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Welcome, Crazy Cat People!
The Maine coon is a very large cat, in fact, they are one of the biggest domestic breeds. So it’s normal to often wonder if the Maine coon is aggressive?
I have studied this breed for several years, watched their behaviour and spent time with Maine coons and have used my knowledge to answer your question.
As a general rule, the Maine coon cat is not aggressive. They can, however, act aggressively if they are feeling threatened or to defend their territory. Aggression in a usually placid cat may indicate health problems, so it is always a good idea to get them checked by a qualified vet.
If you’re looking to find out more about Maine coon behaviour then you’re in the right place!
The rest of this post acts as a complete guide and contains answers to all your related questions but more importantly how to deal with Maine coon aggression correctly if it should arise.
Keep reading crazy cat people to learn more!
P.S I have linked out to a lot of related articles where you can find more info, don’t worry the links open in a new browser page so you won’t lose this article!
Jump ahead to:
Are Maine Coon Cats Aggressive? (The proof and poll results!)
If you have read my other articles then you know that I like to get proof from cat owners.
There are so many articles out there that just give you the information without backing up what they say. I am not disrespecting the other cat blogs out there but it’s always good to get some real figures.
So I did a Facebook poll and for this one, I had lots of responses, 273 people! I have put the results into a little table for you below!
|My Maine Coon is friendly to everyone||My Maine Coon loves me only||My Maine Coon can be aggressive and mean|
Only 6% of Maine coon owners said that their cat was sometimes aggressive. Wow!
This just goes to show that aggression is not a common issue with Maine coons.
So if you are thinking of sharing your life with this feline then you should have a fairly peaceful life with them. Nevertheless, bookmark this article in case you ever need to refer to it!
Do Maine Coons Attack Other Cats?
As a general rule, the Maine coon cat will not attack other cats. They have a gentle, docile and friendly nature, so aggression is very rare. Like any other breed, they may attack other cats if not introduced slowly and correctly as a way to defend their territory.
The key point here is correct cat introductions to avoid conflict.
Bringing a new pet into an already established feline home isn’t always easy and will require patience and dedication. With a placid and friendly breed like the Maine coon it should make your job a lot easier.
Maine coons are a sociable breed and they thrive in the company of others but let’s remember like all cats they are territorial at heart and a sudden change with a new pet around can cause conflict while each cat defines their territory.
So make sure if you are introducing another cat to do this slowly by keeping the cats in separate rooms, let them smell each other through the door and get used to each other’s scent for a few days, before introducing through sight and then finally letting them meet.
Check out this article by Wiki on how to introduce cats correctly!
Will a Maine Coon Cat Attack A Human?
The Maine Coon is a very large breed and sometimes when a breed is large some people may wonder if they are safe to be around humans and if they could potentially attack.
It is highly unlikely that your Maine coon will maliciously attack you, as we have already discussed they are generally a non-violent breed of cat with a gentle and loving personality.
Hardly the traits of a killer!
If your cat has behaviour issues then they may decide to attack but this in itself is a rarity and the worse outcome could be an infected bite, so it’s always a good idea to get bites seen by a doctor as soon as possible especially if it becomes inflamed in any way.
Generally, though you have less chance of bites, scratches etc.. from this big gentle giant!
Why Is My Maine Coon Cat So Mean? (With Solutions)
So what if your Maine coon does not fit into the category of friendly, affectionate and they are being mean to you, a family member or another pet?
This is rare but let’s face it, it can happen!
Cats are always either hunting or being hunted, it is in their nature and sometimes their wild side can come out but there is always a reason!
Here is where you may need to get your detective hat on and find out why!
Let’s have a look at some of the causes of feline aggression to get to the bottom of your Maine coons behaviour!
This has to be one of the easiest forms of aggression to deal with and the most common!
Cats have a natural tendency to hunt. They sleep to conserve energy and they use that energy to get their prey a natural
If your cat chases your ankle while you walk past or tries to bite your hand and looks at you in a playful way they are saying to you
” Play with me, I need stimulation”!
They have lots of play energy that is stored up and they need to burn some of this off so it’s very important to schedule regular playtime with your cats with interactive toys and its important to take note of the times that they are engaging in play aggression and play with them at those time.
If you do this and make it a habit then your Maine coon will know when to expect play and is less likely to then take that aggression out on your poor ankles!
This one can be hard to spot in your Maine coon but normally this will happen when they are looking at a bird or other small animal outside the window.
At that moment your cat is in hunter mode, they want to get to their prey and they want it now!
Suddenly you or another cat comes along and BAM! They scratch or bite you.
