My Cat refuses to drink from a dish...

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  1. profile image0
    keyplayerposted 12 years ago

    My Cat REFUSES to drink from a dish.  He will drink from mud puddles, occasionally from our fish pond but prefers to stick his head under a flowing faucet and drink the water running into the drain while his head gets sopping wet. 

    TWO concerns: (a) he eats almost exclusively DRY food which means he needs LOTS of water which he isn't getting, and (b) it's a $#$%#$%#% nuisance tending taps all day to try to ensure he drinks enough. We're on a WELL and can't leave a tap running all day.

    We have tried every possible sort of container, even a table-top fountain to no avail.  The WATER can't be the problem as what we put in bowls is the same water he laps up with gusto from the washbasin or tub drain.  HELP!!!!!

    1. Diane Inside profile image76
      Diane Insideposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      That's intersting, never heard of a cat that didn't mind getting his head wet while he drank. Funny.

      I wish I could help, but I don't know. All I can think of is leave a bowl of fresh water out daily and if he gets thirsty enough he will drink from it.

      I know this is not the answer you are looking for but like you said you can't leave a faucet running non stop.

      Sorry couldn't be more helpful.

      1. PaulaHenry1 profile image67
        PaulaHenry1posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        My Lucky does this! All except for the running water. He will wait till you are done in the shower and drink the water off the bottom of the tub, toilet bowls are his friend and my flower pots on the deck after it rains. However, I found that if I fill a plastic drinking cup full of cold bathroom water, he will drink from it. I guess I would try a fountain simulated drinking bowl that I see at local pet stores or different cups or pots? If all else fails, call your vet for advice. Good Luck!

      2. profile image56
        cincin3posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        Sometimes trying bottled watered helps.  As this wates is filtered and is rid of the chlorine.  Some cates prefer this

    2. profile image52
      Boots_Mom62posted 12 years agoin reply to this

      My cat used to do the same thing. My vet said that exclusively dry food can cause him to develop a blockage/constipation and to give him some wet food, too. Some of the wet food nowadays has "gravy" with it, which sometimes my cat will drink instead of water.
         If your well water is like what we had for 15 years before moving back to town, your cat might be tasting the iron and other metals in it--which is nasty. ={  Have you tried bottled water with your cat?? You wouldn't have to get the really expensive type (even a store brand would work), and a 20 ounce bottle would go a long way with the way cats drink. And put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold, as some others have suggested. Also, if using plastic dishes, wash them out about every other day. Hope this helps.

      1. profile image50
        Miss Steakposted 11 years agoin reply to this

        Cats prefer COLD, running water. Give your kitty refrigerated water, in a crockery bowl. The bowl stays colder, longer, than most. You can also put ice cubes in their water and they'll suck it right back. I wish you well.

        Miss Steak

    3. beverleejb profile image61
      beverleejbposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      I would place the water in a large dinner plate
      Good luck!

    4. tritrain profile image71
      tritrainposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      My dog will only drink filtered water.

      He's a water snob.

    5. Uninvited Writer profile image77
      Uninvited Writerposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      My cat will only drink water from a cup or a glass, never his bowl. That might be a solution.

      1. Ron Montgomery profile image59
        Ron Montgomeryposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        We have cats like that too.  They drink from water glasses and highly prefer to drink from a glass after one of us has sipped from it.

        I used to have a cat that would only drink from the toilet; no bowl, glass or anything else, only the toilet.

        1. Sufidreamer profile image80
          Sufidreamerposted 12 years agoin reply to this

          That makes sense - they let you take a sip and, if you don't die, the water is safe to drink. big_smile

          1. Uninvited Writer profile image77
            Uninvited Writerposted 12 years agoin reply to this

            I never looked at it like that lol

          2. profile image0
            EmpressFelicityposted 12 years agoin reply to this


            One of our cats likes to sleep on the bed. One night I was woken up by a slurping sound. He had stuck his head inside the glass of water I keep on my bedside table, and was drinking his fill. 

