With a nickname like “gentle giant,” it’s a pretty fair guess that your tiny fluff ball of a Maine Coon kitten is going to grow quite a bit bigger. Did you know the current record holder for the world’s longest cat is a Maine Coon? This record-breaker, a Maine Coon from Italy named Barivel, measures 3 feet, 11.2 inches long! Barivel snagged the title in 2018 from a Maine Coon named Ludo who had taken it from a Maine Coon named Stewie and well, you get the idea…these cats can get big!
While your Maine Coon probably won’t be breaking records, they are, in general, going to be bigger than a normal cat. In this article, we will compare the size of Maine Coon cats versus normal cats, including some other popular purebred cats. We’ll also learn why Maine Coon cats are usually so big as well as some reasons why they could be smaller.
Average Maine Coon Size vs Normal Cat Size
So how big can you expect a Maine Coon cat to be? Maine Coon cats usually weigh between 10 and 25 pounds. Their average height is 10 to 16 inches and their average length is 19 to 32 inches. Male Maine Coon cats are generally larger than females.
We usually consider a normal house cat to be one of no specific breed, although they are often widely labeled Domestic Shorthair or Domestic Longhair cats. There can be a lot of variety in size among these cats due to their mixed breed status. Generally, an average-sized adult house cat will weigh between 8 and 10 pounds. Their average height is about 10 inches and their average length is 15 to 20 inches.
Based on these averages, you can see that Maine Coon cats overall tend to be larger than normal house cats. However, this won’t always be the case, especially with female Maine Coons who are usually smaller than males. Some large house cats might be similar in size to a smaller Maine Coon.
Maine Coon Size vs. Other Cat Breeds
A normal house cat is usually a mixed breed and doesn’t have the consistent size that you generally get with purebred cats. How does the size of the average Maine Coon cat compare to that of other cat breeds? Here is a chart comparing the weight, height, and length of the Maine Coon to other popular cat breeds:
|Maine Coon||10-25 pounds||10-16 inches||19-32 inches|
|Ragdoll||8-20 pounds||9-11 inches||17-21 inches|
|Persian||7-12 pounds||8-10 inches||14.5-17.5 inches|
|Norwegian Forest Cat||9-20 pounds||9-12 inches||12-18 inches|
|Sphynx||10-12 pounds||8-10 inches||13-15 inches|
|Abyssinian||8-12 pounds||8-10 inches||12-16 inches|
|Scottish Fold||9-13 pounds||8-10 inches||14-16 inches|
|Savannah||12-25 pounds||13-15 inches||20-22 inches|
As you can see, the Maine Coon is generally one of the larger breeds of cats. Again, individual Maine Coon cats can certainly be smaller than some individuals of other large cat breeds such as the Savannah, Ragdoll, or Norwegian Forest Cat.
Related Read: Maine Coon Ragdoll
Why Are Maine Coon Cats So Big?
The origins of the Maine Coon cat breed are not completely clear, although it is known that they were developed in the state of Maine. There are several theories as to why Maine Coon cats are so big. One is that the earliest Maine Coon cats bred with either raccoons or bobcats and that is responsible for their size. However, this theory is not supported by science or genetics.
Many of the recognizable features of the Maine Coon, like their long, thick coat and extra-large, furry paws, probably developed to help the breed survive the cold winters of Maine. Another theory about why Maine Coon cats are so big relates to the cold as well. It is speculated that Maine Coon cats grew so big to slow the rate that they lost body heat, allowing them to keep warm in the harsh winters. Unfortunately, this theory is also unproven.
Whether genetics, environment, or a mix of both is responsible for the size of Maine Coon cats hasn’t been completely answered. What is known is that Maine Coon cats grow much more slowly than other cats.
Normally, cats reach their full adult size at about 1 to 1.5 years old. However, Maine Coon cats may continue to grow up until 3 to 5 years old! This slow growth rate allows their bones and muscles to develop more fully than other cats, which is a big reason that Maine Coons can be larger than normal cats.
Small Maine Coon Cats: They Exist! Here’s Why…
As we’ve seen by comparing average sizes, there are times where the Maine Coon might not be the biggest cat in the room. Some Maine Coon owners claim their cat’s massive coat often makes them seem bigger than they are! While that’s not always the case, it is true that the size of a Maine Coon cat is determined by several different factors and can’t always be predicted. Here are some reasons why a Maine Coon cat could be smaller than average.
The amount, type, and nutrient quality of a Maine Coon’s diet can impact their size. Remember, Maine Coon cats grow much more slowly than the average cat. They need the right mix of nutrition as they grow to help them get big.
At the same time, you shouldn’t overfeed your Maine Coon trying to make them larger. They may very well get larger but in an unhealthy way by becoming overweight. Excess weight can cause many health problems. Your veterinarian can help you figure out the right food and amount to feed to keep your Maine Coon cat fit and healthy.
If your Maine Coon’s parents were small, chances are they will also be on the smaller side. Again, this isn’t true 100% of the time. There are times when a Maine Coon can grow larger (or smaller) than their parents. Still, the size of a kitten’s parents is usually a good guide for how big they will grow.
Yes, it’s true, some “Maine Coon” cats offered for sale are actually Maine Coon mixed breeds. There can be a couple of different reasons for this.
Sometimes it’s been done deliberately to make a smaller cat. Not everyone is prepared to own a large Maine Coon cat even if they love the personality and look of the breed. Introducing some new genetics into the Maine Coon breed can also be done to keep the breed strong and healthy.
Whatever the reason, these mixed Maine Coon cats generally don’t get as big as the purebred ones.
It’s possible that an inherited health condition or a kitten disease could impact the growth rate of a Maine Coon. If your Maine Coon doesn’t seem to be growing as you expected, consult your veterinarian. They can help you determine if there is a medical explanation for your Maine Coon’s small size.
Maine Coon cats are popular not only for their size and beauty but their gentle, friendly personalities as well. While there’s no guarantee your Maine Coon will be bigger than a normal cat, there’s a good chance that they will be. Make sure you’re prepared to share your home with a large cat, especially because the Maine Coon won’t be satisfied with just living with you. More likely, you will end up with an oversized lap cat who always wants to be snuggled and follows you everywhere! Maine Coon cats might be a lot to love but they bring a lot of love to your life in return!
Featured Image Credit: Sergey Ginak, Shutterstock