The Indoor Outdoor Natural Living Maine Coon

by Lisa
(Franklin, MA)

About 10 years ago we had a Maine Coon cat. He was a gift from a neighbor of my grandmother in Ohio. He was crawling across the lawn and I picked him up and that was it…

I couldn’t let go of him for all the tea in China.

We “smuggled” him back to Massachusetts and named him “Chicken”. It was Chicken “poop” because he used to run out from beneath the couch, attack your shoes then run back.

He was an indoor/ outdoor cat. He used to attack racoons and other beasties because he always came back in with scars and there was a dead Raccoon on the porch.

He also liked to collect chipmunk tails. He was intact for quite a while and to this day the cats at the barn down the road have a little bit of him in them.

He eventually got feline HIV and he was neutered but he lived 5 years without a symptom. Suddenly when a neutered orange tabby mutt cat from up the street decided to live with us, Chicken quickly got sick and died.


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The Indoor Outdoor Natural Living Maine Coon

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Jul 11, 2011 Compromised Immune System
by: Gail (Boston, USA)

Hi Lisa, Loved your story about your Maine Coon, but sad you lost him due to feline HIV. Please be sure that you take your current cat to the vet regularly (at least once/year) for whatever innoculations are required for his age. Not only are outdoor cats suseptible to FIV, they are also subject to FeLV (feline leukemia virus)

FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus – feline AIDS) is caused by the transmittal of saliva and blood products from one cat to another – bite wounds and scratches. This disease surpresses the cat’s immune system. The normal course of action is to keep the cat indoors to prevent the spread to other cats. New cats should also not be introduced into the home unless they are also FIV positive.

PLEASE! Have your current cat tested (if he hasn’t been already). Although there is no credible evidence to indicate the virus spreads through sexual contact between cats, infected females can pass the virus on to their kitten(s). There is no cure for this disease and is not transmittable between feline and human. FIV disease is most common in adult, sexually-intact, free-roaming males – another very good reason to SPAY/NEUTER your furkids. Neutered males generally do not have the propensity to be aggressive.

FeLV (feline leukemia virus) is found in cats world-wide; however, the prevelance varies depending on their age, health, environment and lifestyle. Like FIV, FeLV is also spread by high quantities of saliva and nasal secretions, but also from urine, feces and milk from infected cats. The virus can be transferred cat-to-cat from bite wounds, mutual grooming of cats and, though less common, sharing of food dishes and litter boxes if one cat is infected. Common ailments from this virus are cancer, various blood disorders and the inability to fight off other ailments not found dangerous in healthy cats.

I don’t mean to scare you, Lisa, but these 2 diseases are very serious. Regular vet visits and preventative measures can keep your current cat healthy. The early stages of these diseases show no outward signs in cats. Over time, though – weeks, months, even years, the cat’s health may progressively deterioriate with recurrent illness. That’s what it sounds like happened to your Maine Coon.

Good luck with your moggie, but I cannot stress enough – PLEASE have him tested and don’t allow him/her near other cats until you know he’s got a clean bill of health.

Jul 09, 2011 Desex ur cat
by: Anonymous

I also have a beautiful male 9kilo maine coon.
He too does what he wants But I took charge & desexed him when he was 3-4 months old I knew about cats AIDS & how quick it spreads. But the orange moogie that came & stayed with you was a blessing so when ur cat passed away you had a replacement.It may be one of his son.

Jul 08, 2011 Like your story but some reservations
by: Michael

Hi Lisa. Personally I liked your story. It is almost old fashioned. Your Maine Coon lived like domestic cats used to live.

But it seems that you were a little laissez-faire meaning you let him do as he pleased including breeding (there are too many cats already).

I am not criticizing. It is just an observation. His death is sad and perhaps it could have been avoided.

Thanks for sharing by the way.


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