To many people, the Siberian cat and the Maine Coon cat look alike. However, they are quite different once you learn more about them. Both breeds fall into the category of large cats, with the Maine Coon being bigger, of course.
They are also similar in personality and temperament and can have similar colors, but despite the colors and similarities at first glance, look a little closer and you will see that they differ both in size and in overall appearance.
We will explore the personality traits of both these breeds, whose temperaments are quite alike. Remember, all cats are different, and the typical personality traits of a certain cat breed won’t necessarily be 100% true for every cat belonging to that breed.
So, what about the Siberian cat vs Maine Coon? Why do people seem to mistake them for one another? Read on to see what these long-haired cats have in common and what are their main differences.
Maine Coon Vs Siberian Cat – Differences And Similarities
|Eyes & Ears
|Lifespan and living habits
Both the Maine Coon and the Siberian cat have long fur and require lots of grooming. These cats do resemble one another in many ways, but they also differ in many ways as well.
They have similar coat colors and patterns, but the varieties and possible pattern-color combinations differ. They are both large cats (hence both breeds of cats are predisposed to HCM), but the Maine Coon is at a higher risk of developing health issues.
Read on to find out all there is to know about the Siberian cat vs the Maine Coon cat.
Siberian Cat Vs Maine Coon: The Origin Stories
There are a few different stories about the origins of the Maine Coon cat breed. According to one of them, Maine Coons came to America with the Vikings because they were excellent mousers (which is certainly true – they are great hunters).
There is also a legend that Marie Antoinette sent her cats to the American state of Maine, including Persian cats, Turkish Angoras, and Siberian cats. It is believed that these cats interbred and produced semi-long-haired cats known as Maine Coons after the state’s name.
However, the origin story of Captain Coon is my favorite. People used to think that Captain Coon stopped in Maine and that his ship’s cats mated with other cats. As his name was Coon and the state’s name was Maine, the new breed came to be known as Maine Coon cats.
The origin of the Siberian cat breed is clear from the breed’s name; they are Siberian! These cats originated in the icy forests of Siberia, Russia. Siberian cats are also sometimes known as Siberian forest cats.
The breed evolved spontaneously in the harsh environment of Siberia over the course of millennia, without human influence. The Siberian cat was presented in a cat show for the first time towards the end of the nineteenth century.
After the Cold War ended, the breed resurfaced, and the first pedigree was given in 1987 by the Kotofey cat club. Siberian cats are the Russian national cat, while Maine Coons are considered to be the official cat of the state of Maine, USA.
Maine Coon cats are commonly referred to as gentle giants because they are as sweet as they are big. Maine Coons are extremely loving, affectionate, and cuddly. They aren’t big fans of lap naps, (perhaps they’re aware of their size); they prefer to lie down and snuggle beside you rather than sit on your lap. They are intelligent, friendly, and quite calm by nature.
Siberian cats are also quite intelligent, friendly, and affectionate, but in comparison to Maine Coons, these cats mature rather later. Sometimes, the Siberian cat will only reach maturity at the age of five, i.e. it will act as a kitten for all those early years..
Both these cats enjoy exploring around, and they love a good challenge. They’re also terrific mousers, always on the lookout for annoying pests.
However, when a Siberian cat isn’t playing or hunting, this adorable lap cat enjoys cuddling and getting all the attention it can from its owners. The only difference in terms of affection and snuggling is that the Maine Coon will usually snuggle beside you rather than in your lap.
Maine Coons and Siberian cats are both known to display behavior that is often described as “dog-like”. Maine Coons are playful and will greet you like dogs do, and a Siberian cat will act like a dog by coming to you when called.
Both these cat breeds are well-built and have fur that can endure very cold climates. Even though these two breeds come from different sides of the planet, they come from similar climates so they have both evolved certain characteristics to help them manage cold weather.
Both Maine Coon and Siberian cats have a fluffy ruff, but Siberian cats tend to have a bigger ruff around their necks than Maine Coons.
Head & Body Shape
Maine Coons have a square-shaped head with strong cheekbones. The head shape of the Siberian cat is more gently rounded. They both have strong bodies, with medium-length legs. The chest of the Maine Coon is large and robust, and its tail is long, whereas the Siberian has a barrel-shaped body and a medium-length tail.
Eyes & Ears
The Maine Coon’s eyes are very large and somewhat oval in shape, but when fully open, they can appear rounder. The eyes of a Siberian cat are also very large but they are practically round and set further apart.
One of the most notable characteristics of the Maine Coon is its huge, pointed ears with lynx tips, which both breeds can have.
The ears of the Maine Coon are broad and wide, situated high on its head, while the ears of the Siberian are medium in size and usually have rounded tips.
Even though the Siberian cat definitely isn’t considered small, the Maine Coon is a larger breed. Siberian cats have longer hind legs, but the Maine Coon’s size is generally bigger, making this large cat bigger than the Siberian cat.
