Cats prefer to drink from a running supply rather than from a bowl. Some owners will have seen their cats drinking from a dripping tap or sitting in the bath tub waiting hopefully for them to turn on a trickle of water.
Pet products manufacturer Rolf C. Hagen recommends providing a drinking water fountain such as those in its Catit® range. These hold a large supply of clean water – the Hagen fountains hold up to 3 litres – so there is plenty for several cats to drink even if their owner is away for a short while. Drinking fountains provide a continuous stream of re-circulating filtered water that’s free from the impurities present in static drinking bowls and cats enjoy drinking.
Dehydration in cats can be fatal; a good way of checking is to pull up the loose skin on the back of the neck and release it. If it springs back quickly the cat is sufficiently hydrated, but if it’s slow to recede suspect a problem. If the cat shows other symptons such as lethargy or sunken eyes, veterinary advice should be sought immediately. Conversely, excessive drinking of water can also signal trouble and may indicate kidney problems or conditions such as feline diabetes. Again, contact a vet if a significant change in drinking habits takes place.
“Most owners take great care when it comes to their cat’s food, but often drinking water is not given much thought,” said Hagen’s Marketing Manager Jackie Wilson. “Cats are fussy animals and drinking from a bowl of water that’s been sitting on the kitchen floor for a day or so is not going to encourage them to drink. A drinking water fountain is fun for cats to use and makes sure they get the water they need to keep healthy.”