are maine coon cats polydactyl

Many Maine Coons have six toes.

Experts estimate as many as 40% of early Maine Coons were polydactyls, which some people said helped the cats use their paws as “natural snowshoes” during snowy Maine winters.

What is a Polydactyl Maine Coon?

Globally, one of the most favored cat breeds is the Polydactyl Maine Coon. However, you might be surprised to learn that some Maine coons are born with polydactylism, or extra toes, a rare genetic trait. These are also known as the “Hemmingway Cat”.

A dominant gene in cats causes polydactylism, which can be passed down to progeny. For the gene to be present in kittens, it needs to be present in at least one parent. That being said, there’s no assurance that a polydactyl cat will produce polydactyl kittens.

More Maine Coons than any other breed of cat exhibit polydactylism; however, not all Maine Coons are polydactyl.

A typical cat’s paws have four on the back and five on each of the front. The maximum number of extra toes a polydactyl Maine Coon can have on each paw is two. The kitten has the maximum number of toes that a Polydactyl can have, which is seven on both front paws and six on each back paw, if you notice a note stating that he is 7/7/6/6.

Caring for a Polydactyl Maine Coon

Fortunately, maintaining the health of a polydactyl cat’s paws is simple as long as you keep an eye out for any issues or injuries.

  • examining each paw to check for cuts on the pads or anything lodged between the toes.
  • Regular nail trimming will keep their nails from growing too long, becoming embedded, and hurting them.
  • To keep their claws healthy and naturally worn down, give them lots of toys and scratching posts.
  • Keep an eye on your cat’s activity level and give their toes a routine check and cleaning.

In general, routine veterinary care and ensuring a polydactyl cat can function normally are important for their health.

are maine coon cats polydactyl

The polydactyl dominate gene in Maine Coons is a natural anomaly that is simple autosomal, meaning it is not connected to a dominant gene. The Pd gene is a benign genetic characteristic that shouldn’t be connected to any other abnormalities. For this reason, in order to have a polydactyl kitten, you need to have polydactyl parents. The polydactyl gene in Maine Coon cats has not been shown to have any negative effects. Numerous scientific studies have revealed that the polydactyl Maine Coon is a more desirable characteristic for the working breed’s vigor and health. The genetic lines of many non-polydactyl Maine Coons include a polydactyl member, and breeding these polydactyl cats is still widely acknowledged as purebred. They can be registered with any official cat association. All polydactyl Maine Coons can be identified in a pedigree by looking over it, as they will all have a P. somewhere in the name.

A polydactyl Maine coon is a Maine coon with additional toes and all other characteristics. This term refers to multiple toes, and the extra-large paws are known by the nickname “double-paws” since they are typically twice as wide. Although they go by the nickname “snowshoe cat” because they can move through snow more readily, they are most commonly referred to as polys.

FAQ

Is polydactyly common in Maine Coons?

A condition called polydactylism, in which a cat has extra toes, can affect any breed of cat. But this trait is most common in Pixie Bobs and Maine Coons. It’s a condition, not a breed. Most domestic felines have five toes on each of their front paws and four toes on each of their hind paws, for a total of 18 toes.

Do all Maine Coon cats have 6 toes?

Maine Coons have more instances of polydactylism than any other breed of cat, but not all Maine Coons are polydactyl. The paws of a normal cat have 5 toes each on the front paws, and 4 on the back. A polydactyl Maine Coon can get a maximum of two extra toes on each paw.

What breed of cat is most polydactyl?

Some people consider polydactyl cats a separate breed in their own right, called the American Polydactyl. However, they’re not officially recognized as a specific breed. “Maine Coon and Pixiebob cats are the only two breeds where polydactyly is prevalent enough to be considered a normal variation,” Patel says.

How do you tell if your cat is a Maine Coon?

Measure the Tail A Maine Coon tail is three-quarters of their body length and closely resembles a raccoon’s tail. It is extraordinarily long and fluffy. The length of the cat’s tail can give you an indication as to whether they are a genuine Main Coon. The tail can be up to 16 inches long.