Dogs And Water

How much water does your dog really need?

Most dogs don’t drink enough water, just like most people don’t drink enough water in a 24 period of time.  It is one of the major reasons why health problems occur or get worse.

All mammals need water to live. With out water, our organs don’t function properly, our body’s waste collects and caused damage to our organs, get kidney stones organ failure and even death in some cases if it they are not dehydrated enough. Fresh water is critical to keeping your pet healthy.  Most dog owners think that because they always have water in the dogs dish that their dog will drink enough and be ok.  The truth is that most of the time a dog’s water will sit on the floor for hours or even days.  Bacteria, saliva and dust get into the water making it not only taste bad, but can make a dog sick.  A dog can get sick and you would not know it until their symptoms get worse and the illness is so bad you have to take the dog to the Veterinarian.  When water smells bad, it tastes bad and a dog will not drink the amount it needs.

There is purifying fountain dog dishes that can clean the dogs water 24/7, adding oxygen to the water as well, but most dog owners can not find them or can afford them.

It is recommended that you clean out your dog’s water dish ever 2 to 3 times a day and add new water in it.  First thing in the morning the water dish should be cleaned and the water that was in it over night should be used for watering a plant or put in the back of your toilet bowl so you don’t waist it down the drain.  After cleaning the dog dish, just fill it with fresh water for the morning.  You can do it again in the afternoon and evening.

While some dogs naturally drink on their own and will drink any water around, some dogs are more picky.  Drinking too much water can lead to stomach bloating, electrolyte imbalances and Hyponatremia (water toxicity).  Remembering that if your dog is under drinking or over drinking, it can be a sign of an underlying illness.  Under drinking can indicate Parvo, Leptospirosis, or Pancreatitis.  Over drinking can be a sign of a bladder infection, diabetes in over weight dogs or an infection in your dog’s body.

Monitoring your dog’s drinking habit is important and part of being a good dog owner.  On average a healthy dog drinks about 1/2 to 1 ounce of water per pound of body weight per day.

A healthy diet is as important as water and the type of dog food your dog is eating also will affect the water intake too.  High sodium in your dog’s food will make your dog want to drink more and also raise their blood pressure.

Puppies need to be closely monitored especially from birth to 6 months old, if they are not drinking every two to 4 hours they will become dehydrated and can die.  You can test to see if your dog is dehydrated by pinching the skin on your dog’s or pup’s back near their neck and then let go of the skin quickly.  If the skin goes back very slowly, your dog needs to be hydrated ASAP by your Veterinarian and if it the skin bounces back quickly, then your dog is ok and is hydrated.  This is also how human Doctors check to see if us humans are dehydrated.

A well hydrated pet is a healthier pet that will live a longer life.