How to encourage your cat to drink

by catfood

There are some situations in which encouraging your cat to drink more water may be advantageous.


Examples of this include, but are not limited to:

  • Feline kidney disease

Dehydration may exacerbate the kidney disease in these cats because they are more prone to it.

  • Cats that have feline idiopathic cystitis (FIC)

Producing larger volumes of more dilute urine can help prevent relapses of this condition.

Type of water bowl

Choose a bowl that will attract your cat to drink from.

  • For your cat, experiment with several bowl kinds; in general, they choose glass, metal, and ceramic over plastic.
  • Most cats like bowls that are wide and shallow so they don’t have to poke their heads inside of them to drink from them. Cats typically don’t enjoy their whiskers touching the side of their food or drink bowl.
  • Tumblers are preferred by certain cats for drinking; if you want to place one on a high shelf, make sure it won’t break.
  • Make the water bowl as full as you can because cats prefer to drink from full bowls.

Different water bowls

Make sure your cat has access to several water bowls so she won’t have to look far for one.

  • For example, installing one on each floor of the home would save the cat from having to go upstairs or downstairs in order to find its water.
  • If you own more than one cat, you must provide each “social” group with necessary resources. At least one bowl of water is required for each social group of cats in the home.

Other guidance

  • Where possible, provide room temperature water and other drinks (the flavour is reduced in cold liquids)
  • Give a moist diet as opposed to a dry one (in cans or pouches).
  • Consult your veterinarian before making changes to your cat’s diet.
  • Adding more water to moist meals is another way to increase water consumption.

Some cats will happily eat food that tastes like soup! (When adding, use room temperature water rather than cold water.)

  • If your cat mainly consumes dry food, consider adding water to its diet.
  • Be persistent
  • Make changes gradually because cats don’t like when their food or water is abruptly changed.

The location of the bowls of water

Choose a suitable location for your water bowls.

  • Cats prefer not to drink while they are near the food dish or right after a meal.
  • DON’T USE TWO BOWLS (one side for water and the other for food). Your cat will drink more water and food if the bowls are placed in different locations.
  • In a quiet place, away from commonly used entrances or very crowded areas

Additional sources of water

  • Consider sources of running water because some cats prefer to drink from them.
  • Floating pillars

Other options include a shower or bath tray with little or no water in it or a leaking faucet.
Some cats may drink more when a ping pong ball is placed in a large-diameter dish of water, and many cats enjoy the movement that the ball creates in the water.

A variety of water types

Try out various types of water to see which ones your cat prefers. Fluoridated water is disliked by cats in big numbers.


  • From the faucet, water (so long as safe for human consumption)
  • Collected rainwater, such as that from containers in your garden
  • Many cats will choose to drink from puddles and other water sources in the garden if given the chance.
  • Glistening water

To evaluate various liquids:

The liquid left over from a can of tuna in spring water after poaching chicken or seafood
a soup or broth made of fish, meat, or liquidized shrimp

Don’t drink this liquid:

  • Additional salty liquids such as brine Milk
  • This is not the greatest option if your cat has kidney disease because it contains an unhealthy amount of phosphate.
  • Cow’s milk may give cats diarrhea because it can’t be fully digested by them.
  • Anything that includes onions or onion powder, such as a stock. Onions are toxic to cats.

READ NEXT: Introducing and Managing Cats and Dogs




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