How to tell if Your Cat is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon Mix: A Guide

In this comprehensive guide, we will provide you with all the information you need to determine if your cat is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon mix. Whether you’re curious about your cat’s breed or simply want to learn more about these majestic felines, we’ve got you covered.

We’ll explore the distinctive traits and genetic markers that can help you identify the breed or mix, as well as discuss the importance of genetic testing and the unique traits associated with the Maine Coon breed.

Key Takeaways:

  • Understanding the physical traits such as tail length, fur texture, and unique features can help identify a Maine Coon or Maine Coon mix.
  • Maine Coons are known for their gentle giants’ personality traits, including intelligence and sociability.
  • Genetic testing can provide definitive answers about your cat’s breed or mix.
  • Consider a combination of factors, including physical and behavioral traits, to confidently determine your cat’s breed or mix.

Physical Traits of a Maine Coon or Maine Coon Mix

The physical appearance of a cat can provide valuable clues about whether it is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon mixMaine Coons are known for their impressive size and robust build. They can weigh anywhere between 10 to 25 pounds, with males typically being larger than females. Their body shape is rectangular, with a solid bone structure and broad chest, giving them a strong and muscular appearance.

Their tail is one of their defining features. Maine Coons have long, bushy tails that can measure up to 16 inches in length. The fur around the tail is dense and thick, protecting it during harsh Maine winters. The tail is carried high and is often described as a “lynx-like” feature. It adds to their majestic appearance and serves as a counterbalance for their large bodies.

Their fur is another characteristic that sets them apart. Maine Coons have a double coat with a soft and silky undercoat and a longer, shaggy topcoat. This combination helps them stay warm in cold weather. The fur is particularly thick around the neck, creating a mane-like appearance that adds to their regal look.

Maine Coons have distinctive ears, often described as tufted. Tufts of fur can be seen at the tips of their ears, resembling the tufted ears of a lynx. These tufts are more prominent in some individuals and add to their overall charm and unique appearance.

When it comes to patterns and colors, Maine Coons come in a wide variety. They can be tabby, with unique patterns such as classic tabby, mackerel tabby, or ticked tabby. They can also be solid colors like black, white, or red, as well as tortoiseshell or calico. Additionally, Maine Coons can have colorpoint patterns, similar to those found in Siamese cats.

Overall, the physical traits of a Maine Coon or Maine Coon mix include a large and muscular body, a long and bushy tail, shaggy and dense fur, tufted ears, and a variety of patterns and colors. These features contribute to their majestic and captivating appearance, making them truly special.

How to tell if Your Cat is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon Mix

Behavioral and Personality Traits of a Maine Coon or Maine Coon Mix

Maine Coons are not only recognized for their physical traits but also for their distinct behavioral and personality characteristics. These gentle giants are known for their exceptional temperament and make wonderful companions for cat lovers. Let’s explore the personality traits that set Maine Coons apart.


Maine Coons are known for their high level of intelligence. They are quick learners and enjoy interactive play that stimulates their mental abilities. These cats are often able to solve puzzles, learn tricks, and even use their paws to open doors or manipulate objects. Their intelligence makes them curious, adaptable, and engaging pets.


Maine Coons are social and friendly cats. They are naturally inclined to interact with humans and other pets, making them excellent companions for families and households with other animals. Maine Coons enjoy being in the company of their human family members and may even follow them around the house, wanting to be a part of all activities.

Affectionate Nature

Maine Coons have a reputation for being affectionate and loving. They often form deep bonds with their owners and are known to be quite cuddly. These cats enjoy being petted, stroked, and cuddled, often purring contentedly in response. Their affectionate nature makes them wonderful therapy animals and loyal companions.

“Maine Coons have a unique combination of intelligence, sociability, and affection that truly sets them apart. They are not just majestic in appearance but also in their interactions and relationships with their owners.”

Understanding these behavioral aspects can help you determine if your cat exhibits the distinctive traits of a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon mix. Their intelligence, sociability, and affectionate nature are key indicators of their breed heritage. However, it is important to note that individual cat personalities can vary, and not all Maine Coons may exhibit every trait in the same way.

Personality TraitsMaine CoonMaine Coon Mix
SociabilityVery sociableVaries
Affectionate NatureVery affectionateVaries
How to tell if Your Cat is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon Mix


By carefully analyzing the physical and behavioral traits of your cat and considering genetic testing, you can confidently determine if your cat is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon mix. Understanding the distinctive characteristics of the breed, such as its large size, unique fur markings, and friendly nature, can help you make an informed decision about your cat’s lineage.

If you want a foolproof way to know for sure, you may consider purchasing a genetic testing kit specifically designed for cats. These kits allow you to collect a DNA sample from your cat and send it to a lab for testing. The results can provide valuable insights into your cat’s genetic makeup and help you determine whether it has the genetic markers of a purebred Maine Coon or a mix.

Genetic testing is becoming increasingly popular among cat owners who want to delve deeper into their pet’s ancestry. It not only satisfies curiosity but also helps in understanding potential health risks associated with certain breeds. If you’re interested in genetic testing, several reputable companies offer genetic testing kits for cats.


Q: How can I tell if my cat is a Maine Coon or a Maine Coon mix?

A: Look for physical traits such as tufts of hair on the ears, a bushy tail, and a shaggy fur coat. Maine Coons are known for their large size, lynx-like ear tufts, and friendly personalities.

Q: What are some characteristics of a purebred Maine Coon kitten?

A: Purebred Maine Coon kittens typically have long hair, distinctive tabby markings, and a playful yet gentle nature. They may also exhibit the classic Maine Coon trait of having tufts of hair between their toes.

Q: Is it possible for a cat to be part Maine Coon?

A: Yes, it is possible for a cat to be a mix or part Maine Coon if one of its parents is a purebred Maine Coon. In such cases, the cat may display some but not all of the typical Maine Coon traits.

Q: Can I determine if my cat is a pure Maine Coon without a DNA test?

A: While a DNA test can provide definitive results, you can still make an educated guess by looking at your cat’s physical characteristics and comparing them to those of a pure Maine Coon.

Q: Are Maine Coon cats always larger than other breeds?

A: Maine Coons are known as gentle giants, but not all Maine Coons will be significantly larger than other breeds. Some may have the size characteristic, while others might be more average in size.

Q: What are some personality traits that indicate a cat might be a Maine Coon?

A: Maine Coons are known for being friendly, sociable, and intelligent cats. They enjoy human companionship and are often described as dog-like in their behavior.

Q: How can I distinguish between a mixed Maine Coon and a purebred Maine Coon?

A: Mixed Maine Coons may exhibit some Maine Coon traits but not all of them, while purebred Maine Coons will have all the classic characteristics including the signature tufts of hair on their ears and paws.