Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons vs. Siberian

The first questions many people have asked are Are Norwegian Forest cats and Maine Coons related? To answer that, Maine Coon cats and Norwegian Forest cats share many characteristics, leading some experts to conclude that the Maine Coon is a descendent of the Norwegian Forest cats.

The most noticeable distinction between Maine Coons vs. Norwegian Forest cats vs. Siberian, according to breeders, is the length of their legs. Coons have even-length legs, with all four being the same length.

Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons vs. Siberian

 Maine Coons
Maine Coon Cats Personality
Maine Coon Cats
Norwegian Forest cats
Origin of Norwegian Forest cats
Norwegian Forest cats
Siberian Forest Cats
Origin Of Siberian cats
Siberian cats
Head ShapeThe head of a Coon looks to be more squareNorwegian cat's head appears to be more triangular.The head of the Siberian is gently rounded. From the forehead to the nose, the profile has a moderate concave slope. The muzzle is rounded and short.
NoseMaine Coon's snout has a gentler curvature Norwegian Forest Cat's, nose appear very straight
EarsMaine Coons has a long tapering ears also has a broad stance and a high stance on their headsThe ears of Norwegian Forest Cats are medium to big, with a rounded top. Their ears are positioned further to the side of their skulls.The ears of a Siberian are average in size and have rounded tips.
EyesThe eyes of Maine Coons are big, oval, and wide setthe eyes of Norwegians are more almond shaped.The eyes of a Siberian are big and practically spherical. They're a little slanted and spaced far apart.
Size and Body ShapeThe Maine Coon is a larger cat in generalNorwegian cats have a shorter body and a higher rump than other cats. The structure of a Siberian is barrel-shaped.
The Siberian cat is a medium-sized feline. Males weigh between 5 and 8 kilograms (11-17 pounds), while females weigh between 3.5 and 5.5 kilograms (8-12 lb).
FurThe coat of the Coon is silky, and it feels smooth, soft, and exquisitely fine in general.The Norwegian has a mane and has a water-repellent outer coat. A Siberian's coat is made up of three layers: a dense undercoat, a water-repellent topcoat, and a middle coat.
ColourCoons come in a variety of colors, including white, black, lighter cream, and blue.
Maine Coons have 80 colors recognized by the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA)
In addition to the primary hues, Norwegians might have markings in red and amber.
Norwegian Forest Cats have 60 colors recognized by the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA).
In the Siberian breed, the colorpoint pattern (sometimes known as the Siamese pattern) is permitted. Neva Masquerade is the name given to colorpoint Siberians. Sepia and mink designs (also known as Burmese and Tonkinese patterns, respectively) are not permitted.
The Siberian can have both the sunlight color (also known as golden) and the bi-metallic hue, which is unique to this breed.

Maine Coons, Norwegian Forest Cats and Siberian: Physical Characteristics and Differences

The most noticeable distinction between Maine Coons and Norwegian Forest cats and Siberian, according to breeders, is the length of their legs. Coons have even-length legs, with all four being the same length.

The hind legs of Norwegian Forest Cats are longer than the front legs. Perhaps as a result of this, they are outstanding climbers.

Of course, if you have the patience and ability to measure a cat’s legs, you may notice this. Cats, on the whole, may be reluctant to comply with you and your tape measure. But there are a few more methods to tell the two apart – let’s take a deeper look.

  1. Head Shape

The skull forms of Norwegian Forest Cats and Maine Coons are likewise extremely distinct.

In general, the head of a Coon looks to be more “square” than that of a Norwegian, which appears to be more “triangular.” The head of the Siberian is gently rounded. From the forehead to the nose, the profile has a moderate concave slope. The muzzle is rounded and short.

The snout of a Coon is more square, but the face of a Norwegian is tapered to a point, with a somewhat rounded skull. Norwegian Forest Cats are often referred to as “wedgies” because of this.

Because of its facial shape, some think the Coon appears “happier” than the Forest cats.

  1. Nose

The Maine Coon’s snout has a gentler curvature than the Norwegian Forest Cat’s, which is very straight.

  1. Ears

The long tapering ears of Maine Coons are well-known. They have a broad stance and a high stance on their heads. The ears of Norwegian Forest Cats are medium to big, with a rounded top.

