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Showing posts from August, 2023

Can newspaper rustling upset your Maine Coon?

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Something as innocuous as reading your newspaper while your Maine Coon (MC) is on your lap can upset him or her. That's if they want to snooze on your cosy, warm lap. It is said that MCs are not lap cats but that does not mean that all of them are the same. Some will enjoy it or they'll be by your side on the sofa as you read the paper in the morning after breakfast. Here is a picture of my non-MC being a little pissed off by the Sunday newspaper: Photo: MikeB. Rustling newspapers can put off cats. My experience tells me that MCs and other domestic cats may find the sound of rustling newspaper uncomfortable and jump off your lap. I am not saying it affects all cats but some and in varying amounts. The same might happen if you are eating potato chips (crisps in the UK) while watching television. Other sharp sounds made by, for example, kitchen foil, can cause a genuine reaction. Any sharp crinkling sounds can cause a rarish condition called feline audiogenic reflex seizures (FA

What is the activity level of the Maine Coon cat?

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Laid back, golden-eyed silver tabby Maine Coon looks down on their slave. Image in the public domain. One well-known Maine Coon cat website asks whether Maine Coon cats are hyper? And they go on to state that Maine Coon kittens are a little hyper which, as it happens, is typical of all kittens of all domestic cat breeds and random bred cats. It is just the nature of young kittens in the same way that it is the nature of young humans. But the word "hyper" is very far from the behaviour of the adult Maine Coon cat. My impression is that it is the opposite pretty well. One very obvious sign that Maine Coon cats are in general calm individuals is that you see many photographs on the Internet of Maine Coons cat owners holding up their cat to show them off to the camera and the expression on the cat's face could not be any calmer. They take it all in their stride. There is no struggling or wriggling to signal that they want to be put down as quickly as possible. I have a strong

Are ginger Maine Coons rare?

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Red and ginger The title refers to 'ginger' coated Maine Coons. Firstly, the word 'ginger' means 'red' in the cat fancy. The word 'red' is used by the cat fancy and 'ginger' or 'yellow' is used by owners! Both the solid red coat and the red tabby coat are listed under the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) breed standard and are therefore both accepted by this premier cat association in the US.  Red (ginger) tabby Maine Coon. Image in the public domain. Breeders So, it's just a question of finding a breeder who is breeding solid red or red tabby Maine Coons from foundation cats that are red tabbies. And in searching for such a breeder it might be true that there are few breeders creating red Maine Coons.  I don't know how many breeders are breeding the red and red tabbies. If there are very few then the answer to the question in the title is that they are rare! But it will only be because breeders don't want to breed them. Ho

The major reason why your Maine Coon cat is 'naughty'

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The major reason why your Maine Coon cat is naughty is because you are being naughty! Don't take that badly but please read on. Super-looking Maine Coon cat. A young ginger tabby. Image: Pinterest. Introduction Before we discuss the major reason and some lesser reasons as to why you think your Maine Coon is naughty, we have to discuss the word "naughty"! What does naughty mean in terms of cat behaviour? This is a very valid question. We use the word "naughty" to describe human behaviour that we don't think is acceptable because it doesn't fit in with social norms and standards. It is poor behaviour. When we use the word naughty to describe cat behaviour, we are describing cat behaviour which we, as humans, don't like. This does not mean that the behaviour is bad it just means that we do not like it. So naughty cat behaviour is behaviour that humans don't like. I think that's a very important observation. I will give you an example. Example of

What is bigger the Maine Coon of any of these: Norwegian Forest cat, Ragdoll, Savannah, Siberian, Bengal?

