It is really a common question, if you ask me… Maine Coons are huge cats, and one must wonder whether keeping this huge and healthy fur ball indoors would affect its health.
One thing about Maine Coons is that they are strong, and when frustrated, they may lash out their anger on your pricey little sofa, so it is essential to keep them happy and occupied! Yes, the struggle is real, and so the question carries weight!
Are Main Coons Indoor Cats?
Let us first start with the fact whether or not Maine Coons are indoor cats. The truth is that Main Coons are generally not known to be indoor cats. There are some cats that like to walk with their owners and cling to them whenever they hear the doorknob turn.
Others are not that clingy but do not mind a casual stroll in the park every other week. So, no Maine Coons are not indoor cats, but will not mind if you keep them behind closed doors.
They are actually very laid back in nature, and you will hardly hear a Maine Coon parent complain.
One debate that could be raised over the question is that Maine Coons are really expensive and beautiful creatures, (costing in the range of $800 – $1200), and so you would want to keep them indoors if you want to keep them safe.
These cats often get stolen so you need to be extra careful. Most pet owners advise new parents to avoid letting their Maine Coons out if they live in a city apartment.
Do you live in a small apartment?
Most cat lovers are hesitant to adopt a Maine Coon if they are living in a small apartment.
Although small apartments come with their fair share of benefits like great amenities and affordability while getting to choose a location that is in the city, walking distance from your place of work so you do not have to drive and pay for parking (I hate parking meters), cat lovers often feel at a disadvantage.
It is true that most cat breeds do not do well with restricted walking space, and congested surroundings, but if you have always wanted a Maine Coon… there is good news for you!
Maine Coons generally grow to an average height of 10 – 16 inches, which is 3 – 6 inches more than an average cat. Males are usually heavier and weigh between 5.9 and 8.2 Kgs whereas females fall in the weight range of 3.6 – 5.4 Kg.
Yes, that is quite a size for a cat, and hence pet owners are often reluctant to move a Maine Coon from a huge and spacious environment to a smaller and congested environment.
Like other animals, cats are territorial, and therefore they need a place which they can identify as their own. So, when they are sharing space, they tend to get upset and start peeing to mark their territory.
These cats actually do well even if they get a small space that they can identify as their own.
Therefore, Maine Coons are one of these, and as long as you arrange a tiny space for them, they will relax their peacefully and adjust to their new surroundings.
They are intelligent too, so it will not be as challenging as with other breeds, to teach them not to urinate outside the litter box or scratch walls.
All you will need to do is take care of their grooming since Maine Coons have a lot of fur, and not being pro-active with their needs will leave your small and cozy crib infested with cat fur.
What stuff do normal cats need – and can that stuff fit in a tiny apartment?
As discussed earlier, most pet owners are reluctant to keep their beloved cat in their tiny city apartment, but ones who cannot bear parting ways make it work. There is nothing special that Maine Coons need that is different from other cat breeds.
It depends more on your preferences of what surrounding you want to provide to your cat, or what the breeder has advised you regarding your specific cat.
Usually, you will find the following things to be necessary for your cat’s comfort and fun:
- Cat bed
- Litter box
- Cat Condo
- Scratching pole
- Chew toys
However, you may need to attend to special needs for some cats. For example, if your cat is hyperactive, they may need more room to walk and too may barriers may lower their activity.
If you own a Sphynx cat, you will have to attend to her needs, especially if you have adopted him/her in an adult age. They are very active and fond of acrobatics, and therefore you may have to hear their cry all night long if they are uncomfortable.
While most cats and their essentials cannot fit into a tiny corner, the more compact inventions today have made it possible to live with your feline friend high up on the 18th floor in the middle of the city.
Is a cat bed enough to mark my Maine Coon’s territory?
No, your cat is not a couch potato, with a routine of just waking up, eating food and going back to bed again. Maine Coons are very laid back, but they still need their fair share of exercise and fun, and a good night’s sleep as well.
You need to be creative and think out of the box when you are living in a city apartment and want to keep your Maine Coon with you.
Indeed, cats have needs too, and these involve a nice place they can go to when they need to hibernate or when they need to play.
Therefore, at some point in time, you will realize that your Maine Coon is not as active or playful as it was since it is stressed and cannot sleep properly, or scratch, or play, which is crucial for them to live a healthy life.
Cat condos come in a variety of shapes and sizes, starting from $75. So, if you value the comfort of your Maine Coon and do not think that a comfortable cat bed would be enough, you can go for a cat condo that will fit in one uninhabited corner of your apartment.
Since you have the option of choosing a smaller condo, it is not necessary that it should have a hammock or odd geometrical shapes that will take up more space.
If you have opted out of a cat condo, and are just going for a cat bed, you will have to buy a cat pole too, which again will not take up too much space but will keep your cat active and engaged while you are out their earning dough.
