Cats are more prone to chronic dehydration than you may realize. Fortunately, there are several simple ways to keep your cat hydrated.
- Multiple Watering Areas. Keep several sources of fresh water easily accessible throughout the house for your cats at all times. Ensure all water dishes are kept clean and refilled regularly. Take the time to wash the bowls with a gentle soap, rather than just rinsing them.
- Consider Running Water. Static water breeds bacteria, and flowing water is more likely to be clean, as your cat's wild ancestors understood. Cats have retained this instinct. When cats are offered flowing water versus a stationary bowl, they are more likely to drink and stay hydrated.
- Separate the Food and Water Bowls. Keeping your cat's food and water bowls next to each other may seem logical, but it may actually discourage your kitty from drinking. Additionally, keeping your cat's water away from their food (and their litter box) keeps water bowls cleaner.
- Avoid Stress. Those little whiskers don't just make your kitty cute - they help them sense their surroundings. Because their whiskers are so sensitive, many cats do not like being forced to smoosh their whiskers against the edges of a small bowl. Your cat may be avoiding drinking water because of this.
In general, a shallow, wide water bowl is better than a deep, narrow one. (This is true for your cat's food bowl as well - many cats even prefer a plate.)
- Ice Cubes Make Drinking More Fun. The final way to get your cat to interact with their water is to make it visually appealing and interactive. Ice cubes bobbing in the water attract your cat to come over and bat at them. When they are there, they may decide to sip a few drinks!