Make sure if your cat is in hunter mode, not to approach them. They are in fight or flight mode at that moment and it is not a good time to pick them up. Let them cool down first before you decide to go in for cuddles.
You will learn your cat’s body language over time and know when to approach and when to back off.
Stop Petting me, I have had enough!
This one is very common!
Ever been stroking your Maine coon and then suddenly turn round and give you a little nip or scratch?
This is called over-stimulation and is very common in cats. Cats love to be stroked and petted but when it becomes too much it can start to slightly hurt their nerves and hair follicles which can cause a reaction. They will normally warn you about it first but if you continue then they will let you know about it.
Watch out for their ears becoming flat or their tail flicking, these are signs to back off!
Pain Induced aggression
If your cat hurts it will be on edge just like you would. However, cats cant let us know they are in pain and they are normally good at hiding it but aggression can sometimes be a tell-tale sign.
They may react with a bite or scratch and if this happens please see a vet it could be anything from a bad tooth or even arthritis, so go get it checked out ASAP.
A vet really should be your first port of call if your cat suddenly starts acting aggressively and there is no other reason.
I don’t own anything!
This can be called status aggression. Cats need to feel like they own items within the home, it’s part of their territorial nature.
Cats will leave their scent on beds, scratching posts and even items of furniture. Once they have claimed their territory they will quickly ward off any other cats that may come near.
The best way to overcome this is to make sure there are enough resources to share between cats.
Separate food dishes, more cat trees, more litter trays, more toys, more vertical space such as wall-mounted cat shelves.
If there isn’t enough space for each cat then there may be aggression within the home!
You smell AWFUL! Get away from me!
Well, I wasn’t directing it at you but you know what they say if the shoe fits! (Only joking!)
This is called non-recognition aggression.
Ever been away for a few days and been around other pets and you come home and your cat is disgusted in you and they either don’t want to come near you or they appear to not want to be petted by you?
Yes, they did miss you but it’s more related to smell, cats sense of smell is far stronger than a human in fact according to Wikipedia, their sense of smell is 9-16 times stronger than a human with around 45-200 odour sensitive cells in their nose!
They may act aggressively until they get used to your smell again and the same can happen if you take one cat to the vets and then return home and suddenly one of the other cats lashes out at them.
Well here is your reason why! Just re-introduce yourself to your cats slowly and let them come to you.
Also, get a bath and use that soap! LOL
Un-neutered male aggression
This one can be very common.
A male cat who is not neutered will have lots of testosterone coursing through their bodies. This hormone as we know is responsible for finding a mate and male cats are known to fight other males over a potential female in the area.
Simple solution, if you are not planning on breeding then get your male neutered. Male cats are also prone to wandering for miles and often for extended periods when looking for a female, another reason to consider getting the snip!
So these are some common reasons why your cat may become Aggressive, hopefully understanding them may help you learn more about your cat and what to watch out for and also how to deal with these types of behaviour.
One thing I will say is that a lot of behavioural issues with cats stems from boredom, cats need an environment that is enriching and fun! Without this, they may get bored, stressed and aggressive towards you, your furniture or even other pets!
Why not create a cat superhighway in your home? With wall mounted shelves and lots of spaces for your cats.
You may find that aggression re-directed if you do!
Check out the youtube video below by the cat daddy Jackson galaxy and find out why and how to catify your home!
Are Maine Coon Cats Territorial?
Maine coon cats can like any other breed be very territorial.
Being territorial and owning territory is just in a cats nature.
For your Maine coon to feel secure in its home it needs to feel like it owns its territory and it’s normal for any cat to fight if needed to protect their domain.
Maine coons mark their territory by leaving pheromones or cat hormones around the home by rubbing their scent glands which are located in different areas of their body on objects and you!
Territory marking is only a problem if your Maine coon decided to spray urine inside which can happen from time to time.
To find out how to STOP your cat spraying and to learn more about why Maine coons are territorial and how to reduce these behaviours, I made an entire post that covers the subject which you can bookmark and read to help put a stop to this problem behaviour.
Plus find out about the product I wouldn’t be without to get rid of cat pee on furniture and carpets!
Do Maine Coon Cats Get Jealous?
There is some debate out there that says that cats don’t feel emotions in the same way as humans, particularly jealousy.
My argument is that if cats can feel sadness, fear and excitement why can they not feel jealousy?
In my experience cats can get Jealous and this can be for a number of reasons and is often started with a sudden change of routines such as the arrival of a new baby or a partner.
Maine coons like any cat breed are masters of their territory so any changes to routine should be introduced slowly.
One of my cats often gets Jealous of my partner, she may not even bother to come near me all day but as soon as my partner arrives she wants to sit right in between us both.