            I now use a very tall, narrow glass for my bedside water...

            1. Pearldiver profile image71
              Pearldiverposted 12 years agoin reply to this

              That sounds like the cat got your teeth!! lol

    6. druidana profile image60
      druidanaposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      lol, sounds just like my when he's up on the counter wanting the fauset turned on..................i make it a wee drip for him. he likes that. that way i KNOW he's getting water. every so ofter he will drink from the water basin.....but he prefers the running water. silly boy

    7. blondey profile image79
      blondeyposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      try putting ice cubes in the water......sometimes cats drink from toilet bowls cause the water is so cold.
      my cat loves the above and is hooked on it!

    8. J Sunhawk profile image70
      J Sunhawkposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Small bowls might touch a cat's whiskers. Some cats don't like that. Maybe try a bigger bowl.

  2. Lisa HW profile image62
    Lisa HWposted 12 years ago

    There are gadgets that will help keep pet water cold.  They do like the colder water, and sometimes their dishes get "less fresh" than they like.  Have you tried a disposable paper dish to see if, maybe, the dish you're using has picked up "old smell" (the way plastic often does)?

  3. Bill Manning profile image64
    Bill Manningposted 12 years ago

    My Spinkie eats only dry food and also likes to drink from a running faucet. I turn one on now and then when she lets me know she wants a drink.

    But she does not seem to drink much. I have a water bowl for her and if she has to she will drink from that.

    So I guess if your cat gets thirsty enough she will learn to drink from the bowl. You teach kids how to not be picky, you do the same with animals. smile

    1. profile image0
      keyplayerposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thanx to all for some interesting advice.  My BIG concern is that MALES can develop urinary problems from under-hydration.  I got some interesting info from a jA vet (pay site) which I'm going to try.  I've had «finicky» cats B4 but this guy (a suspected FERAL rescue) is just plain s-t-r-a-n-g-e.  Our dog loves him though so I guess we just have to muddle along with these idiosyncracies.

      1. Pet Owners profile image59
        Pet Ownersposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        Please be very, very wary of any pay site. HUGE Red Flag right there.

      2. beverleejb profile image61
        beverleejbposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        Hello, our cat was a male Persian and the food I am a rep for he most always drank water because the food just seems to make him thirsty.
        He was an extremely healthy  cat.
        no kidney stones.
        I can check with the company and find out why their food keeps my cat drinking

  4. ftclick profile image53
    ftclickposted 12 years ago

    finicky comes to mind.

  5. TigerLillyRose profile image65
    TigerLillyRoseposted 12 years ago

    My cats prefer running water too, and have no problem with sticking their head under the faucet, whether I want them too or not.  I would think a pet drinking fountain would work, but if you've already tried that, hmmm. I would leave water in the sink for one of my cats. Usually they follow me to the bathroom (well,they actually follow me everywhere) and I automatically turn the tub on to trickle while we are there.

    What did the vet suggest and did it work?

  6. caninecrtitics profile image61
    caninecrtiticsposted 12 years ago

    Try a automatic cat waterer or leave a faucet dripping like i do it doesn't affect the water bill hardly at all.

  7. Pet Owners profile image59
    Pet Ownersposted 12 years ago

    Here are some basic cat facts to clear up the many myths and mysteries out there pertaining to cats:

    -Cats are the strictest of all carnivorous mammals.

    -Cats, as obligatory carnivores, have a naturally low thirst drive to begin with -- any Zoo or encyclopedia will conform all this. Do NOT believe what adverts and Vets endorsing pet foods tell you. Look into the facts and make an INFORMED judgment for yourself.

    -Cats' jaws do NOT rotate
    -Cats do not even have teeth which are designed to grind -- they are more like scissors, for shearing and tearing.

    But don't believe me, the Zoo, or an encyclopedia -- just open your cat's mouth and look in!

