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Diet, Food And Nutrition Questions

This is a collection of diet, cat food & nutrition visitor questions, along with the advice of other cat lovers.

If you are not sure what to feed your Maine Coon Cat, or how much food he needs you'll find those and other similar questions here.

Just scroll down to read more about:

  • Pork By-Product For Kitten?
  • Food For 9 Month Old Kitten
  • "My vet told me to buy EVO Is this good?"
  • How much food is too much for a male Maine Coon?
  • "I don't know how much to feed my Maine Coon kittens!"
  • Orijen dry cat food - anyone use it?
  • Best Food For 9-year-old Female - Royal Canin?
  • Best Food And Cancer Prevention?
  • How to get the best nutrition to all 3 cats?
  • Type of food and how much water for Maine Coons
  • How much for 8-week-old kitten?
  • Giving milk to a kitten?

Pork By-Product For Kitten?
I Think The Vet Is Trying To Sell Me Garbage.

by Jennifer
(Syracuse NY, USA)

black kitten

I recently adopted a kitten, 3 months old, that I'm pretty sure is a Maine Coon.

The adoption agency I got him from includes the standard shots/neuter/vet visit.

So when I took him in today and asked about food--my fiance and I want to nourish him with the best possible food, did some research and went to an organic pet food store and got him a brand of wet canned called Dave's - the store is full of all natural, grain free pet food.

They said it's closer to a cat's natural diet, and also because it's wet. and they said it'd be fine for a kitten too because it's all natural meat. Here is the ingredients in some recipes:

The vet today said that I need to feed him kitten food and pushed this "vet-created" stuff called Royal Canin. I felt pressured and she was a bit belligerent and pushy. But when I got home I realized the 2nd ingredient to "water sufficient for processing" is PORK BY PRODUCT.

I somehow don't believe that this is better, though admit I am not a doctor. But I am frustrated that everyone gives me different answers, every website says different things (or is full of idiots who think their opinion is fact on yahoo answers and the like).

The vet, of course, was short and wasn't easy to talk to. I had so many questions ready and she brushed me off. I at least wanted to ask if grain-free is good for the cat. She acted is if it were MY personal preference the cat eats grain-free (which is silly, I don't care..I only want what's best for the cat), and said that cats eat mice which eat grain so it's fine.

I'm confused and annoyed with the vet for pushing that on me and not taking time to talk to me about this. Can you give any insight on this issue? Also, sorry to tack on another question, but I heard tuna is should I not feed him the tuna/mackerel variety canned because of mercury?


Hi Jennifer,

I'm sorry to hear about your disappointing visit to that vet. Regardless of her reasons (bad day, over-booked, personality insecurities about being "questioned") she really should have been professional enough to listen to your questions and concerns, and give thoughtful, respectful answers.

I'm sure you won't be returning to her (as it was part of the new-kitten package), but just in case, I must recommend you find a new vet! If you have any friends or relatives who have long-standing relationships with their vet and recommend them highly, see if they are taking new patients.

She was (sort of) right about one thing, though: It is up to you to make nutritional decisions, including whether your cat eats grain-free. And as you've figured out, "grain-free" is a bit of a hot topic.

Speaking in generalities, grain-free food is considered top quality. And keeping a balanced viewpoint in mind, not all grain is bad. Yes, a cat will eat the stomach content of it's prey, including grain. Therefore grain is not "bad" in and of itself. But, they will not go munch on wheat or wheat gluten, corn or corn gluten for a snack in the wild! Therefore, it's wise to avoid any cat food with those ingredients!

It sounds like you've really done your research. Regarding Royal Canin, you might want to check out our two-part article on it if you haven't already: Royal Canin Cat Food For Maine Coons - Why Not Review It? I think it will make you feel better about not wanting to feed your little boy a food that is marketed for Maine Coons.

As for the pork by-product, here is a quote from our article on Cat Food Ingredients: "Chicken by-products consist of the rendered, clean parts of the carcass of slaughtered chicken, such as heads, feet, viscera (also known as innards, or offal)" Pork would be similarly revolting. This description puts it mildly, too. A quick search on the web will bring up disturbing and disgusting info on by-products for those who want more details.

