The TOP 10 Frequently Asked Questions:
We’re looking forward to hearing from you but please do read through this part and have a little think about the following before we have a chat:
1.) Why a Maine Coon?
If you’re already browsing Maine Coon breeders’ websites then you probably know best the answer to this question. Most people are impressed by the appearance, the size and the personality of this breed, just like us. “Once a Maine Coon, always a Maine Coon” is how we and many others feel.
However, Maine Coons belong to the semi-long hair type of cat and they do moult, therefore you can expect to find cat hair on your furniture, on your clothes and in other undesirable places. Is that something you mind?
2.) I only want a pet. What do I need a PEDIGREE for?
As you will have probably seen on the internet, there are various kittens advertised as Maine Coons “just” without papers for less money than a pedigree Maine Coon. When you speak to the sellers (they can’t be called breeders) you may hear things like “they don’t have pedigree papers because we’re not in it for the money”. You may be surprised that the exact opposite is the truth!
As any good and reputable breeder will be able to tell you, responsible and ethical breeding is non-profitable, the money charged for a kitten covers the expenses at best, more often it does not!
Breeding kittens with papers means that a breeder has to adhere to certain rules and standards (genetic testing etc.) which makes breeding MORE expensive and not less!
It is not the piece of paper we order from our club that makes the kitten more expensive, but what makes your kitten eligible for a pedigree! You can only sell cheap, if you produce cheap.
Breeding does not mean letting cats breed! Breeding also does not mean multiplying.
Breeding means improving, researching, learning, planning, managing, investing….. Breeding is about aiming to breed the “perfect” cat of a certain breed because a real Maine Coon is not a moggie with long hair! Do you know what makes a Maine Coon a (good) Maine Coon?
People who know cats will be able to tell if your cat is a Maine Coon or not. But how will you know? Because someone said so?
What is the benefits of a pedigree to you? Firstly, you will get what you actually wanted – the REAL DEAL, no fake!
Secondly, you will be able to trace back the ancestors of your kitten. Google the prefix in front of the names and visit the websites of the catteries who have bred the relatives of your baby.
Thirdly, many pedigrees show whether your pet is bred from lines that are tested and scanned negative for certain diseases in your cats, such as HCM and PKD.
You may be ok with a fake hand bag or shirt but never settle for a “fake” kitten!
3.) What does getting a Maine Coon mean for me?
Before you get your Maine Coon kitten, you should check if you have the right environment for it to live in. If you live in a rental property, is your landlord happy for you to keep a pet?
Maine Coons are messy eaters (they tend to eat with their paws) and are even messier drinkers as they love water. They also like to do a fair bit of “gardening” in their toilets and you may find cat litter in scattered your house. Are you ok to put up with a bit of mess?
Every animal can get sick. Can you afford one or maybe multiple vet visits and regular vet checks? Will you take out insurance?
Maine Coons are large cats and need very sturdy and big cat trees. Do you mind big cat furniture in your house?
4.) What does me buying a Maine Coon mean for my kitten?
How many hours a day are you at work or out and about? Maine Coons are very social, and while they’re not necessarily lap cats due to their sheer size, they will want to be around humans and have company. If you were a kitten, or later a cat, would you be pleased to say good bye to your owner in the morning, see them again in the evening and spend the whole day by yourself? We’re well aware that no one can spend every waking hour with their Maine Coon but we feel that they should at least have feline friend (regardless of the breed) as a companion, so they can do “cat business” while you’re at work or out socialising.
Please note we do not sell kittens to households where they will be the only cat!
5.) Can I let my Maine Coon go outside?
Unless you have a cat-proof garden, the simple answer is NO! The way most Maine Coons are raised, they’re very trusting and have no concept of danger – not of cars, dogs or strangers. We’re certain that you won’t want to find your beloved Maine Coon run over by a car on the road or realise that it has been stolen by someone who didn’t want to buy one themselves and was happy to take yours.
Unfortunately, some people hate cats and there have been numerous cases in the media of cats and kittens that have been tortured to death.
If you get a kitten from us, it is bred for you and your family, not to become the victim of a fatal car encounter and not to live with a thief.