Their ears are positioned further to the side of their skulls. The ears of a Siberian are average in size and have rounded tips.

Ear tufts, often known as furnishings, are present in both breeds. Ear hair is considered quite unpleasant in humans, yet it looks to be extremely adorable in cats! These tufts are not only decorative, but they also assist to keep these kittens warm.

  1. Eyes

The eyes of Maine Coons are big, oval, and wide-set, whereas the eyes of Norwegians are more almond-shaped. The eyes of a Siberian are big and practically spherical. They’re a little slanted and spaced far apart.

  1. Size and Body Shape

Both cats are rather large. However, the Maine Coon is a larger cat in general. Maine males can weigh up to 25 pounds. Females are somewhat smaller than males, weighing up to 18 pounds.

Meanwhile, the Norwegian is reported to weigh between 20 and 15 pounds for males and 13 to 15 pounds for females.

Maine Coons are big, long, and muscular creatures. They have tufts between their toes and medium-length legs that are fairly wide apart. Polydactyly is more common in Maine Coons than in any other breed. When a cat is born with extra toes, this is known as an extra toe syndrome.

Norwegian cats have a shorter body and a higher rump than other cats. They have toe tufts and their rear legs are longer than their front paws.

Both breeds have substantially bigger males than females, which may be considered a minor type of sexual dimorphism.

The structure of a Siberian is barrel-shaped. Legs are of average length. The Siberian cat is a medium-sized feline. Males weigh between 5 and 8 kilograms (11-17 pounds), while females weigh between 3.5 and 5.5 kilograms (8-12 lb).

  1. Fur

Both cats have thick and gorgeous fur and hair. The Norwegian has a mane and has a water-repellent outer coat. The coat of the Coon is silky, and it feels smooth, soft, and exquisitely fine in general.

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With its woollen undercoat, Norwegian Forest Cats have a double coat. On their chests and shoulders, their fur is shorter. On their necks, adults have a complete ruff of fur.

Maine Coons have a short undercoat and their hair around the shoulders is shorter and less even. Although adult Maine Coons have a ruff, it is not as large as the Norwegian Forest Cat’s.

A Siberian’s coat is made up of three layers: a dense undercoat, a water-repellent topcoat, and a middle coat.

The tail of a Norwegian is also flowing, but the tail of a Coon is less ordered, resembling a large tuft of fur.

Both breeds’ tails will be at least as long as the space between their shoulders and their tail base. The tail of the Maine Coon, on the other hand, tends to taper to a bushy finish.

  1. Colour

Both types come in a variety of colours, however, the Norwegian breed has more.

Coons come in a variety of colours, including white, black, lighter cream, and blue. In addition to the primary hues, Norwegians might have markings in red and amber.

Maine Coons have 80 colours recognized by the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA), whereas Norwegian Forest Cats have 60.

In the Siberian breed, the colourpoint pattern (sometimes known as the Siamese pattern) is permitted. Neva Masquerade is the name given to colorpoint Siberians. Sepia and mink designs (also known as Burmese and Tonkinese patterns, respectively) are not permitted.

The Siberian can have both the sunlight colour (also known as golden) and the bi-metallic hue, which is unique to this breed.

History of Norwegian Forest Cat Breed

Origin of Norwegian Forest cats
Origin of Norwegian Forest cats

The Norwegian Forest Cat is a kind of feline that originated in Norway.

Surprisingly, the Norwegian breed was on the verge of extinction in the early twentieth century. It was only saved in the 1930s because of a breeding effort.

It’s possible that the “Skogkatt” – as it’s known in Scandinavia – was initially brought from the Middle East. However, it has a long and illustrious history in Norse mythology.

According to legend, the goddess Freya rides in a chariot driven by long-haired cats. It’s been suggested that it’s a reference to the Norwegian Forest cats.

It’s also possible that the Norwegian Forest Cat’s progenitors were Siberian Cats from Russia or Turkish Angoras from Turkey. Today, King Olaf V has chosen it as Norway’s official cat.

