At a Glance
You might be wondering if your cat is a Maine Coon Mix or not, but you don’t know the decisive criteria for that. So, how do you tell apart a Maine Coon Mix cat from the rest? What features make them such a mix?
While it’s true that genetic testing your cat is always the most accurate way to tell, not every owner can afford the hassle and dollars just for that. It’s always easier to just look at the cat and tell from its physical qualities.
When you’re looking for a specific cat that’s a Maine Coon Mix, we’re here to help you with this article. We’ll list down all the possible signs to look for in a cat if they are part-Maine Coon or also known as a Maine Coon Mix.
Compared to a purebred, a Maine Coon Mix will have specific traits, which might come from its size or shape, as well as temperament. It all depends on their genetics and family history as no two cats are the same, just like people.
When looking into a cat and suspecting if it is a Maine Coon Mix or not, you need to look into their physical characteristics, such as frame, paws, eyes, ears (especially tufts), size, the design of their tail, and others.
Although we did say that genetic testing is still the most reliable way to tell a Maine Coon Mix apart, if you can’t do that at the moment, go for the easy way – using physical cues.
Physical Characteristics of a Maine Coon
The signature characteristics of a Maine Coon are what you should look for when determining whether or not a cat is a Maine Coon Mix. Unless you got your cat from a registered breeder with official documentation stating its breed (e.g. breeders who are registered as Maine Coon breeders), it’s tricky to find out if your cat is a Maine Coon Mix or not.
You’ll find most Maine Coon breeders aren’t very much into crossbreeding so if you got your cat from them – it’s most likely a purebred. However, if you got your cat from other breeders, they’re more likely to be crossbred felines, and there’s a chance that you might get a Maine Coon Mix.
Maine Coons are notable for being consistent with their traits so it’s easy to spot a purebred cat, especially with their appearance, size, and their temperament. Here are some common breed standards or physical traits of a purebred Maine Coon for you to check:
Maine Coons are not your average cat when it comes to size. It’s easy to spot them due to being significantly bigger than a regular housecat, such as the Domestic Shorthair.
This cat breed will even surpass the size of some dog breeds, which makes it unique and loved by most breeders. A Maine Coon will weigh about 8 to 25 lbs. and will stand 8 to 16 inches high, with an average length of up to 40 inches. As with most breeds, females tend to have a smaller frame.
Bottom line: A purebred Maine Coon is a large cat that can grow up to 16 inches high and may weigh up to 25 lbs.
A Maine Coon purebred will usually have a bushy tail that has a larger base with a narrow tip, scaling with their size. Think of it as that of a raccoon, which is also why “Maine Coon” rhymes with “raccoon” (interesting fact!).
The typical usage of this long and bushy tail is to protect them from the cold winters. As their name implies, Maine Coons come from Maine, where winter is quite horrible at times.
Bottom line: Maine Coons have a large, bushy tail.
Proportional to the cat’s body, a Maine Coon usually have a rectangular-shaped body frame and is typically muscular. They have a medium-sized set of legs, which are also quite muscular, while their bodies tend to have a long length.
Bottom line: A Maine Coon’s body frame is typically muscular and rectangular, matching with their huge size.
Maine Coons typically have oblique-shaped eyes, which are wide and are distinctive compared to most cat breeds. As with other breeds, Maine Coon kittens start with blue eyes, which gradually change in a color depending on their genetics.
As for eye colors, gold and green are the most common for the Maine Coon. However, there are cases when Maine Coons get heterochromia (two different eye colors), which can either be gold/green or blue and another color.
Bottom line: Maine Coons have slightly oblique-shaped eyes, which are also large and wide-looking.
You’ll commonly find a Maine Coon with shaggy fur, which is typically long and thick. A Maine Coon has two short undercoats and one topcoat, resulting in a total of three coats!
As mentioned above, Maine Coons were meant to survive harsh winters, in which their thick fur will help a lot. Aside from that, Maine Coons easily go into the rain without getting too wet due to the nature of their coat being slightly water-repellent. This is also why Maine Coons tend to love bath time!
Bottom line: Maine Coons are best known for their long, thick, and salon-worthy shaggy fur.
A Maine Coon is sometimes dubbed as a “small lion” due to having a lion-like mane around its neck. This makes them much closer to the King of the Jungle than most cat breeds.
Having a thick mane will not only help them survive the winter but also adds some royalty to the breed’s appearance.
Bottom Line: Your Maine Coon is expected to have a lion-like mane.
Lynx-like ears are a signature of the Maine Coon due to the wisps of hair found on their ears. The most common way to tell a Maine Coon Mix apart is through the ear design. As with the previous characteristics, the added hair on the ears will help them during the winter.
Bottom line: Maine Coons typically have ear tufts similar to that of a lynx.
As the Maine Coon is a large breed, they’ll also have large paws. Moreover, if you converse with Maine Coon breeders, they’ll often tell you to look at the paws to determine how big their cat will grow into adulthood. If the paw size matches with their body, then that’s their growth limit.
The large paws are also a big help for winter survival so they could walk on the snow easily. You’ll also see a couple of hair tufts that also keep them warm in the winter.
Bottom line: you’ll spot tufts of fur on a Maine Coon’s large paws.
Maine Coons grow very slowly and you’ll have to wait until they are 3 to 4 years old to become full adults – sometimes, even at 5! On the other hand, an average cat breed typically reaches adulthood at 2 years old.
Bottom line: Maine Coons grow at a slow rate and will reach full adulthood at 3 to 4 years old.
Characteristic Traits of a Maine Coon
Another way to tell a Maine Coon mix apart is to know about its signature temperaments. From loving water to being a dog-like trainable breed, Maine Coons have key personality traits that tell them apart from other cats.
It’s not enough to simply know their physical characteristics but also look into their personality. Here are some common characteristics that Maine Coon typically possesses:
They love water
Maine Coons are best known to have a water obsession, contrary to most cats. If you see your cat being oddly obsessed with water or bathing time, or even when taking them for a swim, it’s a good sign that they might possess the Maine Coon gene.
The common explanation for Maine Coons loving water is due to being around for a long time and becoming ship cats alongside Vikings. Maine Coons will most likely love a shower.
An affectionate cat
A Maine Coon typically has a loving and affectionate personality. They are close with the family and have great loyalty to their pet owner. These cats are also packed with curiosity so you might even be followed on your way to the restroom!
A great follower
Your Maine Coon will most likely follow you everywhere. These cats are also packed with curiosity so you might even be followed on your way to the restroom!
A Maine Coon will act like a dog most of the time due to being highly trainable. Other characteristics that make them dog-like include being sociable, loyal, water-loving, and loving to follow their owner.
They like to jump
Unlike other cat breeds, Maine Coons love to jump their way out of a situation. That’s because Maine Coons are an intelligent breed, which means they’ll prefer the shortcut instead of walking, which is jumping.
You’ll hear more short chirps from a Maine Coon, rather than the standard meowing. You’ll hear this when your Maine Coon responds to you (and you compare it with regular cat meows).