How Much Water Does My Cat Need
A cats daily water requirement depends on several factors, for example: their age, size, diet, and the time of year. In general, kittens and elderly cats need more water than adult cats as do very active cats or those in warm climates and sun.
In general, an adult domestic cat which weighs 5 kg should drink approximately 250 ml of water or just over one cup per day.
However if your cat is very active outside, or eats only dry food , your cat may need more than 250 ml. You vet will be able to tell you exactly how much water your cat needs each day. But theres no need to measure out exactly this amount provide your cat with access to a clean, fresh water supply all day long and let them drink as much as they need.
If your cat is taking less trips to the water bowl than normal, refusing to drink at all, or even drinking a lot more water than normal, you need to be concerned about your cats water intake.
My Cat Isn’t Drinking
Staying hydrated is important for the overall health and well-being of your cat. Typically, animals will drink when they are thirsty, and the amount of water needed to stay hydrated varies from animal to animal. So although it may seem to you as though your cat hasn’t been drinking much water, they may be perfectly hydrated.
Cats are known to drink small amounts of water each time as that is all they require.
Cats don’t require as much water per kilogram as some larger animals do, meaning that your cat may not need to drink as much water as you think.
Having your cat on a canned or fresh food diet also provides them with added water, while cats that mainly eat a dry food diet will need more water on a daily basis to ensure they keep hydrated. For every ounce of dry food, cats typically drink about 1 ounce of water, whereas cats eating wet foods will drink considerably less because much of their hydration comes from their food.
While your cat needing less water compared to other animals is true, there might still be situations that your cat isn’t drinking enough. If you notice that your cat isn’t drinking any water then it’s time to look into why. There may be an underlying health condition, the water may not be fresh enough or the location of the bowl could all be potential reasons why your cat isn’t drinking enough.
Your Cat Cant Taste Sweet
Heres another fun feline fact you may not have been aware of: cats cant actually taste sweet in the way that we can. Scientists found that they simply lack the required receptor for sweetness so not only do they not need carbohydrates in the form of sugar, they cant even taste them!
So while you might think the glass of apple juice could be a nice treat for your cat, not only is it best to avoid sugar but your cat just isnt going to taste that sweetness that makes apple juice so appealing to us.
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Give Your Cat Options
Every cat has their own preferences and tendencies, so it might be beneficial to learn what your cat likes best. One way to start is by trying out different bowls. For example, an easy-to-access elevated dish can be especially great for elderly kitties. Or, an angled, low-splash bowl that doesnt tickle your cats whiskers could be another option to try.
Some cats also refuse to drink out of certain types of bowls altogether or even have an allergy to their water or food bowl. Others will always prefer a good old-fashioned water glass made for humans. If you find that to be true for your kitty, leave a few around the house for them to nurse.
Place Water Bowls At Small Distance
Your priority should be keeping your furry friend healthy and happy as a pet owner. For that, you should be making sure that your cat drinks the right amount of water as required.
Once you place water bowls at short distances within and outside your house, they can drink anytime they want.
For instance, your cat can sprint from here and there during playtime and drink water from the bowls.
This frequent placement of the bowls makes it easy for your fur friends, and even you can be at peace. So from now, leave out some water bowls around, and it will entice your cat to drink more water.
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Why Is It Essential For Cats To Drink Water
The most obvious answer to this question is to prevent dehydration. But aside from this very important reason, consuming water is necessary for the following:
- helps flush toxins from the kidneys
- aids in digestion
- helps with circulation
- aids in the transport and absorption of nutrients
- helps keep essential body organs hydrated and healthy so they can properly function, and many more reasons
Add Meaty Ice Cubes To Your Cats Food
Maybe your cat wont eat canned food, or maybe hes on a prescription dry food diet for a medical issue. If thats the case, you can still add water to his food by using ice cubes made from tuna juice or chicken broth.
Just get an ice cube tray and fill it with your cats favorite meaty liquid. Smaller cubes or balls are best, but if you dont have an appropriate tray, use a normal one and fill the compartments only partway up.
Make sure to label the tray so you dont accidentally toss a chicken broth cube into your morning smoothie or lemonade pitcher!
Then, when dinnertime rolls around, put one of the cubes into your cats food bowl, add the kibble and mix it up a bit. The cube will impart a little extra moisture into the kibble and your cat will enjoy licking it in between bites of food.
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Switch To A Mostly Wet
Canned food simply has more moisture. According to my vet, this is the easiest way to get your cat to drink more water and avoid a dehydrated cat.
If your cat wont eat wet food, add water or broth to dry food and see if hell eat that. If your cat digs canned food, add water or broth to it to make it even wetter. Some cats love the soupy consistency this creates.
Try A Different Kind Of Water Bowl
Your cat might be avoiding its water dish because bending over it with its neck exposed makes it feel vulnerable. If thats the case, try getting an elevated water dish.
The material of the water bowl matters too! Depending on the kind of material the water dish is made from, cats could detect subtle differences in the taste of water. Get water bowls of different materials and see which one your cat likes!
Cats have very sensitive whiskers and they dont like it when they drinking from a water dish and their whiskers continually brush against the sides of the bowl. Swap out a deep water bowl for a shallow one and see if your cat is lapping up water much more frequently. But make sure that youre consistent with the amount of water you put in the bowl.
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Choose A Different Bowl
It may just be that your cat doesnt like their drinking bowl anymore. If moving their bowl around doesnt do the trick, opt for a different bowl. When selecting the best water bowl, youll want to look for something wide and shallow to prevent whisker stress. The Park Life Designs Monty Cat Bowl is a sturdy, easy-to-clean option.
When Should I Be Concerned
It is often difficult to measure accurately exactly how much your cat has been drinking, especially if there are multiple cats or other animals in the household. Other signs that can indicate an underlying disease process include the following.
Changes in drinking behaviour:
- Repeated trips to the water bowl
- Drinking from unusual locations . Please note – this is quite normal for some cats so doesnt necessarily indicate disease.
Other signs of being unwell:
- Increase in urination frequency
- Change in appetite
- Sleeping more than normal or in unusual places
- Change in general demeanour
- Vomiting and/ or diarrhoea
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How To Tell That Your Cat Is Dehydrated
If your cat becomes dehydrated it can be a serious threat to your cat’s overall health. Dehydration can happen quickly if your cat isn’t drinking an adequate amount of water. Here are some ways to tell if your cat might be dehydrated.
- Skin Elasticity – Check your cat’s skin by gently pulling the skin between their shoulder blades out. Once you let go your cat’s skin should return immediately to its regular form. If your cat’s skin doesn’t snap right back, your feline friend could be dehydrated.
- Sunken Eyes – Take a good look at your cat’s eyes. If your cat’s eyes appear sunken or glazed over this could be another indication that they haven’t been drinking enough water.
- Dry Mouth – Take a look at your cat’s gums. They should always be pink and moist. If you press your finger against your cat’s gums they should turn white, but if they don’t return to a healthy pink color within a second or two of removing your finger your kitty may be dehydrated.
- Constipation – Checking your cat’s litterbox is an easy way to tell if they have been drinking enough water. When cats are dehydrated they often become constipated. If your cat hasn’t been having regular bowel movements, dehydration may be to blame.
- Panting – Unlike dogs, cats do not typically pant. If your feline friend is panting it is a sign that they may be dehydrated.
Does My Cat Have Access To An Appropriate Water Bowl
When they put their face into their water bowl to drink, their whiskers could graze the side of the bowl and it could cause discomfort,Patrick Mahaney, VMD, a holistic veterinarian in Los Angeles explains. Look for a wide bowl that doesnt brush up against the whiskers. Or, for kitties that want a more tantalizing water source, consider a trickling fountain.
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Make Their Water More Appetizing
If your cat still wont drink water, try changing what is in the bowl to make it more appetizing. One option is to add flavor add a little juice from a can of tuna or a dash of chicken broth to their water. Most cats wont be able to resist the tasty smell of meat or fish. Theyll be much more inclined to drink.
If you are adding tuna juice, make sure it is from tuna packed in water and not oil. Adding oil to your cats water is not a good idea whatsoever. Also, check that the broth has a low salt content. Salt isnt part of a cats natural diet and too much of it can affect their electrolyte imbalance. In worst cases, this can cause sodium poisoning.
An alternative is to add a few ice cubes to the water. This will keep the water cooler, fresher, and more appetizing for longer. Plus, many cats will enjoy playing with the ice cubes. The more fun they find drinking, the more likely they will be to do it. For a double-whammy, make ice cubes by freezing broth or tuna juice and add these to the dish.
