Water is essential to your cat's health. Drinking enough helps your feline friend maintain healthy kidneys and supports hydration of other organs. Cats that eat canned food get some of the water it needs when it eats, but animals that only eat dry food, or who have a combination diet, need to drink more to meet their bodily needs.
Cats are like horses in the old saying: you can lead them to water, but you can't make them drink it. Fortunately, there are three different types of water bowls that make them more likely to keep themselves properly hydrated.
- 01 of 03
Wide Water Bowls
Cats are funny creatures. Most don't like anything touching their whiskers, and really, that's understandable—those long facial protrusions are extremely sensitive. Felines can even detect slight changes in the breeze with their whiskers.
Given this sensitivity, it's no wonder that most cats don't like things touching their whiskers, and that includes small food and water bowls. If you provide a large, wide bowl from which your cat can drink without rubbing his whiskers against the side, you might notice an increase in his water consumption.
Pick up a wide stainless steel water bowl for your cat. It's easy to clean thoroughly and doesn't cause a chin rash like some plastic bowls.
- 02 of 03
Cold Water Bowls
What would you rather drink: a glass of room temperature liquid or a nice, cold, refreshing glass of water? Many cats, like humans, prefer their beverages chilled. You'll promote more water consumption if you serve it cold.
It's hard to keep refilling your kitty's water bowl, but luckily you can buy products that keep it chilled for hours. For example, Frostybowlz is a stainless steel cat and dog bowl that keeps the water cool and refreshing. You simply freeze the base, then put the water bowl over it. Its effects last several hours.
- 03 of 03
Some cats absolutely adore drinking running water. They'll beg for some at the sink or jump in the bathtub, hoping you'll turn it on so they can indulge themselves.
If you have a cat like that, consider buying an automatic fountain. There are many different models available, such as the Pioneer Pet Stainless Steel Fountain with the raindrop design.
Because it's stainless steel, the bowl is easy to clean. However, you have to change the filters regularly in pretty much any pet fountain, which is one of the drawbacks. If you don't keep spare filters around, you'll have an unhappy kitty on your hands until you finally get out to pick some up.
The only other drawback is that you need to keep the fountain near an electrical outlet since it has to be plugged in.
If you're a dog owner, you might want to try a fountain with your pooch. Although dogs aren't typically as excited about running water as cats, many enjoy drinking from a pet fountain.