If you're looking to get the best big cat, you're probably debating between the Norwegian forest cat vs. Maine Coon. Both are some of the largest cats you can find globally, and both have their advantages and disadvantages.
In the United States, the Maine Coon is significantly more common, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it is the better cat to have. Let's take a look at both of these fantastic cats to see which one might be the best fit for you!
Norwegian Forest Cat vs. Maine Coon: Size
The Maine Coon is a giant cat. Indeed, the Maine Coon is the largest in the world. A male cat will weigh between 13 and 18 pounds and will measure approximately 3.3 feet. Females are slightly less heavy, weighing between 8 and 12 pounds.
By contrast, the Norwegian forest cat, one of the oldest cat breed in the world, will typically weigh between 10 and 20 pounds for males and 8 and 18 pounds for females. However, the Norwegian forest cat is not quite as long as a Maine Coon. On average, its body is anywhere between 12 and 18 inches, which, even adding the tail, won't reach the 3.3 feet that you'll see with a Maine Coon.
Therefore, if you want a giant cat, you'll want to get a Maine Coon! There's no Maine Coon size comparison out there, even if the Norwegian forest cat does come very close!
The personalities of the Maine Coon and the Norwegian forest cat are quite different.
Maine Coon cats are typically affectionate, amiable, and they can be quite playful. Many people have contended that they act more like a dog than a cat. They're not altogether wrong! If you spend time with a Maine Coon, you'll sometimes feel like you have a dog, not a cat!
By contrast, the Norwegian forest cat is much more gentle, sweet, and shy around new people. If this cat trusts you, though, it will be exceptionally social. However, they are not anywhere near as "dog-like" as the Maine Coon cats are.
If you're looking for a more "cat-like" cat, then the Norwegian forest cat is probably your best bet. They're more independent and reserved. However, if you want to have a cat that acts a little more like a dog, the Maine Coon is the perfect pet for you!
Both cats have some health issues that prospective owners should know.
Norwegian forest cats have some hereditary health issues that you should have screened:
- hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
- hip dysplasia
- glycogen storage disease
Maine Coons have a similar set of conditions of which you should be aware:
- hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
- hip dysplasia
- spinal muscular atrophy
If you're getting your cat from a breeder, please make sure that they screen for these hereditary diseases before you take the cat home. If you don't, you may, unfortunately, deal with a very sick cat. If you decide to adopt a cat from a shelter, which is always the better option, you can get the cat's health information from the shelter.
Finally, it's worth noting that both the Maine Coon and the Norwegian forest cat have similar lifespans. Maine Coons tend to live around 13-14 years. Norwegian forest cats live around the same length of time, but they can occasionally live a little longer.
Norwegian Forest Cat Price Compared to the Maine Coon
Maine Coon cats are quite pricey. It can be between $1,500 and $4,000 for a kitten, depending on where you live and what breeder you visit.
Norwegian forest cat breeders typically charge much less. You'll usually have to pay between $800 and $1,500, depending on the pedigree, location, and age.
Finding these cats in an adoption shelter tends to be complicated. Both are relatively popular breeds that are much rarer than the calicos and tabby cats you'll find in the animal shelter. With that said, though, please check your local animal shelters first. It's significantly less expensive to adopt than to pay the full Norwegian forest cat price or the Maine Coon price.
Norwegian Forest Cat vs. Maine Coon: Which Is Right for You?
As you can tell, the Maine Coon and the Norwegian forest cat are very similar. They're both large, relatively healthy cats that will provide lots of love and laughter for any family.
However, the Maine Coon cat is larger of the two, and it also costs significantly more. If budget is your primary concern, the Norwegian forest cat is the way to go.
If, on the other hand, personality matters to you most, you'll probably want the Maine Coon. Its dog-like character, amiable demeanor, and goofy charm make it a near-perfect feline companion.
While the Norwegian forest cat is a lovable animal, many owners feel that it doesn't have the same appeal as the Maine Coon. But that is, of course, dependent on your personality as well. If you're looking for a more independent animal, the Norwegian forest cat might be a better fit.
In both cases, please check out your local animal shelters before you buy from a breeder. Adopting a cat is a more humane way to obtain one of these lovable pets. You'll give a cat a new lease on life, which is a fantastic feeling!