How to Get a Cat to Drink More Water?

Cats are natural water drinkers. They will often lap up a bowl of freshwater or drink from a dripping faucet. But as cats age, they may become less active and start to drink less. Cats can’t tell us when they don’t feel well, so owners need to be proactive about their cat’s health by ensuring that pet gets enough fluids. 

In most cases, you can encourage your cat to drink more with the following methods: 

1. Frequently Fill Water Bowls

Cats are creatures of habit, so they will often drink from the same bowl at the same time each day. So, fill your cat’s water bowls up before you go to bed, right when you wake up in the morning and during mealtimes. 

Alternately you can use a large water reservoir which can hold a supply of multiple days; so, it needs fewer refills.

2. Place Multiple Bowls Around the House

Cats don’t like to have a lot of water bowls in one room. Your cat may be less likely to drink from a single, large bowl especially when she roams freely in the house and rest in different spots.

If an individual water dish is not sufficient, place multiple water dishes throughout your house so that your cat has lots of options when she’s thirsty. 

If you choose this route, make sure the water bowls are not placed near litter boxes or feeding stations. Moreover, different types of bowls add more attraction for cats.

3. Use Ceramic Water Fountain

Plastic water bowls add strange smells that cats might not like and stop drinking adequate water. 

Ceramic fountains are readily available in the market. Ceramic fountains are usually made of recycled material that is friendly for the environment and contains no chemicals; hence, your cat will love it. Owners also need to make sure that they rinse regularly and wash the water fountains using hot water.

Cats feel less pressure while drinking from the raised water bowls and most ceramic water bowls fall in this category.

4. Try a Water Fountain

You might already hear “cats like running water” So, get the best cat water fountain to provide running water no splashing water to your cat. 

Cat water fountains run through electricity and are equipped with water reservoirs and water filters that ensure an uninterrupted water supply throughout the day. As a result, your cat will get fresh and clean water 24/7.

Gentle streams and flowing water from a height add attraction to cats, and they cannot keep themselves thirsty anymore. Usually, the water reserve of a fountain is enough for a day to accommodate multiple cats. 

5. Keep Water Bowl and Litter Trays Separate

Many owners choose to place the water bowl and litter box side by side. But it is not a good idea because cats may start avoiding using one of these facilities if they feel anxious about being in that specific area.

Naturally, cats do not like to eat or drink near to their feces and where they can smell something strange.

So, always keep both facilities separate; if you are using only one room for all of your cat business, then prefer to place a litter box at one corner and water in the other corner.

6. Switch to Canned Cat Food 

In the wild, cats get most of their liquid intakes through the food, and you can stimulate it for your domestic cats too. 

The canned cat food, which we call wet food, contains nearly 70% water/liquids that fulfill cats’ water requirements. So, when a cat is not drinking water simply moving to wet cat food is a solution.

Cats on wet food may not consume the same amount of water as cats on kibble do; because they are getting enough liquids through wet food.

7. Use Water Additives

Sometimes color or flavor do all the magic. Usually, cats do not prefer to drink color water. But when you find out they do not like the color or flavor, you can use a good quality water additive to entice their taste.

Different water additives are available in the market to choose carefully and read ingredients before buying.

Why do cats stop drinking water?

Initially, your cat might stop drinking water if she is receiving enough liquids in the canned food.

Secondly, when cats are too old, they start to drink less water because their kidneys become less efficient.

If you think that your cat is not eating enough food, likely, she will not drink enough water either.

Cats with dental problems like tooth decay and oral infection may avoid chewing hard food, reducing their fluid intake.

Cats who are stressed tend to drink less water. Cats’ common causes of stress are new pets, house guests, moving home or renovations, etc.  

If your cat is not drinking enough water, it can lead to serious health problems like kidney disease, urinary tract infection, or dehydration. So, when you figure out the cat is not drinking enough water immediately start considering the above solutions one by one to keep her in good health.


Waleed Khalid

A professional writer and a passionate wildlife enthusiast, who is mostly found hooked to his laptop or in libraries researching about the wildlife.

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