As for your burning question, "Is grain-free better?" it certainly is top-notch. The protein content is so much higher than in regular food that you must make the switch very gradually. We made the switch to grain free a couple of summers ago. Surprisingly, Alice's digestive system couldn't handle it. She had severe diarrhea, vomiting, and lost weight. It was gradual and I couldn't believe it was related to our switch to the "best" cat food I could find. But, it was. My vet explained that as good as a food is, sometimes it just doesn't agree with a cat. Now she's thriving on her old food which has some rice in it (though not a primary ingredient. Last summer, we ordered some Epigen from Wysong and the cats just devour it. They now eat it more than their "regular" stuff. It's grain free and starch free and Alice is thriving. Go figure!

Dave's looks like another great food. I don't think you should have any doubts about it. It's ingredients are whole, real foods.

Did the vet encourage you to go out and find Royal Canin, or was she selling it in-house? If so, that would also contribute to her defensiveness.

As for the tuna, you are right. It's not great. Here is a link to one or our past issues to Tattle Tails, our newsletter. At the end, Leo's health tip includes a section about tuna: Tattle Tails - Cats With Spring Fever.

Lastly, congratulations on your new little boy! He's all ears, isn't he? What is his name?

All The Best,


What to feed our cats!
by: Nancy

When we were young we fed our Siamese "Kozy Kitten" smelled awful but she loved it. This was in the 1960' dry food then. Next cats 1980's got all dry food...nothing wet or canned! Now, 2011, we have a Maine Coon and a Russian believes in canned/wet food as a means to avoid kidney issues in later life. So we are feeding that...and we supplement it with Iams (weight and hairball type)...feeding Meow Mix and Whiskas from the grocer.....When reading the recommend amounts to feed it is just ridiculous....3 packets for each 5# of weight...for our Russian Blue that would be 9 packets a day or about $5 a day! We cannot go that way....the Maine Coon kitten is eating a bunch...more than the Russian Blue.

What should we be feeding?????


by Shirley


Our 9 month old kitten, Mandy, is now just about 10 lbs and 30 inches long. She was malnourished when we got her from the shelter.

We began giving her dry food and added small amounts of lightly boiled boneless chicken breast meat for her..

She ate a lot of food & still begged. She is much better about that now, especially when we let her sniff our food & she realizes she does not like it.

However, I see that you talk about wet cat food. As Mandy seems healthy & growing, would you recommend giving her the canned food, as she has grown tired of the chicken? If you do suggest wet food for her, what kind (brand) do you recommend?
Thanks for your help.

Hi Shirley,

I'm glad to hear Mandy is doing so well! Sounds like she is growing nicely.

Some folks choose to feed dry food exclusively, and that's ok as long as the cat drinks plenty of water. To take their nutrition one step further, though, it is as good idea to add some canned cat food as well.

Canned food has more moisture, which cats bodies need, and lower carbs. All in all, it'll only benefit them to supplement their diet with some canned food.

As for brand, our cats like Wellness. You can't go wrong with regular Wellness & Wellness Core. But, there are others who have top-quality ingredients too!

The ultimate in nutrition is of course the raw diet. You've been giving her chicken, so she would likely love a bit of raw (insert whatever is on tonight's menu here!)to gnaw on too!

Bon Appetit!



My male Maine Coon never really liked wet food. So I fed him Meow Mix, which he seemd to enjoy over the decade.

My cats have food in their bowl constantly so they can enjoy eating whenever they want.

Try leaving a bowl of dry food out and see if he goes for it.

Best Cat Food For New Maine Coon?

by Em
(Knoxville, TN)

New Owner To A One-Year-Old Red Maine Coon Cat:

My vet told me to buy him "EVO" - is this recommended for him?

I was also told to give him some wet food (1-2 teaspoon) as a treat every day for water supplement too.


Hi Em,

Evo is very good food. It's nutritious and grain free, and their tagline is: "The Ancestral Diet Meets Modern Nutrition." Go ahead and try it!