Male Maine Coons typically weigh from 15-26 lbs, while females weigh 11 to 18 lbs. The Siberian cat is also quite big but usually described as a medium-large size. Male Siberians usually weigh between 11-17 lbs, and females weigh 8-12 lbs.
Coat Colors And Patterns
Comparing the Siberian cat vs Maine Coon, you notice that both breeds have thick, water repellent, long coats, but the Siberian cat has a triple coat and a long undercoat, whereas a Maine Coon has a short or medium-length undercoat.
Both the Maine Coon and the Siberian cat have incredibly majestic, long, beautiful fur. Their thick coats can come in a variety of colors and patterns. The CFA recognizes eighty possible colors for a Maine Coon cat, and the Siberian cat is a natural cat breed and can have fur of all possible coat colors.
They can each also have different coat patterns, but the Siberian cat commonly has spotted, mackerel, or ticked patterns, with all the usual patterns as well (i.e. tabby, solid, tortie, calico, bi-color, color point).
Maine Coon cats typically have yellow eyes, while Siberian cats usually have green or golden eyes. White Siberian cats tend to have blue eyes.
A Maine Coon’s coat requires a lot of grooming if you want to keep it nice and sleek. For your kitty’s health and looks, you need to brush or comb its fur regularly, ensuring that it doesn’t get dirty or tangled, to prevent matting and reduce dander as much as possible.
Your Maine Coon also needs to have regular baths. Aside from hygiene and health concerns, grooming sessions are great for bonding and giving your Maine Coon your undivided attention. When it comes to baths, shower your Maine Coon with attention and water as well lol!
Maine Coons do not have any special exercise requirements, but they do require a lot of entertainment options. Cat trees, cat toys, scratchers, anything you can provide to prevent these furry creatures from getting bored and to keep them occupied will be great. They are easily trained and very sociable.
Siberian cats also require a lot of brushing; a couple of times a week at least. However, unlike Maine Coons, their coat is water repellent, so they don’t require regular baths. You will still need to clean the ears and the eyes of Siberian cats.
As for exercise, there is no need for anything special, but just like Maine Coon cats, Siberian cats require cat toys and different games to keep their minds and bodies in action.
They are also easily trained and can even be taught to perform tricks. Both these cat breeds require a larger litter box since they are big breeds.
Both these breeds are commonly referred to as being hypoallergenic, but they’re not. Even though the Siberian cat produces much fewer allergens than most other cats, they still can’t be regarded as hypoallergenic.
However, people with cat allergies are mostly allergic to Fel d1, and these two breeds produce less of it than other domestic cats, so sensitive people might find it easier to tolerate them.
Health And Nutrition
A Maine Coon is usually a very healthy cat. However, there are some medical conditions and diseases that this cat breed is predisposed to. The Siberian cat is also prone to certain health issues.
Both these breeds are predisposed to HCM (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy), a condition that affects the cat’s heart, making it larger and less functional. Maine Coons can also develop hip dysplasia or arthritis, and some dental diseases are known to affect them.
There will be fewer worries if you decide to buy from reputable registered breeders, since they test and screen their breeding cats and kittens regularly, so you will know about your kitten’s medical history from the very beginning.
However, some medical conditions can develop later on, so it is important to screen and test your cat regularly, whether it is a Siberian or a Maine Coon.
When it comes to nutrition, both these breeds will eat a little more than most other domestic cat breeds, due to their size.
You need to provide them with high-quality cat foods and also keep track of their intake so they don’t overeat as this can lead to health problems. It is best to consult your vet and establish a healthy diet plan tailored to your cat’s needs.
Maine Coon cats are extremely affectionate and therefore need a loving family that is ready to include their Maine Coon in their everyday activities. They are great with kids, and people of all ages, but they are not so fond of being left alone. Siberian cats are also prone to separation anxiety if left alone for long periods.
A Maine Coon needs plenty of entertainment sources if you don’t want them to get depressed when you’re not home. They are best for families that always have a member at home, and having a second cat for company is a great idea.. They aren’t very vocal, but will occasionally meow to their owners, i.e. they will vocalize when they need to.
Just like Maine Coons, the Siberian cat will only vocalize when there’s a need for it. Both these breeds are known to chirp or trill rather than have a loud meow, which can be very funny because people expect these big cats to have big roaring voices to match their stature!
Siberian cats are also best suited for people that are eager to play and for families that always have one member present at home. They are also quite friendly and get along well with everyone. Both of these breeds are a terrific choice for a big household as a family pet.
Siberian cats are also extremely smart and will require lots of different toys and forms of entertainment. However, the Siberian, unlike the Maine Coon, is known to jump up and nap in your lap.
Both these cats love to climb, but the Siberian cat will typically be more interested in climbing up to the top of the cat tree than a Maine Coon.
