Cat photos: one enormous Maine Coon and one strange black-and-white coat

This is another very impressively large Maine Coon cat. I don’t know his name. I don’t know where the photograph was taken either. Perhaps someone can help? What you can see from the photograph is that his face is about the same size as the face of his human guardian (including the fur!), which is rare for a domestic cat!

Enormous Maine Coon cat
Enormous Maine Coon cat. A tabby cat.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

He has a mane which is a bit like the mane of a lion. He has forelegs which look extraordinarily thick and overall he looks to be quite a stocky cat especially which is unusual as the Maine Coon is normally quite rangy. His large and strong muzzle reminds me of the big cats; lion, jaguar, tiger or leopard. He has a very placid, big cat countenance.


Strange black and white cat coat
Strange black and white cat coat

The other cat appears to be a black-and-white cat. I am sure he/she is a random bred cat. We are used to seeing black-and-white cats with large areas of black and, usually, smaller areas of white, but in this case the black and the white has been fragmented to create this very unusual appearance.

We would have to ask Sarah Hartwell to tell us what is going on genetically. As far as I can tell this is a black-and-white cat and therefore the white spotting gene is working (to create the white fur) but the way that it has worked has been modified by other genes so this coat is the result of polygenes, as I see it, but that is a layman talking.

He or she seems to have a blob of something on his face to the left of his nose. I don’t know what that is but it is a little concerning. There is also some grey in the coat. Is this the workings of the dilution gene?

I’ve never seen a black-and-white cat with a coat like this. Both these cats are exceptional in my opinion.

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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

16 thoughts on “Cat photos: one enormous Maine Coon and one strange black-and-white coat”

  1. Thanks for the latest article Sarah, it made very interesting reading.

    My older sister has vitiligo. She developed a white patch on her throat when she was pregnant with her first child, so perhaps for her the trigger was hormone related? Over the years her fair skin has become almost paper white over much of her body. She has to wear high factor sun screen on even the mildest of days. So I’m guessing that any cat suffering from vitiligo who has access to go outside, would also be at increased risk for sun burn.

  2. The Maine Coon photo is a case of forced perspective making the head look bigger in proportion to the body and to the handler.

    1. I’m going to disagree with you slightly on this one. The lens used by the person operating the camera is perhaps a very moderate wide-angle or standard lens and the person standing about 6 feet away from the subject. The standard lens is less inclined to create perspective issues. However, a wide angle lens will have an effect but a moderate wild angle such as a 40 mm (on full frame sensor) will only have a marginal impact.

      I agree that the Maine Coon is nearer the lens than the person which will create perspective and make the cat’s head look larger compared to the person holding the cat but I don’t think that substantially affects the assessment of this cat’s size. This cat is clearly a very big Maine Coon.

    1. Hi Sarah, everything you say comments is always helpful and much appreciated! I knew there was something technical which I had not heard of about this interesting cat coat.

  3. I also came across some comments from a Russian lady who suggested that their MC’s were becoming too large and powerful looking. She pointed out that surely the ideal look should be closer to the American CFA version as that was based on the original cats.

    Like us, it seems some Russians would like to see a uniform standard for breeds worldwide. That then raised the question of whether cats would have to be genotype (purebred) or phenotype (appearance fits the type.) That’s a valid point and would make universal breed standards impossible. I believe that in the UK the GCCF operates a genotype policy, whereas TICA is a phenotype registry because it allows more outcrosses than other cat registries. I can’t see either registry wanting to adopt the other’s policies.

    Most Russians seem to share our opinion that the breed standard is really set by the judges more than anyone else. It is their interpretation of the standards and their own personal preferences, which dictates the look breeders will strive for.

    1. Very square muzzle. This is unnatural breeding a little like the flat faced Persian when the face has to be flat – literally.

      This explains the very strong slightly unnatural muzzle of the huge Maine Coon in the picture.

      As you say they are breeding a dog! Barmy as far as I am concerned. Sadly I prefer the more natural appearance.

      1. There’s no denying they are impressive looking cats, but the muzzle is too “boxy” for my liking. It’s gone too far and beginning to look unnatural, especially when compared to American or British versions.

        I don’t know why they didn’t create a new breed and call it the Leonid, because their MC’s are beginning to resemble lions ๐Ÿ˜‰

        1. These are indeed beautiful cats! I love the MC and the color of the other is mesmerizing!

          About the Maine Coon, I met one that was similar in size and facial appearance several years ago at my vet’s clinic. He was more grey and silver and belonged to the vet. I wonder if he was of Russian ancestry?

          1. Cat: It’s quite possible that the Maine Coon you saw did have some European heritage. Some breeders in the USA are importing cats from Europe so that they can produce this much, larger type of Maine Coon.

            This breeder in Raymore, Missouri has some wonderful examples of cats imported from across Eastern Europe.

            http://www.vasilismainecooncats.com/index.html

            It will be very interesting to see how well these cats do on the show bench. If American judges start awarding them prizes, more breeders will follow suit by supersizing their own cats.

  4. I’m always interested in learning what cat lovers worldwide think and recently found a very interesting Russian forum for Maine Coons. Even within Russia and Eastern Europe there is some disagreement as to what constitutes the “perfect” profile.

    These images were considered to be a good representation of the ideal. At first glance I thought it was a sketch of a dog;

  5. I don’t know who the cat is, but the pronounced muzzle suggests to me that he is from a breeder in Russia, Poland, Germany or perhaps the Czech Republic. That “wilder” look and large body is the preferred type for the Maine Coon in those countries.

    The black and white cat is very attractive. Looks almost like a tortoiseshell coat minus the red. There are photos of other unusual black and white markings on Sarah’s web site.

    http://messybeast.com/roan-tweed.htm

    1. Once again I think you’ve come up with the right answer, Michelle. This Maine Coon cat does not look like an American bred cat. And as we know they do breed their cats, meaning all the breeds, differently in Eastern Europe and Russia compared to America. I remember the huge differences in the British Shorthair cat bred in Russia compared to those in the UK and the USA. The Russian cats are almost unrecognisable as a British Shorthair.

  6. Sandra Murphey, No. CA, USA

    This is a magnificent Maine Coon. What a peaceful face! I think I saw this picture on a site that showed pictures of “largest cats”.

    I’ve never seen a black and white pattern like the other cat.

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