Grain free is usually a big change in diet for cats. Make sure to make the switch very, very slowly and keep a close eye on him so you know his system agrees with it.

For most pets, grain free is a top notch choice in nutrition. But when we tried the switch, we found that our Alice couldn't tolerate it. She experienced severe diarrhea and weight loss. I couldn't believe that it was the grain free food, but the vet had me go back (our regular food contains just a bit of grain, no corn) and she returned to normal. Go figure!

Definitley read our articles on finding the best cat food and cat food ingredients to learn more.

As for the wet food, your vet is right on again! Canned food is a great source of moisture and hydration for cats, plus it is so good for them to experience different flavors. Who wants to eat the same thing all the time?

Congratulations on your new boy! Send in a picture sometime, we love to meet new Coonies!

All The Best,

How much food is too much for a male Maine Coon?

by Schanda Tierney
(St. Louis)


Hello. I adopted a male kitten from a shelter about 8 months ago. Didn't even know what a Maine Coon was until the vet said I had one.

Memphis is now a year old and he always wants more food. My other two female cats are average-sized DSHs. They each get a 1/4 cup of dry food in the AM, and another in the PM (as advised by a vet).

Since I've had Memphis, I've had to start feeding him separate from the others. If I don't watch, he will eat his food, along with theirs.

It wasn't so bad at first, because he couldn't jump high enough to reach the kitchen counter. I hate feeding the other cats up there, but have not choice. Memphis is now so much bigger than the others and he jumps on the counter and eats whatever he can. I have upped his food serving to 3/4 of cup a day and continue to try to keep him out of his sisters' food.

I worry about just leaving food out for my cats. As cute as their chubby bellies are, I don't want them be be unhealthy. How much is too much for a growing male Maine Coon?

St. Louis, MO

Hi Schanda,

Good question. I can see how you are in a bit of a pickle, with the vet recommending that you measure the girls' food.

I'm assuming he didn't restrict Memphis's diet? If he's on high-quality dry food, I don't see any reason why he can't free-feed. This tried-and-true method is used by many (including us).

The only thing to look out for, as he grows, is that big males sometimes eat too fast & then leave a mess somewhere. As long as he doesn't gorge himself, and he's eating nutritional food, he should be fine to just eat till he's done, no measuring required.

Maine Coons have strong, robust bodies that are long and can handle their weight. They don't usually get overweight. Your vet will alert you on one of your regular check-ups if you ever should start restricting his diet. I wouldn't expect it, though.

Great, high-quality food that tries to mimic the nutritional value of a "natural diet" (ie. prey) shouldn't cause weight issues. Just as in the wild, cats hunt & eat as much as their bodies tell them to.

You may have to put him in another room during the ladies mealtime, though!

Thanks for sharing a photo of Memphis. He's a handsome boy! And he has an awesome name!



Too much food...

My cats like to, like humans, graze. I always leave a bowl of dry food out along with a big pot of water which I change daily. They never have had a weight problem.

I don't know how much to feed my Maine Coon kittens!

by Janet

I have 2 at least partial Maine Coon kittens who are now almost 4 months old. I feed them hard food and soft canned food which is what the adoption place told me to do.

By now since they are just about twice their original size (from 4 weeks ago) I give them one can of canned food in the early afternoon and they share it in a nice size bowl and I always leave hard food in another large dish.

Then of course I have the 3rd large bowl where they both drink water from.

They beg, in their own squeaky way, for more soft food, and all they need to see is me in the kitchen and they whine and whine but I am not giving in because I feel I am feeding them enough food at least for their present weight.

Do you agree with me? I must admit fortunately they drink water all day long, something my former cat never had enough of. It's funny because they will climb right into a somewhat empty refrigerator shelf oftentimes when I open it up. Seems like they will do anything for more soft food!

I'd appreciate everyone's opinion on this. Thank you!!

Hi Janet,

I think you are doing everything right! Many cats and kittens just prefer canned food. If you "give in" every time, you may find yourself in a situation where they get picky!

As long as there is always dry food available they won't go hungry!

