In the early days, most cats keep themselves hydrated through the milk of their mother. But as they move to solids food during the weaning period, a couple of kittens seem to dislike drinking water. Needless to say, if your furball refuses to drink water, it's only a matter of time before the pet starts to suffer from dehydration. As dehydrated cats often experience various health issues, it's necessary that cat parents know how to get a kitten to drink water every day.
So you want your fluffy friend to drink more water? If that happens to be the case then you have come to the right place. Take a good look at the following information in order to understand why cats appear uninterested in water as well as methods to address that.
The Mind Of The Pets
Before we actually talk about how to get a kitten to drink water, it's a good idea to know what makes the felines disdain water in the drinking bowl.
In case you don't know, wild cats acquire moisture through the fleshes of preys (rodents, birds,...) which means they rarely have to drink water. Though modern-day cats have discarded many traits of their ancestors, they retain a few characteristics including the drinking habit. Unfortunately, cats tend to receive less moisture from food these kinds of days, especially if people give them dry food. So without proper habit corrections from humans, dehydration is an eventual outcome for the pets.
Additionally, if cats need to drink water, some of them only drink from moving water. In the mind of the pets, they think that still water may make them sick. Therefore, the felines pay no attention to their drinking bowl and instead of hanging around the sink for tap water. It's also possible that kittens treat moving water favorably simply because it's fun: catching falling drips from tap is a great way for bored cats to pass time. Alternatively, it could be that kittens enjoy the cool temperatures of moving water (tap, rainwater,...).
Last but not least, it's worth noting that most kittens don't need to drink a lot of water. The felines have the ability to concentrate their urine which allows them to retain water. Hence, odds are the pets hardly drop by the drinking bowl out of the belief that they already received sufficient amounts of moisture by eating. That happens to be the truth in a couple of cases but it's strongly recommended that you keep a close eye on your furball. The rule of thumb here is "Better safe than sorry".
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Encouraging Kittens To Drink Water
Generally speaking, people have lots of ideas regarding how to get a kitten to drink water but if you want something straightforward, consider these options:
Pick A Kitten-Friendly Bowl
The drinking bowl of your kitten must be shallow enough to let it get to the water without much difficulty. Moreover, the bowl needs to be made of something that wouldn't change the flavor of the water over time. Most of the time, you have to test a variety of design in order to see which one fit the tastes of your kitten. It's unnecessary to wait around the bowl to see if your furball likes it. All you have to do is to take note of the bowl water level so as you could notice changes.
Position More Than One Bowl
Kittens like to wander constantly which means if cat parents place several water bowls across the house, the felines would always have something to drink. Obviously, it's unwise for you to arrange the bowls without taking the moving pattern of your kitten into account. Place the drinking bowls near locations that the pet tends to visit so it's able to quench its thirst at a moment's notice. Needless to say, you also have to refill the bowls with fresh water every day.
Add Flavors To The Water
A few picky cats would be more willing to drink water from the drinking bowl if they detect appealing flavors. You could put things like clam juice, low sodium chicken broth and so on into water in order to encourage your kitten to drink regularly. To be on the safe side, it's strongly recommended that you use spice-free stuff to protect the pets. Overall, garlic, onion, .... often provoke adverse reactions in the felines.
Throw In Some Ice Cubes
Get a couple of ice cubes from the fridge and drop them into the drinking bowl of your fluffy friend. Most of the pets got attracted to the bobbing ice which makes them go in for several laps without reservation. If possible, feel free to take things up a notch by making the cubes out of clam juice, chicken broth, ... That would add flavors to the water as well as attract kittens to the bowl.
Invest In A Cat Fountain
In the case your furball simply refuses to use the drinking bowl, consider getting a cat fountain from pet stores. For a few dozen dollars, you could get your finicky kitten to drink water without having to lift a finger. To preempt possible messes, place a carpet around the fountain.
How Much Water Kittens Need
Knowing how to get a kitten to drink water is indeed nice but it's essential that you grasp the daily water intake of cats.
Different cats have different requirements but in general, the felines need between 3.5 and 4.5 pounds of water per 5 pounds of weight. Of course, cats don't take in all of their water through drinking alone, they obtain some from food too. For your information, the water content of a can of wet food is usually around 70 – 80%. That means a single 5.5-ounce should be able to satisfy the water need of most kittens in a day. As a result, it's widely advised by experts that cat parents put together a wet food diet for kittens.
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