Maine Coon Life Expectancy – Unveiling the Mystery


Maine Coon cats vary in their appearance and size, resulting in different life expectancies and health concerns. If you have experience with Maine Coons, you may be curious about their lifespan and what to anticipate as they grow older. Therefore, what is the typical lifespan of a Maine Coon?

Maine Coon cats typically live for 10 to 15 years, with many reaching the age of 12.5 years or more. The lifespan of a Maine Coon can be influenced by various factors, such as a healthy diet, regular exercise, and regular visits to the vet. These factors contribute to a longer life for these cats.

Taking care of your cat’s health and knowing the elements that contribute to a lengthy lifespan can significantly increase their life expectancy. This article will discuss the life span of a Maine Coon cat, what to anticipate during different stages of their growth, and ways you can support their well-being for a longer and healthier life.

Maine Coon Lifespan

Maine Coons are considered a robust and durable breed, due to their muscular physique. They have evolved in harsh weather conditions and near the sea, which required them to possess strength and resilience. Therefore, it may come as a surprise that the average lifespan of a Maine Coon cat is only 10 to 15 years. This doesn’t mean it’s a short lifespan, but rather shorter than what one might anticipate.

Maine Coon cats are pretty average when it comes to their lifespan. Most cat breeds have a similar life expectancy or fall into this range. There are a few exceptions with a very small variation.

Other cat breeds have similar life expectancies. For example, a Manx cat typically lives for about 8 years, which is the shortest compared to other breeds. This is only a 2-year difference from the Maine Coon. Certain cats, like the Siamese, can live quite long, up to 20 years.

Even though Maine Coon cats are typically expected to live up to 15 years, this is not a fixed number. It is possible for them to live well into their 20s. However, there are certain factors that need to be taken into account.

Life expectancy factors

Maine Coon cats have a special life expectancy because of their size. Here are some things you should know that affect how long they live.

Purebred Vs Mixed Maine Coon

The type of cat and if it’s a purebred is a major factor in terms of life expectancy. A study in the UK discovered that mixed breeds lived an average of 14 years, and purebreds average 12.5 years. That’s really interesting since purebred cats usually cost more and are more desired when it comes to cats. In this case, a purebred Maine Coon may not live as long as a mixed breed. This is something to be aware of if you’re looking for a pet. 

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Maine Coon Diet

It is important to provide your cat with the proper nutrition to maintain their health. High-quality cat food is essential to ensure they receive the necessary minerals for their body and overall well-being. Inferior quality food may not contain all the essential nutrients. Ideally, you should feed your Maine Coon a raw food diet whenever feasible.

If you can’t make your own cat food, you can still give your cat all the necessary nutrients by buying high-quality food. Brands like Royal Canin and Purina offer more expensive options specifically designed for larger cat breeds like the Maine Coon.

Make sure you don’t give your Maine Coon too much food. Maine Coon cats are always hungry, but stick to the right amount and feeding times!

Exercise

Maine Coon cats are really big. They can weigh up to 20 pounds! Because of their size, it’s important for them to get plenty of exercise. The weight of a Maine Coon is the main thing that sets them apart from regular cats.

Regular physical activity is crucial in preventing cats from becoming obese. Nowadays, cats are more prone to obesity compared to previous years. Similar to humans, if a cat carries excess weight, it can result in various health issues.

Stress

There is a distinction between short-term stress and long-term stress. If cats experience ongoing stress, it can result in different health issues and alterations in behavior. Maine Coons not showing affection is typically a result of stress as well. The better your cat feels, the better their overall health will be.

Health Concerns

Each cat breed has its own unique genetic health issues. Additionally, certain cats may require more medical care than others. It is important to be aware of common illnesses and regularly monitor your cat’s health.

Environment

This category is quite broad. The lifespan of indoor cats and outdoor cats differs, and we will explore that. Apart from that, factors in the surroundings could include unfriendly cats, ongoing stress, or harmful chemicals.

Certain factors, like breed and genetics, are predetermined, while others can be influenced by you.

Indoor vs. Outdoor Cats

The biggest contrast in terms of health between Maine Coon cats that stay indoors and those that go outdoors is the safety of their surroundings.

