Why Do Maine Coon Cats Howl?

Are you tired of hearing your Maine Coon howling at night, and keen to discover why do Maine Coon cats howl? If you are, don’t panic because you are not alone. This unwanted behavioural trait can occur due to a number of different factors. In certain cases though, some owners have even accidentally encouraged their Maine Coon to howl! In the majority of cases this upsetting Maine Coon noise can be lessened, though, this will take a great deal of patience and effort.

Maine Coons often howl because their owners trained them to, or because they have reached sexual maturity. Females howl when they are on heat, possibly more than male Maine Coons. Maine Coons howl when they are lonely, sad, hungry, or physically hurt. Owners unwittingly encourage their kitten to howl, by responding to every Maine Coon cry.

In this article we will explore why Maine Coons howl, and the most likely reasons for repetitive Maine Coon howling or crying during the night. Owners can then use our simple tips and tricks to reduce or negate this unwanted cat behavioural issue entirely.

What Sounds Do Maine Coon Cats Make?

Famous for being one of the largest domesticated cat breeds in the world, the regal looking Maine Coon is also well known for being extremely talkative. Unlike other cat breeds though, they will not meow at their owners for attention. Instead, these handsome cats use a variety of unique Maine Coon sounds to let their owners know what they want.

When a cat is happy, and content, the most common Maine Coon sounds are:

  • Trilling
  • Chirping
  • Chattering
  • Purring

In cases where a cat is unhappy though, it is more likely that you will hear the following sounds:

  • Crying
  • Yowling
  • Hissing
  • Long drawn out noises

How To Identify Maine Coon Howls

Have you noticed some unusual noises from your cat, and are wondering whether your Maine Coon cat is howling? If this sounds familiar, take a look at the videos below to identify if the sounds are familiar.

1. What Maine Coon Howls Sound Like

If you aren’t too sure what a Maine Coon cat howl sounds like, take a look at the short video below of this Maine Coon howling. This cat is howling at his owner, because he doesn’t want to leave his favourite bush!!

Credit for video goes to Youtube channel ‘Spankedmoney77’ (link)

2. Maine Coon Kitten Howls Sound Like This!

Maine Coon kittens have tiny bodies, lungs and voices. Their bodies are not yet developed enough to make the loud Maine Coon howls heard in the video above. Instead, their voices are high pitched, soft and quiet.

Here is a short video of some Maine Coon kittens howling, and crying at their owner for food:

Credit for video goes to Youtube channel ‘Christinamary38’ (link)

10 Reasons Why Maine Coon Cats Howl

There are a variety of reasons why Maine Coons howl, whether it be because they want attention, or simply because they are hungry. Whatever the reason, it is very useful for owners to learn to differentiate between their own Maine Coons sounds.

So, why do Maine Coon cats howl? Find out by taking a look at the table below, which highlights the top 10 causes of Maine Coon howling: 

Wants attentionMaine Coons are very sociable felines that enjoy interacting with their owners. These cats may simply howl to get your attention
Not NeuteredMaine Coon cats that haven’t been neutered are more likely to howl. Whilst females will howl when then they are on heat, their male counterpart will howl if they scent a female on heat nearby
DementiaOlder Maine Coons suffering from dementia will howl when they become disoriented and confused. Howling is more likely during nighttime hours, since cats with dementia are unable to tell the difference between day and night
Stressed CatCats that are stressed or anxious will howl, or meow excessively. Stress can be induced by a number of factor i.e. house move, or new baby
Separation AnxietyMaine Coons are extremely sociable felines. They require high levels of human interaction and/or company. This cat breed are likely to howl if left on their own for too long
Medical IssuesNot all feline health issues are immediately visible to the human eye. A Maine Coons howls might therefore signify an underlying medical issue causing them pain, or discomfort
LonelinessMaine Coons are more ‘dog-like’. They are not usually solitary creatures. Instead, they thrive in families where they have regular human interaction and contact. Cats lacking social interaction will likely howl because they are feeling lonely, and sad
Hunger and ThirstMaine Coons have been domesticated, so expect owners to fulfil their food and water requirements. If a Maine Coon howls, check their basic needs are met
ScaredSome Maine Coon howls because they are feeling scared, or frightened
TerritorialMaine Coons do not have a high territorial instinct, however, may howl if they are unable about an unknown animal entering their territory

Maine Coon Howling At Night

Some Maine Coons cry during the night simply because they miss their owners. Although it can be tempting, it is not advisable for owners to immediately comfort and cuddle their Maine Coon cat in this scenario. This is because giving attention to your cat whenever they howl will actually teach the cat to howl more often! These highly intelligent felines will quickly realise that howling gets them the attention they crave.