Maine Coons can be a bit dramatic in this way! Our cats will cry as if they've been absolutely famished and it's so funny. Then we feed them, they take a few bites, and they're back in the family room with us as if nothing happened.

Good luck with your little ones! They're so fun when they're small.

It'll be interesting to see what others have to say as well...



by: JUDY

Hi there ! Buddy's co-owner back again!

A US maine coon site recommended a kitten under 6 months of age should be fed 5 times a day. Buddy is fed cooked chicken, canned food and usually eats 2 tablespoons of Royal Canin kibble in 24 hours. Am I over feeding him? He's not great at drinking tho'.His water is replaced twice a day.

Alternatively, he's fed a helping of sardines, liver and lamb heart instead of the above. Having read meat which has had electrical activity is better, so I read on a web site. I chose heart. I tried to feed the heart raw - he wouldn't eat it. My husband is concerned I'm over-feeding him. What do you all think ?

4 month old kitten
by: Bobby

I was shocked to se how huge a 4 month old maine coon kitten is. I feed him kitty nibbles and he just loves it. I free feed him, putting it in his food tray and always fill up the water tray as well because he just drinks too much water. i put fresh water in the morning and evening. and he is just so playful and kind. i have to relocate my christmas tree because he has scattered all the ornaments in the house. now he has the whole ledge for hiself, where the christmas tree used to be. i also bought 2 tennis balls for him to play. i have my walls half-way carpeted (i used tile carpets) for his scratching and playing. he looks like spiderman climbing on the wall... and i just love my kitty...

Orijen dry cat food......anyone use it?

by Deborah
(Orlando, FL)

My dog does well on Orijen dog food. I was wondering if anyone feeds their cat this brand and if the cat does well on it. Thanks so much. Deborah


Orijen Pet Food Looks Great at a Glance!

Hi Deborah,
I haven't used Orijen Cat Cat Food food myself, but after looking it up, I'm thinking about trying it!

The website is impressive, and their philosophy toward making pet food can't be topped.

Since you use it for your dog, you probably know the details, but I'll add them here for folks who may not be familiar with the brand: According to the site, their food is manufactured in their Alberta, Canada facility using only fresh, local ingredients. Here is a quote:

"Our fresh regional ingredients include free-run chicken, turkey & ducks, whole Grade A eggs, free range wild boar, bison and heritage pork, grass-fed lamb, and a variety of wild-caught freshwater & saltwater fish?all farmed or fished within our region, passed ?fit for human consumption? and delivered FRESH TO OUR DOOR. Each & every day!" -From

Also, Orijen is High-Protein, Low-Carb, and Grain-Free (YES!) So I would personally have no problem trying it! We're currently starting a new brand (will write about it soon) But we'll keep this one in mind!

If anyone else has thoughts to add, (especially if you use this brand!) please do so!


Sort of...
I've been wondering the same thing. I've been using Acana, from the same company (champion), which is essentially the same but a little lower protein, has potato, and is cheaper. The people at my organic food store said it was essentially the same as Orijen but fewer ingredients and more affordable, but now I'm having second feelings. I want my cat to have the best nutrition possible, and if better means higher protein then I'll switch. But how much protein is enough?

I don't want to be a victim of marketing either so to follow up, is Acana just as good?

PS: my cat loves Acana, and does seem to consume less (and poop less) than grainy foods.

by: Judy

Hi Deborah
I buy Orijen here in the UK, our 7 m o Buddy(OMG how time flies) much prefers it to R Canin kitten kibble. I found out RC include cereal in it, hence the change.

I have a friend whose two extremely fussy chinnys

(chinchillas) were difficult to please till she used Orijen. It feels good when I measure it out, 'cos I know he's getting the best, altho' it's expensive.

