How to encourage pets to drink water?
"My cat does not drink enough water" - most cat parents will come across this concern at least once in your lifetime.
Have you ever seen your cat drinking water from a faucet? What about toilet water and washbasins? If you had, yet your cat does not stop, it is because cats prefer running water over still water. It is a natural instinct for cats and other animals to prefer running water due to the lower microbes present in running water. Unlike outdoors cats who drink from river or active water sources, indoor cats do not have easy access to running water. Hence, pet fountains are always advocated and encouraged.
There are many reasons why your cat prefers pet fountains over still water, but firstly, let us discuss the importance of water for cats.
Importance of Cat hydration
Cat ancestors lived in desert and their roots are of desert animals. This desert traits of DNA is still alive in your cat today. This meant cats get most of their water intake from their food. Your house cat may derive 75-80% of hydration from food, however this level is lower for a cat on a dry food diet.
Similar to humans, inadequate water intake for your cat can cause multiple health problems such as kidney diseases, heatstrokes, diabetes, and other illnesses. Facing the threat of these diseases, it is best to encourage your cat to drink water using pet fountain with running amount of water supply that your cat prefers.
Is still water bad for your cats and you?
Assuming that you provide enough water to your cat, it is better to consider other options than bowl water. Bowl water can be bad for your pets in many ways:
On National Geographic channel, you may have seen that animals always prefer running water over still pond water. It’s because they know it’s not good for them. Still, water is a breeding ground for bacteria. And it’s a threat to the health of animals. So if your cat gets an illness, it’s trouble for both of you.
- Changing water everyday
Assuming that you already give water to your cat in the bowl. You are already familiar with the cleanliness of the bowl. You may have to change the water every day or sometimes twice a day. It can become a pain in the neck if you are already living a hectic life.
- Staleness of water
As still water contains a lot of bacteria, it can become the reason for the staleness of water. Running water on fountains and rivers is always fresh because it is always circulating. Not only this, still water can produce quite bad odor which will prevent to drink more water from there.
Five reasons why your cat prefers pet fountains over still water
Your cat is a friendly pet, but she still needs some care. Due to the cat’s instinct, cats will always prefer pet fountains over still water. Let’s talk about some reasons for your cat’s preference for pet fountains.
Supposing you live in a high-temperature area, you know how water at room temperature feels to you. It’s the same case with your cats. Pet fountains allow you to control your cat’s water temperature. This way, you can keep the water 1 to 2 degrees below room temperature. Your cat will most likely drink water from the pet fountain resulting in good health.
As we have discussed earlier, animals have the instinct of being attracted by running water. They feel running water is a safe option, and there’s no denying it. Circulating water prevents the growth of bacteria and fungus making it clean and safe water. Bacteria and fungus may appear in still water.
3. Cats consider still water unsafe.
Naturally stillwater offers a breeding ground for bacteria that could become the cause of your cat’s future illness. Running water eradicated this threat of unsafe water. You will see domestic cats still prefer running water because of it.
4. Cats avoid their whiskers being touched
Just like the tail, the cat’s whiskers are very sensitive. They provide your feline information about their surroundings. Cats often become agitated when their whiskers are being touched, also known as whisker stress.
If the bowl is small and deep, it is more likely that their whiskers will get the touch. This could irritate them, and they would not drink water rather than their whiskers get touched.
Pet fountains are here to overcome this problem. There are wider, and water is running upward. So they don’t have to look out for their whiskers.
5. Sound of running water
In rivers, running water produces a trickling sound. It is of the opinion that the sound of running water attracts cats and other animals to it. Pet fountains produce that very sound, and your cat will have an attraction towards it.
Benefits of pet fountains
Other than your cat’s preference, let have a look at some of the benefits that pet fountains will give you over the bowl of still water.
The capacity of pet fountains could be the reason why you will not be able to resist them. Most of the pet fountains can hold 2 to 3 liters of water or more. This means you can fill its tank once a week, leaving you the worry of changing the water every now and then. What a fantastic machine, right?
Some pet fountains can also be connected with a faucet to ensure an endless supply of water. This way, your cat will always have enough fresh and clean running water to drink from it.
Bowl water doesn’t have any sort of filtration treatment. And they possess more bacteria and dirt because of their stillness. Just to add salt to the injury, it can also have cat hairs.
Most of the pet fountains out there contain some sort of small filter present near the motor. They are mostly made up of carbon. Carbon will clear bacteria and other impurities, making water safe to drink.
Filters will catch waste like hair and dirt from building up in the water to make it clean more. This filtration process will make water more cleaner, fresh. And improve its taste and smell, encouraging your cat to drink more water.
Search for the best pet fountain
Now you have made up your mind to buy a pet fountain for your cat. You may be considering a shiny, cute, and colorful pet fountain to buy. But these aren’t factors that separate the best fountains from the bad ones.
Here are some of the factors you should consider before buying a pet fountain for your cat buddy.
Are they easy to assemble?
When you are on a hunt for the best fountain, look for a pet fountain that has small parts and is easy to disassemble. The best pet fountains have relatively simple designs, don’t have many parts, and are easy to clean.
Check whether they are dishwasher-safe or not. Dishwasher-safe pet fountains can be easily cleaned once in a couple of weeks into the dishwasher, leaving you a lot of cleaning trouble.
Are they sturdy and long-lasting?
You may be looking at a cute pet fountain, and you think it’s good. But there’s a catch here. It may not be. You may have heard the phrase, “all glitters are not gold.” This phrase applies here.
Most of the time, these extravagant pet fountains are just for decoration. You may want to look at pet fountains that comprise robust materials. So they don’t get broken by some toppling and bumps. They should withstand some kicks because you will be bumping into the pet fountain, especially if it is placed in the middle of the room.
Are they made from hygienic materials?
Non-porous materials like plastics may collect bacteria and promote chin acne. Try to avoid these materials. You may need to clean them frequently.
Instead, use stainless steel and ceramic materials as they are the cleanest materials for the pet fountains.
Do they have a good carbon filter?
A carbon filter is a must to look for in a pet fountain. The carbon filter will remove bacteria, odor, and small particles making water clean. Some of the pet fountains have pre-filters. Their job is to capture any unwanted debris. These pre-filters will also help to increase the life of your pet fountain.
Do they produce loud sound?
Your pet fountains should be quiet. Because a noisy pet fountain can scare off your cat, destroying the whole purpose of it. Its noise can also become irritating for you.
Best: Nekohouse Pet Fountain Water Dispenser
This particular pet fountain has a large capacity of 3 litres, with free pre-installation work (you will only need to add water and plug into electricity source). When you purchase this pet fountain with us, filter packs are included (also pre-installed) that contains activated carbon, which ensures water is fresh and clean while it is being pumped. All materials used to make this pet fountain is of food grade quality - checked and assured. Lastly, with the latest pumping technology and overheat prevention, this pet fountain produces low sound - just enough for your cats to hear and hydrate itself. All at $19.90.
Your cat is more likely to get 80% of the water from its food if she’s on a wet diet. But still, that 20% needs to be fulfilled to ensure the cat’s health. According to a study on flowing water by the Journal of Veterinary Behavior, cats’ water consumption rate from a flowing source is greater than still water. This means your cat is more likely to drink water from a pet fountain than a bowl of still water.
Chose a pet fountain for your cat to ensure they are hydrated. This will help them to avoid a wide range of bladder and urinary health issues. Having a pet fountain instead of a bowl of water is a great way to entice your cat to drink more water. And ensure that they live happy and healthy.