When you find yourself asking if there is such a thing as a giant Maine coon cat, remember that what we call “giant” depends entirely upon your reference points.
All cats are interesting, but some are much more so than others. A few even develop tonal qualities that make them instantly recognizable. One such cat is the giant Maine Coon!
The name “Maine Coon” comes from where these large cats were first identified. In fact, many believe it was the breeders who gave this friendly furball their new moniker.
These tall, longhaired feline giants originated in the United States back in the early 1900s. Since then they have become one of the most popular types of domestic shorthair cats!
Sadly though, like all other big breeds, overpopulation has been an issue. As such, there are now very strict regulations about how many cats owners can keep.
Many states actually ban certain sizes for specific types of animals to protect wildlife! This is why you will not see giant rabbits or guinea pigs roaming free across America anymore.
Fortunately, those protective measures also apply to cats. So, if you love your pet Maine Coon, you need to be sure you are within the allowed limits!
History of the Maine Coon cat
The giant Maine Coon is one of the larger variations of domestic cats that was originally bred in America. They are characterized by their long, thick fur and large rounded ears that stick up slightly.
The Maine Coon breed got its name from the state it originated in – Maine. It is also sometimes referred to as a Northern Breed or Americana.
These days, there are very few purebred Maine Coons left due to a lack of natural habitat. Because they are such big friendly cats, however, people continue to keep them as pets!
Some experts believe that only 1%–2% of all Maine Coons survive natural births because mothers do not produce enough milk for them. This results in many orphaned kittens being left without food or shelter.
Many animal shelters across the country have had to put down healthy giant Maine Coons because they could not find homes for them.
Big Cats in The US
Almost every state has at least one large carnivore living within their borders! In fact, there are quite a few big cat species across America, with some even being giant versions of your average housecat.
A “giant” is someone who weighs more than 9 pounds (4 kg) and this includes all breeds of cat. The most famous giants include the Siberian or Amur Leopard, the Bengal Tiger, and the Neutering a Male Carnivore Cats Canada article contains information about the American Mastiff.
However, none of these cats actually grow to be taller than 30 inches (76 cm)! It seems like it would be easy for them to do so though, considering how tall many lion-dominant breed hybrids can get. That is why we need to talk about something much bigger…
Does My Cats Look Like a Wolf ?
Wolf-cat looks are probably one of the main reasons people get confused about whether or not there is such a thing as a giant Maine Coon cat.
Is There Such A Thing As A Giant Maine Coon Cat?
Maine Coons are an interesting hybrid cat breed that was created in the 1970s by two different couples. They mix traits from both the British cat and the Russian Boarhound, making them very playful and friendly.
Because they are almost always neutered before they reach adulthood, people usually describe them as shy and mellow. This is definitely not the case when they are young though!
When kittens around their age start to show signs of adult behavior, people often refer to them as ‘giant’ due to their size.
Weight of a Giant Maine Coon Cat
Maine coons are known to be very large, but is there such a thing as a giant Maine coon cat? Technically speaking, no! A giant Maine coon cat does not exist due to weight limits set by most major breed organizations.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) sets the minimum height requirement at 22 inches for cats over 5 pounds and 25 inches for heavier cats. The same goes for the British Columbia Veterinary Association with their size limit being 24 inches for any cat over 10 kilograms (22 lbs. 2 oz.) and 30 inches for anything larger.
However, these sizes are the average maximums so some breeds exceed both numbers easily. For example, a three year old Russian wolfhound cat that weighs 65lbs can meet the AKC height requirements even though he is only 17 inches tall!
So while it may seem like a really big cat, he/she is still pretty small compared to other large breeds.
Facts about giant Maine Coon cats
All big cat species are characterized by their large size, but not all larger animals are considered to be giants! In fact, some breeders refer to very large domestic dogs or cats as ‘giant’ due to them being bigger than average.
However, what makes an animal qualify as a true giant is only determined by looking at height measurements across several breeds that belong in the big cat family.
Only cats that have been officially measured using the same metric are able to determine if they meet this definition, so most people agree that unless you are comparing like with like, it is impossible to tell whether or not any given dog or cat is truly a giant!
Many owners of oversized cats claim that these individuals are just naturally tall and/or lean, making them look proportionally longer. While this may be possible in some cases, it is highly unlikely for every single one of your pet’s unique genetic traits!
For example, even though Alaskan Malamutes are known to be taller than other mastiffs, this doesn’t necessarily make them giant per our definitions.
What is a melanistic Maine Coon cat?
Melanistic or black cats are not normal! Abnormal coloration in mammals is very uncommon, even among domesticated animals.
Melanism is when an individual has dark pigment instead of light fur or no fur at all. Some breeds have been shown to be naturally pigmented, such as Persian and Russian tortoiseshells.
However, it is extremely rare for a mammal other than primates to develop significant levels of internalized hair growth that is covered in darker pigment.
There are some reports of this happening in cats (usually due to poor management of the cat’s coat), but nothing conclusive.
How to Tell if Your Cat is a Giant Maine Coon Cat
The term “giant” varies slightly between organizations, but most agree that a large, adult Maine coon has longer fur than average.
Most consider a cat to be a true giant when its fur length equals at least two inches beyond their elbow. For example, small-medium-sized Maine coon may have fur that is 2½ – 3¼ inches long!
This isn’t necessarily bad, but it can make grooming difficult. When this happens, they may develop mats or even hair balls which will need to be removed soon to avoid health problems such as choking or stomach ulcers.
Also, many feel that extra fur draws heat away from their body which could cause them to become sick or even die in very hot weather. This only becomes an issue if their coat grows longer during warm seasons then normal.
Experts also believe that larger cats are born with thicker coats because genetics play a role in how much fur they grow.
Care of a giant Maine Coon Cat
Taking care of a large, domesticated animal can be tricky at times! Luckily, there are some general rules that apply to most dogs and cats,
but unfortunately, these things cannot always tell the difference between an average size dog or cat and a big one, so they may get treated differently.
Does a giant Maine Coon cat shed?
As we mentioned, most cats are considered to be fine size when they were adopted as kittens. However, some big cats are bred in very close quarters which can contribute to them developing health issues or even requiring special care for grooming.
Sadly, many breeders will not prioritize health over appearance so animals that are already ill may be put to sleep rather than getting expensive veterinary treatment.
This is especially true if the animal does not fit into their planned coat style! Many large-breed cats are never socialized due to this, making it hard for them to find a home once they are too old to play with other cats.
For example, one person was reported to have walked out of an office after viewing a cat advertisement only to discover that it was a six year old kitten who wanted to be picked up right then and there!
So, while some people might consider these oversized breeds to be ‘cute’, they actually suffer because no one wants them. They remain outside and unsupported until they give up on finding a home. This can sometimes lead to suffering or death since they become more vulnerable when young.
There is nothing wrong with owning a well-cared-for large-breed cat but make sure your pet is healthy before you get them! Avoid buying a pet at risk by doing your research first.