Early Viking voyages are said to have brought Norwegian Forest cats to the United States. They were supposedly in charge of protecting food supplies aboard ships from pests. So they’ve gotten their bearings on the water. They are now affectionately referred to as “Wegies” in Norway.

The breed developed long lustrous fur and a woollen undercoat to cope with its chilly climate.

History of the Maine Coon Cat Breed

Maine Coon Cats Personality
Maine Coon Cats Personality

Maine is the name of the state of Maine in the United States. The tale of how the cat arrived lends support to the theory that the Maine Coon is linked to the Norwegian Forest Cat.

The origins of Maine Coon cats are the subject of numerous hypotheses. According to one theory, the cat arrived with the early Viking expeditions of North America. The second story claims that Marie Antoinette is to blame for the Maine Coon’s origins.

Despite the fact that Marie Antoinette was unable to flee her fate and live in the United States, she did send many of her belongings to the United States, including six cats believed to be Turkish Angora or Siberian.

Her belongings made their way to Maine, where her cats are said to have crossed with local shorter-haired cats to form the Maine Coon breed.

Captain Coon is the subject of the third and last tale. Coon moored his ship in Maine, along with his long-haired cats that he kept on board to keep pests at bay.

These cats are said to have mated with local cats, and because their progeny resembled the cats from the ship, they were known as Coons – and because they were in Maine, well, you know the rest of the tale.

Over time, the cat evolved distinct, acclimatized characteristics that markedly distinguished it from its original form. Maine was the first state to designate it as a breed. The cat is now known as the Maine shag and has comparable status to that of the state cat of Maine.

History of the Siberian

Origin Of Siberian cats
Origin Of Siberian cats

Similarly, the Siberian moniker denotes the breed’s origins: the breed evolved in Siberia’s frigid woods. Siberians are sometimes known as Siberian woodland cats. Their forefathers, like the Norwegians, were cats from the Middle East.

The breed evolved spontaneously in the harsh environment of Siberia for millennia without human interference, with the earliest mention of the breed being from 1000AD. The Siberian cat originally debuted in a cat show towards the end of the nineteenth century.

After the conclusion of the Cold War, the breed revived, and the Kotofei Cat Club issued the first pedigree in 1987.

The color pointed (siamese designs) Siberians are known as the “Neva Masquerade,” after the Russian river Neva. The Neva Masquerades are sometimes thought to be a separate breed.

We can now see that the three species share certain historical parallels since they are both natural, rustic longhair cat breeds. They are most likely related through shared ancestors from the Middle East, which explains their similarity.

Health status of Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

In general, both cat breeds are in good health. Larger breeds of cats and dogs, on the other hand, are prone to particular joint and bone problems. Sadly, the Norwegian Forest and Maine Coon cats are no exception.

Hip Dysplasia is one of these illnesses, and it’s something you’ll regularly hear dog owners discuss. It is notably common in German Shepherds and other similar breeds. This occurs when the ball of the thigh bone is not entirely surrounded by the hip socket.

It can cause limping or even lameness in cats, which becomes worse with time. Medications, exercise, weight loss, and good environmental management can all help to alleviate symptoms in certain situations.

Polycystic Kidney Disease has been found to be a problem in both breeds. Cysts develop in the kidneys during this time. It is usually passed down down the generations. Blood in the urine, continuous thirst and urination, vomiting, and other symptoms are all signs of PKD.

Modern breeders can screen for PKD using a cheek swab or a blood sample, which is a blessing. PKD can also be detected via an ultrasound test. A variety of supplements are also available to help with renal problems.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy can affect either breed. This is a genetic cardiac condition in which the heart muscles stiffen, making blood pumping more difficult.

Spinal muscular atrophy is more common in Maine Coons. Over time, the muscles in their rear legs weaken, resulting in difficulty walking and a hunched posture.

Glycogen storage is caused by a lack of an enzyme required for glycogen metabolism. This is a common health problem among Norwegian cats, and it can be deadly.

According to certain research, Norwegian cats, particularly males, are more prone to diabetes than other cat breeds.

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The personality of Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

The personalities of our two hero cats are rather different. Maine Coons are known for being lively and sociable, and they like being the centre of attention.

