A lot of first-time owners ask me, what do you need for a Maine Coon kitten?
When bringing home a kitten for the first time, there are a lot of things you’ll need to ensure its health and happiness. Due to their large size, Maine Coons often require special supplies, as well.
You will need to provide all of the essentials for your Maine Coon kitten, including high-quality food, a litter box, and grooming supplies. Maine Coons are also highly intelligent and playful cats that need durable toys and plenty of space to climb and play.
Many first-time cat owners are surprised by just how many supplies they need for their new cat. Read on to make sure you don’t forget anything important before bringing home your Maine Coon kitten.
What Do You Need For A Maine Coon Kitten?
If you are wondering what do you need for a Maine Coon kitten, then you might be overwhelmed by all of the supplies you’ll need for your cat’s happiness and health.
Here is a list of Maine Coon kitten essentials to make sure you’re prepared for all of your kitten’s needs:
- High-Quality Cat Food
One of the most important things you’ll need for your Maine Coon kitten is food.
For the beginning of your Maine Coon’s life, you will need to feed your cat kitten food, which you can then gradually switch to adult food once it’s time.
Most cats switch to adult food once they reach one year of age, but for larger cat breeds like the Maine Coon, it’s best to wait until they’re between eighteen months and two years old.
Unfortunately, not just any cat food will do, especially when it comes to Maine Coons.
Many cat food companies use grains and other filler ingredients to make production cheaper, which ends up as empty calories for your cat. Maine Coons are extremely large and highly active and, as a result, they require high-quality cat food that is high in protein (source 1).
Here’s some great dry foods for your Maine Coon kitten and cat.
- Litter Box
Naturally, you’ll need a litter box for your kitten, as well. These are my favorite cat litter trays for Maine Coon cats.
You’ll want to purchase a litter tray with short sides so that your kitten has no difficulty climbing in and out.
Once your kitten begins to grow, however, you’ll need to switch it out for an extra-large litter tray.
A Maine Coon litter box will need to be much larger than most litter boxes, or else your cat will have difficulty fitting inside!
The choice of litter is also important to consider. Most people opt for a clumping litter that also helps remove odor. While you might be tempted to purchase a scented litter to further help with odor, cats are notoriously sensitive to smell, and many have a preference for non-scented litter.
- Scratching Post
Another essential investment when bringing home a Maine Coon kitten is a scratching post.
All cats need to scratch for a variety of reasons, including removing the dead sheath of their nails as they grow, expressing emotions such as joy or frustration, and even just stretching.
If you don’t have a designated scratching post for your Maine Coon, it will end up clawing up your furniture instead. I personally love this extra-large scratching post, available on Amazon. We’ve found it both sturdy, good quality, and heavy enough that our large male Maine Coon cat cannot topple it over with one push!
You should get a scratching post that is tall and sturdy, preferably made from high-quality wood and sisal rope. Just like most other supplies, you’ll need a large scratching post that will fit your Maine Coon when it’s fully grown. If your kitten begins scratching at the furniture, place the post near its favorite scratching spot and quickly place your kitten near the post every time it uses the furniture.
- Cat Tower
Maine Coons are well known for their love of climbing and exploring, so a cat tower is an absolute must for this breed!
You’ll need an extra-large tower made from high-quality, sturdy materials. The best cat trees I have sourced, are these large towers sold over on Amazon.
Cats don’t like wobbly cat trees, as they make them feel unsafe.
Another thing you might want to consider is installing cat-friendly shelves around your living space.
This gives your cat a whole new place to run, jump, and explore, and it’s a much better alternative to the counters, table, or the top of your fridge! Maine Coons need lots of exercise and enrichment, so having plenty of space to climb and run is the best way to make this breed happy.
- Durable Toys
Of course, you’ll need a wide variety of toys to keep your kitten entertained. If you aren’t sure which toys your Maine Coon will like, here’s my list of the top 5 Maine Coon cat toys. Our Maine Coon loves them, and they were great investments for our home.
First, you’ll want to get plenty of floor toys for your kitten. These are toys that your cat can play with on its own, including balls, mice, and tubes to run through.
