Thirteen years ago, while taking my daughter to a friend’s birthday party, I feel in love with a kitten who live at the ‘party’ house. After checking with my husband if I could bring her home, I drove back and brought Cleo to live with us. I have had different breeds throughout my 52 years, but have fallen in love with
Maine Coons. Granted, mine is only part Maine Coon, but as she grows older, I have discovered that she has a predisposition to certain health issues, merely because of her breed. It is important for Maine Coon owners to know what to look for as their cat ages.
Hip Dysplasia is a common birth problem that is more likely to occur in Maine Coons than other breeds. Hip Dysplasia generally refers to the placement of the hip socket and occurs as a kitten ages. Some adult cats have no symptoms until they are older. If your can begins to hobble or show signs of pain, contact a vet and ask for hip x-rays to rule out Hip Dysplasia. It might be a case of arthritis and can be treated with medication.
As cats get older, they often show digestive issues. This is particularly true of Maine Coons due to the intensive’ cleaning routines. These cats are larger than the average cat and tend to have lots of hair ball issues. Know your cats regular digestive issues and purchase a hair ball remover medication to help your older get get rid of unwanted hairballs that often block the digestive tract in older cats.
Main Coons are prone to a genetic heart condition called Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. Most reputable breeders check for the gene before mating cats. For those like me with a cat we inherited, knowing their genetic pool is a bit more difficult. The disease most often shows as severe fatigue and heart issues when a cat is small. however, those with a minor variety of the illness, might not exhibit symptoms until they are older. This is especially true for cats that are house cats and haven’t had a lot of outside activity. If your cat exhibits trouble breathing, shows excessive fatigue or appears less playful than usual, check with your vet and ask for a sonogram of your cats hear. It could be mild Cardiomyopathy instead of aging.
Early intervention and regular checkups are the best method for keeping your Maine Coon cat healthy. Knowing what to look for helps ensure that your cat is a healthy and happy elder Maine Coon.