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On average, the Maine Coon cat is going to be bigger than any of the cats in the title except the F1 i.e. first filial Savannah cat. The first filial Savannah cat is the biggest domestic cat but it is not a formal cat breed. The largest domestic cat breeder is the Maine Coon cat. Caveat: please read on. F1 Savannah cat Titan. Photo: Kathrin Stucki. Compare the size of the F1 Savannah cat above with the huge Maine Coon below. But this an unfair comparison as the Maine Coon in the picture below is exceptional in their size. This is not a typical Maine Coon whereas the F1 Savannah (Titan) is a typical size for the F1 Savannah. The difficulty in comparing domestic cat sizes is brought home in this exercise. In this example the Savannah cat is smaller than the Maine Coon. Maine Coon as big as a child (almost). Image in public domain. There will be a lot of conditions to the statement that the Maine is the largest domestic cat breed. Let's take an example. You've got a smallish fema

Checking your Maine Coons cat's gums at the rear of the mouth when they are conscious

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Perhaps like almost everybody else, I struggle with checking my cat's gums at the rear of his mouth. In fact, I've never actually done it specifically to check that area. I have noticed the health of his mouth in general terms because I can see inside his mouth from time to time particularly when he yawns but that's a cursory glance and it's not that accurate. Checking a cat's gums at the back. Image: The Veterinary Nurse. Link to The Veterinary Nurse website . How to perform a conscious all examination of a cat and what to look for. What they mean is that the cat is conscious and not under a general anaesthetic. We know that domestic cats including Maine Coon cats will eventually have oral health problems. Calculus and plaque builds up on the borderline between gums and teeth. This is a mixture of food waste and bacteria and it causes gum inflammation which is also called gingivitis. And gum disease is called periodontal disease. How do we, as cat owners, get to ch

Adorable Maine Coon snarl with crinkled nose

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 Don't get the wrong impression that Maine Coons snarl a lot. They don't. They are pretty laid-back cats. This picture caught my eye as the large, square muzzle of the Maine Coon makes a domestic cat snarl look particularly impressive. This brown tabby Maine Coon has a very strong, masculine face. His crinkled nose is the icing on the cat for a feline facial expression.  The owner says this about the picture: "My Maine Coon buddy Quentin. He does the best don't-mess-with-me snarl. He even crinkles his nose." It is harder to read the emotions of domestic cats through their facial expressions than it is for dogs . The cat is known to be inscrutable but not so in this instance. Adorable Maine Coon snarl with crinkled nose. Image: Twitter/X The relatively inscrutable face of the domestic cat compared to the domestic dog is all to do with the fact that the cat is solitary and therefore has less of a need to communicate with other cats compared to dogs which are pack an

Utterly charming Maine Coon is a "Twisty Cat" with radial hypoplasia

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Well, this is a really beautiful Maine Coon cat behaving in a way which makes him even more beautiful in my opinion. He appears to be at a veterinary clinic and he is sitting up in the meerkat position supporting himself by his strong back.  He has a strong back because he has to have one because his forelimbs are distorted due to an inherited condition called radial hypoplasia.  Note: I believe that this condition is radial hypoplasia. There are other conditions affecting the forelimbs of domestic cats which are rare but I have seen a video of this cat when he was a kitten and it does look very much like radial hypoplasia to me. If I'm wrong then please correct me. Maine Coons suffers from radial hypoplasia but copes brilliantly well and looks super handsome. Screenshot. Cats with this condition are sometimes referred to as "twisty cats" and at one stage somebody somewhere, I have fortunately forgotten the name of the person, decided that they would make an interesting n

At one time the Maine Coon cat was highly unpopular

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It's hard to believe now but at one time just after the beginning of the cat fancy in America and the early formal cat shows, the Maine Coon cat's popularity declined rapidly because of the importation of highly exotic new breeds (as they were seen at the time) such as the Siamese and Persian. Please read on.... In the early years of the cat fancy in America, the Siamese and the Persian were exotic breeds which eclipsed the Maine Coon forcing a decline in the Maine Coon cat's popularity to near extinction of the breed. Image: MikeB A bit about the Maine Coon cat history before their popularity declined There are many theories about the history of the Maine Coon cat. You make up your own mind about it but in my personal viewpoint, the common-sense argument is that the Maine Coon cat history started with the introduction of longhaired and medium-longhaired European cats into the east coast of the United States of America with the settlers from the late 1600s onwards. Click to

Do Maine Coons need a companion?