Good luck

Nutritious Kibble
by: Judy

Hi Debroah & Carrie
Buddy is doing well on Orijen. Buddy gobbled and crunched his way through all of it. Maybe they'd send you a FOC sample = FOC Free Of Charge. With cranberries and other goodies peace of mind is worth plenty ;-)

Bud is becoming a finicky eater and not sure how to helt this new habit. I put canned ckicken breast into his bowl, he sniffed, licked the small amount of liquid, lifted his head and walked away. I re-heated it twice -with no success. On the other hand, he loves our roast chicken. Good luck Judy - Southern England

Orijen cat food
We have started our main coon kitten on a combination of orijen and Lily's kitchen (its a UK company that make lovely dog and cat food) We own a pet grooming and accessory shop and have education days from all the pet food companies and I think that these two are the best

Orijen Cat and Kitten dry food
by: Elismom

My MC Eli LOVES Orijen. It took about a week to get him to really like it but now he clamors for it over wet. I've done a great deal of research on the best cat foods and IMHO Orijen is the best quality I can buy here in Canada. They source ingredients here and have rigid quality controls. I also like that it has me supporting local as they manufacture here in Alberta. Had both my cats, I have a Ragdoll as well, on it for about 6 months and they are thriving on it. Both are around 1 year old.

Orijen the BEST dry cat food!
by: Gail (Quincy, MA, USA)

My 3/year Maine Coon mix, Abby, is now eating Orijen and boy oh boy, does she love it!

Never having shared life with a Maine Coon cat before, I inquired of a reputable MCC breeder after finding her website. She was very forthcoming about Orijen. She ONLY feeds Orijen to her breeding cats and kittens, strongly suggesting that adopters only feed Orijen. (Her MCCs are documented with purebread papers and people are on a waiting list because she's not a kitty mill; she goes by the natural birth cycles - never overbreeding.)

She told me the reason cats overeat and gain weight, generally speaking, is that they are not satisfied nutritonally and keep eating to sate their appetite. Unlike humans, it's not in an animal's DNA to intentionally overeat. With all the fillers - cereals, grains, by-products and "mystery" junk in most food, it's no wonder cats succumb to weight gain and a host of other ailments that can be easily tracked back to their dietary habits. It's like feeding your kitty fast food. Since we are the cat's guardians, it stands to reason we should give them what's best.

Even though the brand may be a bit expensive ($23USD for a 5-lb. bag and about $40USD for 10-lbs.), cats eat less, so you save money anyway!>

I also give Abby one heaping teaspoon of wet food (she doesn't want more than that) in the morning ONLY and switch between Newman's Own Organic (grain & gluten free) and Harmony (grain & gluten free). The dry is measured morning and evening shy of 1/4 cup. If her dishes are empty, I do not refill them since she's slightly overweight.

Hope this helps!


by EMH
(Zephyrhills, FL,US)

My Maine coon is about 9 years old. Female. What is the best food for her, her coat and age? She weighs about 9 lb, a smaller coon.

Funny-her personality does not fit what I read here....but we blame that on her upbringing before we adopted her. She lived in a cage in a pet store for 18 mos or more, then near many dogs, loud large dogs for over a year. When I got her she was very high strung and fidgity. That has worn down only a bit. She wants attention on her terms only and in her own time frame. If you forget her or ignore her she howls! Nutsy kitty.

The food thing, we want the best for her. I feed her now #31 Canin? Something like that, for Maine coons.

Quest For The Best Cat Food:

Hi There,

This is a very good, and very complicated question! First off, I believe there is no "perfect" processed cat food. It wouldn't be possible to nail down just one that has everything a healthy Maine Coon needs, and does it just right. Every year, pet food gets just a little bit better, showing that there will always be room for improvement!

There are quite a few holistic and organic cat food manufacturers who do an excellent job of creating a well-balanced cat food with only top quality ingredients and no fillers.

Royal Canin is marketed to Maine Coon cat owners. It is made with larger kibbles which force a fast eater with a large jaw to slow down. That doesn't seem to be an issue with your small girl, though.

Also, there is the subject of ingredients. Here is a list of the primary ingredients in this food: Chicken meal, brown rice, corn gluten meal, chicken fat, ground corn, natural chicken flavor, rice, wheat gluten?. I would encourage you to compare this with the info in cat food ingredients

So what would I recommend? Well, at our house we are currently trying Wellness Core. It's grain free, protein focused & reflects a raw philosophy. Here are its top ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whitefish Meal, Potatoes, Salmon Meal, Natural Chicken Flavor, Chicken Fat, and more good stuff. It also has Salmon Oil & Flaxseed which are helpful for hairballs. (Fish oil provides a good coating, helping things move along, and fiber gets things going too) And it contains similar amounts of Omega Fatty Acids as the above brand for coat beauty and joint health. Plenty of balanced vitamins & minerals too.

