As a pet owner, your primary concern is ensuring that your dog or cat is safe, happy and healthy. One area that even the owner with the best intentions forgets is the amount of fresh water that is necessary for a pet to consume each day.
Water Needs of Felines
Filling a bowl of water each morning is likely enough for most cats. Felines who are primarily fed a diet of dry food generally need about four ounces of water each day. Cats who eat wet food, which is made primarily of water, need about half that.
It is a well known fact that cats can be finicky with their food. This is also true with water. Some cats will not drink water that has been sitting out and has a stale taste. Others may be put off by minerals from tap water or an after taste from a plastic or metal bowl. To ensure your cat drinks the water that is given, refresh it daily and place it in a ceramic dish. You may wish to use filtered water or even use an automatic fountain that both purifies and refreshes the cat’s water.
In order to determine if your cat is getting enough water, observe the following steps. Check the litter box to see if urination has decreased. Normal, healthy cats urinate about two to three times per day. You can also check your cat’s coat to look for signs of dry skin. Dandruff and excessive itching may be due to lack of water.
Canine Water Needs
Unlike cats, dogs can need a massive amount of water to ensure a healthy body. Dogs that get little exercise need approximately one-half ounce of water per pound of body weight. Dogs that are very active will need twice as much. They need even more during days when the temperature is high or the atmosphere very dry.
Puppies have different guidelines. Though they may have a smaller amount of body weight, they must drink water often to stay healthy. Puppies should be encouraged to drink water throughout the day.
Managing a dog’s water needs is much more difficult than cats. If you are away for long hours at a time, you may not be able to get home to refresh an empty water dish. You may be tempted to leave out multiple water dishes, but these can pose hazards as well. A dog who drinks too much water at once may develop hyponatremia, or water intoxication.
The best way to ensure a dog is getting enough water during days when you can’t be there to supervise is to place him or her in a doggie daycare. These facilities ensure your dog is happy, healthy and always has plenty of water.
Fon Jon Pet Care has served the San Diego area for more than 50 years. We specialize in providing safe, clean and caring environments for dogs and cats. We offer doggie daycare, long-term boarding, training and bathing. Give us a call at 858-490-2117 or stop by today!