Cats are known to not be very good at drinking enough water. Illnesses and problems are therefore right around the corner. It is important that you make sure that your cat stays hydrated at all times.
Check for De-Hydration
You can easily check whether your cat is hydrated or not. You can use the pinch (Skin Turgor) test to test for (de-)hydration.
The Pinch or Skin Turgor Test
- You pinch the skin gently, pulling it upwards by your cat’s shoulders
- If your cat is properly hydrated, the skin will spring back immediatly upon release
- If it is slow going back or stays up, your cat is badly dehydrated and needs medical care.
Try to see if you can offer your cat a drink by taking your cat to the water bowl or by making your cats lips wet with your finger, taking water from the bowl. If your cat is unwilling to drink, it is important that you go to your veterinary with your cat as soon as possible.
Choice of Food
Dry kibble is as it says: dry. Kibble contains on average only 30% water. So if you have a cat that has troubles with hydrating himself, it is best to give your cat wet cat food. Wet cat food made with jelly or some sort of sauce, contains over 75% water.
In addition you could consider installing more than one source of water in your house to make your cat interested in drinking water.
Glasses Of Water
You could leave a normal glass of water stand on the counter or table. Fill it as much as possible and don’t drink from it yourself. Your cat might be interested in this peculiar way of offering water and drink from it. We tried this out and it really really works. You just have to be careful with those cats that like to topple things down the table.
Multiple Bowls On Multiple Places
Most cat owners have a place for drinking and eating somewhere in the house for their cats. They tend to have water and food next to each other. The interesting thing is that cats prefer to have their food separated from their water as well as both have to be on a different place then where the litter box is located.
So first of all it is important to not position food bowls next to drinking bowls and neither of these directly adjacent to the litter box.
To liven things up you can also add different water bowls to different locations in the house. As such a bowl of water could be on top of a cupboard, table or in the window sil.
In certain cases it might be required to add some taste to the water. If you happen to have saltless chicken or beef bouillion blocks at home, you could add a little bit of that to the water. Alternatively you could use a normal bouillon block but just dillute it enough so that the salt will not impact their liver function.
I wouldn’t add taste to water fountains, which is my next tip to hydrating your cat.
Installing a Water Fountain
To really brighten and liven things up, you could consider installing one or more water fountains to your cats. We got currently two CatIt Cat Bowl Cat Fountains installed in our home. The cats love the interactive way of serving water which keeps their water fresh and filtered. The bowl offers different ways to access and drink their water. It is also placed in such a way they can drink from it while being comfortable about it.
Installing the water fountains has really helped our cats as they were having troubles drinking enough. The sparkling gurgling noise attracts them to the fountain and they like to put their tongue or paw on it. The filter takes care of all the dirt they take with, so you don’t have to worry as much for their health.
Water bowls get easily dirty and slimey and need a lot more cleaning and refreshing then the water fountains we have installed.
Other then the fountains, we give our cats regularly wet food to help them maintain a healthy diet and a healthy amount of hydration.
What is your experience with hydration of your cats. Do they drink enough water?