6.) Can I make money in breeding Maine Coons?
Applying a famous quote to this question: “You can make a small fortune in breeding cats – provided you start with a large one.”
As mentioned before, breeding pedigree cats is expensive and against common belief by no means profitable!
Just think of everything it takes to breed your future furry friend, such as our own breeding cats, killer vet bills (!), regular health checks, genetic testing, heart and kidney scans, food, supplements, cat furniture, all the equipment, vaccinations, fees for club memberships, fees for showing etc, etc, etc. The list is endless and: The time it takes and sometimes the heartache it brings, is something that cannot be paid for!
Many people start breeding because they think it’s easy, the mother cat will just “pop out” a few kittens and the money will just flow in with the sale of the kittens – sorry if the truth disappoints you but just as many people stop breeding very quickly once they’ve discovered what a drain on their finances and how much work it is!
7.) What if a kitten is just not for me and my lifestyle?
We (and other breeders) occasionally have young adults who are looking for excellent pet homes. They will leave neutered / spayed and might be more suitable for you and your circumstances. Please contact us for more info!
8.) Will my Maine Coon kitten get along with other household pets?
In the past we have experienced that it doesn’t work too well to stick a playful, young kitten in with a settled, piece-loving older cat. It can stress both of them out, because the youngster wants to play and won’t have a playmate in the older cat and the older cat will feel harassed by the youngster. We have good experiences though with people introducing two kittens to an older cat as the kittens can just play with each other and the older cat can observe and join in if she feels like it.
With dogs we don’t know of any problems, however, we would strongly recommend to supervise the two, in particular during their first encounters and while the kitten is still a lot smaller than the dog.
9.) Why are breeders so overly cautious with prospective buyers?
Many of our kitten buyers have told us that they found it rather challenging at times to talk to breeders which is why we have decided to list this question: Breeders get many enquiries, unfortunately not only good ones. There are people out there who do not have the best interest of the Maine Coon kitten at heart, and most breeders have had bad experiences and get lots of “dodgy” enquiries or disrespectful “one liners”. Parting with our kittens is very hard for us breeders and the thought of giving them to the wrong person is simply unbearable. So don’t be put off should you sense a breeder’s caution and don’t take it personally; try to see it like some kind of application process: tell the breeder why you think they should trust you with a piece of their hearts and let them know what you can offer the kitten if you were entrusted with it. It is not about arrogance, it’s all about us trying to find the perfect homes for our “babies” – bear in mind, we don’t know you!
A good and reputable breeder will not offer their kittens on a “first come first serve basis “and there will be no haggling either. A good breeder will invite you to their house, they will be happy for you to meet them and their cats, they will want to get to know you, how you live and they will try to match you with the perfect Maine Coon baby and offer their support with any questions or concerns.
It quite frequently happens that the buyer and the breeder become very good friends. Doesn’t that sound more reassuring to you than a “kitten bargain hunt” ?
10.) Maine Coon and health
The health of your Maine Coon kitten should be very important to you and is, in fact, one of every reputable breeder’s primary concern.
A health concern related to the Maine Coon breed is HCM (Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy). You may have heard or read about it or even be unlucky enough to have lost your own cat to HCM. Against common belief, t is NOT a heart disease that only affects older cats but can be the silent killer to a cat of any age!
You may have seen on some websites that breeders talk about NN or N/N combinations. This means that both parents were tested negative for the HCM gene and your kitten will also be genetically HCM negative. HOWEVER, this does not mean that your cat will never develop HCM!
A Maine Coon tested positive (heterozygous) for HCM, i.e. be N/HCM may never develop HCM and Maine Coon kitten from an NN combination may develop the disease as you can read in this article HCM-genetictest-JVIM-2010
To reduce likelihood of kittens not to die from HCM as best as we can, a specialised cardiologist scans the hearts of our breeding cats once a year (echocardiogram), as well as their kidneys for the disease PKD (polycystic kidney disease).
We encourage prospect owners to read up on Maine Coon health but please do choose credible sources and stay away from online forums where you will find a lot of people who want to sound knowledgeable but in fact know very little.