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Buster and Luna; sibling Maine Coons who get along great. When it happens it is perfect. They have each other to entertain themselves when their caregiver is out, provided they're not out for too long! Image is a screenshot from the video below. This strange question in the title is asked on the Maine Coon Central website. I'll tell you why I think it is strange. It is because all Maine Coon cats have a companion in their human caregiver! They automatically have a companion and domestic cats regard their human caregivers as felines or surrogate mothers.  Of course, Maine Coon cats need a companion because they need a caregiver as they are domestic cats. The question is superfluous. It is irrelevant UNLESS it is meant to be asking if a Maine Coon cat needs another Maine Coon cat or another domestic cat of any breed or non-purebred as a companion. That's a whole different kettle of fish which introduces some quite complicated problems. When Maine Coon siblings get along as se

The peculiar case of the theft of two adorable Maine Coons kittens from a locked barn

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NEWS AND COMMENT: The story comes from Vernon, California, USA. Brent Comeau said, "My last two Maine Coon kittens were stolen out of my barn between the hours of 8 PM August 30 and 6 AM August 31" (2020). He is convinced that the person came to steal his kittens because they knew exactly where to go and how to avoid the security cameras. The thief used bolt cutters to break into the barn. He added that the two kittens were days away from being purchased and they were the last two kittens of two litters of kittens. One is male and the other is female. Ostensibly 2 Maine Coon kittens stolen from a barn but they don't look like Maine Coon kittens! Image: Supplied. He is asking anyone with information to call him and he provides his phone number online. He is offering a $1000 reward for the kittens' safe return. I've not published the phone number as this story is about 24 months old. He received a tipoff about the possibility of the two kittens being offered for sal

Majestic solid blue male Maine Coon is perfect right down to his nose leather

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Well, if you are interested in buying/adopting a blue Maine Coon, this is the sort of cat you should be considering. So perfectly Maine Coon. So handsome and distinguished. So much so that it is almost undignified that he is playing (reluctantly) with the tease waved in front of his face. Majestic blue male Maine Coon is perfect right down to his nose leather. Image: Instagram. This is the CFA breed standard for Maine Coon Colors - solid color class. You can see that there are five different solid colours allowed for this cat breed under the Cat Fanciers' Association. WHITE: pure glistening white. Nose leather and paw pads: pink.  BLACK: dense coal black, sound from roots to tip of fur. Free from any tinge of rust on tips or smoke undercoat. Nose leather: black. Paw pads: black or brown.  BLUE: one level tone from nose to tip of tail. Sound to the roots. Nose leather and paw pads: blue.  RED: deep, rich, clear, brilliant red; without shading, markings, or ticking. Lips and chin the

Discussing the Maine Coon's hairy feet

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We know that the Maine Coons has hairy feet. They have tufts of hair sticking out between the toes. It varies between the cats but you will see some extraordinary photographs of very long hair tufts poking out through the paw pads going downwards. This means that the fur is between the floor and the paw pads when they walk. The Maine Coon cat must have hairy feet as per the cat breed standard of all the cat associations. RELATED:  Maine Coon has the most amazing 'tufted paws' that you'll ever see . The Maine Coon cat's hairy feet are wonderful. Image: Mon Balon. This is a neat topic for discussion. Do you trim them? If a Maine Coon owner has a hard floor which are quite common these days and if that floor is shiny because it is well polished, there may be a slight risk of a Maine Coon cats slipping and sliding on it because their hair tufts are in between their paw pads and the floor. More hairy feet! Image: Facebook. I think that's a fair assessment.  It is based u

Should I feed my Maine Coon a raw diet?

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The idea of feeding a raw diet, often homemade, to a domestic cat became a trend about 12 years ago. The raw diet has been touted as a good cure for sensitive feline stomachs and digestive problems leading to 'smelly poop'. Of the purebred cats, the Bengal probably topped the list of the best 'patients' for the change in diet. Although I am sure that many Bengal cats benefited as their stool improved, we don't hear about the potential issues. Premix and raw meat cat food diet. This is taking raw meat and adding in the nutrients needed to make it a balanced diet. It is a good option. Photo of mince by BobPetUK Risk and reward Despite the fact that I am a supporter of the raw diet for cats, I am also fully aware of the potential hazards. The decision to feed a raw diet is a personal one based on risk and reward . It will be a balanced decision. And if you want to feed your Maine Coon a raw diet, I think the safest way forward is to buy a commercially prepared food to

Should I brush my Maine Coon daily?

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In my opinion, YES, is the answer to the question in the title but a little less is probably okay.  I'd suggest that as a minimum it should be three times a week but daily is better, I'd say. I don't think you can overdo grooming your Maine Coon provided you are not brushing through matts causing discomfort or pain. Of course, daily brushing/grooming to prevent matting is the answer. Grooming a Maine Coon. Screenshot from the video on this page. I think that regular and routine brushing of a Maine Coon with a grooming tool which is perfectly suited to grooming Maine Coons can only be a positive experience for human caregiver and cat alike. Enjoyable for both Provided the grooming is conducted in a respectful and caring way the cat will enjoy it. And so will the caregiver as it creates a nice bond and close relationship between cat and person. It also gives the owner the opportunity to check out the coat condition and the skin for health issues. Grooming a Maine Coon not onl

What should I do to make my Maine Coon cat happy?

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Every cat owner wants to make their Maine Coon cat happy; as happy as possible because it is their second duty after the first which is to ensure that their Maine Coon (MC) cat is safe and secure. But the starting point of the process in making your MC happy is to observe her behaviour as in that way you can find out! All domestic cats including MCs are generally undemonstrative . This means that they don't tell us very clearly through their behaviour and the sounds they make what they like; what makes them happy. We have to do work at it a little bit to find out. Image: MikeB And we do that by being observant . My belief is that good cat caregivers are observant people. And it means observing their cat's behaviour, their rhythms and their routines, their likes and dislikes, 24/7 for the entire time that they are the owner of that cat. It is a permanent state of affairs because cat caregivers can always learn. And in observing their Maine Coon, they learn about cat behaviour ge

Some body language signals of Maine Coon cats (and all domestic cats)

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Body language is perhaps the most complex way that cats communicate their wide range of colourful emotions. They have a highly developed system of communication which uses most parts of their body, from ears to tail, to express what is going on in their minds. Is your cat feeling contented? Frightened? Angry? By recognising the following body signals, you'll be able to tell exactly what kind of mood your Maine Coon cat is in. Maine Coon facial expressions - anger or concern. Image: MikeB Contented cat Maine Coon cats commonly use body language to express their contentment often in the way they sleep and arise from sleep. There is no better image of a creature at peace with the world than a cat snoozing away while curled tightly into a ball or stretched out upside down in the middle of your favourite armchair.  After waking up from a nap a contented cat may yawn lazily and go through a luxurious series of stretching movements. These movements will be accompanied by heavy-lidded blin

Are Maine Coons territorial?

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Maine Coons are inherently territorial with males being more concerned about maintaining their home range (territory they claim as theirs) than females but both genders have home ranges. How strictly a home range is defended from intruders also depends on the character of the individual cat and the circumstances under which they live. Are Maine Coons territorial? Yes. Image: MikeB For instance, a Maine Coon living indoors full-time with three other cats is going to have a very small amount of territory that he/she can call their own.  There will be overlapping territories. They'd have to be a lot of give and take. A lot of flexibility and the willingness to adapt to compressed territories and unnatural conditions. To ask if Maine Coons are territorial is like asking whether Maine Coons walk on their toes (are digitigrades). The answer is yes of course because Maine Coon are the same as any other domestic, stray, feral or wild cat species. No matter what species of cat or breed (all

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