Where to Get A Maine Coon Cat: How To Find A Gentle Giant

where to get a maine coon cat - studio image of a grey and white tabby maine coon on a grey background

Maine Coon cats, known affectionately as “gentle giants,” are not only one of the largest domestic cat breeds but also one of the most beautiful and charismatic. Their bushy tails, shaggy coats, and large size paired with their friendly disposition make them highly sought after.

Whether you’re dreaming of owning a big cat, their variety of colors, their long coats with a luxurious feel, or their unique tufted ears and paws, bringing one of these beautiful cats into your home is a rewarding experience.

Here’s everything you need to know about where to get a Maine Coon cat and how to welcome one of these magnificent cats into your life.

Where To Get A Maine Coon CAt

Reputable Breeders

The best place to start looking for a Maine Coon cat is with registered Maine Coon breeders who take great care in their breeding programs to avoid health issues like hip dysplasia or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

Reputable breeders go the extra mile to guarantee that their kittens are not only healthy but also align with breed standards, offering a health certificate as proof.  Buying from a responsible breeder often comes with a high price, but the quality, pedigree, and health of the kittens justify the cost.

Finding a Maine Coon breeder requires a bit of research. Start by checking online for breeders in your area that have a business website, and look for reviews from previous customers. Some breeders will even deliver kittens across long distances, for the right price. 

If you get the opportunity, visit a local cat show, where you can meet breeders in person and see their cats’ quality firsthand. This also allows you to ask questions and get a feel for the breeder’s expertise and passion for Maine Coons.

Cat associations, such as The International Cat Association (TICA), maintain lists of registered Maine Coon breeders, making it easier to find a reputable breeder in your area. 

Another reliable source for locating high-quality Maine Coon kittens is breed-specific clubs and organizations, such as the Maine Coon Breeders and Fanciers Association (MCBFA). These groups often maintain lists of member breeders who adhere to specific health testing and ethical breeding standards. 

Remember, a reputable breeder will be just as interested in ensuring their kittens go to a good home as you are in finding your new furry family member. They will welcome your questions about their cats and their breeding program, provide detailed health information about the kitten and its parents, and offer support as you integrate your new Maine Coon into your household.

where to get a maine coon cat - grey tabby maine coon kitten laying on a table next to a wicker basket

Pet Stores

Acquiring Maine Coon cats from pet shops may seem convenient, but it’s not the best way to find purebred Maine Coon kittens. Pet stores are often associated with “kitten mills,” which are mass breeding sites focused on profit rather than animal welfare. 

Kittens from these mills can have genetic and health issues due to poor breeding, poor living conditions, and lack of medical care. This impacts the kitten’s health and can lead to long-term medical problems. We always strongly advise against purchasing kittens from pet stores to avoid perpetuating mistreatment. 

Some pet stores choose not to sell pedigree kittens and instead promote rescue cats, working with shelters to facilitate adoptions. This practice helps address pet overpopulation and increases rescue animals’ chances of finding homes. Prioritize pet stores that collaborate with reputable breeders or local cat rescue centers.

Classified Ads and Social Media

Platforms like Facebook pages or classified ads might tempt you with offers of free Maine Coon kittens or low-cost options.

Caution is advised here as well. While there might be legitimate offers, understanding the kitten’s health background, the conditions they were raised in, and whether they come from responsible breeding is challenging. 

Engaging with community groups dedicated to the Maine Coon breed can be more reliable. Additionally, online forums and social media groups dedicated to Maine Coon enthusiasts can be invaluable resources. Here, current Maine Coon owners share their experiences and recommend breeders they trust.

Animal Shelters and Rescues

Though they might not come with pedigree papers, rescuing a cat offers the joy of providing a second chance to a gentle giant.

Adopting a Maine Coon or mixed breed cat from a shelter or rescue organization not only provides a loving home to a pet in need but also offers the opportunity to expand your family with a grateful feline companion. 

By welcoming a rescued Maine Coon cat into your home, you are giving them a second chance at a happy life, filled with love and care. Rescuing a cat not only benefits the feline but also enriches your own life with affection and companionship.

Adopting from a shelter promotes responsible pet ownership, as you are actively contributing to reducing the population of homeless animals and supporting animal welfare efforts.

Maine Coon Specific Rescue Organizations

Focusing your search on organizations specifically dedicated to the Maine Coon breed can be a great way to find healthy Maine Coon kittens or older cats that need a new home. 

Maine Coon rescue centers work with registered breeders and pet owners to take in Maine Coons from less-than-ideal situations, ensuring they go to good, loving homes. 

However, purebred cats don’t find their way into rescues nearly as often as mixed breeds do. So if your heart is set on a purebred registered Maine Coon kitten, your best bet is to look for a breeder.

where to get a maine coon cat  - studio image of a black maine coon cat laying on a black surface with a black background

Things to Consider Before Getting a Maine Coon Cat

Before welcoming a Maine Coon cat into your home, take a minute or two to honestly evaluate your readiness for the commitment, assess your available space and resources, and determine if your budget can accommodate the costs associated with caring for this breed.

