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Proper hydration is crucial to your cat’s health. And sometimes, setting out a bowl of water isn’t enough.

How can you tell if your cat isn’t getting enough water? Look for clues like:

  • Dry mouth
  • Lethargy or depression
  • Panting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Decrease in the elasticity of skin

If you see one or a combination of these signs in your cat, it could indicate that your cat is dehydrated. We recommend working with your veterinarian to rule out any potential illnesses.

Here are four tips you can put to work today to help your cat get the fluids he or she needs. 

1. The Right Bowl

Many cats do not like deep and narrow bowls because the sides impede their whiskers and prevent them from being able to keep their surroundings in view. Try a wide and shallow bowl with a smaller lip to see if your cat is more comfortable drinking out of this type of bowl.

2. Refresh Frequently

Cats prefer water that has not been standing around for long. This is why it’s important to refresh your cat’s water bowl at least once per day.

3. Keep it Moving

Researchers have observed that cats in nature tend to avoid still water, like ponds and puddles – one theory for this is that cats may have learned to associate still water with contamination with bacteria and parasites. So some cats are naturally more likely to drink dripping or running water.

A couple of ways to appeal to the instinct of avoiding still water is to try running a faucet at a trickle so your cat can drink directly from it, or try using a cat fountain.

4. Wet Food

In nature, cats get most of their fluids from consuming prey. An easy way to promote water intake is by including some wet cat food in your cat’s diet. We recommend choosing one of our best wet cat foods offered through Pro Plan®, but regardless of which brand or formula you choose, make sure that it is rich in protein, moisture and nutrients.