Westgate Pet Clinic is proud to welcome Dr. Valerie Aliano to our hospital! Dr. Aliano obtained her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Missouri in 1983. After graduation, she practiced in Nebraska (as both an associate and and a practice owner) before moving to Minnesota in 2005. Dr. Aliano has a special interest in soft tissue surgery, internal and geriatric medicine and emergency and critical care. We know that our clients will love Dr. Aliano's calm, caring style, and we love the wealth of knowledge she is bringing with her to our veterinary team.
History of the Breed
The Maine Coon is one of the oldest natural breeds of cats in North America. It is the official state cat of Maine, hence the name, Maine Coon. No one knows for sure the exact origins of this breed, but likely it was ship cats that intermingled with local cats on ports of call along the eastern coast of the United States.
Maine Coons are noted for their large bone structure and luxurious coat. The males can reach 15-25lbs, and females 10-15lbs. They are slow growing and don’t reach their mature size until they are 3-5 years old. Their coat is soft and silky, and their tail puffy and raccoon-like. They come in a variety of colors, with the most common color being the brown tabby. They are also gentle and friendly in nature. They are loyal to their families, and tend to be relaxed around other cats, dogs and children.
Preventative Care Recommendations
Daily brushing: Although their coat doesn’t tend to mat up as easily as some other long haired breeds, they still require daily brushing to keep their coat free of tangles.
Hip x-rays to screen for hip dysplasia if your cat is not jumping well, or slow to climb stairs
Echocardiogram to screen for Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy if a heart murmur , arrthymia or excessively elevated heart rate is noted on physical exam,
Weight maintenance: Although Maine Coons have a large body structure, making sure that they don’t have excess fat is important. Feeding primarily canned food to your cat can help her maintain lean muscle mass and stay in a good body condition. Consult your veterinarian about diet options for your Maine Coon.