Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Purrfect 10: Ways to Keep Your Cat Properly Hydrated

We love reading and researching anything and everything about cats, and wanted to find a fun and unique way to share the interesting facts we learn with you! Since top 10 lists are very popular in the blogosphere, we created The Purrfect 10 as a way to present 10 educational or fascinating tidbits about a wide variety of cat-related topics, everything from health issues to cat breeds to famous felines.

Did you know your cat needs approximately one ounce of water per pound of body weight each day? Essential to a pet’s overall health and well-being, water supports vital organ functions and is responsible for important bodily functions including digestion and waste removal. Unlike human bodies, which are made up of 55-60 percent water, a pet’s body is made up of 80 percent water, and can result in serious health issues if a pet becomes dehydrated. 

Since cats don't have a strong thirst drive, it's up to us to make sure they drink enough water, so in honor of Pet Hydration Month, July's edition of The Purrfect 10 features some tips and tricks on how to make sure your cat stays properly hydrated...

1) Feed a wet food diet. Canned food averages 78% water, whereas dry food only contains 7-10% moisture. Prey consumed by cats in the wild contains approximately 70% water, so canned food more closely mimics what a cat's diet is meant to be.

2) Add extra water to your cat's canned food. (I've found with Mudpie, the mushier I make her food the better she likes it.)

3)  Add a couple drops of low sodium chicken broth or tuna fish juice to flavor the water.

4) Add an ice cube to the bowl. Not only does it keep the water cold as most cats prefer, it's also fun to bop around in the bowl! Again, a drop of chicken broth or tuna juice can be added to the cubes to flavor the water.

5) Experiment with different types of bowls. Cats are picky (but that's hardly a secret, right?) Try different materials (glass, metal, ceramic) and different depths. Prevent whisker stress with wide bowls filled to the brim so kitty's whiskers don't touch the side when they drink. Have you noticed your cat likes to take a drink for your own water glass? Give her a glass of her own! (Mudpie has her very own oversized coffee mug that has become her main watering hole!)

Flickr Creative Commons/D Coetzee

6) Provide multiple bowls around the house. Place them near where your cat sleeps and other convenient locations to encourage them to stop for a drink during their daily rounds. If you have an older cat or one with mobility issues, multiple cats, or a large home with more than one level, place bowls on each side of the house and on every floor so they don't have to go out of their way to find a source of water. Avoid placing bowls near litter boxes and food dishes to prevent contamination.

7) Clean the bowls and refresh the water every day. Would you want to drink a glass of water with dust on top, food particles lurking at the bottom, or slime around the edges? Neither does your cat! A cat's taste buds are very sensitive and if the water goes unchanged for long it will taste stale to them.

8) Try bottled or filtered water. Some cats may be turned off by the smell of chemicals or chlorine in tap water.

9) Lots of cats love drinking from the water faucet. Since you probably don't want to leave your faucets running all the time, create a special routine each morning or evening before bed when you put her up on the sink for a drink. Cats love playing in the bathtub and sink too and if your faucets are like mine and always tend to drip a little, allow it to puddle or place a small dish underneath to catch the water.

10) If your cat enjoys running water, consider investing in a pet fountain. This enables fresh water to flow all day!

Is your cat drinking enough water? 
How do you encourage them to drink more?


  1. We only eat wet food here and we have glass bowls to drink out of - we like those a lot.

  2. As always, these are such fantastic ideas! We love the ice cube trick. That makes for some fresh, cold water, and also lots of fun!

  3. Oh, this is a great list! I especially like the tip about chicken broth flavoring.

  4. I've discover the outside fountain as an extra source of water...oh boy does it taste good!
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  5. Great ideas! We have had a pet fountain for a couple of years, and our cats love it. I just couldn't believe how attracted they were to it when we first got it!

  6. Thanks for all these tips to get us cats to drink more. Staying hydrated is so important for us.

  7. I'm lucky that Ellie and Bear both drink water without much effort on my part. Kitty wasn't like that at all. But do they get one ounce for each pound of body weight?!? I kind of doubt it. Since Bear loves gravy so much - I add a little water to his wet food treat too. We just got our first fountain and Bear still hasn't gone near it while it's on (he'll drink from it when it's not on).

  8. Great post, kitties need lots of water.

  9. We add about 1/4 can of water to Angel and Chuck's meals, and sometimes Chuck drinks from the water bowl. We had a fountain once but they hated it. The 'O' Cats get a fresh bowl of water twice a day (because sometimes the squirrels get it dirty), and in the winter too!

  10. I need to get a new bowl...long overdue...and will see about getting 3...ands for wet food....I think Sneakers and Friday would go for that...not sure about Elvira as she has never showed interest like they have.

  11. Hot weather, cool mountain stream flowing past the house. Timely post though.

  12. Great tips! None of my cats are interested in drinking from the faucet. They all run away when I turn it on.

  13. Great tips ! It's hard to make a cat drink more, your tips are very helpful . Purrs