Domestic Long Hairs are renowned for their hunting skills and come in a wide array of temperaments since they are of mixed breeds. This is not an officially recognized breed according to bodies like the Cat Fanciers Association. Maine Coons, on the other hand, are large, affectionate cats with three layers of fur, consisting of two layers of undercoat and one guard coat. These two cats are often compared because they look alike, but you would be surprised at how different they actually are.
Domestic Long Hair vs Maine Coon: What are the differences?
They have different origins and histories.
Maine Coons originated in Maine, USA, and date back to the 1800s. These cats were said to be descendants of European ship cats, kept on board by ship captains to kill rodents. The State of Maine was a popular area for ships to anchor for repairs, and this was how the cats first became a breed. Meanwhile, Domestic Long Hairs allegedly came to Europe and America via ships around the 16th and 17th centuries, from Western Asia.
They differ in physical appearance.
Domestic Long Hairs are of medium size while Maine Coons are massive cats. The former weighs around eight to 15 pounds and is about 12 inches long, while the latter weighs 10 to 20 pounds or more, and is around 16 inches long.
Domestic Long Hairs have a normal, smooth body, while Maine Coons have a more solid body. The former have an even coat length and the latter have layers of varying lengths, creating a shaggy look. Maine Coons also have more pronounced ear tufts corresponding to their neck ruffs.
Domestic Long Hairs have contracted faces or extended noses, while Maine Coons have straight noses and large eyes, especially in their younger years.
They differ in personality.
Domestic Long Hairs are sociable, attentive and passive. They tend to be somewhat talkative and neither too needy nor too aloof. Some are quieter than others, while some are more affectionate. Their personalities can be quite diverse, varying from one cat to another.
Meanwhile, Maine Coons are gentle, sweet and affectionate. They have above-average intelligence which makes them very easy to train. They are loyal to their humans, independent, not clingy, and cautious around strangers. They also love water and would willingly play in the tub or sink.
Domestic Long Hair and Maine Coon: Similarities
1. Both are prone to health problems.
Domestic Long Hair cats are prone to obesity, kidney problems and cardiomyopathy. They may also be prone to vomiting, upset stomachs, hyperthyroidism and inappetance. Meanwhile, Maine Coons are prone to hip dysplasia, spinal muscular atrophy, patellar luxation and feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
2. They both have good hunting instincts.
Domestic Long Hairs have good hunting skills and are popular as mousers. Maine Coons share this trait, also being famous for their hunting abilities. They can withstand harsh climates, are large, and have great intelligence, all of which contribute to their hunting acumen.
3. They both tend to be vocal.
Domestic Long Hairs tend to be talkative, although some may be timid and quiet. Meanwhile, Maine Coons are popular for being vocal cats. They have certain vocalizations, like the trill and the chirp, but they rarely meow at all.
Domestic Long Hairs are allegedly the same breed as the Domestic Shorthair and Domestic Medium, the only difference being their coat length. Some also refer to them as American Long Hair cats. These cats were the origin of certain purebreds, such as the American Shorthair.
Maine Coons take around four to five years to become fully grown. Aside from being good mousers, they are also excellent swimmers. A Maine Coon was the first pet to be cloned commercially in 2004, and a Maine Coon named Stewie holds the Guinness Record for being the longest cat.
Domestic Long Hairs and Maine Coons share certain similarities, in that both are vocal and have good hunting instincts. However, they also have differences, such as their physical appearance and their histories. These cats also differ in personality, with Maine Coons being affectionate with a gentle demeanor, and Domestic Long Hairs tending to be more passive and reluctant, but sociable.
Image: istockphoto.com / Sara Middleton