Interestingly, both the Maine Coon and the Siberian cat, have a lifespan of approximately 12 to 15 years. The main difference is that the Siberian cat will reach maturity a lot later than a Maine Coon cat, usually at the age of five.
Breeders And Prices
The price of a purebred Maine Coon cat is usually somewhere between $1000 and $2000 in the USA. However, their price can be as high as $4000, depending on the breeder, the cat’s age, and its pedigree.
The Siberian breed usually costs between $1200 and $2000, but their prices can also vary and it may be as high as $4k. Again, depending on several factors including the breeder, pedigree, and appearance.
How can you tell a Maine Coon from a Siberian?
There are a few notable differences when you have a closer look at the two breeds, but the most noticeable difference is the head shape. The Siberian cat has a rounded head with a rounded ruff around its neck, whereas a Maine Coon’s head is somewhat square-shaped with strongly pronounced cheekbones.
No, both cat breeds were produced and developed on different sides of the world, and therefore the Maine Coon isn’t related to the Siberian cat breed.
How can I tell if my cat is Siberian?
The thick, triple-layer coats of Siberian cats set them apart and give them their unique look. They have a long overcoat, then bristle middle coat hairs, and finally a soft undercoat. These numerous coats protect the Siberian cat from the harsh Russian winters.
Siberian cats also have a rounder head shape and typically bigger paws than Norwegian Forest cats and Maine Coon cats, which they resemble the most. They also have characteristic round eyes that are usually golden or green in color.
Do Siberian cats meow a lot?
No, Siberian cats will only vocalize when there is a need for it, i.e. when they need something. Their meows are more like chirping sounds, which often surprises new cat owners due to the cat’s majestic and imposing appearance. They purr loudly and a lot, which is so soothing you won’t miss the meows.
Can Maine Coons be indoor cats?
Yes, in fact most cat owners prefer to keep them as indoor cats, and sometimes include walks on a leash since Maine Coons are easily trained and are fond of these types of walks. Maine Coon cats can be both indoor and outdoor cats, but there is a risk of getting stolen if your Maine Coon happens to wander around on their own, so most people keep them indoors most of the time.
Why is my cat meowing?
Cats only meow to humans, i.e. that is their way of communicating with us. There are several reasons why your cat might meow to you; it could be hungry, or want playtime, or something might be wrong. In any case your cat will meow if it needs or wants your attention.
Pay close attention to your cat if it is meowing but not seeking food or cuddles, since it might want to show you a rodent it has brought as a present to you, or something might be bothering them. You might have to visit the vet if your cat’s meows don’t stop and you don’t discover any ailment on your own; the vet is the best person to check your cat over..
What is the size difference between the two breeds?
The difference in the size of the Siberian cat vs Maine Coon is actually quite pronounced. Despite the fact that the Siberian cat is a big cat, the Maine Coon is still a bigger breed. Siberian cats have longer hind legs, but the Maine Coon is larger in size overall; therefore, this giant cat is the largest of the domestic cats, including the Siberian cat.
Male Maine Coons typically weigh between 15 and 26 pounds, while females’ weigh between 11 and 18 pounds. The Siberian cat is also fairly big, with male Siberians typically weighing 11-17 pounds, while females weigh 8-12 lbs.
Do Siberian cats get along with other pets?
Yes, Siberian cats get along extremely well with other pets including other cats and dogs that are tolerant of felines. Siberian cats are great for families and multi-pet households. They are friendly towards children, and people of any age generally.
What are the colors of a Siberian cat?
The Siberian cat breed is a natural breed and it can be any of the possible colors, and color varieties. Their coat colors include black, white, brown, red, cream, blue, and other possible color variations.
What is the difference between a Maine Coon and a Siberian?
The key difference between a Maine Coon vs Siberian cat is their size. Maine Coons are bigger cats, even though the Siberian has longer hind legs. They also differ in head and body shape, ears, eyes, origin, and predisposition to health issues.
The Siberian cat and the Maine Coon may appear to be very similar at a quick glance, but they are really very different once you understand more about them. Both of these breeds fall into the big cats category, with the Maine Coon being the larger of the two.
They are also similar in nature and temperament and can have similar colors, but despite the colors and similar features at first glance, they differ in size and overall appearance with a closer look.
Once you get to know the breed, you will discover all of its peculiarities, as well as those of your pet in particular. I mentioned the personality qualities of both of these breeds, whose temperaments are pretty similar, but, once again, all cats are different, and the personality traits of a certain cat breed won’t be 100% accurate for every cat of that breed.
All in all, as James Franco says in the movie The Interview, “same, same, but different”. Jokes aside, Siberian cat vs Maine Coon can be tricky as they do appear extremely similar until you look more closely.
The key difference is in their head and body shape, eye color shape, tips of ears, and then further investigation highlights differences in their health and origins as well.