How Much Water Do Cats Need
So, how much water does your cat really need?
That is a very good question. But before I answer it, I want to talk about the importance of water to your cat's health.
Importance of Water
It simply cannot be overstated how important water is to your cat's health and well being. It helps digest food, absorb nutrients, flush out waste and control body temperature. Next to oxygen, water is the most important nutrient in your cat's body.
Cats can go for days without food. They can lose up to 40 percent of their body weight and still survive. But when a cat loses just 10 percent of its body's water, bodily functions shut down causing serious illness. A 15 percent loss of body water will kill him.
So how much water does your cat need?
A general rule of thumb is that cats need about 1 ounce of water a day for every pound of body weight. So, a 9-pound cat needs about 9 ounces of water a day, which is about 2 quarts of water a week. (Water requirements for cats with kidney failure, urinary tract disease or bladder infections are even higher.)
Unfortunately, most cats just don't drink enough water to stay healthy.
So what can you do to get your cat to drink more water?
Here are a few tips:
1. Make it more appealing. Keep the water bowl clean. If you wouldn't drink from it, chances he won't want to either. Wash the bowl every day and disinfect it regularly to control bacteria. Change the water several times a day.
2. The better the water tastes, the more likely your cat is to drink it. Try adding some water from a can of tuna to change the taste, or use bottled or filtered water. Cats like cool ... and that's the way they like their water.
3. Cats prefer to drink running water. In nature, cats are drawn to moving water. It tastes better (most cats don't like to drink water out of a bowl).
Am I suggesting that your cat drink from a running faucet? Not necessarily. There is actually a better solution in the market today ...
The solution is a pet fountain with running water. It was invented more than 10 years ago by Dr. M. Burns, a licensed veterinarian.
Let me tell you her story ...
In 1994 Dr. Burns was very frustrated with the behavior of one of her cats named "Buckwheat". Buckwheat would only drink water from a dripping faucet and would lie around on the kitchen counters all day waiting for her human to turn the faucet on.
Aside from finding cat hair in the food preparation areas on the counters, Dr. Burns was getting very tired of running to the faucets to satisfy Buckwheat's demand for running water. Add to this a nasty water bill, because someone would forget to turn the darn faucets back off. So, Dr. Burns turned a problem into an opportunity and created a wonderful new product - pet drinking fountains.
I really like Dr. Burns' pet fountains, and for cats I really like the Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain(pictured below) .
The Drinkwell is ideal because it filters the impurities so the water tastes better, and it provides constant motion keeping the water cool and very appealing to your kitty.
P.S. Water requirements also depend on your cat's stress level, how active he is, his size, his age, his health and the kind of food he eats. Even the weather can be a factor.
P.P.S. If you don't have a pet fountain, you really should consider getting one. It's a great way to help your cat drink more water ... and that's the best thing you can do keep your cat healthy.
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