Forests are less conducive to social interaction. They may play for a short time, but they appear to lose interest much more quickly. As a result, they are sometimes referred to as “lazy.” But keep in mind that this only applies to Maine Coons. They are still a sociable feline species.

It is theoretically possible to train both species to go on walks. They like being out and about and are typically fairly clever, as they are both from the outdoors.

Your Norwegian Forest Cat could even be sitting high in a tree, watching the world go by. They enjoy being alone and are more than capable of depressing themselves.

Maine Coons have a talkative personality and are recognized for their chirping sound. Norwegian woodland cats are generally quieter and only meow when they want assistance. However, you should not leave your Norwegian Forest Cat alone for lengthy periods of time since it will want your care.

Maine Coons are friendly and affectionate, but they do require some attention. This is true for adult Maine Coons just as much as it is for kittens.

Forests in Norway Cats are more active and enjoy having something to do all of the time. They are a little more self-reliant than Maine Coons. As a result, they’re ideal for active households and families.

In general, both cats are regarded as very clever and will rapidly and firmly acquire up learned habits.

Food for Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

Even though they are huge breeds, these cats will eat regular cat chow for the most part. While dry cat food is always less expensive, cats with renal problems will benefit from kidney care cat food.

Given their size, both breeds should consume more than the typical cat, with the Maine Coon eating more than the Norwegian Forest Cat. There are particular cat diets that can help keep both breeds’ coats lustrous.

Although wet food is more costly, it has a higher protein content, which can be advantageous to bigger cats. My Siberian cat gets a combination of wet and dry food.

Maine Coons gain from having their own dry food labelled with the Maine Coon logo since they are unique. Otherwise, check to see if the food is high in protein, as it should be in a typical cat diet.

Both kinds are susceptible to dehydration, just like any other cat. Because they are physically huge cats, they will pay greater attention to the water dishes you pick so that they do not simply tip over. My Siberian cat, a big male, enjoys his water fountain.

Territorial Conduct of Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

Both cats have a reputation for being quite territorial. As a result, if you plan to have more than one cat in the house, they are not the greatest pets. It’s better to keep them as solitary pets.

In addition, Norwegian Forest cats are less likely to desire to be picked up and fussed over by strangers. That’s not to suggest they’re aggressive; it’s just that they want to be the ones to make the decisions in a relationship. Maine Coons, on the other hand, are more tolerant of being seen.

Activities of Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

Both types like being amused and are extremely playful. These big cat breeds prefer scratching posts and towers with a lot of height.

Not only will this help them receive the proper amount of exercise for their growing bodies, but it will also help them keep their nails and claws in check – as well as safeguard your furnishings.

Keep in mind that owing to their size, both breeds will require larger towers. They also want to be able to sit on top of their towers and have an excellent view of their kingdoms, so attempt to position the tower in such a way that this is possible.

These are also cats who like engaging in interactive play with their owners. They will like the engagement that feather toys, mouse toys, and balls provide.

Maine Coons, in comparison to the more autonomous Norwegian Forest Cat, demand more playtime.

Shampoos, Grooming Products and Keeping Clean of Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

Grooming will be essential to keep the Coon and Forest Cat happy as fluffy and longer-haired cats. Brushing or combing with a self-cleaning slicker brush on a regular basis will assist to avoid matting, which can be unpleasant or medically harmful in the long run.

The more extra hair you can remove when grooming, the less your cat will shed and the simpler it will be for them to brush themselves. This should help minimize the number of furballs and the issues that come with them.

Remember to brush and even trim the fur on their paws. This hair can grow fairly long and is ingested by your pussycat, resulting in more hairballs.

Many cats like being brushed by their owners, especially these two sociable breeds. I like grooming my cat as a cat owner (Alexei is a Siberian).

It is not only beneficial to his health, but it is also an essential and enjoyable bonding time for the two of us. A slicker comb, in my opinion, is the most efficient technique to remove extra fur quickly and without harming Alexei.

Brushing your cat from the time they first enter your house is the greatest approach to make grooming a fun pastime for both of you. Of course, kittens don’t require as much brushing, but it may still be a beautiful bonding ritual for you and your new cat.

Long-haired cats should be brushed or combed at least twice a week, according to some veterinarians. During peak shedding seasons, like in the spring, I would raise this to four to five times each week.

