How Much Water Should Your Cat Be Drinking Every Day
We are all aware of the saying water is life. Water is critical to all living things and it is one of the basic prerequisites for the healthy functioning of the body. Essentially, the body requires water to perform well. In the same vein, your cats and al your pets simply cannot function optimally without water. Water forms about 60 – 70% of the mass of a cat’s body and helps to maintain its composure.
Ever heard the saying cats hate water? Well, it is affirmative that cats are not the favorite pets to have near water, but it doesn’t mean they don’t need water. Cats require water for all the biological processes within their body.
You may have overlooked the fact that your cat may be thirsty or needs water as they show little to no signs of thirst. It is time you take into consideration the value of water for your cat. So now you may be asking yourself ‘Exactly how much water should my cat be drinking every day?’ This article will increase your understanding in this regard.
Here are some things to consider about your cat’s daily water intake.
Your Cat’s Daily Water Requirement
Cats require up to 3.5 – 4.5 ounces of water per day (depending on its body weight). This is the optimal amount that keeps their body fit and is essential for digestion of food, blood circulation and a whole lot more.
Whenever your cat eats his meals, water is needed to regulate how well it processes the foods in order to extract the right levels of nutrients for its body. Cats which consume a large amount of dry food get much less water from their meals as dry foods only contain about 7 – 12% of water. These cats would need more water in their system to remain healthy, therefore it is important to offer them water throughout the day.
Some cats take in canned food, which contains 78% water, which is about 3.8 – 4 ounces of water and is very beneficial to the cat. Canned food helps to solve the problem of water deficiency in your cat’s body – particularly if your cat is not prone to consuming water regularly. That being said, it is still recommended for your cat to drink fresh water each day.
If your cat doesn’t take in the right amount of water needed for its health, it may develop certain health risks. The main health risk in this case is dehydration – but on the other hand, you should also take care not to give your cat excessive amounts of water.
Taking In Excess Water
As good and healthy as it is for your cat to drink fresh water each day, you should also be wary of when it becomes too much. Drinking a lot more water than normal could be a sign that your cat may have some health issues. Visiting the vet is your best bet when you start to see your cat peeing more often than it should and taking in excessive water. This could signal feline diabetes or kidney disease which can only be diagnosed and treated by your vet.
How To Cultivate The Habit Of Drinking More Water
Getting into a regular water drinking habit is just as important for you as it is for your cat. Do you find it worrying that your cat doesn’t go near the bowl of drinking water that you provide for him/her to drink? If you are feeling anxious about your cat’s water drinking habit, here are some steps you can take to encourage your cat to drink more.
- Change the source of water for your cat. Perhaps your cat doesn’t drink enough water because it doesn’t like the source of water you provide. Try switching from tap water to another source and see if it works. One great idea is to provide a cat water fountain for your cat. The movement of water is just right and will appeal to your cat to drink.
- Make drinking attractive. Yes, everyone loves a nice presentation and cats do too. Try to have your cat drink from a bowl that doesn’t put them off easily but rather encourages them to drink. Invest in more bowls to give an array of choices for your cat as well as ensuring cleanliness. Remember to scrub the bowl clean every day as dirt only increases the chances of more health risks.
- Flavor it up. If all else fails, try adding some broth or tuna water to your cat’s water to make it more appealing to drink, and hopefully this should do the trick.
Dehydration is not often emphasized in cats, making many cat owners ostracize it. Your cat is likely to get dehydrated when there isn’t enough water to boost its body systems and organs. An imbalance in the supply of water to the needed areas in your cat’s body causes many illnesses and health risks. If not well treated, dehydration in cats could lead to heart stroke, diabetes, diarrhea and a variety of other ailments.
Causes of Dehydration
A lot of things come to play when a cat is dehydrated. Dehydration can be caused by an excessive sudden loss of fluids in your cats, but more commonly it is caused by an insufficient intake of fluids. Drinking the right amount of water is one thing but be aware that some cats tend to still get dehydrated even with the correct intake of water.
A spell of vomiting and diarrhea can cause your cat to get dehydrated. Seasonal changes and rising temperatures outdoors can also lead to dehydration. Be aware that this also includes a very warm home in the winter months. It is advisable to monitor the heating in your home and set the controls to a cat-friendly temperature inside your home.
Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration
Perhaps your cat may be dehydrated but you find it difficult to notice. Here are some symptoms of dehydration in your cat:
- Skin Elasticity
You can check whether your cat is dehydrated or not by this method. When you give your cat a slight pinch, and its skin doesn’t return to normal after a few seconds, it may be a sign of dehydration.
- A loss of appetite
When your cat loses appetite for food and won’t eat even when you try to get it to, it could be a sign that it is dehydrated. You should see your vet when this happens to find the best remedy.
- Dryness of mouth
Should you notice that your cat has a dry lip with gums not as sticky as they usually are, your cat is likely to be dehydrated. Provide more water and also see your vet for advice on it.
Cats are lively and very playful, and this is one of their signature habits. Now when your cat develops a depressed composure and becomes lazy, it could be due to dehydration.
- Sunken eyes
One sign that your cat is dehydrated is having sunken eyes. If your cat’s eyes are not as bright, bubbly, and lively, you should see the vet. A dull look in its eyes could signal that your cat lacks water in its system.
- Less urination
Urinating should come as freely for your cat as possible, but when this is not so, your cat may be dehydrated. When your cat is well hydrated, it is normal to see it pee at least twice a day, but if that is not happening, there could be a problem.
Treating and Preventing Dehydration
Upon noticing that your cat is dehydrated, the quickest and simplest treatment is to provide it with more water immediately. If you feel that the symptoms are more serious or prolonged, then your vet can prescribe the most appropriate treatment to quickly combat prolonged dehydration.
You can prevent dehydration when you make a conscious effort to cultivate the best water drinking habit for your cat. Here are some ways to prevent dehydration from settling in.
- Provide water for cats in glass bowls instead of plastic ones. Cats generally do not like the taste they get from water in plastic bowls.
- Fresh clean water is always the best option for your cat. Do not form the habit of giving your cat stale water or leave the same water in its bowl for days on end. This could pose health risks to your cat.
- Check your cat’s water intake and see to it that it takes in water in bits at regular intervals. When you monitor what your cat drinks, you would be able to notice any change in behavioral pattern with respect to being hydrated. It helps you make an informed choice of whether to see your vet for advice.
Water is just as important for your cat as food is. Try to monitor your cat’s drinking habit and always provide it with fresh water each day to form a healthy habit. Use different methods to establish this habit every day. Always keep an eye out for signs and signals of dehydration. Whenever you suspect dehydration, never be too busy to visit the vet. Putting off your vet visit can put your cat’s health at greater risk by prolonging any undiagnosed health conditions. An expert’s advice goes a long way to ensure your cat is healthy and well.
- Dehydration in Cats – Web MD