Next, you’ll want wand toys, a laser pointer, and other toys that you can use to interact with your cat. These will be used for about thirty minutes every day as you engage in play sessions with your kitten.
Maine Coons are extra-large, and they’re also known to play quite rough with their toys, so you’ll want to invest in toys that are extra durable. While durable toys are more expensive, they’ll be sure to last you much longer, and they’ll be more fun for your cat to play with.
- Food And Water Bowls
Surprisingly enough, the food bowls you choose for your cat can make a big difference!
Cats have sensitive whiskers, and if they rub against the bowl while eating, it can cause enough discomfort that some cats even refuse to eat all of their food.
You should buy wide, shallow bowls to make it as easy as possible for your cat to eat.
Ideally, you should choose bowls made out of either ceramic or stainless steel, as these surfaces are more hygienic. While you can use a bowl for your cat’s water, cats prefer the taste of running water, and would greatly enjoy a fountain instead.
- Cat Treats
Another essential supply for your kitten is cat treats. Similarly to cat food, you’ll want to purchase high-quality cat treats that contain lots of protein and few filler ingredients. It’s best to find natural ingredients, as well.
Cat treats are a great way to begin training and conditioning your Maine Coon.
Maine Coons are highly intelligent and trainable, and they respond very well to positive reinforcement. Many Maine Coons can be trained to do all sorts of tricks, which is both fun and enriching for your cat.
Treats are also great for getting through unpleasant situations, like nail clipping. Starting early and providing lots of treats is a great way to help your cat associate less than pleasant activities with positive stimuli. They can also help your kitten warm up to you more if it’s shy when you first bring it home.
- Cat Bed
Just like a litter box, a Maine Coon cat bed will need to be extra-large to fit this extra-large breed.
It’s possible to find cat beds that are specifically designed for Maine Coons, but some owners opt to purchase dog beds, instead. Regardless, the most important part is finding a bed that will fit your Maine Coon once it’s fully grown.
There are all sorts of materials and shapes to choose from when it comes to cat beds! These are all a matter of preference, though you’ll want something durable that you can count on to last a while.
Some owners even get an extra cat bed or two and place them throughout the house so their cat has access to a comfortable sleeping area in practically every room.
Catnip is another fun treat that can be used to enrich your cat’s life. Some part of this plant causes cats to go absolutely crazy for it, and it’s commonly found in a lot of different cat toys. You can also give your cat some catnip straight for an hour or so of extra fun.
However, not all cats react to catnip. Some simply become calmer or “zoned out” after eating it, while others seem to have no effects at all. Regardless, it’s fun to at least try it out, especially considering how inexpensive it is.
You can buy catnip tubes or pouches at most pet stores, or you can even purchase and grow a plant of your own! Chances are, though, you’ll want to keep it out of reach of your cat.
- Pet Insurance
Pet insurance is an important thing to consider when getting a Maine Coon kitten.
Unfortunately, the unthinkable can happen to anyone, and emergency vet bills can get extremely high. Pet insurance is a great way to keep your cat safe and protected, and ensure you can provide the best quality care should an emergency happen.
You can get insurance of varying kinds, including coverage of emergency situations, standard vet bills, or even pre-existing conditions. While insurance may seem expensive to some, it’s far less expensive than bills after an emergency surgery! Many different pet insurance companies will also let you customize your plant to best suit your needs.
Even though we always hope that our pets will stay safe throughout their lives, pet insurance is a great way to protect your pet in a pinch, and it helps many owners sleep better at night (source 1).
- First Aid Kit
Speaking of emergencies, it’s also crucial to keep a first aid kit specialized for cat care at home.
While you should always take your cat to the vet if it is sick or injured, a first aid kit can mean the difference between life and death. This is especially true if you take your cat on outdoor adventures like camping or hiking, where serious injuries can sometimes occur far away from help.
A first aid kit should include a blood clotter, disinfectant, a saline flush, gauze pads, gauze bandages, tweezers, medical-grade scissors and tape, splints, activated charcoal, and various medications, among other supplies.