Maine coons develop a very strong attachment to their owners and jealousy can be a sign of insecurity in your cat.
If Jealousy is a problem for you and your Maine coon or if you just want to find out more about why cats are Jealous and how to deal with it in the correct way you then need to see this post and find out how to overcome this issue.
Do Maine Coon Cats Scratch?
Maine Coons like any cat need to scratch. Being the big friendly giants that they are they should never scratch you in a malicious way.
They can however scratch if they feel intimidated or scared.
It is always recommended that you do not teach your Maine coon that the hand is to a toy and always use toys such as the wand toy when you are engaging in interactive play, otherwise you could get your hand scratched and believe me a deep cat scratch can be quiet painful!
There is more chance that scratching could become a problem when they decide to scratch your furniture.
”Cats need surfaces to scratch for exercise, to mark their territory and to help them deal with emotions such as excitement and to let out frustration.”
If scratching is a particularly bad problem for your Maine coon, I highly recommend reading my post ”Do Maine Coons Scratch Furniture” which contains some awesome tips on how to stop this behaviour as well as answering in detail some questions you may have around Maine coons and why they scratch.
Do Maine Coon Cats Bite?
There are numerous reasons why your Maine coon cat may decide to bite but it is rarely out of spite!
Maine coons are super friendly beings and they are gentle giants so I wouldn’t worry too much about your cat biting you.
There are some instances when they could bite such as through play, when being overstimulated with touch or if they are being constantly teased. Very occasionally a cat bite may be due to your cat being in pain or ill.
Your Maine coon will not want to bite you to be vicious because generally, it is not in their nature!
More often they will want to give you a little Love bite.
If you are interested in finding out more about why Maine coon cats bite, how to treat a cat bite and to find out what a love bite is and why your Maine coon cat give you them then take a look at my below article.
Do Maine Coon Cats Hold Grudges?
Grudges! The bane of the human life, often we can be so stubborn at times.
Do Maine coons hold grudges? Well, cats don’t think with the same complexity as humans they learn through association over time.
If you have accidentally trod on your Maine coons tail they are not going to plot to kill you or seek revenge and make you pay for it especially if all they associate you with is positive energy and love.
A bond will not be broken that quickly but if you repeatedly lose their trust they will learn to see you as someone to be scared of.
So if you have accidentally hurt your cat forgive yourself because you Maine coon will forgive you before you know it!
To find out more on the subject and also learn how to make it up to your Maine coon if you have hurt them by accident then take a read of my post to educate yourself on the psychology of cats!
How To Deal With Maine Coon Aggression?
If your Maine coon has been aggressive towards you or another pet then what do you do?
First of all, NEVER shout and physically chastise your cat!
This can often make them even more scared or act more violently towards you and may slowly break the bond between you and your cats. This will be a very rare occurrence if ever in a Miane coon but it’s always good to know what to do in case the situation ever does arise.
If you catch them in the middle of a fight with another cat, make a loud noise such as a clap or a ”Sssshhhh” sound to distract them and to break up the fight.
The best place for distressed and angry cats is in a room where they can be alone for a while to calm down.
Get them into the room in any way that you can but be wary of picking them up in a distressed state.
Make sure this room contains all their essential needs and leave them there to relax for a while before introducing them back into the main room, 10 minutes should be enough for them to associate the time out with the bad behaviour.
Remember that when your cat comes out if they have calmed down and they do not react violently towards you or the other cats to reward them.
Rewarding good behaviour is just as important as dealing with bad behaviour.
If this behaviour is sudden and out of nowhere then see a veterinarian straight away and also get your cat detective hat on. Earlier in this post, I look at the reasons why your cat may be aggressive so delve a little deeper and try to understand the reasons why they reacted in this way.
My two cats fight if I change the furniture around in the home and one time I bought a large cat bed for them to ”share”. That’s when I realised that cats don’t like to share and the fighting stopped when I bought another identical cat bed for the second cat.
My best advice would be to regularly play with your cat in an interactive way to stimulate their hunting instincts and to release pent up energy in your cats and at the same time provide enough space in the home for each cat with lots of vertical space and also hiding places on the ground.
This really will go a long way in preventing future eruptions and fighting for territory!
Final thoughts: Are Maine Coons Cats Aggressive?
I hope this post has helped you understand a little more about your Maine coon. Knowledge is power, my fellow crazy cat people!
If you are thinking of getting a Maine coon your life should be full of cuddles, affection, playfulness and laughter with a close bond and lots of happy times but now you know a little more about cat behaviour and what to do if they do ever act violently.
Enjoy the rest of your life with your Maine coon, they truly are an amazing breed!
As always take care of yourself and your little fur babies!
Mark (The Crazy Cat Man)