Our resident cat expert, Wendy Nan Rees, offers advice on the health benefits of keeping your cat hydrated.
Keeping Cats Hydrated
Did you know that in nature cats are not typically big water drinkers? Cats in the wild get 70 percent of their water from the prey they eat. Many of today's cats are given only dry cat food. While some cats are allowed outside so they can hunt, many are indoor cats and are never allowed outside. So, you will need to make sure to offer your indoor cat fresh water, and it is important to also feed your cat wet food at least once a day because this will help supplement water that they may not get from drinking straight from the bowl.
Domestic cats learn to drink water, but if you have noticed your kitty not drinking there are a few reasons for this. Here are a few tips to get your cat to drink more water.
- Try to offer kitty running water. You could try using a fountain water system or if you cannot do that, try dripping some water out of a water bottle.
- Try to offer him water that is at room temperature.
- Try to keep the water in the same place, but not next to the food bowl since many cats do not like to drink where their food is.
- Be sure to use a stainless steel bowl and not plastic because water that sits all day in a plastic dish can have toxins in it that are leached from the plastic dish.
- Be sure to clean the water bowl daily since a cat's sense of smell is so acute that he may be put off by the slightest odd smell in his water dish. This could also lead to him not wanting to drink water.
I hope these few tips will help you keep your kitty well hydrated.
Here is a great treat for you to make that will also help to keep kitty hydrated:
WARM FISH AND VEGETABLE SOUP
This is a wonderful treat to help the kitty that is protesting drinking water and just a nice warm cozy treat during the winter.
- 2 Cups Fish stock- Use low salt chicken or beef broth if you cannot find fish stock. You can also use bottled clam juice mixed with water; use 2 bottles of clam juice with 2 cups of water.
- 2 Tablespoons baby carrots, chopped
- 2 Tablespoons chopped catnip (optional)
- 2 Tablespoons chopped sardines or any chopped fish you know your kitty loves
- 4 Tablespoons dried fish flakes to sprinkle on top
- In a large stock pot, add all your ingredients except for the fish flakes, and then bring to a boil.
- Once it boils, turn down to simmer for 30 minutes or until the carrots are very tender and the fish is cooked thru.
- Cool and serve. You can even add this as gravy to your cat's dry food.
Please be sure if you add it to your cat's dry food, do not leave it set out too long. All you will get is soggy dry food, and then your cat will not like that at all. My favorite way is to offer the soup as soup and let the cats drink away."Remember the animals in your life are not just your pets; they're your friends."~ WNR