Most people today recognize that not drinking enough water is bad for their health in multiple ways but it’s also detrimental for our favorite felines as well. In fact, it’s much worse for our kitties than for people because we can make ourselves drink more water but it’s very difficult to convince a cat that it needs to empty that water bowl to keep healthy.
Consider the statistics. About 14% of the human population in the United States (some other countries do better) gets CKD (chronic kidney disease) but about one third (33%) of domestic cats wind up with CKD. That’s a huge difference.
Many veterinarians feel that inadequate water intake contributes to this problem. In the wild, cats rarely drink water as their typical prey, for example a mouse, is about 70% water. But urban cats living on dry and canned food have a much lower water intake. And in addition to CKD some cats also have an issue with constipation. Water intake greatly affects both these conditions.
One of the easier ways to encourage more water consumption is to add enough water to canned food to make it more of a chili-like consistency. Many cats really seem to like it and lick all the soupy part out leaving more solid food. Add more water and mix it up again and they’ll drink/eat the rest.
Cats need about 23 milliliters of water per pound per day so if you have an eight-pound cat that’s about 184 milliliters or about 3/4 of a cup.
If your cat doesn’t eat canned food, try a water fountain to encourage more water consumption. Your kitty will live a longer healthier life and you’ll spend less time and money at your veterinarian’s office.
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