It’s easy to assume that cats know what’s best for their health seeing as they’re so self-sufficient. But, the fact is, there is one thing that they sometimes aren’t doing in their best interest and that’s staying hydrated. A lot of cats simply don’t drink enough water on their own. It may seem harmless enough at first glance, but it can actually turn into a medical emergency fast.
While dehydration can be an emergency in itself, cats can also develop life-threatening urinary stones from lack of water. Now, we know it’s not always easy to get cats to do something that they don’t want to do, but the key to keeping your cat in good health and avoiding these serious issues, as is the case with humans, is to make sure that your cat is drinking plenty of water.
If you suspect your cat isn’t drinking enough, there are some creative things that you can try to get them to drink more:
- Switch to wet food – The easiest way to get your cat to drink more water and avoid dehydration is to switch them to a mostly wet food diet. Canned food contains moisture, so your cat will be ingesting water without even knowing it. If they won’t eat the wet food, though, there are some other options. You can try adding water or broth to your cat’s dry food. If they like it, you can add as much water or broth as you like to ensure that they’re getting even more water in their system. You can do the same with wet food to make it into more of a soup consistency.
- Add ice cubes – Some cats love ice cubes. They add moisture, and they’re like little treats to your cat. And, the best part is that the ice cube will take on the food’s flavor, so they’ll never suspect that it doesn’t belong. You can also just add ice cubes to your cat’s water bowl. As they play and lick it, they’ll be ingesting water, plus it will just make the water bowl naturally more interesting.
- Put out more water bowls – Make sure your cat has easy access to water all around the house. You might even put out different kinds of drinking bowls and glasses, as your cat may prefer one to the other. Just, make sure you keep water bowls away from the litter box. No one wants to drink near the toilet.
- Regularly refill all water bowls – Cats prefer fresh water, so be sure to change out their water bowls at least once a day. When you do this, wash each bowl out completely with soap and water to prevent slimy, germy buildup.
- Flavor the water – Yes, you can do this! You can easily add a bit of tuna juice or chicken broth to your cat’s water to make it more enticing. Trust us, they’ll drink it right up.
- Serve smaller portions more frequently – When cats eat, they get thirsty. So, to get them to drink more throughout the day, try feeding them smaller meals more often.
- Turn on the faucet – Some cats are attracted to running water, so use this to everyone’s benefit, and turn a faucet on from time to time so that they may enjoy a fresh drink. Try just running a faucet for a few minutes several times a day while you get ready in the morning, wash up in the evening, etc. Think of it as bonding.
- Try a water fountain – If your cat likes the running faucet, they might also like to drink from a regular kitty water fountain. The moving water is very attractive to cats, and it keeps the water fresh all day long.
Whether feline or human, we could all do better to drink more water. So, help your kitty stay happy and healthy by providing them with new, creative ways to stay hydrated.