
You will not be able to get a detailed history of your Maine Coon’s genetics, which means there could be some underlying health issues that you won’t know about.
These health issues could prove very costly in the long run.
For a full list of Maine Coon health issues, take a look at my article ‘Top 7 Maine Coon Health Issues‘ for more information.
There is no way to know your cat’s genetic history for certain, so your newly adopted Maine Coon might not be purebred.
Owners must therefore be open to the fact that their new cat may or may not display all of the Maine Coon characteristics common to this particular breed of cat.
Click here to read my full guide on common Maine Coon characteristics.
It can take a long time to find a Maine Coon at a shelter, as they tend to be snatched up pretty quickly.
In fact, if you have your heart set on adopting a purebred Maine Coon cat you might have to wait many months, or even years to locate the perfect one for you.
3. The Pros Of Buying A Maine Coon
Here are the key benefits of Maine Coon adoption:
It won’t take as long to find a Maine Coon available from a breeder, as it would from a shelter. This is because Maine Coon breeders regularly breed their cats for sale.
If you cannot wait, and do not pay the premium price these gentle giants command, then take a look at this list of registered Maine Coon breeders in the United States.
For those of you living in Europe, take a look at this useful registered breeder list.
When you buy a Maine Coon from a reputable breeder, you will be given a detailed health and genetic history, so you will be sure your Maine Coon is purebred.
There is so much to learn when it comes to Maine Coon Genetics, click here to find out more!
A lot of cat owners prefer to get their cats from kittenhood. It is much easier to find a Maine Coon kitten from a breeder than at a shelter.
4. Downsides To Buying a Maine Coon
You might think buying a Maine Coon cat from a breeder is the best choice, but is it?
Make sure you consider the following downsides of buying a Maine Coon kitten:
Purchasing a purebred Maine Coon can cost up to $2,500, though the average cost is thought to be $1000.
The price ultimately depends on the Maine Coons genetic history, and the quality of the cat you are purchasing. For instance, Maine Coon show cats cost up to $2500 per cat!
As with everything expensive, there will also always be criminals trying to trick innocent buyers into paying top dollar for a Maine Coon cat.
Therefore, to avoid being scammed, take a look at my ‘Complete Guide To Buying A Maine Coon Cat‘.
After you purchase a Maine Coon from a breeder, you will also have to pay for vaccinations and get your cat fixed.
It is hard to know for sure whether you are buying from an ethical breeder. There can be a gray line between breeders and kitten mills, and some breeders are only in it for the money.
Why You Should Adopt A Maine Coon Cat Or Kitten
While purchasing a cat from a breeder might seem like a no-brainer to some, there are many reasons why you should adopt instead.
Life in a shelter is stressful for cats, and there’s no guarantee a cat will be adopted.
Government-funded humane societies only have so much space, and if they are overcrowded, they have no choice but to euthanize some of their animals.
Adopting a cat from a shelter could save an animal’s life!
How To Adopt A Maine Coon Cat
If you are willing to go through the process of adopting a Maine Coon cat, there are a few different ways you can go about it.
Here are the main places you can adopt a Maine Coon.
1. Your Local Shelter
Cat shelters and humane societies don’t often carry Maine Coons, but if you keep an eye out, it’s possible to find a Maine Coon there.
2. Maine Coon Rescue
While these places aren’t as common as most shelters, there are some specially run Maine Coon rescues.
With a little bit of research, you may be able to find a Maine Coon rescue center near you.
You should also check out the Facebook Page ‘Rescue Me! Maine Coon Rescue‘, to see if there are any Maine Coon cats available for free.
3. Your Community
There are some Facebook and other social media groups designed specifically to help people adopt their ideal pet!
You can also make posts on social media asking about people looking for a new home for their Maine Coon cat.
The Process Of Maine Coon Adoption
If you do manage to find a Maine Coon cat at your local shelter, keep in mind that the process might take a little while.
Here is a step-by-step process of adopting a Maine Coon.
