What Do Maine Coon Cats Eat?

Largest Maine Coon Cat
© iStock.com/Tylinek

Written by Heather Hall

Updated: September 30, 2023

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Key Points:
  • The Maine Coon cat is a domestic cat who at times has been used to control rodent populations on farms and homesteads.
  • Maine Coons cats need between 190-875 calories a day to thrive.
  • The best dry or wet cat foods for Maine Coons would contain chicken or fish.

Maine Coon cats are large domesticated cats native to North America. These gentle giants are playful, loyal, and loving to their owners. Maine Coons need lots of protein in their diets to fuel their energetic, kitten-like personalities. 

Although often mistaken for a wild cat, the Maine Coon is a domestic cat sometimes used to tame vermin on homesteads.  

Are you wondering what Maine Coon cats eat? Find out the best food for your Maine Coon, how much it eats, and what it might find on its own. 

What Do Maine Coon Cats Eat?

Largest Maine Coon Cat

Maine Coons need a high protein diet from a combination of wet and dry cat food.


Maine Coon cats eat a combination of meat like chicken and fish, dry cat food, and wet cat food. 

Main Coons are large and energetic, so they need plenty of protein to fuel their play. While they don’t need a specialized diet per se, they need to consume raw or cooked meat. 

While these cats can get all of their dietary needs through dry and wet cat food, some owners opt for a raw food diet combined with supplements. 

Stick with high-protein, low-fat meat like poultry, fish, and rabbit. The best raw food diet for Maine Coon cats contains 85% muscle meat, organs, and ground bones. If you choose this diet for your cat, consider adding vitamins and supplements to keep your cat healthy. 

Veterinary studies confirmed that omega-3 fatty acid supplements help treat inflammatory bowel disease in Maine Coons. 

Also, don’t forget the cat treats!

When Maine Coon cats are left in the wild, they resort to hunting for small rodents, birds, reptiles, insects, and small mammals.

A Complete List of Foods Maine Coon Cats Eat

cat eating wet food

Choose high-quality cat food with protein as the first ingredient for your Maine Coon.


Check out this list of the most common foods Maine Coon Cats eat.

  • Dry cat food
  • Wet cat food
  • Cat treats
  • Chicken
  • Fish
  • Rabbit
  • Small rodents
  • Birds
  • Reptiles
  • Insects
  • Small mammals

Most people keep Maine Coon cats as pets and feed them a diet like regular domestic cats. This is perfectly acceptable as long as their daily protein intake is 35% to 50%. When picking out cat food, ensure the first ingredient is protein, like fish or chicken. 

Choose high-quality cat foods that contain fewer carbs and moderate amounts of fat. Maine Coons are predisposed to adult diabetes and obesity, so ingredients like grains and corn should be limited. 

You can give Maine Coons dry cat food daily and wet cat food two to three times a week as their primary diet. Also, veterinary studies confirmed that omega-3 fatty acid supplements help treat inflammatory bowel disease in Maine Coons.

How Does a Maine Coon Cat Hunt?

can cats see in the dark

Maine Coons have intelligent hunting instincts and excellent problem-solving skills.

©Konstantin Zaykov/Shutterstock.com

Maine Coons were initially used as field cats to hunt for rodents on farms and homesteads. This sizeable domestic breed is a natural-born hunter and an excellent mouser. 

You may find that if you let your Maine Coon outside, it will bring back a variety of wildlife. These cats have intelligent hunting instincts and can fend for themselves when left to their own devices. 

Maine Coons have a high prey drive and excellent problem-solving skills than most domestic cats. 

They may look chubby under all that fluffy fur, but they actually have sleek and muscular bodies perfect for sneaking up behind prey and pouncing. Its large paws provide better accuracy for grabbing hold of a slippery rodents like mice. This breed is also more likely to be polydactyl, meaning they have more toes on their paws. 

Maine Coons will hunt for:

  •  Mice
  • Rats
  •  Fish
  •  Birds
  •  Rabbits
  •  Reptiles
  •  Amphibians
  •  Insects

What Can Maine Coons Not Eat?

Maine Coon lying on the couch

Don’t feed your Maine Coon chocolate, alcohol, dairy, and candy.

©ShotPrime Studio/Shutterstock.com

Like all domestic cats, Maine Coons must steer clear of certain types of food. Eating the wrong foods can cause digestion problems, high temperatures, abdominal pain, and increased thirst. It’s rare but possible for Maine Coons to suffer from seizures and even death when given the wrong food in high quantities. 

Do not feed your Maine Coon:

  • Chocolate
  • Dairy products like milk
  • Alcohol
  • Candy and other sugary products
  • Large amounts of tuna fish
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Onions and garlic
  • Mushrooms
  • Caffeinated drinks
  • Raw eggs
  • Dog food
  • Nuts
  • Human medicines
  • Yeast dough

How Much Do Main Coon Cats Eat?

Maine Coons must consume between 190 and 875 calories, depending on their size. To reach these calorie requirements, you will need to feed your cat 9 ounces of wet food or 3 ounces of dry food each day. 

Without proper exercise, Maine Coons can develop weight problems later in life. Owners tend to overfeed this breed because of its large size without considering its activity level. Maine Coons do eat more than the average cat breed, but they also need more exercise and room to play.

Consider investing in an indoor climbing structure for your Maine Coon to burn calories throughout the day.

What Do Maine Coon Kittens Eat?

Three red and two dark Maine Coon kitten sitting on the windowsill

Maine Coon kittens will eat dry and wet kitten food until 15 months old.

©Andrew Will/Shutterstock.com

Baby Maine Coons will drink its mother’s milk until two months of age. At this time, you can switch the baby over to a combination of dry and wet kitten food. Be sure to give your kitten two to four meals per day. 

Maine Coons take longer to mature than regular cats and must stay on kitten food until around 15 months old. You can switch to adult food after 15 months. 

Most cats reach adulthood between one and two years, but Maine Coons are not fully grown until three to five years old.

Do Maine Coon Cats Have Any Predators?

Maine Coons may be larger than other cat breeds, but they are not immune to attacks from bigger predators. 

If your Maine Coon is an indoor cat, you won’t have to worry too much about animal attacks. But letting your cat outside on its own poses a threat.

While hawks and owls would have trouble lifting a 15-pound cat, other predators could be lurking. Coyotes, cougars, and foxes could easily take off with a Maine Coon. 

Other predators include wolves, dogs, bears, bobcats, and lynx. 

If you let your Maine Coon run freely outdoors, consider keeping a watchful eye on your prized pet.

How Long Do Maine Coons Live?

Mine Coon cat lovers hope their furry friends will be around for many years. With proper care and yearly veterinarian visits, the average lifespan of Maine Coons is 12.5 to 15 years. Some owners of Maine Coons, however, have reported their beloved felines living for 20 years or more. The longevity of a Maine Coon is determined by its overall health, exercise, and balanced diet. They are known, though, as healthy, hearty cats in general.

Summary of Foods a Maine Coon Cat Eats

1Dry cat food
2Wet cat food
3Cat treats
7Small rodents
11Small mammals

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About the Author

Heather Hall is a writer at A-Z Animals, where her primary focus is on plants and animals. Heather has been writing and editing since 2012 and holds a Bachelor of Science in Horticulture. As a resident of the Pacific Northwest, Heather enjoys hiking, gardening, and trail running through the mountains with her dogs.

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