Maine Coons stand out from other cat breeds in many ways, including their size, and fur length. One thing you aren’t likely to automatically notice, however, is their somewhat unique diet!
So what do Maine Coons eat, and do Maine Coons need a special diet? The answers to these questions will be explored throughout this article.
Maine Coon cats eat an animal protein-based diet. Like all other cats, they are obligate carnivores. They need to consume high levels of protein to fuel their high activity levels and keep their body fit and healthy. Protein-rich, low grain dry-food, wet food, raw food, or a combination of all three are best for Maine Coon kittens and cats.
To ensure optimal health, a Maine Coon’s diet should be reviewed regularly to ensure the cat is consuming the correct level of protein, carbohydrates, nutrients, and minerals.
If you want to help your Maine Coon live a long healthy life, Maine Coon owners should pay particular attention to this large cat breed’s nutritional needs.
This article will help you pick out the perfect diet for your cat, so read on to find the best food for Maine Coon cats.
Keep scrolling to also read the results of a poll conducted by Katrina Stewardson on Maine Coon Central’s YouTube channel, where viewers were asked if it was safe to feed Maine Coon cats chocolate.
What do you think the results were?
Do Maine Coons Need A Special Diet?
So, you’re wondering what can I feed my Maine Coon cat? Here are the facts …
Maine Coon cats are known for their large and powerful build, which is reminiscent of their wild lineage, but what do Maine Coon cats eat?
While most domesticated cats are far removed from their wild relatives, Maine Coons are thought to be a bit closer in both their looks and functionality.
Having originated in Maine, these former wildcats are recognized as being great hunters with powerful muscles, and a broad-chest.
To fuel their highly energetic personalities and strong muscle structure, owners need to ensure they are feeding their Maine Coon a diet high in protein.
So, what type of food do Maine Coon cats eat? And, should you be feeding your Maine Coon cat special food?
Below are the 5 key nutrients needed in Maine Coon food:
1. Animal Proteins
Cats require a high level of dietary protein.
Larger cats, that are more active, will require more protein than their smaller counterparts.
This puts Maine Coons on the higher end of the protein requirement spectrum, and it has to be animal protein.
The Maine Coons body will not properly digest plant protein. Plant proteins also have insufficient amounts of certain necessary amino acids, like taurine.
2. Fatty Acids
Fatty acids are a key part of feline diets because cats cannot produce their own omega-6 and omega-3 to support their necessary biological functions.
It might seem impossible for cats to get all their minerals from meat alone, but their bodies have evolved to suit this diet.
All of the minerals your Main Coon needs are found in meat, especially calcium.
Vitamins A, B, K, and Niacin are essential for cell growth, energy, and a healthy immune system.
Luckily for cats, animal proteins are rich in the vitamins needed for their survival.
Carbohydrates are not required for cats to survive, but they do help with energy production in small amounts.
Since Maine Coons are such a large and active breed carbohydrates can be a supportive part of their diet.
What Types Of Maine Coon Diet Exist?
Below are the key Maine Coon dietary options that Maine Coon owners can select from:
1. Dry Food
This is a common option for cat owners since it is easy to store, convenient, and normally affordable.
Crunchy kibbles can be great for rubbing off the plaque on a healthy cat’s teeth, but not all owners are a fan since this diet is a far cry from the Maine Coon’s origins.
2. Wet Food
Wet food is often canned or bagged.
The moisture content and smell of this food is closer to a wild carnivore’s diet than kibble is. However, it is still processed to prevent the transmission of raw food-related illnesses.
Maine Coon cats should not be fed more than 2-3 sachets of wet food each week, as it can damage their teeth.
These are my favorite Maine Coon kitten wet foods.
3. Raw Diet
Raw diets are the closest most domesticated Maine Coons can get to their ancestor’s diet.
While a Maine Coon cat’s body is built to consume raw meat, it is worth noting that humans are not.
Owners therefore have to ensure that the raw meat they are feeding their Maine Coon cat has to be properly managed, to prevent the spread of dangerous bacteria.
4. Homemade Maine Coon Cat Food
Homemade pet food is no easy task, but it can provide premium nutrition when done properly.
It is possible to build your cat a well-rounded diet at home, but this will require research, careful monitoring, and upkeep, and may be more expensive than store-bought kibble.
Be sure to consult a veterinary professional when designing your cat’s diet and only seek meats from trusted sources.
What To Feed A Maine Coon Kitten
Kittens require a lot of nutrition to support their growth and high energy levels, so if you were wondering do Maine Coon kittens eat a lot, the simple answer is yes!
