Education Blog

20 June 2018

Does Your Cat Have a Drinking Problem?

As we know, pet cats were originally desert animals. They rarely drank water and ate a fresh food diet of prey that had a 70% – 75% moisture content. However, over time our cats did not evolve a “thirst drive” similar to that in humans or dogs.
The need for cats to drink plenty of water cannot be emphasized enough.
Chronic dehydration stresses the kidneys and can contribute to urinary tract and bladder issues, also called “Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease” (FLUTD). Kidney failure is the most common cause of illness and death in cats.

In order for a cat to maintain healthy hydration the moisture level of their food must be 63% or higher. If you are feeding canned or raw food (usually containing 65-75% moisture) with no dry food, your cat is consuming plenty of water.

However, a dry food only diet contains just 6-10% moisture. To equal the amount of water a cat eating a canned-food only diet consumes, a cat eating dry food needs to consume one cup (8oz / 240ml) of water a day. To maintain a minimum “adequate” level of hydration, your pet needs to drink more than half a cup daily.

We have included a list of helpful tips to keep your pet hydrated. However, if you feel there is a problem and your cat just isn’t getting enough water, make an appointment to talk with your veterinarian.

Read the full article
Lafayette Veterinary Care Center