There are many cat foods with similar ingredients and philosophies now. Look for these phrases on the label or website: Grain Free, High Protein & Low Carbohydrates.

One way to make your choice is to just go to your local pet shop, and just ask an associate to show you some of the best cat foods they carry. Then armed with your knowledge of ingredients, take a look at them.

As for her age, you may be wondering about senior food. It generally has fewer calories to help with obesity in older cats. If that's not a concern, a wholesome well-balanced quality food may be all she needs.

Thanks for sharing your rescue story! Your girl is very lucky to have you, and it's too bad she had to have such a rough start. It sounds like you are very patient with her and she'll hopefully grow in security and confidence.

Good luck on your quest for new food!

by: Edna

WOW Carrie- thanks for the help, I'll look for Wellness core, do you think it's at a health food store? We had a petsupermarket open in town a month ago and I'm not impressed. Maybe A HFS. I'll try that. My girl's name is Hannah and we have many nicknames for her. She's the owner of the house and she lets us work to buy her food and calls us to bed at nite if we are late. She sits in her favorite window and chirps at the wild chickens and squirrels outside. She'll attack the window if a lizard walks over it. Sets off the alarm...

We DO have loads of fun with her. Not sure how to get her more attentive but that's ok, she gets better with each year. She has blonde belly fur and as you know they get we call them her girly curls. Anyway, thanks for the help. I'll look for WC food for her.

Sounds Like a Plan
Hi Edna,

Hannah sounds like a great cat, you are lucky to have found each other :) It's so funny when they see an animal out the window, isn't it?

You should be able to find Wellness Core at most pet stores or pet supermarkets. You could call ahead and see if they carry it. It has transitioning instructions right on the package. I must mention that we've also had great success with Wellness Indoor Formula. It agrees with Alice's system better than the Core does.

Keep in mind that it's just one of many good brands! If you find something else at the store, feel free to check it out!

Good luck,

Best Food And Cancer Prevention?

by Carol
(Corolla, NC)


My Baby Scrappy

Hi, my Maine Coon is 11 years old and had a tumor removed from his side that was caused by his shots. He made it through the surgery and day after fine.

On the next day he went into heart failure. We rushed him to a 24/7 clinic and with much treatment, he made it home...I understand his cancer is an aggressive cancer and may come back.

He cannot go through any more surgeries because of his heart. He has an enlarged heart, and did have fluid around it and in his lungs. They are clear now.

He has been on heart meds and lasix for 3 months and is acting like he is in his second childhood...He has tamed many feral kittens so they could find homes. He is the most active cat out of 10 that we couldn't find homes for.

He has had one eye since birth, had it rebuilt and now had to go through this...The other cats follow him around just to be near him...

He loves to play in water so we got him a drinking fountain...He does all kinds of funny tricks and we love him dearly...I give him saffron to eat, warm castol oil compresses,(everyday) 1/4 of a baby aspirin every 3 1/2 days and lots of hugs and kisses...

I would like anymore suggestions on cancer prevention, and the best food to feed him. He doesn't like raw meat at all...The vet said he was in the top 2% to make it through something like this...The Animal Clinic only gave him 6 days to 6 months to live...

He is doing wonderful, and we would like to keep him that way as long as possible. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Carol and Scrappy


Hi Carol,

Wow, what a special boy! It seems he really is here for a reason. Helping tame feral kittens, he is a living angel!

I'm sorry to hear of all his troubles. But he knows how much he is loved and cared for, that's for sure.

As for your question regarding food for cancer prevention, this is something I've not yet encountered or researched. I would think that giving him a very high-quality cat food made from top ingredients would be important.

You might want to try having him eat a variety of ingredients, too, by purchasing more than one brand. Canned food and a variety of "real" human food would be good to.