1. Background Check
A good shelter will do a background check to make sure you don’t have any past animal abuse charges.
You will also have to fill out a form to make sure you will be a good owner for whatever cat you choose to take home.
2. Veterinary History
Every cat has a different veterinary history.
Older Maine Coons may have hip dysplasia or other health problems, so make sure you get a detailed medical history before adopting
Cats adopted from shelters should already have all of their necessary vaccinations, although even adults will need some vaccinations every three or four years.
Make sure your cat is completely up to date on all of its vaccinations!
4. Breeder Or Shelter Reputation
Whether you are getting your cat from a shelter or a breeder, you will need to make sure it has a good reputation.
Most shelters are reputable, but a little bit of research will go a long way.
If you are getting your Maine Coon from a breeder, ask for a look around to make sure all of their cats are kept in excellent conditions.
5. Cat Registration Bodies
If you are purchasing your Maine Coon from a breeder, make sure the breeder has been registered through The International Cat Association or TICA for short.
This will ensure that your breeder is completely reputable.
A few other associations that your shelter or breeder should be registered through include:
- CFA (Cat Fanciers Association)
- ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals)
- The Humane Society of the United States
6. Taking Your Cat Home
Once you have finished the process of adopting your cat, it’s time to take it home!
Make sure you have all of the supplies necessary and give your cat time to adjust to its new environment.
It is usually best to keep your cat contained to one room first, so that it doesn’t get overwhelmed by too many new sights and smells.
Adopted cats are typically quite shy, so don’t try and pet your cat too much.
Let them get used to your smell, but don’t worry if your cat spends most of its time hiding under the bed for a few days.
Maine Coon Cat Adoption Near Me
Keep an eye out for Maine Coon rescues in your area. While a Maine Coon rescue might be a few hours away from your hometown, it would be worth the drive to find a Maine Coon that is ready to be adopted!
Maine Coon Adoption Cost
Most shelters charge anywhere from $100-$250 as an adoption fee, and this expense often includes vaccinations, a microchip, and the cost to get your cat fixed.
This is much cheaper than buying a purebred Maine Coon from a breeder, which averages $1,000 and does not include any of the things mentioned above.
How To Adopt A Maine Coon Kitten
When adopting a Maine Coon kitten, you will have to provide more enrichment than you will for an older cat.
Kittens will also need to eventually be weaned off kitten food to adult cat food.
Adopting an adult Maine Coon usually means you will already have a good idea of the cat’s personality, while kittens tend to take time to grow into their personality.
However, kittens are both more predictable as well as easier to train than adult Maine Coons, and their energy is enough to keep you entertained for weeks!
Downsides To Adopting a Maine Coon Cat
While there are plenty of positive aspects of adopting a Maine Coon cat, there are a few downsides, as well.
Here are the potential negatives of adopting a Maine Coon cat.
1. Lack Of Accurate Genetic Information
Adopting a cat from a shelter means you won’t know its genetic history, and you might not be adopting a purebred Maine Coon.
2. Unknown History
It’s impossible to know what an adopted cat has gone through, and some cats have experienced severe trauma with past owners.
It might take a while for your cat to warm up to you.
3. They’re Hard To Find
Maine Coons are a popular breed, and most cats of this breed that end up in shelters are adopted quickly.
It’ll take some dedication to find a Maine Coon at a shelter.
Where To Find Free Maine Coon Kittens
Finding a Maine Coon kitten for free is no easy feat, but your best bet would be searching online communities like Facebook.
Some people accidentally end up with a litter of kittens that they want to get rid of as quickly as possible.
While this is a rare case, if you keep an eye out, you might get lucky.
Learning how to adopt a Maine Coon cat is important if you’re thinking of bringing a new member of the family into your home.
Maine Coon adopting can be a lengthy process at times, but it will all be worth it once you are finally able to bring your new companion home!
Adopting from a shelter or Maine Coon rescue will give a cat a much-needed home, and while it may be harder to find this cat breed at a shelter, it is far less expensive than buying one from a breeder.