You will also need a cat litter box, which is about 27 inches long and 18 inches wide on average, and therefore will not take up too much space as well, and will also keep your cost under $30 – $35, if you have not set your eyes on a fancier option.
How do I make sure my Maine Coon is comfortable and happy?
Living in a tiny apartment, you may need to be a tad more careful if you want to see your Maine Coon healthy and active.
They are not aggressive animals, but if they are going through severe boredom or mental distress, they can be hostile and may attack you, which you do not want.
One other problem with house cats is that they usually do not get enough exercise as they would if they had been living in a house with a front yard, in a cat-friendly neighborhood.
Maine Coons can explore a lot of things if they are let out, for example, climb several trees, interact with and scare several other cats because they are entering their territory, expose themselves to different smells, run and play, etc.
In an apartment, Maine Coons may not have the privilege of getting out more often, but they can be occupied for hours if you have toys around the house.
The essential point is that they need to be able to work their muscles and use up their energy, no matter whether it is indoors or outdoors.
You can even use laser pointers, strings, toys with catnip in them, or battery operated mice to make them run and jump around. Even if you spare twenty minutes a day, you can contribute to your Maine Coons health and a long life.
The best part about engaging your Maine Coon for a small time is that he will happily spend the rest of his day gently batting around toys or snoozing in his bed.
I would advise you to buy interactive toys like a food dispenser that will make your Maine Coon work for his food, but a city apartment can only adjust so much of your cat’s belongings.
When it comes to cat toys, you can find a plethora of options in different shapes and sizes. Here are a few more options to keep your furry pal engaged:
- Feather Teasers/Teaser Toys
- Lattice Balls
- Crinkle Cat Tunnel
- Mouse Catnips
- Twisted Tubes
- Tower of Tracks
- Cardboard Cat Scratcher
- Cat Groomers
Take walks with your Maine Coon
Maine Coons are amazingly easy to train. They easily understand commands, and are happy to follow you on command.
If you do not have enough time to spend with your Maine Coon, since you are busy making ends meet in the city, you can give your time in small ways like letting your Maine Coon wear the harness indoors, and distract him from the urge to go out.
Just by training your cat to walk on a leash, you can satisfy their needs, and also give treats along the way to make them feel pampered. You can even teach your Maine Coon to stop when you do, and offer a treat to enforce this habit.
This way, even if you have a small amount of time to take your cat to the balcony (or outside if you have a little more time), you can keep him safe while also attending to his needs for fresh air and adventure. They are very clever cats so just a little bit of training will bring about amazing results!
This is probably the greatest thing you can do for a Maine Coon that lives in a tiny apartment. That´s why we have created a guide for you. This article explains to you how you can train your Maine Coon to walk on a leash in 3 easy steps. We highly recommend reading it!
Windows … Make them awesome for your Maine Coon!
You are well aware of the fact that you live in a tiny condo in the city, and you will not have time to walk your cat, but you can still meet their needs without giving them access to the world outside.
You can teach your Maine Coon to explore the outside world through the window, next to your television. When you are off to work, they will be comfortably lounging in the windowsill all day long.
Another interesting thing you can do is use wall mounted toys or ones that can be attached to your window. You can even install a cat perch next to a window or place a cat tree close to the window to make that area more interesting.
A more interesting thing would be catios or perches… Have you heard of them?
Just have a look at the picture below. These things are awesome and cats absolutely love them.
If you are interested in getting such a perch for your Maine Coon, we highly recommend getting this perch on Amazon. It is inexpensive and the suction cups really high-quality and huge. This perch can hold up about 25 pounds.
Here are a few more ways you can ensure your Main Coon remains happy indoors
- Clean their litter box and your house regularly (since most cats are neat freaks, hence the constant licking!)
- Get a feline friend if your cat is quite social
- Create food puzzles or treat based adventures to keep them entertained
- Leave out cardboard boxes – because cats love playing in boxes!
- Get a fish tank that is properly secured (apparently, watching fish swim is quite an amusing sight for cats!)
- Setup an indoor playground
- Skype with your cat when you’re at work with the help of a PetCube, which is a pet camera that allows you to keep an eye on your feline friend.
Maine Coons can definitely be your indoor companion, but it will be great if you can let them outside every once in a while, supervised of course! Living in the city is everyone’s dream but if you are a pet lover, you will have to think of your pet’s needs as well.
Maine Coons are indeed quite large felines, but they are definitely not of the odd height that will force you to turn your city apartment upside down.
They are laid back animals that can adjust to almost any surrounding, however, you need to make some effort to help them get there.
They do not need a lavish condo but enough space that has their essentials and a place they can identify as their own. So, don’t be afraid, bring your Maine Coon to your home in the city and make it work!