Can I Get My Cat to Drink More Water?
The importance of water cannot be underestimated for cats! One in three cats will get kidney disease. This is a shocking and terrifying statistic!
Water consumption and hydration are major factors in developing kidney disease. The more water consumed (to a point) the easier it is for the kidneys to flush toxins out of the body. You want your cat to drink plenty of water but some cats just don’t get enough. So if you are asking “Can I get my cat to drink more water?”, check out these easy tips.
Cats are picky as we know. The easiest way to get them to drink more water is to make it desirable for them. It is nearly impossible to force a cat to drink. They have to want to! Here are some easy ways.
How to Get a Cat to Drink More Water
- Make it easy by putting multiple cat water bowls around the house in various places. Cats like options. If the water bowl is in a location where they don’t normally go or don’t want to be (it may be noisy, crowded, busy etc) they won’t drink as much as they could. I noticed my cats drank more often when I added another water bowl in a different location. I added the second one near their dry food bowl and they often take a drink after they eat the dry food. This is good since dry food itself is the greatest cause of dehydration in cats. In nature they would never eat a dry food.
- Make water desirable by always keeping water bowls clean and making clean water available. Water bowls need to be washed often and should be wiped out (even if they look clean) every day between washings. I just wipe mine out with a paper towel every day and put in fresh water.
- Use water bowls that keep the water clean tasting. Don’t use plastic bowls. They could add a plastic taste to the water. They also leach dangerous chemicals especially if they are in hot water or the dishwasher. Use a stainless steel, glass or ceramic bowl. I recommend the following characteristics in bowls to make your life easier and your cat’s life better.
- A large bowl. What if you are stuck away from home longer than you expect? Wouldn’t it be nice to know your cat has water even if you are gone unexpectedly overnight? It is also nice to now worry that they are always running out of water and a with a larger bowl is easier to keep water from sloping over the side when you set it back down.
- A bowl with a rubber bottom on the outside to keep it from moving across the floor. This is more of an issue with food bowls but helps for water too.
- A bowl with steep sides! If a bowl has shallow, angled sides the water slopes out and makes a mess (however, keep in mind some cats don’t like their whiskers to touch the edges of the bowl so if that is the case you would need a very large bowl).
- Curved bottom edges so it is easy to clean but a flat bottom (once again to keep water from sloping out).
- A smooth interior so it is easy to keep clean. I have seen some interesting looking hammered metal bowls but I don’t want any texture inside.
- I recommend you look around Amazon to find one. There can be a very disappointing selection at pet food stores. Here is one type I use and like. It meets all the above criteria. Stainless steel inside, rubber bottom, steep sides, flat bottom, smooth interior and comes in a wide variety of sizes. They even come with different colors and patterns on the outside. Don’t be afraid to get a “dog” bowl if you need to find a large enough size vs a “cat” bowl regardless of which brand you choose. Many cat bowls are just too small to be practical for water. This is the Loving Pets brand Bella Bowl. They claim to be the best selling pet bowl brand and I can see why. They are great! They come in many sizes, styles, colors and finishes such as metallic. They are often only about $5 on sale!
- Try a water fountain if your cats like running water. Many cats prefer running water! If a fountain gets them to drink more, then it is worth it to prevent kidney disease. There are many fountains out there. Check out all these options on Amazon. Here is the fountain I got since it is stainless steel unlike many of the others that are plastic.
- Some cats like drinking from a faucet instead of a bowl.
- Add a flavoring to the water if necessary. I do not do this but some cats like broth or other flavoring in their water. Just make sure it doesn’t have too much salt. Use a low sodium broth.
- Give your cats more wet instead of dry cat food. This is an easy way to get them to take in more water since they don’t even have to drink. If you already feed wet food you can also add more water to it.
I am lucky my cats are good about drinking water. Make sure yours get plenty too. Keep it clean and fresh and give them options.
Let me know how you get your cats to drink water or if you have any comments below!
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