It’s a mountain of meows
COULD this be Sydney’s biggest cat?
Karen Milton, of Normanhurst in Sydney’s north, says her maine coon Ollie is definitely a contender.
“He’s still got some growing to go,” Milton says.
“But if his dad is anything to go by, he’ll be a big boy in the next few months.”
Ollie tips the scales at close to 8kg and is 165cm long, from his nose to the end of his tail, which is on the higher end of the maine coon size chart.
On average maine coons, known as the largest domesticated breed of cat, reach 8kg at maturity but Ollie is just 18 months old and still growing.
“He doesn’t take any more feeding than a regular cat,” Milton says.
“I wasn’t surprised by the amount he’s grown either – we knew what we were in for when we brought them home.”
Milton says she has always been a cat lady and she and husband Ian have owned seven cats, with Ollie and his sister Thea their first maine coons.
“I’ve never really been interested in getting a dog but I liked the idea of a bigger animal. I did a lot of web searches for maine coons because they’re like dogs, in a way.”
Milton says she is trying to teach Ollie and Thea to “fetch” and says for cats they are “very sociable” and friendly with some of the cats known to “go for walks on leashes”.
“They always want to play or meet new people, I think they’re naturally inquisitive animals.”
Milton says she also likes the “wild” look of the cats.
“They look a bit scary, or impressive, like a bobcat or a lynx,” she explains.
“They have tufts of fur on their ears and paws, that gives them quite a lovely look.
“It’s usually what shocks people more than their size.”
But it was the sound they make that gave Milton the greatest surprise.
“When you hear them, it’s like a meow and purr mixed together, they’re cats that sound more like a bird. I’m pretty sure it means they’re happy, but hearing a cat chirp is one of the stranger parts of having them.”
Karen Milton with her big cat, a maine coon named Ollie. Picture: Troy Snook