The Parched Pet: How to Keep Your Pet Hydrated

Rocklin CA dehydrated dog

Heat and humidity make it hard for most of us to stay cool and hydrated, especially when we are outdoors and exercising. It’s no surprise that many of us don’t get enough water each day to adequately stay refreshed and hydrated. 

Proper hydration is also a need for our four-legged friends. Drinking enough water keeps them cool and allows the body’s internal systems to function well. Unfortunately, our pets, too, often don’t get enough water to keep them cool and healthy. 

You may wonder if your pet is drinking enough water each day. Your team at Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital wants to give you some tips on how to keep your pet hydrated this summer, and all year long!

Pet Dehydration

You have a big bowl of water in the kitchen, so you would naturally assume your pet is drinking all they should, right? However, you may be surprised to know that some pets are resistant to drinking the amount of water they should. This can lead to chronic dehydration to the point of negative health consequences, including those that affect the kidneys, liver, and heart.

Dehydration occurs when the body loses more water than it is gaining. Symptoms include loss of skin elasticity, dull, dry coat, vomiting, loss of appetite, reduced energy levels, panting, dry nose, among others.

Keep Your Pet Hydrated

Encouraging your best friend to drink more water isn’t as simple as supplying them with water. Your pet needs to drink 1 ounce of water per pound (their weight) each day. 

Some pets are picky about what they drink out of, the temperature of the water, if it is moving water or still, and so on. To keep your pet in good health, try some of the following creative ways to encourage hydration.

  1. Ditch the old bowl and opt for a fountain. Most pets, especially cats, prefer running water. Try using a water fountain type of water dispenser to get them to drink more. Just like the bowl, clean your dispenser regularly and offer new, cooler water for your furry.
  2. Entice them with flavor. If you enjoy flavored sparkling water, your pet will enjoy their own flavored water, too. Try adding low sodium chicken broth, water from canned tuna, or water from wet food to the bowl and watch your pet lap it up!
  3. Add water to your pet’s food. One way of giving your pet more moisture in their diet is by putting a little water into your pet’s normal food. Kibble can be too dry for most pet’s to enjoy, so add some H2O to your pet’s food bowl. Likewise, you can switch your pet to wet food or add some wet food to dry kibble.
  4. Put out more than one bowl. This seems like a no-brainer, but most pet’s just have one bowl to drink from. Offer several bowls throughout the home to give your pet easy access for hydration.
  5. Make frozen treats. Make doggie popsicles and kitty tuna pops. This is a great way to encourage your pet to get more hydration while they also get the added benefit of mental enrichment.
  6. Add ice cubes. Putting ice in your pet’s bowl can help cool down the temperature and offer something your fuzzy can chew on. Some pets dislike warm or tap water temperature, but do enjoy cold, icy water.
  7. Give them some fruit. Blueberries, strawberries, and melon pieces contain an ample amount of moisture. It’s a good low calorie snack for pets who need more water each day.
  8. Bring water with you as you travel with your pet. Keep plenty of water in the car when you travel with your pal, as well as a collapsible bowl or pet water bottle.

What are some of the things that work for your pet? Do you have a favorite frozen pet treat recipe that you would like to share with our readers?

No matter what your pet enjoys, when it comes to hydration, offering your pet every opportunity to drink is key. Whether from a bowl, fountain, the palm of your hand, or bottle, hydration is extremely important. Good health and energy is a result of hydration.