It seems like you are already pampering him very well! I would recommend asking your vet if there is a particular ingredient or supplement that would help with cancer prevention.

There are two products I know of that may interest you: Natural Wonder Pets makes a supplement in liquid form called Primalix C-Care Herbal Extract Functional Food Drops you might want to check out.

Also, there is an ebook written by a vet all about natural, holistic pet care including cancer. You can Click Here to look at it.

If there are other owners who know if there is a best food for cancer prevention, I hope they will leave comments, too!

And my thoughts are with you and Scrappy. I'm glad he is feeling so well right now!

All The Best,

PAWSitive Passages!

PAWSitive Passages!

Best food to feed my Maine Coons

Hi, I have 3 Maine Coons now, Arnie a red he's 16 weeks, Bruce a cream and he's 16 weeks and Crystal a Silver tabby and shes 17 months now, and not forgetting 2 moggies! A ginger called Ziggy and a ginger called Frankie.

My moggies go out but the Maine Coons don't wander, they have a garden run, Crystal is my worry, she's always been a fussy eater and they have a hard food of fairly good quality down at all times, and I feed chicken and pouches as well, but Crystal will only eat the hard food and won't touch anything else and I worry she's not getting enough, maybe its because the boys are growing so fast and she's not the biggest Maine Coon, but shes still a fairly good large Moggie size!

Any advice on the best stuff to feed a Maine Coon would be much appreciated, am I doing the right thing feeding them pouches and chicken as well as the hard stuff or should I just feed the hard food? Help!

Thanks Lyn

Hi Lyn!

I don't think you have anything to worry about! You are doing everything right. The boys are going to shoot right past Crystal when it comes to size. Our Leo weighs more than twice his sister!

It's unusual for a cat to prefer the dry food, but as long as it's good quality and she always has access to fresh water, it's fine. If you haven't seen it yet, our article on Cat Food Ingredients provides some guidelines on what they should and shouldn't consume. If she never eats anything other than dry food, you could try buying 2 or 3 different kinds and mixing them.

Providing them with chicken and pouches in addition to their dry food is great! It gives them variety in flavor as well as supplemental nutrients, since no dry food can have everything a cat needs.

Don't worry! And, pictures, please!!



by Sharon
(Plattsburgh NY)

What do Maine Coon cats generally eat and how much water do they typically drink in a day?

Hi Sharon,

A Maine Coon will do best on a good, high quality cat food. Grain free, and high protein are things to look for on the label.

If using only dry food, your cat will be thirstier than his wet-food fed counterparts. It's super important for a dry-food fed cat to always have plenty of fresh water.

We have a giant water dish (big-dog size) and seem to fill it daily. They like to have it wiped out frequently to keep the water tasting good, and we turn a bathroom faucet on to drip for them when they ask for it.

If your cat is big, he'll probably eat more than most other cats. And a big Maine Coon (especially a male) might be prone to gorging and then maybe vomiting a bit. In that case you'll want to measure his meals.

As for the exact type of food, there are so many good choices, I haven't been able to pick favorites yet. Another visitor asked about Orijen Cat Food, which looks terrific, and at our house we're trying out Wellness Core.

There is a new food by Wysong. It's called Wysong Epigen, and it's starch-free. I just received it yesterday and the cats gulped it down like it was a treat! I'd recommend checking it out.

It a generalization, but grocery stores usually carry foods with fillers and by-products. They tend to be lesser foods, so anyone should tread carefully there.

#1 tip: Familiarize yourself with the few basic ingredients to avoid, and what a good label will look like. Good food is full of real ingredients, not a bunch of stuff we can't pronounce.

I like to recommend that owners go to their local pet store & just ask an associate about some of their "top quality" food. High-protein, holistic, grain-free are all good things to see.

A Maine Coon will benefit from variety in his diet. He'll do best with some dry, some wet, and if you have time, some raw food. This is an area we'll be exploring soon. Some raw chunks of meat (maybe about 1 inch pieces) as you're preparing dinner in the evening (chicken, pork, etc.) will be awesome for him.

Variety and some fresh food are the key to a healthy Maine Coon cat!