When considering the commitment level, remember that Maine Coons live on average for 12 to 15 years, so you will be required to invest a significant part of your life for caring for these cats. 

The tradeoff is that they will be loyal, sociable and playful companions. Their affectionate nature thrives on human companionship, making them ideal for families or individuals who can provide the necessary time and affection.

Do You Have the Space and Resources?

Deciding if you have adequate space and necessary resources to accommodate a Maine Coon cat involves evaluating your budget as well as your living arrangements. 

Before you buy, make sure you research this breed’s potential hereditary health issues that the breed may be prone to.

Understanding the cat’s genetic background can help anticipate and address any specific health concerns early, as well as help you know what questions to ask the breeder regarding any genetic disease screening they may be doing to keep these diseases out of their cattery.

The better the pedigree, the more expensive the kitten is to purchase but, in the long run, you might end up spending less on veterinary care. Selecting a reputable breeder with a focus on breeding healthy and well-socialized cats ensures you are getting a pet with a strong genetic lineage.

Keep in mind that since Maine Coon cats are bigger, their care needs are therefore bigger too – more money for food, more time for grooming for their thick fur to prevent matting and tangles (failure to groom regularly may lead to having to shave your cat to get rid of mats!), bigger toys, bigger beds, and bigger everything! Even the kittens are bigger than the average cat.

Living space suitability is another important factor. Maine Coons are large cats, with males often reaching up to 18 pounds and females around 10-12 pounds or more. These cats require ample space to roam and play. Your home needs to offer enough room for their comfort and playfulness.

Creating suitable living conditions involves not just physical space but also mental stimulation for these intelligent and active animals. Your living space, as well as your budget, will need to allow for scratching posts, climbing trees, and interactive toys that are so critical for keeping your Maine Coon cat happy and healthy.

Can You Afford a Maine Coon Cat?

Understanding the financial aspects of owning a Maine Coon cat includes factoring in initial costs, expenses related to potential health problems, quality food requirements, and other essential investments for your pet’s well-being.

Initial costs for a Maine Coon cat typically encompass expenses like purchase or adoption fees, spaying/neutering, vaccinations, and basic supplies such as a litter box, scratching posts, and toys. Don’t forget about high-quality cat food tailored to the breed’s nutritional needs.

Ongoing expenses may arise from routine veterinary check-ups, grooming, litter, toys, and potential unforeseen medical bills.

Health issues specific to Maine Coon cats, such as spinal muscular atrophy, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or hip dysplasia, could incur additional costs for diagnosis, treatment, and long-term care. Purchasing pet insurance is usually a good idea when it comes to this breed.

Closing Thoughts

Bringing a Maine Coon into your home requires careful thought, preparation, and a dedication to providing a nurturing environment. 

Whether getting your new kitten from a registered breeder, a reputable pet shop, or a rescue center, ensuring your new feline friend is healthy and content is key. 

But in the end, with proper care these gentle giants bring immense joy, companionship, and a touch of elegance to your home, making all the effort worthwhile.

Remember, getting a Maine Coon is not just about getting a pet; it’s about welcoming a new member into your family and community.

Editor’s Note: Did you know there is another giant cat that is almost as popular as the Maine Coon. Learn more about the Norwegian Forest Cat here!

where to get a maine coon cat - grey and white tabby maine coon cat laying relaxed on a grey wood floor

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Maine Coon cat?

The Maine Coon cat breed is a line of large and affectionate domestic cats, known for their distinctive long fur, tufted ears, and bushy tail. They were originally bred as working cats in the state of Maine in the United States, hence their name. 

Where can I get a Maine Coon cat?

The two main ways to get a Maine Coon cat are either through adoption or by purchasing one from a reputable breeder. Both options have their own unique benefits.

What is the process for adopting a Maine Coon cat?

The process for adopting a Maine Coon cat may vary depending on the shelter or adoption agency, but typically involves filling out an application, meeting the cat in person, and providing proof of a suitable living environment for the cat.

What should I look for in a reputable breeder?

When looking for a reputable breeder, make sure to do your research and ask for references. Look for breeders who prioritize the health and welfare of their cats and are transparent about their breeding practices.

How much does it cost to buy or adopt a Maine Coon cat?

The cost of buying or adopting a Maine Coon cat can vary depending on the source and location. Adoption fees may range from $50-$200, while purchasing a purebred Maine Coon cat from a breeder starts at around $1500 and goes up quickly from there.

What are the benefits of adopting a Maine Coon cat over buying one?

Adopting a Maine Coon cat not only gives a loving home to a cat in need, but also typically comes at a lower cost than purchasing one from a breeder. Additionally, many shelters and adoption agencies provide necessary medical treatments and spay/neutering services for their cats.

Author

  • Dr. Wendy Wilkins DVM PhD.

    Dr. Wendy Wilkins is an experienced veterinarian and epidemiologist with over 20 years of expertise. She holds a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree and a Doctorate in Epidemiology from the University of Saskatchewan. Throughout her career, Dr. Wilkins has excelled in clinical practice, academia, research, and regulatory veterinary medicine. She is a respected voice in knowledge dissemination, delivering factual information in a readable and understandable manner through articles, books, and public engagements.