You can look online for more comprehensive guides on putting together a first aid kit for your cat (source 1).
- Cat Carrier
A cat carrier is essential for all kinds of travel, from a quick trip to the vet to a flight across the country. No matter how long the journey, you’ll want your cat to feel safe and comfortable.
Cat carriers come in a range of materials but are usually separated into soft and hard.
Hard carriers are more durable and easier to clean, while soft carriers are more comfortable and feel more like home to a stressed cat.
Choosing the material is up to you, but no matter what it’s made of, you’ll need to make sure you get an extra-large carrier that will fit your Maine Coon when it is fully grown (source 1).
- Grooming Brushes
If you’re getting a Maine Coon kitten, you’ll also need to invest in one or more grooming brushes. After much trial and error, I have compiled a list of the best 5 Maine Coon cat grooming tools, to save you the time, hassle, and expense!
Maine Coons are known for their luxurious, thick, long fur. While they’re relatively low shedding, they do require more care than short-haired cats to keep their fur from getting tangled and matted.
You’ll need a fine brush or comb to remove dead, loose hair and prevent hairballs. You should groom your Maine Coon once or twice every week, and more frequently during the shedding season. You’ll have to get your Maine Coon used to groom at a young age, and use plenty of treats so your kitten associates it with positive stimuli; this will make it much easier to care for your cat as it grows older.
- Nail Clippers
Cats’ nails grow quite quickly, and unless you feel like getting scratched every time your cat walks on you, you’ll need to trim your cat’s nails every few weeks. Not only will this be more comfortable for you, but it’s safer and healthier for your cat.
You’ll need a pair of high-quality nail clippers that were specially designed for cats and dogs. Cheap nail clippers can splinter your cat’s nails and make nail clipping a far less comfortable experience than it should be. Do research on proper clipping methods, so you don’t cut the quick and cause bleeding or more serious injury.
You’ll definitely want to keep a handful of treats nearby while you’re clipping your cat’s nails, as well. While no cat enjoys getting its nails cut, it’s certainly an easier process for those who grew accustomed to the ritual at a young age.
- Harness and Leash
It’s not essential to get a harness and leash for your Maine Coon, but because many Maine Coons can be trained to walk on a leash, it’s certainly a fun supply to consider buying.
If your cat is purely indoors (which is considered much safer for your cat as well as local wildlife), then you can provide some extra outdoor enrichment during supervised walks.
Harnesses come in three different styles: H-harnesses, jackets, and vests. Jackets and vests are typically more secure and make it less likely for your cat to escape during walks. Choose a material that is firm but breathable for your cat, for maximum security and comfort.
- Pet Calming Scents
If you plan on traveling a lot, you might also want to invest in some calming pet scents. Aromatherapy has been shown in scientific studies to potentially reduce stress in animals, which is perfect for long planes or car rides.
Calming scents can also be used during nights with lots of fireworks, or any other situation that might be stressful to your cat. If your cat shows extreme anxiety during travel, thunderstorms, and other stressful situations, however, you might want to talk to your vet about potential prescription medications, as well.
- Playpen or Baby Gate
Finally, you’ll want to get a playpen or baby gate for your kitten, particularly if you have other cats or dogs in the house.
You can set up a baby gate between rooms so that you can easily cross over without letting your cat get into all sorts of trouble in another room. This will also help other animals in the house become acquainted with the new addition without feeling threatened.
A playpen is also a great option for more rambunctious kittens if you’re worried about them getting lost while they’re young. You can set up a safe, fun play space without the chance of your kitten climbing where it shouldn’t.
If you’re wondering what do you need for a Maine Coon kitten, then you might be feeling overwhelmed at first by all the supplies you’ll need! While these supplies can get expensive, they’re all important to providing an enriching and healthy environment for your cat.
When owning a Maine Coon, you’ll need to purchase essentials, such as a first aid kit, a litter box, and food bowls, as well as fun and enriching supplies like a cat tree and toys.
Do Maine Coons Need Baths?
Maine Coons do not need to be bathed regularly, but if your cat gets especially muddy or dirty from an outside excursion, then a bath will be necessary.