8 Ways to Get Your Cat to Drink More Water

One of the common misconceptions when getting a pet is that they will naturally drink water with no encouragement.

Cats can be one of the worst culprits of the animal kingdom for keeping hydrated; this explains why you may find it difficult to get it to drink as much water as your dog or any other water-loving pet. 

However, this also doesn’t mean it’s OK to let it stay without water or only drink when it wants– it may never drink enough. Left to drink when they want, felines could suffer from complications like UTI (Urinary Tract Infection), kidney failure, and many other health problems.

If your feline already has to deal with certain health complications like kidney or bladder issues, it should be drinking more water than the average cat. 

In this article, we’ll go through some techniques that should help you get your cat to drink more water and stay hydrated and healthy. 

Tips to Get Your Cat Drinking More

Add Water Your Cat’s Food

If you don’t feed your cat wet/canned food, you should consider adding water to its kibbles. However, you may still need to add additional water to canned food, depending on the type or texture.

Do that and watch your cat gobble every last kibble and water. You must understand that not all cats like food with additional water and may avoid the meal altogether.

Switch to Wet Food

If dry food is what your budget can cover, you can skip this technique because adding some water to your cats' food is equally good. But if you can afford it, switch your cat to wet food. It is one of the fastest and simplest ways to get your cat more hydrated.

Canned/wet food contains more water than kibble, and it is something to consider if your cat isn't drinking enough water. Again, do this if you can afford it, and if you cannot, you can switch things up by feeding it both wet and dry food. However, make sure you add water on the days your feline eats kibbles. 

Running Water / Cat Fountain 

Cats may be domesticated but they’re still wild animals at heart. This explains why a cat may refuse to drink out of a bowl but would waste no time to drink out of running water sources such as a slowly running faucet. Thankfully, there are tons of nice fountain bowls available to provide your feline with running water all day.

If a fountain bowl is all it takes to get your cat to drink more water, then why not? Check out our review of the top five water fountains your cat would love. 

Add Water to Snacks Throughout the Day

Even with a water fountain on standby, your cat could still use some extra water. To do this, add water to a few pieces of dry snacks and feed it to your cat – that is, if you usually provide it dry snacks. This way, your cat is sufficiently hydrated to prevent dehydration-related issues and boost its health.

8 Ways to Get Your Cat to Drink More Water

Increase the Number of Drinking Bowls

This is an effective way to get your cat to drink more water. Having your cat drink from just one bowl is not as encouraging as having multiple drinking bowls around the house. Cats will pay attention to the unusual, and placing drinking bowls in different areas of your home will not only attract them but they’re compelled to drink from these bowls.

Switch the Type of Bowl

Shake things up by regularly switching your cat’s drinking bowls. You could use a drinking glass in the morning, high bowls at noon, big bowls in the evening, and a low, almost-flat one the next day. You can also try bowls made from different materials, i.e., stainless steel, tempered glass, etc.

Flavored Water

This is another effective method to get your cat to drink more water. Flavor its drinking water with the liquid from a water-packed tuna. This additional flavor entices your cat to drink more water than it ordinarily would do.

Tuna flavoring isn't the only flavor your cat can enjoy. You can switch things by adding some milk, chicken stock, or any other healthy flavor. But remember; it has to be watered down, so it's almost all water instead of the calories from the food. Your cat may not require those.

You could also consider collecting fresh water from the rain or using a water filter on chlorinated ones.

“Catnip” Your Cat’s Water

Felines enjoy catnip, and if you’re looking to improve their water consumption without calorie increase, cold catnip tea is definitely worth looking into. 

Plus, its preparation is easy. Simply mix some loose catnip into fresh, clean water and watch your cat drink it up. Do this daily, and your cat will stay as hydrated as possible.

Final Thoughts 

If you practice any or all of these methods correctly, you should notice massive improvements in your feline’s hydration. If you already practice any of those or know other tricks to get cats to stay more hydrated, we’d like to know them. Please share in the comments below.

About the Author

Kirsten Heggarty
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Kirsten created The Pet Handbook with the aim of sharing her knowledge about pets, pet food, healthy habits, and more. All of her advice is based on years of her own experience with her pets, and feedback that she has received from grateful readers about her tips. If you want to know more please read the About Me page.