Cats can be finicky when it comes to drinking water, and it may often seem like they don't drink enough. Discover the important role water plays in maintaining your cat’s health, why it’s vital they get enough, and how to encourage your cat to drink.
Why water is important
Water is the most important and essential nutrient for maintaining life and has multiple functions within the body. Cats can obtain a certain amount of water from the food they eat and by producing it within the body. But mostly, cats obtain water by drinking, and if your cat is not sufficiently hydrated, it can result in serious health issues.
The role water plays in health and wellbeing is wide and varied, including regulating and maintaining normal body temperature, circulation, removing waste from the body, supporting essential chemical reactions, transporting nutrients, and aiding digestion and nutrient absorption.
Encouraging your cat to drink
Cats are often very specific about how their water is supplied and will often have individual preferences for the type of bowl (ceramic, plastic, stainless steel), the bowl's location, the type of water (tap or bottled), and how it is presented. This is why it is essential to provide clean, fresh water at all times, preferably in several locations around the house.
Some cats also have difficulty seeing still water or prefer their water to be moving. This is why cats often drink from taps, ponds, puddles, and use their paws to move the water around before drinking it. If you find that your cat prefers this way of drinking, consider supplying their water in a cat drinking fountain.