Best Wishes,


My Maine Coon Cat drank a lot of water. In fact, I kept a pot of water in the sink, his favorite drinking hole, when he wasn't lapping water up in the shower stall. Even today, 10 months since he passed, I still keep a pot of water in the sink.

How much canned food?
With my 2 growing Maine Coon kittens, I give them a dog-sized bowl with water at all times, another bowl of that size with hard food, but all they really want is a lot of canned food every day.

They are about 3 or 4 mos old by now and I give them one can of food per day to share, but they always look for more later @ night time. Is one can of food (Friskies) per day too much to give them? I think so but what would I know? Never had kittens that were Maine Coon prior to now.

Ideas anyone??

Blue Buffalo
by: Dean

I highly recommend blue buffalo wilderness for dry and blue buffalo spa select for wet. It's not cheap, but it is definitely worth it. It has no fillers and no grains. I believe it is also organic. Our two Maine Coons LOVE it!

How Much To Feed My Little Guy

by Marcy
(Austin Texas


I have a new addition, Olliver. He is 8 weeks old, I have never had a Maine Coon and the people I adopted him from instructed me to feed him 1/4 cup dry food and 2 tablespoons wet food a day.

But after the second day of him scarfing down his food like he had never eaten before I decided that is way too little.


Hi Marcy,

Olliver is adorable! You must be smitten!

And my goodness, I agree, 1/4 cup dry plus 2 Tbs wet does not seem like enough for an entire day! Young kittens are growing, and need plenty of food. Plus they are full of energy and burn off their calories pretty easily. This is not the age to worry about obesity.

I haven't personally measured out kitten food before, as we prefer to free feed.
Perhaps others will add their opinions, too.

All The Best,


Feed him as much as he wants
by: Jill

I was surprised by how much a growing Maine Coon eats. He will.not be a full grown cat until he is about 3. My female can eat 2 small cans of wet food and a cup of dry on an active day and she is grown. She stops when she is full and is not overweight. I definitely prefer free feeding......she eats whenever she wants. Try that.....he is hungry.

Did you perhaps mishear the vet?
by: Jessy

Mine told me 1/4 cup at each feeding, i.e. twice a day.

Can I Give My 10 Week Kitten Whiskers Milk?

I have a ten week old kitten.



Congratulations on your new kitten. I'm not sure exactly what your question is. It could be two things:

"Can I give my new kitten named Whiskers some milk?"

or "Can I give my new kitten some Whiskers brand kitten milk?"

For the first option, the answer is no. There is no need to give a kitten milk. At ten weeks of age, they should be eating kitten food, either canned or dry (preferrably some of each). I would not recommend the brands found at your local grocery store. You should read our articles on finding the best cat food and cat food ingredients, then go to a pet store and ask about the top quality brands offered.

It's an old wives tale that cats need milk, they do not. For folks who really want to give their cats some milk, for whatever reason, there is a product called Whiskas Catmilk Drink for Cats & Kittens.

If that was the product you meant, it looks just fine to use as a treat. It's not necessary to give it you your kitten, if you were thinking that kittens need milk. But, it looks like a fine treat.

All The Best,


by: Helen

Once a kitten is weaned from its mother they no longer need milk, nor should be given milk. Cats no longer make lactase, the enzyme to digest the milk protein, lactose. Milk will give Whiskers diarrhea.

Here is my 2 cents worth about pet foods. The Purina Company has made and formulated cat foods for decades. Purina spends millions on continued research in animal nutrition and produces a good product. Over the last 40 years I have raised cats that lived into their late teens, one lived to age 23. My first MCC died at age 17. All they were ever fed was Purina Cat Chow. My vet likes the Purina Pro-Plan dry food.

My current MCC is fed Pro-Plan. He has a beautiful coat, is strong and full of vitality. A wise Texas A&M professor in animal nutrition once told me "you feed to fitness and it doesn't have to be expensive." (Now that doesn't mean you feed Ol'Roy from Walmart.) Most of the hype about premium cat foods is simply good marketing.

Talk to your trusted vet about the nutritional needs of your kitten. He will give you good pointers.

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