Cats do not drink water like a dog does and this can lead to dehydration or worse, crystals and stones which can be life threatening for your cats. The domestic cat evolved from desert-dwelling ancestors leaving them with a low thirst drive.
Cats naturally produce highly concentrated urine which can result in urinary tract problems when their diet is low in liquids. It is recommended that if you are feeding kibble, that you also feed your cat at least one can of wet food each day.
Water is essential for helping the kidneys flush out toxins from the blood.
Below are six suggestions for getting your cat to drink more water.
1. Be aware of the water bowl’s location – Keep your cat’s water bowl away from the litter box.
2. Try and ice cube in their food – The ice cube will take on the foods flavor and as the cat licks it and as it melts, they are getting water.
3. Try ice cubes in their water bowl – Some cat may prefer colder water.
4. Try a pet water fountain – These are good for those cats that like drinking from the faucet.
5. Feed canned food – Canned food is 70 percent or more water and great way to get more wate into your cat. You do want to be sure the ingredients in the canned for are mainly animal protein and that it does not contain carrageenan or other low quality ingredients.
6. Watch the type of bowl you are using – Plastic bowls can retain odor and bacteria and can cause your cat to stop drinking or become finicky. Stainless steel, lead-free ceramic or glass bowls will not hold onto odors.
Watch for signs that your cat may be may dehydrated. There are a few ways you can tell if your cat is dehydrated. One of the best tests is to pinch your cat’s skin and gently pull upward. If her skin does not return to its normal position quickly, she is probably dehydrated. Also pay attention to signs of panting, depression, lack of appetite, sunken eyes, dry mouth, increased lethargy, and increased heart rate.
If you think that your cat might be dehydrated, talk to your veterinarian.
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