The Maine Coon is the most popular domestic cat in the world today. The answer to the following question explains exactly why.
Are Maine Coons good pets? Maine Coon cats are not just good pets, they are fantastic if you’re looking for a cat that’s family-friendly and particularly good with children. A Maine Coon is the ideal choice because of its tolerant nature. As soon as you own one you will realize why Maine Coons are the most popular pets in the world.
Treating a Maine Coon kindly and giving it plenty of attention increases its friendliness. As with all cats, they have sharp claws so young children should always be supervised in their company.
Whether you have other cats, dogs or children Maine Coons adapt well. These easy-going cats are much more likely to remove themselves from annoying situations than they are to retaliate against anyone.
The Maine Coon Cat
The Maine Coon is one of the largest domesticated cat breeds in the world. It is considered a great family pet due to its playful nature and is known to be a very sociable cat.
The ‘Maine’ component of its name was adopted from the US State where this cat was believed to originate from but it wasn’t until 1985 that it was made the official state cat of Maine.
What Makes a Cat a Good Pet?
Arguably, this is a very personal thing as what one person considers to be a ‘good’ pet might differ from another.
However, there are some basic questions that are perhaps more generic and relevant to most people. The majority of cat owners are families so we consider how good they are with children and babies.
Often, the family has other pets, so how does the Maine Coon socialize with other animals? Is the Maine Coon expensive and where should you buy one from?
We’ll answer these questions and a few others to try and determine just how good a pet the Maine Coon cat actually is.
Are Maine Coons Good Pets For Children?
The Maine Coon is very good with children. In our case, they have always been very good and we have a fair amount of experience.
We had our two Maine Coons before we had our son (who’s now 13) so we’re in a pretty good position to answer this particular question.
Cats, generally, don’t like erratic, sudden movements and loud noises. If you have children you’ll know that if you go an hour without any of these things happening it’s rare (or the child is asleep!)
Our two Maine Coons (brothers) have different personalities and react differently to children but neither interact in a way you would call aggressive.
Charlie used to keep his distance, making sure that when Joe (our son) was in one of those lively moods, running around the house, he placed himself in a safe spot.
Harry, our ginger Maine Coon was more likely to stand his ground and would let Joe interact with him more. If things became a bit too much for Harry, the worst you would get was a hiss and even that was rare.
I wouldn’t go as far as to say that the cats enjoy the interaction with Joe all the time, but they definitely tolerate it and seem to accept that he’s part of the family.
Joe still absolutely adores both cats and is always saying how naughty and cheeky they are, which is true. As he’s grown up he’s learned how to interact with pets and is now far more gentle and calm with them. Maine Coons are great pets for children.
Are Maine Coons Good Pets Around Babies?
In our experience, the Maine Coon is very good with babies. As I mentioned above, we have experience of this.
We have also conducted a lot of online research and used social media to ask what other people think.
Based on this, I’m confident that generally speaking, the Maine Coon is a lovely family cat and is typically well behaved around young children and babies.
A baby has no idea what a cat is but will usually be fascinated by one. You often see babies crawling after cats and prodding them or grabbing at their tails.
The strongest advice I can give is to never leave a baby and a cat without adult supervision. This is to protect both the baby and the cat.
Our Maine Coons tolerated baby behavior up to a point. When they’d had enough attention, they typically just ran away or jumped out of reach. They seemed to respect how precious baby Joe was and never tried to hurt him.
Are Maine Coons Good Pets For Laps?
A Maine Coon can be a lap cat but not always. We have two at the moment (and I had one before these) so have the limited experience of three cats.
One of our current cats doesn’t sit on laps very often and the other does. Below is a rare photo of Harry sitting on Jane’s lap. He is more likely to curl up on her legs in bed than sit on anyone’s lap.
We have a whole article on the lap cat question so please take a look here (opens in a new window).
We asked a large social media group and about 65% said their Maine Coons are lap cats. There are many reasons why a cat might not be a lap cat.
For instance, one may have had a bad experience in early life (maybe someone forcing it to stay on their lap) so now it avoids that situation.
Who gets more out of a cat sitting on your lap: the cat or you? The cat will like the warmth and security of being with you (if they are that way inclined) and you’ll like it as it will mean your partner has to do everything for you whilst the cat is on your lap!
Are Maine Coons Friendly Pets?
The Maine Coon is considered to be a very friendly breed of cat. However, a lot depends on how (or if) it was socialized when it was a kitten.
Socializing a cat (or any animal) means introducing it to as many other animals and people as possible whilst it is still young, so it becomes accustomed to them and is confident around them later in life.