Cats that stay indoors have a longer lifespan because they are kept in a secure environment. On the other hand, cats that roam outdoors face many dangers such as cars, dogs, other cats, and harmful substances. Exposure to things like car fumes and fertilizers can negatively impact the health of outdoor cats, leading to a shorter life expectancy.

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One of the reasons why cats that go outside have shorter lifespans compared to indoor cats is because they are not being taken care of. When a cat stays indoors, their owner can easily notice any health issues and promptly take them to a veterinarian. Outdoor cats, on the other hand, do not have this advantage.

If you have a cat that goes outside, make sure to keep an eye on them.

Health Problems in Maine Coons

Maine Coons, like other purebred cats, can have genetic health issues that can affect their lifespan. According to Dr. Lee Pickett, there are three primary health issues that Maine Coons can be born with.

● Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) – Fortunately, there is an abbreviation for this. HCM is a heart problem where the walls of the heart are excessively thick and cannot contract effectively. One out of every three Maine Coon cats will inherit the gene responsible for this condition. Typically, this can be detected at a young age. Consult your veterinarian to inquire about the possibility of conducting an ultrasound examination.

● Hip Dysplasia- This condition affects the formation of the hip joint. Around 23% of Maine Coons have this condition, which can lead to arthritis in the hip. Stiffness and limping are common side effects of hip dysplasia. A study showed that males are more likely to develop hip dysplasia than females. It is also more common in older cats than younger cats.

● Maine Coon cats may experience Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) during their early life. SMA is a genetic condition that affects the normal development of the spinal cord, causing difficulties in walking and muscle loss in the back legs.

You can take care of genetic disorders and ensure your cat has a good quality of life. However, the length of their life may be shorter depending on the specific condition.

How to Increase Life Expectancy

It’s not uncommon for cats, especially Maine Coons, to live well into their twenties. There are steps you can take to ensure your cat stays healthy and lives a long life.

●      Make sure to bring your cat for regular checkups– your veterinarian will be able to conduct routine examinations to ensure your cat’s well-being. Your veterinarian will likely examine the ears, eyes, coat, nose, paws, and perform a general screening.

●      It is advisable to have your cat spend more time indoors rather than outdoors– as we mentioned earlier, cats that spend time outside tend to have a shorter lifespan compared to those that stay indoors. It may be challenging to keep your cat inside all the time, but you can establish a routine. For example, you can allow your cat to go outside in the morning when you get ready, and they can come back when you shake a bag of treats. Another option worth considering is getting your pet microchipped.

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●      Ensure a balanced diet– it is important to provide your cat with a nutritious diet. Give them high-quality food that is rich in nutrients. Keeping track of their food intake also helps prevent them from becoming overweight.

●      Playtime– It is crucial to provide mental stimulation for your cat, in addition to physical exercise. Allocating time for play is vital for maintaining your cat’s brain health.

●      Inspect their teeth– a cat’s dental condition can provide valuable insights into their overall well-being. Strong gums indicate a healthy cat. If there is a buildup of tartar, it can lead to tooth decay or even tooth loss.

●      Regularly clean their litter box– Litter boxes are a hotspot for bacteria and germs. Neglecting to change the litter box frequently can lead to health issues. Additionally, regularly cleaning the litter box allows you to observe the condition of your cat’s digestive and urinary systems. This enables you to identify any abnormal feces, blood, or diarrhea that may indicate health problems.

●      Regular observation– it is crucial to consistently keep an eye on your adorable pet. Cats typically do not display signs of illness or injury, so it is important to be attentive and observe closely. By doing so, you can promptly take action when you detect any changes in your cat’s condition.

Conclusion

Maine Coon cats are known for their robust nature and typically live for about 10 to 15 years. By taking appropriate steps, you can ensure that your cat enjoys a lengthy and healthy life. Nevertheless, similar to other purebred animals, Maine Coons can be prone to genetic disorders that may shorten their lifespan. It is important to schedule regular checkups with your veterinarian and keep a close eye on their well-being at home.

You can also check this YouTube video about this topic:

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[Wikipedia] [Encyclopedia Britannica] [National Geographic] [cdc.gov] [Purina]

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