If you bathe your cat, look for shampoos that are designed for long hair and can treat flea infestations without damaging the coat.

A bath once every eight weeks, on average, might be beneficial. Maine Coons are more used to being around water than Norwegian Forest Cats.

Consult a groomer about cutting a sanitary patch around the issue region if your cat has difficulties with debris after using the litter box. If the situation isn’t too bad, you may also use a Clean Step litter box.

Of course, your cat may develop hairballs more frequently than other cats. Brushing and grooming on a regular basis may help to reduce these annoyances. If you’re a first-time cat owner, here’s a comprehensive guide on cat care.

Climates for Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

Climes Both of these breeds, of course, prefer cooler climates. Maine Coons are more tolerant to hot and humid conditions than Norwegian Forest Cats.

But keep in mind that both of these large breeds have a lot of fur all year, which means they will always suffer a little more in the heat than your ordinary cat breed.

If you live in a hotter climate and have one of these breeds, air conditioning will be extremely beneficial. Summer calls for more grooming and possibly trim to reduce the amount of fur.

If your cat prefers to be outside, make sure they have access to shady locations.

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Expected Life Expectancy of Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

On average, the Norwegian Forest cat lives for a very long time. They generally live to be approximately 16 years old before they die. This is, of course, an average. Some cats have been known to go above and beyond.

The typical lifespan of a Maine Coon is between 12 and 15 years. Maine Coon, according to the oldest record, was 26 years old.

Price of Norwegian Forest cat and Main Coon Cats near me

The cost of these breeds will, of course, vary from country to country. Maine Coons are more costly in the United States than Norwegian Forest Cats. Maine Coons eat a little more than Norwegian Forest Cats, thus feeding expenses maybe a little more.

Aside from these two items, the majority of prices will be comparable between the two breeds.

The Maine Coons take against the Norwegian Forest Cats.

They are both big cat breeds. They both have silky long coats. They are both renowned for being extroverted and sociable, although they have certain physical and psychological distinctions.

Maine Coons are recognized for their intelligence and ability to pick up new skills rapidly.

Maine Coons are also highly loyal and love being in the company of others. Norwegian Forest Cats are similarly clever and simple to teach, but if you don’t want to connect with them, they aren’t interested in being loyal.

The Maine Coon is known for its kitten-like playfulness, but the Norwegian Forest cat is more laid-back. They would rather play a bit than relax, but the Coon would continue to play as long as you are willing to play.

Coons are known as the “dog of the cat world” because they can easily be trained to walk on a leash with a harness. Norwegian Forest Cats aren’t interested in being a “dog” for anyone.

The Appearance

Their look is extremely similar, however, their head shapes and coats are somewhat different. Both are fluffy, but the Norwegian Forest cat has long fur that is evenly distributed across its body. The tails are likewise distinctive. The Norwegian Forest Cat’s fur is long and sweeping, but the Coon’s tail is more of a huge fluff with no discernible direction.

The most revealing indicator is in the form of the head. The Norwegian Forest Cat has a triangular skull with a flat forehead and a straight snout.

The head of the Maine Coon is wedge-shaped, with prominent cheekbones. The Coon generally has a cheerful expression on his face.

Both of these breeds are popular because they are attractive and have wonderful personalities. They are excellent additions to any residence.

They’re both wonderful with kids, but the Maine Coon gets a few additional points for its calm, collected demeanour around them. They have considerably more in common than they have differences.

FAQ on Norwegian Forest Cats vs. Maine Coons

Are Norwegian Forest cats better than Maine Coons?

Maine Coons are considerably more devoted and lively than the Norwegian Forest Cat, which is only loyal if pampered. The fur of Maine Coons is long and irregular in length, but the fur of Norwegian Forest Cats is uniformly long.

Which cat is bigger Maine Coon or Norwegian Forest Cat?

Even though the Norwegian is not a tiny cat, the Maine Coon is a larger breed. Male Maine Coons weigh 7-12 kg (15-26 lb), while females weigh 5-8 kg (11-18 lb). Norwegian males weigh 6-9 kg (13-20 lb), while females weigh 4-6 kg (9-13 lb).