The Maine Coon is typically a very sociable cat and is lost without human company. Like a dog, it does not like it when you spend a lot of time out of the house and just watch its mood change when you get the suitcases out prior to going away on vacation!
The Maine Coon is undoubtedly a very friendly breed of cat. In fact, it is so friendly we have an article all about this very subject (opens in a new window) – do check it out and find out exactly why!
Are Maine Coons Good Pets Around The House?
Maine Coons are generally considered a good house cat although this isn’t guaranteed. So, let’s take a look at what makes a good house cat?
- A cat that isn’t always wanting to go out hunting
- A cat that isn’t always seeking a mate outside (this could be because they haven’t been neutered yet).
- A cat that isn’t naturally destructive.
- A cat that can be trained to go to the toilet either in a litter tray or in a specific spot outside.
- A cat that isn’t aggressive and is comfortable with people and other pets.
So how does a Maine Coon cat fair with the above? Well, the Maine Coon is certainly a good hunter but it certainly doesn’t always want (or need) to go out and hunt. Bear in mind when it does go out hunting it is particularly good at it.
The Maine Coon certainly isn’t deliberately destructive. It’s playful, for sure and yes, 5 minutes after putting up your Christmas Tree your Maine Coon will be underneath it batting the decorations and lights off because that’s just what they need to do.
The Maine Coon is easily trained. Ours didn’t require any kind of litter-tray training, they just seemed to know what to do. Quite often they learn this by copying their mothers.
When we stopped putting a litter box down, they just went to the toilet outside (they have a catflap). The Maine Coon is a very clean cat and will only go outside of a litter box if it is really dirty and they can’t get outside.
The Maine Coon certainly isn’t aggressive, at least not with humans. It can be cheeky, inquisitive and playful but the only time I’ve seen a Maine Coon lash out is when it’s been protecting its territory from a strange cat.
Are Maine Coons Good Pets To Have With Dogs?
Maine Coons are good with dogs and other pets this depends on whether they’ve been properly socialized with many other pets as kittens.
That’s not the only factor though, each cat is different and just because one is perfectly okay with other pets, this doesn’t mean they all will be.
Our two Maine Coons (brothers) are a classic example of this. Neither were particularly well socialized at an early age by their breeder. They had little or no contact with other animals.
My Dad came round his Deerhound dog which, if you don’t know, is about as big as a small horse. Charlie sprinted upstairs and hid under the bed whilst Harry cooly stayed exactly where he was and barely flinched when it approached him.
So, there are a few factors that dictate how well your Maine Coon will get along with a dog. If you’d like to know more about this subject then we have a whole article that describes all you need to know (opens in a new window).
Are Maine Coons Good Pets To Have With Other Cats?
Maine Coons can get on with other cats but you have to introduce them both carefully.
If you think you can just bring another cat home one day, plonk it in the same house as you’re existing cat and they will get along, you’re probably going to be disappointed.
This isn’t the way you introduce two cats who don’t know each other. It’s almost a science and if you want to know the best way to get two cats to live peacefully with each other then please check this article out which contains a plan for introducing two strange cats to each other.
In summary though, yes – Maine Coons can cohabit with other cats but spend some time learning how to do it right first.
Are Maine Coons Good Pets If You Have Allergies?
Firstly, let’s just make this clear
The problem with answering this question is people will react differently to different cats. My wife, for instance, suffers from allergies and unfortunately can have a nasty reaction when she encounters most cat breeds.
With the Maine Coon, she doesn’t have this reaction and has always been perfectly okay. In our experience, the Maine Coon has been better than other cats in not provoking an allergic reaction.
The best thing you can do if you’re worried about this is to spend some time with a cat prior to buying it. If you can bring it into your home for an hour or so to see how you get along with it then this is ideal.
Are Maine Coons Expensive Pets?
The Maine Coon can be an expensive cat to buy and to own. A study (opens in a new window) has found that they cost between $800 and $2000 as kittens.
This really is only the tip of the iceberg though. For instance, if you don’t choose to get insurance then you could be looking at thousands in vet bills later in its life.
It really doesn’t take much for these costs to mount up. Insurance, which will cost you around $25 a month (for a 1-year-old cat), should be factored into the costs before you buy one.
The study I mentioned above looks at the cost of owning a Maine Coon for 12.5 years (an average lifespan) which will cost you over $20,000!
I hope after reading this you agree that the Maine Coon really does make a great pet. They will give you years of pleasure, without having to worry about their behavior.
My advice to anyone considering one of these gentle giants is to look at the numbers first and make sure you can afford one (they’re certainly not cheap) and if you can, do it! You won’t regret it.
People often ask do Maine Coons do this, do Maine Coons do that. Now you can read about the top 44 things that Maine Coons do all in one place!