In sad scenarios, it is also possible that your older Maine Coon is suffering from dementia. This is a difficult health issue to manage, since your Maine Coon is not being naughty at all. Instead, they are likely feeling confused and distressed. If you don’t already let your Maine Coon sleep beside you, why not rethink whether this would help calm and destress your older Maine Coon cat moving forwards.

How To Stop Maine Coon Howling

Maine Coon cats are very easy to train, however, once an unwanted behavioural trait has been encouraged (even if accidental), it can be difficult for owners to reverse.

Maine Coon kittens are very receptive to training, and owners will not find it impossible to reverse their unwanted habits. By contrast though, older Maine Coons are very stubborn, so owners might find it takes far longer to put an end to unwanted Maine Coon howling. This is particularly the case when it comes to the male of the breed.

If you want to stop your Maine Coon howling all the time, try the following:

  • Do not give your Maine Coon attention when they howl. Instead, ignore the Maine Coon howling if you can.
  • Seek professional veterinary advice, to rule out any underlying medical needs.
  • If a Maine Coon expects treats every time their howl, make sure you calmly say ‘no treats’ each time they howl.

Remember, it is important that you remain calm and patient at all times.

Maine Coon Crying

From time to time you might find that your Maine Coon cries. This is very similar sound to that of a Maine Coon howling, or yowling. For more information on this subject, take a look at my article ‘10 Causes Of Maine Coon Crying‘.

Do Maine Coons Purr?

Yes, Maine Coon cats do purr. Purring is a very vocal sound that shows a cat is happy and content. Owners are most likely to hear their Maine Coon’s purr whilst they stroke, or cuddle them.

This is not the only sound these large cats make though, so if you are new to this particular cat breed, be prepared to hear a wide range of different Maine Coon sounds. Your Maine Coon is likely to be far more talkative than the average cat, so why not take the chance to bond with them by chatting back when they engage you.

Here’s a short video of our Maine Coon cat purring away, as he tests out his new heated pad. If you cannot hear it, turn up the volume and listen closely, to hear his satisfied purrs:

Maine Coon Purring

Maine Coon Talking

As I mentioned above, this particular cat breed is very talkative, and well known for chattering away to their owners. It sometimes even feels like these large cats are trying to have a conversation with us!

In the video below you will hear our communicative ‘Pippin’ talking to my husband. They are deep in discussion, as Pippin responds to everything said!

Maine Coon Talking

Maine Coon Chattering

If you own a Maine Coon cat, you are no doubt used to hearing them talk via chirps and trills. But did you know that the majority of Maine Coon cats also love chattering away at the birds, from behind a closed windows?

Maine Coon chattering is very funny and cute to watch. This Maine Coon sound might make no sense to us humans, yet many Maine Coons seem to take great enjoyment from staring out of a closed window, and chattering to the birds outside. So don’t be surprised when you find your treasured feline sitting for hours by the window, staring at the birds coming and going.

Our Maine Coon loves to sit on the back of the living room futon, since it’s positioned right next to a very large glass window. He gets a prime view of our three bird tables, where the countryside birds flock everyday, for various seeds and nuts. His chattering sounds are so comical, I really must try and video them!

In the meantime, here’s a quick video of a Maine Coon chattering at the birds:

Credit for video goes to Youtube channel ‘The Adventures of Mojo and Scout’ (link).


Why do Maine Coon cats howl? Whether it be because they have been taught to by their owners, or whether they are just feeling lonely, a Maine Coon howling is never going to sound pleasant! Owners should therefore try to avoid encouraging their Maine Coon to howl, whenever they want something.

Maine Coon Central

Hello! My name is Katrina Stewardson, and I’m a self-confessed CRAZY CAT LADY! I've been in love with the Maine Coon cat breed ever since we welcomed an adorable male Maine Coon kitten into our home 9 years ago. We called him 'Pippin', but he also goes by the name ‘Pipsteroo’! Our enormous, kind-hearted cat genuinely thinks he's a dog and has convinced me that cats are Man's True Best Friend!

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