    Please do some research on cats (any Encyclopedia, any Library) to learn just why the Urinary tract problems; Diabetes; stones/crystals and, of course puking is so very common in cats. And PLEASE look to UNBIASED sources with no conflicts of intere$t before heeding ANY advice, anywhere.

    Many renowned Holistic (i.e "healthy" veterinarians such as Dr Michael Fox, Martin Goldstein, Elizabeth Hodgkins, Marion Smart, Lisa Pierson, etc. have info at our fingertips. Just google for their credentials. They  believe in following BASIC common sense to PREVENT all these maladies before you need to drug up your pets.

  8. libby101a profile image61
    libby101aposted 12 years ago

    One thing about any cat, be it lion, tiger or domesticated, they derive most of their water from their food! A lion gets most of his water from the blood in meat from their prey! But...they do still drink some water because of the heat!

    I would switch the food to soft food... maybe mix it!

    I also would try something to mimic a faucet dripping! Find something that recycles water! I believe if you check I've seen several small waterfall replicas... maybe you could use one of those????

  9. wordscribe43 profile image90
    wordscribe43posted 12 years ago

    Cats like very large and wide bowls so their whiskers are not touching the sides.  You might want to experiment with some new water bowls...  Good luck!

  10. profile image48
    animaluverposted 12 years ago

    I agree with Libby, cats are designed to get their water from their food so feeding cats dry food exclusively is bound to lead to other problems like dehydration.

    I had a cat that drank from faucets and the tub too.  Turned out he was clinically blind -- could be kitty is having a problem seeing standing water in a bowl where as drinking water that is moving or on a very shallow surface is easier.  Every time my cat tried drink water from the bowl, he'd wind up snorting it up his nose.  It was so sad, we wound up leaving facets dripping.

  11. Kidgas profile image64
    Kidgasposted 12 years ago

    There are devices at the pet store (saw one at Petsmart) that are essentially little fountains.  You fill with water and the water recirculates but look like it is coming out of a tap or hose.  Just search cat water fountain on google and you will see what I mean.

  12. profile image0
    Home Girlposted 12 years ago

    Try to eat nothing but a dry cereal(and without milk, please) whole day long and we'll see what tap you'll be sitting under! Just a thought.

  13. Pinkidilly profile image59
    Pinkidillyposted 12 years ago

    You may want to get a water bowl that has a fountain in it. Some cats prefer aerated water and that is what it sounds like with your cat. Cats are very particular about water but there are water bowls with an aeration system. Check your local pet store.

  14. profile image0
    Kathryn LJposted 12 years ago

    My dogs were fussy about their drinking equipment (although rainwater from puddles seemed to hit the spot.) A pudding basin with the Harrods' logo on it seemed acceptable and they now drink willingly from it.  Maybe your cat has similar snobish tendencies?

  15. psycheskinner profile image80
    psycheskinnerposted 12 years ago
  16. Patmar United profile image61
    Patmar Unitedposted 12 years ago

    My cats like running water so I bought a fountain waterer with a filter.  Like many before, I recommend giving a mixture of wet and dry food.  I give my cats dry food for breakfast and wet food with a little dry food on the side for dinner.  My male cat loves the gravy more than the food itself.  Good luck

  17. Pearldiver profile image71
    Pearldiverposted 12 years ago

    My Cat refuses to drink from a dish...

    What is Wrong with some pet owners? hmm

    Why are they Always expecting their pets to do the very things they wouldn't do? roll

  18. kazemaru2 profile image61
    kazemaru2posted 12 years ago

    Cat nip helps in coaxing cats to do something just don't depend on it.

  19. michifus profile image58
    michifusposted 11 years ago

    its quite common with cats to prefer muddy water. However, what is your cat's water bowl made from? Glass or ceramic is best, metal and plastic can give the water an odd taste. Mind you, a ceramic toilet will give water an odd taste, but some cats seem to like it.

  20. caninecrtitics profile image61
    caninecrtiticsposted 11 years ago

    Thats why I use automatic cat water fountains or a dripping sink


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