The phrase Maine Coon cat conjures up an image of a supersized, fluffy feline. Everyone is intrigued to know if all Maine Coons are large and what size one can be expected to reach.
Typically, adult male Maine Coons weigh between 13 and 18 pounds (5.9 to 8.2 kilograms), whilst adult females tend to weigh 8 to 14 pounds (3.6 to 6.4 kilograms). However, it’s important to note that individual cats can vary widely in size, so some Maine Coons might be smaller or larger than these ranges.
Our Maine Coon brothers Fred (left) and Oscar at 2 years old
An adult Maine Coon’s height varies from 25 to 40cm, and its total length from nose to tail can reach 1 meter. Fortunately, these cats have sturdy, muscular bodies to support their hefty weight.
The length and height a Maine Coon cat reaches depends heavily on its genetics, but its weight can be largely affected by environmental factors such as whether it is an indoor or outdoor cat, how much it is fed, and how much exercise it gets.
Can You Predict the Size a Maine Coon Cat Will Grow To?
There is no way to accurately predict the size a full-grown Maine Coon cat will be and I’ll share undisputable evidence of this in a moment.
To a certain degree, genetics play a role but, just as with humans, there is no guarantee that Maine Coon kittens will be the size of either of their parents or each other.
Depending on dominant genes, each Maine Coon kitten in a litter can grow to different sizes, some smaller, some similar, and some larger than either of their parents.
These are our girls Mona (left) and Rosie. They’re not sisters and at 4 years old both weigh 14 lbs.
An example of different-sized Maine Coons from the same litter
We have 2 Maine Coon brothers, Fred and Oscar. They were born on 14th July 2020 and weighed the same, about 4 ounces each (114 grams). At 3 years old, Fred is 25.5 lbs and Oscar is just 15 lbs.
Here’s a table of their growth up until 3 years:
|Age||Fred’s weight||Oscar’s weight|
|Birth||4 oz (114 g)||4 oz (114 g)|
|13 weeks||5.5 lbs (2.5 kg)||5 lbs (2.3 kg)|
|4 months||7.5 lbs (3.4 kg)||7 lbs (3.2 kg)|
|5 months||10 lbs (4.5 kg)||9 lbs (4 kg)|
|6 months||13 lbs (5.9 kg)||10.5 lbs (4.8 kg)|
|9 months||16.5 lbs (7.5 kg)||13 lbs (5.9 kg)|
|12 months||19 lbs (8.6 kg)||14 lbs (6.4 kg)|
|18 months||22 lbs (10 kg)||15.5 lbs (7 kg)|
|2 years||26 lbs (11.8 kg)||15 lbs (7 kg)|
|3 years||25.5 lbs (11.6 kg)||15 lbs (6.8 kg)|
Here’s a photo of Oscar (left) and Fred at 14 months
At what age is a Maine Coon fully grown?
Maine Coons reportedly keep growing for longer than many other cat breeds. Most breeds reach their full size by 2 years of age but it is said that Maine Coons keep growing until they are 3 or 4 years old.
I have shared my life with 7 Maine Coons over the last three decades and have not yet had one that has kept growing beyond 18 months to 2 years.
Our Maine Coon Fred stopped growing at 2 years old and his brother Oscar stopped growing at 18 months ( you can see evidence of this in the table above. So please don’t worry if your Maine Coon doesn’t keep expanding in size until it is 4 years old.
A photo of our first pair of brothers Harry (left) and Charlie at 1 year old. They also stopped growing at 18 months.
Why do Maine Coons grow so large?
These cats are nicknamed ‘gentle giants’ for a good reason. They are the largest (and most popular) breed of domestic cat and are well known for their gentle nature and temperament.
Very little is known about their true lineage, so there is no way of really knowing why Maine Coon cats grow as large as they do.
The best assumption is that Maine Coons are big because they are genetically coded to develop a large musculoskeletal system. Large body sizes ensured their ancestors were robust enough to survive the cold climate of New England winters.
However, today some Maine Coons are selectively bred to be big cats for a completely different reason – because many people desire large cats.
A Maine Coon’s size means it is very well adapted to survive in harsh winter climates. Its large paws help it to walk on snow and long tufts of hair between its toes help to keep its feet warm.
It has extremely furry ears with extra long tufts of fur growing on the inside and on the tips to keep them warm and protected. Its long, bushy tail can be curled around its face to provide extra protection against the cold.
This is a photo of Rosie at 4 years old.
Can diet affect a Maine Coons size?
