Maine Coons are extremely popular and as such owners will live in a variety of different property styles.
A lot of Maine Coons will be brought back to houses in the suburbs, and even some to rural locations where they can roam outdoors.
But what about an apartment?
Surely a large cat like a Maine Coon can’t live in an apartment. Can they though?
Is it true, can a Maine Coon live in an apartment?
Maine Coons can thrive very well living in an apartment, even a relatively small one. In general, the smaller the apartment the more you will need to compensate with walks, trips, and entertainment, as well as not being left alone for long.
My Alita is an indoor apartment Maine Coon and she seems fine with it.
I have plenty of cat toys, other cats, and I take her on small trips locally very often in order to keep her mentally stimulated.
We all have an ideal image of where we’d like to bring our cat back to.
A large rural house with many rooms, next to fields, woodlands, and streams.
Vast wandering grounds to keep a Maine Coon entertained throughout the day and a nice cozy household for it to come back to.
Not everyone has this luxury though, and according to Statista, anywhere between 17 and 24% of people live in an apartment.
Some of those people want to be Maine Coon owners.
So wanting to have a Maine Coon but facing the reality of apartment living isn’t an outrageous afront to ask the question.
Maine Coons can adapt to live anywhere with their owners and many a Maine Coon is already an apartment cat.
Living with a Maine Coon, or at least planning to, does require some forethought though.
Hopefully, I can walk you through some ideas and things to be careful about.
But first, a really important point. Cats that live indoors live an average 2 to 5 years longer than outdoor cats.
Maine Coons, like any pet, deserve to have their needs met.
Whatever household you are bringing your Maine Coon back to there does need to be some basic considerations given to their welfare.
You should be thinking about bringing up a well adjusted, healthy, and happy Maine Coon.
I mean, that’s the goal right?
So as long as your intention is right, and you have the staying power to look after a live animal then living in an apartment is still a viable option.
I mean, it’s better for the Maine Coon to be treated well in a small apartment than to be treated badly in an ideal house and location.
A lot of apartment dwellers are also renters, so the first thing to check is whether your agreement allows for a cat within the property.
If the property is yours that’s all good, but best check if you can first.
Apartment living for a Maine Coon is definitely NOT a prison like environment.
For starters, some apartments have access to the outside where you would essentially have an outdoor Maine Coon.
Even if the ability to go outside had to be restricted, there’s always plenty of entertainment available, care to be given, along with walks and trips to be had.
The basic safety of your Maine Coon should be paramount.
Your cat may have access to the outside even in an apartment, but is it a good idea?
Is there heavy traffic flow close by, with no natural wandering grounds.
You may decide that the risk is worth it, or see that your Maine Coon really wants to go outside.
Decisions in the future might need to be taken because your cat has individual needs.
Male Maine Coons should be more prone to needing to go outside, so if you do want an apartment Maine Coon, a female may be a better choice.
Alita, my Maine Coon is female, and never tries to escape. She’s curious, but I never get the sense she wants to bolt away.
So, let’s look at some factors with reference to keeping your Maine Coon inside, or possibly letting them get a taste of the outdoor fresh air.
For whatever reason, you don’t want the Maine Coon to go outside.
That’s fine, for some it’s traffic or local dogs, but maybe you have no choice.
Difficult to let a Maine Coon out of an apartment if you live on the 10th floor.
I have this problem with Alita. I live on the 4th floor but there is a stairwell. It’s the stray dogs that I am more concerned about in the area.
So, what might you need to think about in this scenario
The Maine Coon will need to have their basic needs met, so all food, water, exercise, and ablutions.
If you have still not chosen your Maine Coon then you may not want the active cats, or even go exclusively for females.
Male cats feel a greater urge to go prowling and defending so the chances of them wanting to go outside are greater.
You might also have to think twice if your profession takes long hours away and the cat will be on their own without company or respite from the loneliness.
Plenty of toys, games, puzzles, and exercise will be needed to keep the Maine Coons mental health up.
Be careful about overfeeding as a substitute for entertainment. The cat may eat as something to do, and as such become obese.
You might need to escape proof your home as well, and make sure the temperature can be controlled.
Open windows or balconies are good for humans in apartments but not so great for a worried Maine Coon owner.
Deciding to let your cat out of an apartment is more analogous to a house with a cat flap.
There’s nothing to say an apartment can’t have a cat flap either.
If you are near a stairwell then why not.
Firsty, the advantage is that your Maine Coon will be able to get its own exercise.
While toys may be nice, they aren’t as necessary. If your Maine Coon becomes bored then it can go out for a while and take a look around.
As such they are exposed to a much more ‘cat like’ lifestyle so there is a natural set of stimuli that go along with this approach.
They can fulfil their natural hunting instincts as well which keeps them alert, healthy, and dexterous.
As a small downside, if you have a female Maine Coon you have little control of pregnancy without spaying the cat first.
Talking of which cats are quite territorial. If you live in a densely populated urban environment the chances of fights with other cats is greater.
Also, as with any urban environment, are the natural dangers of traffic and accidents that can happen quite easily.
Among the factors you might need to think about, there are some distinct advantages to having an indoor Maine Coon.
Firstly, they live longer.
An indoor Maine Coon is much more secure, and safe and studies prove that well cared for indoor Maine Coons will live a long life.
You also get to take them out for walks and get your own exercise too.
A Maine Coon will happily go for a walk as they are adaptable cats, and trust their owners.
They also happily go into those cat backpacks so trips away become easier. This is good for their mental health as well.
Apartments cats are thought to live in a safer environment.
