Each cat breed is unique and intriguing . Take, for instance, the Ragdoll and Maine Coon breeds. They are both large cats and only have a slight difference in their weight although the latter is longer. Both have many similar attributes, temperaments, and behavior but each has a distinct characteristic as well.
Ragdoll vs Maine Coon: Breed characteristics and personality
Both are considered large cat breeds and they are similar in many ways such as size and temperament. However, each breed also has distinct qualities since Ragdolls can be considered lap cats while Maine Coons are adventurers that enjoy the outdoors and even water. Lets take a closer look at both breeds:
The Ragdoll breed originated from Riverside, California, USA. It hashas a lifespan of 12 to 17 years. They are large, muscular, have medium to long fur, soft and silky colorpoint coats, and blue eyes. The breed was developed by breeder Ann Baker in the the 1960s and she aptly named it Ragdoll because of the cat’s fondness to snuggle and go limp in a doll-like position in the arms of any person who picks it up, The average weight for females is 10 to 15 lbs while males can reach up to 20 lbs and measure 17 to 21 inches.
Ragdolls come in six different colors and these are red, seal, chocolate, cream, blue, and lilac. They are born white, have good color at eight to ten weeks and full color at around three to four years. They can exhibit the following colour patterns:
- colorpoint – one color darkening at the nose, ears, tail, and paws
- mitted – has white abdomen and paws
- bicolor – has white legs, a white inverted V on the face, has a white abdomen, and may also have white patches on the back
The breed has two variations, the lynx which is a variant of the above types but with tabby markings, and the tortoiseshell or tortie, with particolored markings.
Personality and temperament
Ragdolls are people, kid, and pet-friendly, affectionate, and love to follow their humans around the house. They love to leap on people’s laps or snuggle with them in their beds and rarely meow. These cats are generally docile, laid-back, and gentle, but also like to play with toys and join in with family playtime activities. They are highly intelligent and can be taught tricks like fetch and how to use a scratching post especially with positive reinforcement and treats.
Health and grooming care
Ragdolls are generally healthy but they also suffer health problems like urinary and kidney ailments. Other health issues among this breed may include hypertrophic cardiomyopathy which is a form of heart disease, increased risk for calcium oxalate bladder stones, and feline infectious peritonitis, a viral disease.
Since this breed has medium to long fur it needs to be combed at least twice a week to remove tangles. It is less likely to mat and shed but make sure that you comb the fur thoroughly and use a brush like the rubber curry brush to smoothen the fur. Spayed and neutered Ragdolls usually have lush coats all year round since they do not have hormonal fluctuations compared to unaltered cats.
Dental hygiene should also be maintained to prevent periodontal disease.
The Maine Coon breed is from Maine, USA and is known as a natural breed. Some people say that these cats were brought by the Vikings to North America while others say it is the descendant of the long haired cats of Marie Antoinette, the last queen of France before the French Revolution. It is considered the largest domesticated cat breed and weighs from eight to 25 lbs, eight to 16 inches in height, and has a length of 19 to 40 inches. These cats have a life expectancy of nine to 15 years and have a prominent lion-like ruff along the chest, a rectangular body shape, and a robust bone structure.
Maine Coon cats are called gentle giants and also known as the American Longhair cats, American Coon cats, and American Forest cats. They have uneven, two-layered coats with longer guard hairs and silky satin undercoat, and they have bushy tails. This breed has long shaggy fur, a light-density undercoat, and the fur is thicker in the winter but goes thinner during summertime. They come in various colors but the common pattern is the brown tabby and eye color may be blue, green, brown, or gold.
Personality and temperament
This breed is not a lap cat but adapts to various lifestyles and personalities. They are good-natured, love to follow their owners around but not clingy or needy. They are fascinated with water and also have good hunting skills, retaining their original skill as a mouser. They make chatty, chirping, and trilling sounds, are very curious, and extra playful.
Maine Coon cats love to chase mice, adore teaser toys, and also enjoy retrieving balls and playing fetch. They are also highly intelligent and puzzle toys are perfect for them since they challenge their minds.
Health and grooming care
Maine Coon cats are generally healthy and easily adapt to any living conditions but they may also suffer health problems like hip dysplasia which causes lameness, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy which is a form of heart disease, polycystic kidney disease that results in renal failure, and spinal muscular atrophy, a genetic disorder affecting skeletal muscles of the limbs and trunk.
These cats should be groomed at least twice every week to remove dead hair and tools like the grooming rake is recommended to remove tangles and pull out dead undercoats. Be extra gentle when grooming the stomach area and tail and bathe them at least every few weeks especially if their coat becomes greasy or stringy. Brushing their teeth weekly is advisable to prevent periodontal issues.
Ragdoll vs Maine Coon: Similarities and differences
Both breeds originated in the USA, are large in size and closely similar in weight and height but Maine Coons are longer since they can reach up to 40 inches in length. These breeds almost have the same temperaments because they are gentle, laidback, affectionate, good with families, and not aggressive. However, Maine Coons are great hunters as opposed to Ragdolls that are more content as lap cats. The two breeds are closely similar in many ways yet, they also have differences that show that each breed is unique.
Ragdolls and Maine Coons are both fascinating breeds because they are massive in size, gentle, good-natured, and highly intelligent. They have closely similar physical features and character except for slight differences in length and skills. Both breeds make lovable companions and given the right care and attention, these breeds will live for 15 years or more.
Image: istockphoto.com / Angela Kotsell