Domestic Longhair vs Maine Coon Cat: What is the Difference?

Written by

Amy Sawy

Veterinarian. DVM


Joseph M. Plummer

Veterinarian, DVM, MVZ

Domestic Longhair vs Maine Coon Cat

Felines with long coats undoubtedly make majestic pets. However, their pristine appearance also makes distinguishing them from one another a challenge.

Two long hair cats that people often get confused about are Domestic long hair and Maine Coons. While the latter is larger than the former, they still bear some striking similarities.

To help you understand these breeds, this article will tackle how to tell the differences between a Domestic Longhair vs. Maine Coon cat.

Is My Cat a Maine Coon? Here’s How to Know

These are the methods to tell if your feline friend is a Maine Coon or a similar-looking breed:

1. Facial Structure


One thing that distinguishes a Maine Coon from Domestic Longhair is its face shape. Maine Coons have a triangular, wedge-like face, which emphasizes their masculine jaw.

Their noses, which sit on their square muzzles, are also longer than those of the Domestic Longhair. They can also be characterized by their high and prominent cheekbones, as well as tufted ears.

In terms of appearance, Domestic Longhair cats look friendlier than Maine Coons. This is because the latter has a broad face, wide eyes, and intense expression.

2. Cat Size & Body Shape


The fact that Maine Coons are a lot larger than most feline breeds is common knowledge. But did you know that they have a rectangular body shape?

While most feline breeds have sleek and slender bodies, Maine Coons have bulkier builds and broader chests. An adult Main Coon can be 14–16 inches tall, and it can grow up to 60 inches in length.

As for Domestic Longhair, their body length rarely exceeds 18 inches, whereas their height is only around 10–14 inches.

3. Fur Length

Maine Coon cats are popular for their long, fluffy coat. The fur around their chest is particularly longer than the rest of their bodies, making it appear like a lion’s mane.

The rest of the fur throughout a Maine Coon’s body is medium-length. Still, you may find some long-haired Maine Coon cats, especially when they reach adulthood.

On the other hand, Domestic longhair cats have semi-long to long hair throughout their bodies, hence the name.

4. Number of Toes


Most Maine Coon are polydactyl—a condition that makes them have one to two extra toes on each paw. On average, a cat of this breed can have 6 toes on each paw, although you may sometimes come across one with up to 7 toes.

In contrast, Domestic Longhair cats have 18 toes on average—4 on their hind paws and 5 on their front. Although some may also get an extra toe on their paw, this condition is rarely seen within these felines.

5. Temperament


Maine Coon cats are gentle and sweet creatures despite their large and muscular appearance. Their affectionate and sociable nature makes it easy for them to get along well with their owners and other pets.

Meanwhile, predicting the temperament of a Domestic Longhair cat can be difficult. The reason is that they’re not bred to have the same temperament as their parents. As such, yours can be anything from playful, hyperactive, and sociable, to lazy.

Furthermore, the environment in which Domestic Longhair grows can also affect their behaviors.

6. Health And Lifespan


Since Domestic Longhair aren’t purebred, it’s much harder to predict what health issues they might face. That said, they are generally healthier than Maine Coon, boasting a lifespan of 12 to 18 years.

Although also considered to be a healthy breed, Maine Coon can face a few hereditary problems, such as spinal muscular atrophy, abnormal hip joint development, and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy—a fatal heart disease. Their expected lifespan is 12-15 years.

What Does A Domestic Longhair Maine Coon Mix Look Like?

Considering how high-end a Maine Coon breed is, there’s no denying how expensive it can get. In fact, a young Maine Coon can reach a price range of anywhere between $4,000 to $6,000.

If you can’t bear to spend such a price for a feline friend but you want a Maine Coon, then a Domestic Longhair Maine Coon mix is an excellent choice. This crossbreed typically has a medium to large rectangular body and a long, beautiful coat.

Its tail looks like that of a raccoon due to its fluffy fur. You’ll also find tufts of fur on its ears and paws.


Domestic Longhair and Maine Coon cats are two of the most popular felines today. But contrary to popular belief, a Domestic Longhair is not actually a recognized breed.

Instead, it is a collective term used to call any feline with a long and thick coat.

Now that you know the differences between a Domestic Longhair vs. Maine Coon cat, it will be easier for you to tell what feline you have at home.

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