In order to stay healthy and hydrated, cats should drink between 5 and ten 10 ounces of water per day. However, this is not always easy to accomplish as they have a low thirst drive and can be very finicky. We currently have two cats, Felicity and Jack (our other three fur kids have since moved on), and we have learned a lot over the years about the importance of getting your cat to drink water.
Dehydration can lead to a number of medical issues, such as bladder, kidney, and urinary tract problems, and these issues can become life-threatening if left unattended for too long! Cats are much more likely to have urinary tract issues than other pets, and male cats are especially prone to these issues. Therefore, you might have to take some of the following steps to encourage healthy water drinking habits in your cat
Cats can be very particular. Felicity, for example, likes her water best when it’s, fresh, and in a clear glass, in our office (she’s very particular). Your cat likely has his or her own quirks – you simply need to figure out what they are!
The first step to keeping your cat hydrated is to make sure that they have enough water and that it is often replenished. If the water isn’t kept fresh, your cat might not want to drink from it. The same goes for the dish itself! It’s important to wash it regularly to keep your cat happy.
Most cats have a preference for the type of dish from which they are drinking their water. If you are concerned that your cat isn’t drinking enough water, you should try serving it in a different type of container. Some cats prefer glass, ceramic and metal bowls, as they don’t retain odor the way plastic does.
Additionally, the type and shape of the dish might matter as some cats prefer shallow bowls while others enjoy human drinking glasses or mugs. You might find that wider dishes are better as your cat might not like having their whiskers brushing the sides of it.
All About Location
The next thing to consider is the placement of the drinking dish. Cats often prefer that their water be kept away from their litter boxes and food dishes – even though it seems more intuitive to keep both dishes together. Any nearby odors can make a big difference to the scent of the water, and they also don’t like when bits of their food pollute the water bowl.
You can also try putting various water dishes in different types of locations to determine which your cat might find most comfortable and appealing. Make sure that your cat has a place to drink water where they don’t have to worry about other pets coming up from behind them.
Above and Beyond
If you feel like you have followed all the previous steps, but your cat is still not drinking enough, you might want to try the following alternatives:
The issue might be something as simple as the type of water being served to your cat. If the tap water in your area doesn’t taste great, your cat would likely prefer filtered or bottled water.
Some cats prefer flowing water and might try to drink from the sink tap. If this is the case, allow your cat a few moments to drink before turning off the tap. You could also purchase a kitty drinking fountain that keeps the water from getting stagnant.
A few more tactics you could try are: feeding your cat more wet food, adding water to the wet or dry food, and also serving broth instead of regular water (as your cat might prefer a more interesting flavor). Another great tip is that if you do feed your cat wet food, once you have emptied the can, swish water around in it to pick up the flavor and pour it in the cat’s drinking dish. Jack LOVES this!
To make sure your cat is happy, healthy, and hydrated, you have to ensure that he or she is drinking enough water on a daily basis. Do you have any different tricks to get your cat to drink or does your cat have any little drinking quirks? Leave them in the comments below!