It’s no secret Maine Coons are some of the biggest cats around. They are large, rugged cats built for almost any cold climate, from their long, thick fur to their big snowshoe feet. Maine Coons also consistently claim the world record for the longest cat alive. When the current record holder passes away, smart money says the next one will also be a Maine Coon.
But how much bigger are these gentle giants compared to the typical cats you see every day? It might surprise you to hear they aren’t always the tallest or heaviest cats, but they are definitely near the top of the list.
Maine Coon Breed Overview
Maine Coons is one of the oldest natural breeds from the United States, originating from the Northeastern parts of Maine and New Brunswick, Canada. It’s widely accepted that the breed came about because shorthaired cats already in the area bred with longhaired (possibly Angora) cats brought by English seamen or other longhaired breeds brought over by Viking explorers.
The result was a large, rugged cat, perfectly built to survive the harsh winters and easily travel along the snow thanks to their large paws that are often referred to as a natural snowshoe – especially polydactyl Maine Coons, which have extra toes and extra wide paws as a result.
Maine Coons are well known for their distinctive lion-like appearance, which includes a long, shaggy coat, mane-like fur, tufted ears/paws, and of course, the exceptionally long bushy tail. Thanks to their friendly and playful personalities, they are commonly called “gentle giants” or “dogs of the cat world,” and they consistently earn their spot as one of the top cats to have around children.
Maine Coon Average Weight
On top of their general appearance, the most noticeable feature of a Maine Coon is their size. Maine Coons are one of the heaviest cat breeds, weighing anywhere from 10 to 25 pounds, depending on gender and age. The average weight of a male Maine Coon is 15 to 18 pounds, and 10 to 14 pounds for females. But those are just the averages; there are quite a few Maine Coons that reach 30 pounds without being overweight. It’s rare, but not that rare, if that makes sense.
To compare, the average weight of a typical domestic cat is about 8 to 10 pounds, meaning that a Maine Coon can be two to three times as heavy as a normal cat.
Of course, there are several factors that will affect the weight of an individual cat, such as diet, health, and spaying or neutering, but Maine Coons are still significantly heavier than most other breeds.
Maine Coon Size Compared to Other Cat Breeds
Maine Coons are not only heavier than most cats, they are also larger than the average cat in terms of length, height, and muscle mass.
The average length for a Maine Coon is about 40 inches long, including the tail, which can be as long as 14 inches on its own. The average height for a Maine Coon is about 10 to 16 inches, depending on their posture.
The longest cat ever recorded was a whopping 48.42 inches long. I’ll give you a hint, it was a Maine Coon.
In contrast, the average length for a domestic cat is about 28 inches, also including the tail, and their average height is about 8 to 10 inches. Making a Maine Coon up to 12 inches longer and 6 inches taller than a normal cat. Doesn’t sound like much, but in the context of a cat, it’s massive.
Maine Coon Size
A Maine Coons size is not only impressive, but it’s also functional. The Maine Coon evolved to adapt to the cold and harsh environment of Maine, and its size directly helped it survive and thrive.
The large body mass helps Maine Coons retain heat and stay warm, while the long, thick coat provides insulation and protection from the snow and wind and a natural waterproofing. Interestingly, their tufted ears and paws actually serve to prevent frostbite and improve hearing and traction.
The size of a Maine Coon also gave it an advantage in hunting and fighting. Maine Coons can easily overpower smaller prey and predators by using their strength and agility to catch and kill them. The Maine Coon can also intimidate and dominate other cats to establish its territory and dominance.
How Big Do Maine Coons Get
Maine Coons are a slow-growing breed and can take up to 4 to 5 years to reach their full size and weight. The growth rate and the final size of a Maine Coon can depend on several factors, such as genetics, nutrition, health, and gender. As a general rule, male Maine Coons tend to grow larger and faster than female Maine Coons, reaching up to 25 pounds or more. Female Maine Coons tend to grow smaller and slower than male Maine Coons, typically reaching up to 14 pounds.
The size of a Maine Coon can also vary greatly depending on the individual and the bloodline. Some Maine Coons are exceptionally large, frequently breaking records for the longest and heaviest cats in the world. For example, the Guinness World Record for the longest cat is held by a Maine Coon named Stewie, who measured 48.42 inches from nose to tail (the one I mentioned before). And the Guinness World Record for the heaviest cat is held by a Maine Coon named Himmy, who weighed in at 46.8 pounds.
Maine Coon Cat Tails vs. Normal Cats
Another distinctive feature of the Maine Coon is its tail which is noticeably different than other cats. A Maine Coon tail is covered with thick and fluffy fur giving it a plumed appearance. Their tail can also have different colors and patterns, depending on the coat color of the cat.
Besides being fluffy and beautiful, their tail is also functional. The tail helps the large Maine Coon maintain balance and steer its body, especially when jumping, climbing, and swimming. Like any cat, Maine Coons also use their tail to communicate and express their mood by waving, curling, or flicking it.
The tail of a normal cat is equally important but not nearly as impressive as the tail of a Maine Coon. A normal cat’s tail is shorter and thinner than the tail of a Maine Coon, and is usually 10 inches or less. Their tails are often covered with short and smooth fur, giving them a sleek appearance.
Can You Predict How Big a Maine Coon Will Get?
Sadly, no, there is no way to tell how large a Maine Coon kitten will be when it’s fully grown. The only semi-accurate way to get an idea is to look at the parents. If your kitten’s parents are exceptionally large, there is a good chance your kitten will be as well – but it’s not a guarantee.
What Cats Are Bigger Than a Maine Coon
The only cat breed consistently larger than a Maine Coon are Savannahs. Larger Maine Coons will often be bigger than a Savannah, but generally speaking, an F1 generation Savannah will be bigger than most Maine Coons.
Savannah cats that are further away from their wild Serval blood, F2 generation or lower, are often smaller than F1’s and, in most cases, will be smaller than a Maine Coon.
Other cat breeds, like the Ragdoll or Bengal, can be bigger than a Maine Coon as well, but their average sizes are smaller.