Since Maine Coon Kittens have much more growing to do than other cat breeds, they need to be on a specific Maine Coon kitten diet until they are at least 10 months old.
Their food should have a minimum protein content of 30% to 50%, which is higher than most adult cat foods, and it must be rich in the necessary vitamins and minerals.
How Much Do Maine Coons Eat A Day?
How much do Maine Coons eat?
Depending on their age, activity level, health, and size, a Maine Coon’s meal quantity can vary.
The type of food you offer your cat also plays a big role in how much they seem to eat.
For example, less nutrient-dense food, like dry kibble, will require larger portions than more nutrient-dense food, like meats, for your cat to feel equally satiated.
So, if you have been wondering do Maine Coons eat a lot, this is mostly dependent on perspective. Compared to a small housecat it would certainly seem so, but considering their size and energy levels, Maine Coons eat a reasonable amount.
Maine Coon Food Calculator
Food calculators can be a helpful resource if your cat needs to gain, lose, or maintain their weight on a mixed diet.
These calculators can minimize the math you would need to do to determine if your Maine Coons food type and quantity are suitable to their individual needs.
Best Food For Maine Coon Cats
Having owned three male Maine Coon cats, in our experience the following items are the best foods to feed your Maine Coon kitten and cat:
1. Royal Canin Maine Coon Breed Adult Dry Cat Food
We love the Royal Canin brand as it is one of the few brands to make Maine Coon specific adult cat and kitten food.
This breed-specific formula takes the Maine Coon’s size and energy requirements into account so you can be confident that their nutritional needs are being met.
Having two very fussy Maine Coon cats, I’ve always found them to give their paws up to this food!
2. ORIJEN® Dry Original Cat Food Premium
This high-protein dry food places a priority on animal products with minimal preservatives.
Orijen also considers the Maine Coons’ requirements for a whole prey diet and includes a variety of fresh animal products related to their natural prey types.
3. Purina ONE High Protein
This wet food offers a high protein option, whilst also being a great sound of hydration for your cat.
We love this Maine Coon food as Purina One has added a healthy variety of flavors and some water to an otherwise dry and possibly bland kibble diet.
This can be especially helpful for Maine Coon cats that are very active and do not drink much water.
Please note, however, that wet food should not be freely given to the Maine Coon, as it can damage their teeth if given too much.
Therefore, please limit wet food to 2-3 sachets each week.
4. Nulo Freestyle Freeze-Dried Raw
This option is more of a meal additive than a whole diet, but its whole ingredients and lack of preservatives make it worthwhile.
If you can not manage a raw diet but want to give your Maine Coon some minimally processed natural nutrients then Nulo is an easy option.
What Do Maine Coon Cats Eat In The Wild?
What do Maine Coon cats like to eat?
Well, according to their ancestors, this breed is likely to have a preference for the following:
- Small reptiles
- Occasional insects
- Other small animals that they can overpower
What Is So Special About Maine Coon Cats?
Maine Coon cats are unique in appearance and lineage.
Their beauty and loveable personalities make them the best cat breed in the world! (In my biased view, anyhow!)
While they share their obligate carnivore diet with other felines, their larger-than-average build, playful nature, and fun-loving personalities make them the ideal pets for many families.
Combining this with their dog-like behaviors, highly sociable nature, and ability to get on with other cats and dogs, the Maine Coon cat is ultimately a great companion to own.
If you are wondering what do Maine Coon cats hunt, outside, then you are probably not surprised to learn that these fearless and highly skilled hunters enjoy catching small prey and rodents, e.g. mice.
What do Maine Coon cats eat?
As you will have seen, these large cats require a diet high in protein which was historically achieved when they hunted small rodents, birds, mice, etc, before they became domesticated.
In today’s society, the Maine Coon nutritional needs are met in a different way and are achievable via a variety of different cat diets, or a combination of all Maine Coon dietary options.
Maine Coons are one of the most expensive cat breeds in the U.S. due to their popularity. Expect to pay an average of $1,000 per Maine Coon kitten, or a price tag of up to $3000 if you’re after a show-level purebred Maine Coon cat.
Research Study 2023: Can Maine Coon Cats Eat Chocolate?
YouTube Research: Is Chocolate Harmful For Maine Coon Cats?
In a unique research study conducted by Katrina Stewardson on the Maine Coon Central YouTube channel, in October 2023, viewers were asked if they thought chocolate was harmful to Maine Coon cats.
Of the 189 viewers that entered the poll, 95% of Maine Coon cat lovers were aware that chocolate is harmful to a Maine Coon.
However, 5% of the respondents did not realize the danger chocolate posed to this large cat breed, which was very worrying.