Updated September 2016 - When I first posted this page, I had no idea it would still attract viewers so many years later.
Much of the information below would be helpful for cats of any breed and mixed breed cats. There is also a list of animal-related charities at the bottom for anyone so inclined.
The breeders and veterinarians linked here are knowledgeable. The links speak for themselves. I have added only a few short comments of my own.
Choosing a New Cat or Kitten
How to Find a Maine Coon Kitten from Stormwatch Maine Coons.
Avoiding kitten mills (Breeder horror stories: here, here, here and here). If you see evidence of severe abuse or neglect during a cattery visit, you have a moral obligation to report it to the agency that investigates animal abuse in your community. They cannot investigate without evidence. Try to take a photo before you leave.
Beware of stolen purebred kittens (Thefts from breeders are on the rise. The stolen cat or kitten may be sold on the internet. Immediately microchip and keep indoors any newly purchased kitten that has not yet been spayed or neutered. They are at risk of theft from the new owners for use in the pet trade.)
A Few Maine Coon Breeder Pages
The following list is not a recommendation of these particular breeders. I have included them because they have good websites. In some cases, that is all I know about them. Please see the article above about avoiding kitten mills, as there are impostor websites by which kitten mills seek to pass themselves off as legitimate breeders. Also, before visiting any cattery, please see the article above on etiquette for visiting catteries.
L.A.P.D. - Illinois
Windwalker - Sacramento
Whatatrill - California Wine Country
Chemicoons - Illinois
Coons'Kin - San Diego
Casecade Mountain - San Diego
MTNest - Pennsylvania
Le Beau Minu - Maine
HCM, Hip Displasia and Other Health Issues in Maine Coons
Other Kitten Health Issues (Not Breed Related)
First Aid Booklet - a .pdf download from Veterinary Medical and Surgical Group - Orange County
Frequently Asked Questions on Cat Health from the Cat Care Clinic, Orange, CA
Care and Feeding
Indoor Pet Initiative Page for Cat Owners - a website with information from veterinary professor C.A. Tony Buffington on the needs of indoor cats, with an emphasis on major life stressors and ways to enrich indoor cats' lives, boosting their resistance to disease.
Vicky Halls Cat Behavior Counselor
Warning: Top 10 Winter Dangers for Pets from Pets Best Insurance
Grooming and Bathing a Maine Coon
World's Best Cat Litter - This litter is both digestible and clumping.
South Paw Pet Supply carriers, collars, and unique and eco-friendly pet supplies
Humberto's ("Cats and Carpet") custom, hand made kitty trees
Petzones kitty trees and supplies
Great Lakes Cat Furniture beautiful, upscale kitty trees, cat beds and litter cabinets
Go Pet Club creative, reasonably priced kitty trees
CritterCord protects pets from electrical wiring
Drinkwell pet water fountains
Groomers Goop shampoo and related products
Cat and Kitten Foods
Some of the websites have more information than just about their pet foods.
The Great Outdoors: Outdoor Cat Runs, Patios, Gardens and Safety from Coyotes
Ethical Issues of Breeding and Caring for Animals
Solicitudo rei Socialis by Pope John Paul II, 1987, section 34:
The first consideration is the appropriateness of acquiring a growing awareness of the fact that one cannot use with impunity the different categories of beings, whether living or inanimate - animals, plants, the natural elements - simply as one wishes, according to one's own economic needs. On the contrary, one must take into account the nature of each being and of its mutual connection in an ordered system, which is precisely the cosmos.
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, 2004, Section 473:
The Christian vision of creation makes a positive judgment on the acceptability of human intervention in nature, which also includes other living beings, and at the same time makes a strong appeal for responsibility. In effect, nature is not a sacred or divine reality that man must leave alone. Rather, it is a gift offered by the Creator to the human community, entrusted to the intelligence and moral responsibility of men and women. For this reason the human person does not commit an illicit act when, out of respect for the order, beauty and usefulness of individual living beings and their function in the ecosystem, he intervenes by modifying some of their characteristics or properties. Human interventions that damage living beings or the natural environment deserve condemnation, while those that improve them are praiseworthy. The acceptability of the use of biological and biogenetic techniques is only one part of the ethical problem: as with every human behaviour, it is also necessary to evaluate accurately the real benefits as well as the possible consequences in terms of risks. In the realm of technological-scientific interventions that have forceful and widespread impact on living organisms, with the possibility of significant long-term repercussions, it is unacceptable to act lightly or irresponsibly.
These links are for cat health and rescue sites and other pet-related charities:
Island Cat Resources and Adoption (Northern California)
FACE Foundation (Funding for veterinary treatment for pet owners who cannot afford to pay for urgent veterinary care for their animals)
Center for Companion Animal Health (U.C. Davis)
Sock it to FIP (U.C. Davis-CCAH FIP research)
Best Friends Animal Society (Dog Town, Cat World, and sanctuary for other animals too)
Click to Save the Big Cats:
Care2.com Click to Donate Page (Donations go to the Wildlife Conservation Society)
Credit: The photo (top left corner) is my kitten. Except for that, all clipart and graphics above are from i-love-cats.com.
Rainbow Bridge Video: