Maine Coon vs Domestic Long Hair Cat

By Lucas Duxbury

Domestic Long Hair vs Maine Coon

When you are choosing a cat for your home, it is of course very important to find one that will be a good fit for the environment, your lifestyle, and your family.

Below, we go over some of the differences between Maine Coon cats and domestic longhair cats– many people consider them to be interchangeable, or have trouble telling them apart, but they are two different breeds!

Maine Coon Cats

Maine Coon cats are the largest domesticated cat in the world! This makes size the number one differentiator when trying to tell a Maine Coon cat from a domestic longhair.

They are purebred cats– purebred cats are actually rarer than you think– and are thought to have been originally bred by the Vikings.It is more likely, however, that the breed is the result of breeding domestic long hair cats with other cat breeds that came from overseas. They were found in the 1800s in the state of Maine, in the United States, and had developed long, thick fur, and strong hunting instincts.

Domestic Long Hair Cats

Domestic longhair cats, on the other hand, are not a purebred breed of cat. Rather, the majority of the domesticated cat population is made mostly of either domesticated short hair or long hair cats.

Due to this, the appearance, size, and temperament of domestic longhair cats can vary a lot. The origins of all domestic cats date back to the domestication of wildcats in the Fertile Crescent, over 6,000 years ago. Humans kept these cats to hunt pests like rats and mice, and then this led to domestication over time. 

Domestic Long Hair vs Maine Coon Cats

So, how do you tell these two kinds of cats apart? There are several characteristics that can help to give you a clue and identify a Maine Coon cat or domestic with long hair. Take a look at some of the characteristics listed below!


Size is the number one differentiator between domestic long hair and Maine Coon cats. Not all Maine Coon cats are a lot larger than other domestic cats, as there is a range of heights and weights that the breed can fall in.

However, as a breed, Maine Coon cats are generally significantly larger than domestic longhair cats.

Maine Coon cats can weigh anywhere from 8 to 25 pounds and can grow to 8 to 16 inches high. Domestic longhair cats, though, usually only weigh between 8 and 15 pounds, and grow to stand between 8 and 16 inches. 


When considering the differences between Domestic Long Hair vs Maine Coon cats for your home, their fur is one of the main things to think about.

Maine Coon and domestic long hair cats both have long fur. However, Maine Coon cats have much thicker, shaggier fur that is also water-repellant– they developed this to protect them from Maine’s harsh winters.

They also have a distinct mane and ruff of fur on their chest and shoulder and may have toe tufts and tip ears, too. A domestic long-haired cat, by comparison, is thinner and not as water-repellant. If you have a Maine Coon cat, grooming will be a very important part of your cat’s care. 


Domestic long hair cats come in a few different color variations, and technically can come in many more because they often have mixed breed heritage. That being said, they typically will not appear in very rare or breed-specific color variations. On the flip side of this, Maine Coon cats can come in 75 different colorings! They are often found in cream, red, black, blue, or white. Maine Coon cats can also have coats that are bicolor, shaded, tabby, tortoiseshell, calico, or solid. 


Maine Coon cats have a very distinct build. In comparison to most other cats, they have much more muscular legs and large, wide paws. They also have broader noses and squared-off muzzles and chins.

Domestic long hair cats have muzzles and noses that are more tapered and proportionate to the face. The Main Coon cat also has a stockier, more rectangular body. Domestic long hair cats can either be slender or be wider, but will not be as solid and powerful in build as the Maine Coon.

Similar to the Ragdoll cat Maine Coon cats have a unique style and build. Check out our comparison on Ragdolls and Maine Coons and see what you think.


Maine Coon cats have specific characteristics and personality traits that are common in their breed. Since domestic long hair cats are not one breed, they can differ more in their temperament and personality.

Maine Coon cats are well known for their playful personalities, and are affectionate and social with other animals and people in the home, too. This is particularly telling of its breed because other cat breeds may be more aloof and independent.

Loyalty and affection can vary more in domestic long hair cats, so early socialization as kittens is important in order to encourage these behaviors. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you tell a Maine Coon from a domestic long hair?

There are several different characteristics that can help you to differentiate between Maine Coon cats and domestic long hair cats.

Some of these are size– a Maine Coon cat stands around 16 inches tall and is around 25 pounds, which is larger than most domestic long hair cats. Domestic cats generally grow to around 10 inches tall and around 10 pounds.

Are domestic long hair cats Maine Coons?

No, Maine Coon cats and domestic long hair cats are not the same breed. They do have their differences, like in size and weight, as well as temperament.

How can I tell if my cat is a Maine Coon?

Your cat is likely a Maine Coon cat if it has a more rectangular body shape and long, shaggy fur. Maine Coon cats also have more of a mane and a thicker tail when compared to other cats, and their eyes are larger, too. Maine Coon cats are also much taller and heavier than other breeds of cat.

How can I tell if my Maine Coon cat is long haired?

All Maine Coon cats have long, shaggy fur. They typically have a mane and a thick tail. Domestic long haired cats may have similar coats, but they are also smaller than Maine Coon cats and are not the same breed.