Once you have been owned by a Maine Coon cat, you will never ever want another breed of cat! They are truly special!

The actual origins are not known. Even today there are people who believe that the Norwegian Forest cat and the Danish and Swedish counterparts the "Racekatte" and the "Rugkatte" have too many traits in common with the Maine Coon cat, not to have a common ancestry.

These breeds evolved from a similar rough and harsh terrain and all underwent periods of living in the wild. It is not inconceivable that the Vikings might have taken cats with them to their settlements to keep down the rodent population on the ships and in the grain stores.

The MC is North America's oldest native breed of cat, but cats are not native to America. There are many legends as to how they first originated, ranging from the absurd to the theoretically possible. The local name for the "coon" cat in Maine 
the "shag". Obviously because of the coat's shaggy appearance.

Raccoons are the same brown colour and have distinctive dark rings on their tails. The locals believed that the raccoons and the cats mated, hence the name. However this is genetically impossible. When the cats were registered as a breed, the "Coon" of Maine became the Maine Coon cat! In April 1985, the governor of Maine signed a bill recognising the Maine Coon cat as the official cat of Maine.

Maine Coons can be found in a variety of colours and patterns, including solid, tabby, tortoiseshell, tortie-tabbies, smoke and shaded colours, with or without white. The brown tabby being the best known. Their hair is longer on the stomach, forming a lion-like mane. The long bushy tail helps to save warmth when the cat curls up to sleep.

They are people orientated cats. They expect to be with you. They will sleep on your bed, usually purring like a locomotive. Although sociable they generally prefer to sit alongside you rather than on your lap. They make a distinguished "chirrup" sound.

The Maine Coon is probably the biggest domestic cat and they are slow to mature, taking up to 4 years to fully mature. Males averaging 6-8kg, females 4-4,5kg.

These big cats do suffer from hip dysplasia (an inherited condition that leads to the degeneration of the socket joint of the femur) and also Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (a genetic heart problem). Responsible breeders test their breeding stock before they allow them to breed. Prospective buyers need to ask breeders to show them the test results before they decide to purchase a kitten.