Yes, what it eats can definitely affect the size of a Maine Coon but your primary concern should be feeding your Maine Coon correctly right from the start.
You should never try to increase your cat’s size by giving it too much food as this could result in your cat being heavy only because it is overweight. You don’t want an overweight Maine Coon as this is very likely to lead to poor health and shorten its lifespan.
Ideally, you should feed your Maine Coon twice a day. In my experience, Maine Coons are quite fussy eaters so make sure your cat really likes a particular food before buying it in bulk.
Basic dietary requirements
Just like any other cats, Maine Coons need certain elements in their diet, including:
- Fats and Fatty Acids
- Amino Acids
- Vitamins and Minerals
You should always buy foods specifically developed for cats as these are created with the right balance of nutrition for good health. They also make it easier to manage portion control.
There are some foods formulated specifically for Maine Coon cats, but research seems to suggest that these don’t make a significant difference to a Maine Coon’s health. So it’s OK to buy any good quality cat food.
This is a picture of Mona at 3 years of age.
There has been much debate on cat food ingredients over the years. All cat food sold in shops must meet certain standards. When choosing food, consider your own thoughts on the type, your budget, your cat’s preferences. Seek advice from a vet if you’re unsure.
Protein is the most important ingredient in a cat’s diet, especially for a large breed like the Maine Coon. Most vets agree that animal proteins such as meat, chicken, and fish are preferable to plant proteins.
So, it is not a good idea to make your cat a vegetarian just because you are.
Where possible, you should choose food that includes real protein sources rather than those that contain “meal” or “by-products.” Many pet owners like to feed their pet a grain or gluten-free diet, believing that these ingredients are bad for a cat’s digestion.
This is totally unnecessary if your pet doesn’t have a diagnosed grain or gluten allergy.
Maine Cooons can be fussy about flavors so you will need to experiment until you find their favorites. And of course, once you’ve established this, you can bet your life they’ll go off that particular variety the day you buy a month’s supply because it was on offer!
Wet versus dry food
Whether you feed your cat wet or dry food is also a matter of preference. Here are some thoughts:
- Dry foods are easier to prepare than wet foods and allow a cat to use its teeth. Some claim to be formulated to help keep a cat’s teeth clean.
- Wet foods have a higher moisture content than dry foods. This is important to maintain proper kidney function especially if your cat doesn’t drink a lot of water. It’s worth considering more wet foods for older cats.
- A mix of wet and dry food might be best to ensure the right dietary balance for your cat.
Food for each life stage
Just like us, Maine Coons require different nutrition at each stage of life. A kitten needs different food than a fully grown cat and a young adult cat’s dietary requirements differ from those of a senior cat. Most food brands treat cats of 7 years plus as seniors.
- You should feed your Maine Coon kitten a formula designed specifically for kittens. This will be carefully formulated to meet all of its dietary requirements.
- Because Maine Coon Cats reach maturity later than other breeds, you may want to keep your cat on kitten food longer. Most cats make the switch at around 4 to 5 months of age, but some vets suggest keeping Maine Coons on kitten food up until they are 9 months. You should discuss this with your vet if you aren’t sure when to make the change.
- Senior cats also have different needs. Many companies make food specially designed for older cats which you might consider, depending on your cat’s health. These are generally lower in energy to prevent your elderly cat from gaining weight in its lethargic later years.
Can its environment affect a Maine Coon’s growth?
Indoor cats will require less food per day as they generally don’t get as much exercise as outdoor cats. It can be difficult to tell if a Maine Coon is becoming overweight because of all that fur!
Many companies market food, especially for indoor cats but beware as these foods can contain fillers and lower-quality proteins. There’s plenty more information in Can a Maine Coon be an indoor cat.
Rosie’s stern look
Outdoor cats are usually more active than indoor cats and therefore are able to eat more without gaining excess weight. Make sure your cat is getting the proper amount of food to maintain a healthy weight for its age and size.
Refer to the food package instructions or check with your vet how much you should be feeding your pet.
Fred enjoying the safe garden.
Conclusion – how big is a Maine Coon cat?
How big is a Maine Coon cat? In truth, their size can vary wildly from one Maine Coon to the next. If you have a Maine Coon, you should be prepared for it to grow into a very large cat but also not worry if it doesn’t.
The proportions your Maine Coon finally achieves should not really bother you because by the time it is a fully grown adult, no matter what size, you will be totally smitten. There are a multitude of larger-than-life features sported by Maine Coon cats.
And if you are wondering whether to get one, here are the best reasons to own a Maine Coon.