Is a Maine Coon the same as a Norwegian Forest Cat?

Because the Maine Coon and Norwegian Forest cats have so many characteristics, some scientists believe the Maine Coon is a descendent of the Norwegian Forest cats. Both of them are big cat breeds. They have silky long coats on each of them.

Are Norwegian Forest cats lazy?

When not challenged or pushed, the Norwegian Forest Cat is a loving cat prone to lethargy. This is critical because they need to be kept occupied in order to satisfy their innate hunting impulses.

How do you tell if my cat is a Norwegian Forest cat?

The Norwegian Forest Cat is a big, well-boned cat with a thick coat. She is strong and has the appearance of a hunter. Her skull is triangular, and her neck is strong and muscular. The chin is firm yet somewhat rounded, and the ears are medium in size.

What cat is bigger than a Maine Coon?

The Norwegian Forest cat is a big breed that looks a lot like the Maine Coon. When comparing the men and females of both breeds, the males are shown to be considerably bigger. A male Norwegian cat may weigh up to 16 pounds, whereas Maine Coons can weigh up to 18 pounds.

How do you tell if my cat has Maine Coon in him?

Consider the cat’s size, eyes, tail, hair, paws, demeanour, body structure, and ear tufts to see whether it’s a Maine Coon mix. Genetic testing is the only surefire way to tell if you have a mixed Maine Coon or not.

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Quick summary on the Norwegian Forest Cat vs Maine Coon

The following are the primary differences between Maine Coons and Norwegian Forest Cats:

  • The Norwegian Coon is more nimble and energetic, whereas the Maine Coon is kinder.
  • Maine Coons are bigger than Norwegian cats and consume more. Head and eye forms, as well as overall ear height and location, are all factors to consider.
  • Although Norwegians are more independent than Maine Coons, they still require some care.
  • Maine Coons might be a little more pricey.

The following are some of the key similarities between Norwegian Forest Cats and Maine Coons:

  • Long-haired
  • It’s ideal for new cat owners and/or dog lovers.
  • Both are active and like playing games.
  • Intelligence
  • Colors
  • Grooming Requirements
  • Life Spans

A few last comments on the Maine Coon versus Norwegian Forest Cat debate.

If all other factors are equal, a Maine Coon may be the ideal choice if you want an attentive cat and have enough of time and room to play with it. If you have little room and a busy lifestyle, a Norwegian Cat may be a better fit for you.

If you live in a hot environment, the Maine Coon could be the best choice.

But, let’s face it, both of these lovely kitties make excellent pets. They are both pleasant and gregarious individuals. Although the Maine Coon is more inclined to play, the Norwegian will cheerfully observe whatever is going on.

They may take a little more attention to keep clean and healthy than your ordinary shorthair cat because they are bigger and furrier. Both are definitely worth the time and effort, and they are simple to fall in love with.

So go ahead and make your decision – and then relax and enjoy your new huge fluffy ball of joy’s companionship.

Please be aware that this post on the Norwegian forest cat versus Maine coon includes affiliate links. That means I’ll get a little fee if you click through on most of the links and make a purchase. This has no bearing on the price you pay. I just wanted to make sure you knew about it.

Author: David Arthur

David's lifelong passion for animals blossomed into a dream profession in 2020. He founded Petscareway Inc., a professional pet care company situated in the Texas. Several veterinarians have educated him in Pet First Aid and CPR since 2003. David decided to become a certified Pet First Aid and CPR instructor in 2011 after completing an instructor training course. David decided he had to be a part of ProPetHero when he discovered them in 2016 and saw how they were offering ER veterinarian-led training to everyone. As a result, he became a member of the ProTrainings family, the designers of ProPetHero. He volunteers and fosters for The Boxer Rescue Inc in his spare time, is a health-conscious Boxer breeder, and is a member of the Middlesex Boxer Club and Wachusett Kennel Club. David has served as a mentor to many people in the pet industry and in the small company world. When he's not working or helping, he's competing with his dogs in agility, lure coursing, and conformation trials across the country. David can be seen training with his puppies, hiking with them on trails, or playing in his backyard when he is not at a trial or trying to find a nice home for a Boxer through the rescue.

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