Degrees Of Dehydration Guideline
5 to 6% dehydration there is only a subtle loss of the elasticity of the skin. Skin will return back to position after tenting only slightly slower than normal. See how to “tent” the skin below.
6 to 8% dehydration there is a notable delay in the skin tent, there is a delay in the return of color when the gums are pressed and the eyes may appear sunken.10 to 12% dehydration there is a complete loss of skin elasticity , the gums are extremely dry, eyes are sunken, there may be signs of shock such as increased heart rate, cool or cold paws and legs, etc., and it is possible for alterations in consciousness.12 to 15% dehydration cats are in shock and death is likely without aggressive veterinary treatment.
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Is It Best To Give My 14
‘Senior’ generally means over 11 years old. Senior diets can be an excellent way to feed older cats, as the diet is adjusted to factor in that older cats are more sedentary and might require certain supplements for example to help keep their joints healthy. Many cats are living longer these days, in some part because the diets we can now offer are so well suited to them.
Why Isnt Your Cat Drinking Water
There are many reasons why cats might not want to drink water in the first place.
Cats by nature dont drink that much water. Domesticated cats are often descended from desert-dwelling wild cats who didnt have much access to water. And due to this, dont require water as much as other animals. Wild cats actually get most of their water intake from the prey they catch.
However, many domesticated cats dont live off of fresh catch. Instead, most consume a primarily dry diet in the form of kibble. Now, there are a bunch of great reasons for this such as maintaining proper oral hygiene and proper nutrition balance but its severely lacking in water content.
Cats also are extremely particular about where their water comes from. Just as we dont like to eat in our bathrooms, neither do cats. If their food bowls are anywhere near their litter, theres a good chance that your cat will consider that water contaminated.
Also, your cat could just be super-finicky about their bowl, water source, or any other variable. As you know, cats are extremely picky when it comes to just about everything. But dont worry, just try out these simple tips to get your cat drinking more water.
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How To Encourage Your Cat To Drink More Water
This article was co-authored by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS and by wikiHow staff writer, Jessica Gibson. Dr. Elliott, BVMS, MRCVS is a veterinarian with over 30 years of experience in veterinary surgery and companion animal practice. She graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1987 with a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery. She has worked at the same animal clinic in her hometown for over 20 years.There are 8 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 94% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 305,605 times.
While you may not think cats need very much water, it’s important that domesticated cats eating commercial cat foods stay hydrated. Preventing dehydration is also crucial if your cat has a kidney or bladder problem. Fortunately, there are several ways you can encourage your cat to drink more water. Provide plenty of clean fresh water and motivate her to drink by learning her water preferences.
How To Provide Hydration To A Cat That Won’t Drink
If your cat is not clearly showing the signs above but you are still concerned that they may not be drinking enough water then there are a few things you can try in order to increase their water intake.
- Cats are clean creatures and may not drink if their water bowl is in close proximity to their litter box.
- Cats have a natural instinct to drink fresh flowing water so you should be sure to provide them with fresh water daily.
- Sometimes your cat may just not like the location of its water bowl in general and moving it may help.
- Try a different bowl or a bowl that provides running water for cats to enjoy.
- An easy way to increase water intake if your cat eats dry food is to switch to canned food.
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Can I Feed My Cat Milk Instead Of Water
Cats only need one thing to stay hydrated water. Generally, milk is bad for cats due to the fact that most are lactose intolerant and will become sick in case they drink milk. So its best to avoid feeding your cat milk, unless it is the kind specifically made for cats3.
Due to its high fat content, cats may enjoy the taste of milk. But avoid giving your cat milk or else you will likely have a sick kitty on your hands.
Instead of feeding your cat milk, follow our recommendations below to get your cat drinking water again.
What Are The Dangers If A Cat Does Not Drink Enough Water
One of the biggest dangers of your cat not consuming enough water is dehydration. Dehydration is when your cat uses or loses more fluids than they take in, which creates an imbalance of water and electrolytes in the body. When this occurs, their bodies are unable to function properly.
Dehydration can be caused by more than just a lack of water consumption. It can be the result of medications, nursing kittens, or elderly cats with decreased mobility.
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