While the outdoors sounds exciting, a cat can get into fights, catch FIP or FIV, or have to constantly dodge traffic.
An indoor cat is less at risk from life threatening external risks.
Luckily Maine Coons are very affectionate and resourceful. They also adapt easily to their surroundings.
Many Maine Coons are apartment cats, with hundreds of thousands of previous Maine Coons having gone before them.
Maine Coons perfectly adapt to apartment life if they are kept healthy.
A set of advantages wouldn’t be complete without looking at the other side of the coin.
Disadvantages aren’t hurdles that are insurmountable, but things to keep in mind with respect to keeping your Maine Coon healthy.
The first thing to discuss would be the level of confinement.
A Maine Coon that doesn’t have enough space, or place to go that it can call its own, might feel the need to try and find some space away from the home.
It may grow anxious with the lack of personal space, so if possible try and keep a little corner of the apartment where the Maine Coon can go to get away from things.
Cats are obviously used to roaming free and over time, especially without company or entertainment they may get a little restless.
To relieve pressures it might get destructive or become withdrawn. It’s imperative to keep an apartment Maine Coon as mentally stimulated as possible.
Keeping your Maine Coon more exclusively inside an apartment doesn’t eliminate physical risks.
Apartments vary, but one of the biggest risks is either open windows or access to balconies.
While a cat can be careful, accidents do happen.
You can install netting or some form of mesh barricade .
I have done this with my balcony and installed some plateau’s for my Maine Coon to perch on and watch the world go by.
Open spaces with dangers are a risk for any cat, even a Maine Coon.
Additionally, doors that swing open without being sprung loaded to close can often be an avenue for escape or at least that cat trying out that famous curiosity.
An indoor Maine Coon experiencing the world for the first time is a little bit at risk.
Apartments can have mezzanine levels, and even open stairs that can pose a risk, especially for kittens.
Cats can fall from great heights and survive, but it’s better if it’s controlled at their own risk appetite.
Normal household items need to be carefully thought about from leaving knives on the draining board to leaving the drier hatch open.
Many apartment cats have stepped on a hot electric stove as well.
Things that can be knocked over and cause a danger might need to be carefully replaced, and fine antiques on mantelpieces need a little more placement thought as well.
Try not to leave electric items plugged in as they pose risk.
Cords, cables, and just about any wire is chewable for a Maine Coon that needs to find some entertainment while you’re away.
Anything that could be a choking hazard like small bits of plastic, pins, or rubber bands should be out of reach.
Candles are probably a no-no unsupervised as well.
This is obviously a question of proportion, but people worry about their Maine Coon growing too large for an apartment.
The proverbial goldfish in a bowl scenario.
There’s no clear answer to the question.
All I can say is I have a small female Maine Coon, and for a while lived in a pretty small apartment.
I have stayed in bigger hotel rooms.
Alita was fine.
Granted I had to walk her, play with her, and otherwise keep her entertained but she did not ‘suffer’ with the small apartment.
I had other cats there so that may have helped.
Maine Coons are animals. If you are not going to interact with them, then there’s no apartment big enough.
If you intend to treat them well and look after them, then a small apartment is fine.
As strange as it sounds, modern domestic cats are well suited to living indoors.
Maine Coons have been around for a while now and many have been brought up in, and experienced their life in an apartment.
They can live many years completely happy without ever having stepped a paw into a field to try and catch a mouse.
Outdoor Maine Coons can run all manner of risks that an indoor one thinks little of. Traffic, dogs, or common infectious diseases.
Quality modern cat food brands contain all the minerals, proteins, nutrients, and calories for an indoor Maine Coon so it doesn’t miss out on anything.
Toys and apartment layouts mean that your Maine Coon doesn’t need to run through fields to exercise.
Yes, your indoor Maine Coon will have a ‘frantic 5 minutes’ every now and again as it burns off some energy.
Playing frequently with your Maine Coon will help them exercise and practice their hunting and pouncking skills.
Laser pointers are always a good one.
Not letting your Maine Coon get bored should be high on the list of ownership responsibilities if you have an indoor cat.
A Maine Coon that is getting ever more frustrated about a ‘trapped’ feeling will probably start a destructive phase.
It could be damaging household items, or it could be self destructive like not eating, urinating in beds, or sulking.
You will probably notice this with the combined effort to get out of a window onto the balcony, or bolt through an open door.
Maine Coons are quite capable of living in apartments.
Far more important than the size of the apartment is the care that’s going to be given.
Long periods in a small, cramped and entertainment free apartment aren’t good, but plenty of mental stimulation with toys, interaction, walks, and small trips can greatly benefit an apartment Maine Coon.
A Maine Coon is a great addition to an apartment and they adapt easily to living there, as many previous owners will testify to.
While there are advantages to your Maine Coon living in an apartment, such as safety, better health, and lower risks of cat fights and traffic accidents there are also some disadvantages.
It’s all about balancing the risk.
A Maine Coon will always prefer company so if you are going to be away for long periods it would be better to think about a second cat.
The Maine Coon breed is one of the most resilient and adaptable there is.
More than likely your Maine Coon will be fine as long as it;s getting plenty of attention and interaction.
And that’s the key.
Interaction with an apartment cat can wipe away a whole lot of problems that you might think you’ll have.
If you have a small apartment then look on the bright side and make a cat table near the window so the cat can have some changing scenery to look at.
I’ve had a small apartment with a Maine Coon and it’s a fabulous and amazing experience.
I’ve had no major issues, but I do spend a lot of time trying to keep them entertained.
And that’s just fine with me.
Maine Coon 101 | Read This Before Getting One