Should Maine Coons be shaved?

Maine Coons should not be shaved unless there is a particular and pressing reason for it. At one time I objected to what people call the "lion cut", which you see on Persian cats not to infrequently, but I now see the advantages sometimes. Rarely, if the climatic conditions are particularly hot a Maine Coon might benefit from being shaved if you are unable to keep her cool inside the home. Or there might be a medical reason such as a skin condition and your veterinarian recommends it. But there is a big downside: shaving (lion cut) might require a full anesthetic which is risky. One in four hundred cats die because of a general anesthetic. Or they can suffer brain damage. If it can be done while the cat is sedated it is far better.

White Maine Coon cool and serene
White Maine Coon cool and serene. Who'd shave that glorious coat?! Photo in public domain.

Or your Maine Coon might have become deeply matted to the point where it was impossible to remove the mats without hurting your cat. Under these circumstances the only solution is for a veterinarian to shave the matted fur out and let the coat grow back.

So, there are instances when saving a Maine Coon can genuinely be beneficial to the cat but it is never beneficial if it is done for the entertainment of the owner. And you do see some cats that have been shaved for this reason. Their coats have been sculpted and dyed with non-toxic vegetable dye to create an interesting looking cat but it is not viable and it is ultimately cat abuse. So that should be categorically avoided.

Logically, it doesn't make sense to shave any cat including a Maine Coon because nature gave them their coat and their anatomy and therefore, they are able to cope with a range of climates. Although, that said, the Maine Coon comes from the state of Maine in America and they can have quite cold winters (mean annual winter temperatures range from 25°F in the far south to less than 15°F in the northern and interior portions of the state). It is said that this cat breed evolved in America from long-haired cats brought over with the first settlers and the cold winters in the state where they landed on the East Coast encouraged the cat to keep their long shaggy coats.

Therefore, if you live in the Middle East, for example, you are taking your Maine Coon out of their natural environment which may present problems of overheating if, unusually, the home is not air-conditioned. I'm just thinking widely to see whether I can find a reason why it would be sensible to shave a Maine Coon. There are some reasons and the most obvious would be medical as advised and as carried out by your veterinarian. Any other reason is problematic in my opinion.

It is far more respectful of the domestic cat and morally acceptable to allow your cat to keep his coat exactly as nature provided it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Black smoke Maine Coon Richie with a black face and diamond eyes

Difference between European and American Maine Coons

The extreme Maine Coon face