The issue of how to get a dog to drink more water is a pretty common one. Generally, dogs know when they need to take a drink and actually do. However, every once in a while, they need to be motivated.
The importance of water to anybody (man or pet) cannot be overstated; especially seeing as our bodies are largely composed of water. Water is necessary for proper digestion and could even help prevent certain complications with the kidney if taken in generous amounts.
That said, your first reaction if you notice that your dog isn’t drinking water should be to report to your vet.
If you have read a number of our articles, you’d have noticed that we write about visiting your vet regularly.
This is because, while there are some things you can deal with on your own, some things cannot be handled with just love. Visiting a vet every time you notice an abnormality helps you know what is what exactly.
How Much Water Should Your Dog Be Drinking?
Generally, really little puppies do not have much of a problem with water because they are getting all they need from being breastfed.
However, if your pup has been weaned, the general rule of thumb is for them to have between ½ and 1 ounce of water per body weight every day. So, basically, a 30-pound dog should be drinking between 15 and 30 ounces of water every day.
Knowing this forms a basis for you to know whether or not your dog is drinking enough water.
Other Ways To Know That Your Dog Is Not Drinking Enough Water
Aside the fact that the water in your dog’s water bowl is not reducing, your dog probably needs to drink more water if:
- Their mouth is dry. You could try checking their gum to see if it is white.
- They are panting.
- Their nose is dry.
- Their eyes are sunken.
Now, How To Get A Dog To Drink More Water
Allow us reiterate here, that the first thing to do is to be sure that this is not a result of some medical issue. So, please report the issue to your vet. Aside this, you could:
Get More Water Bowls
Wonder how getting more bowls will help your dog drink more water? Well, if you place water bowls filled with water at strategic places where your dog usually frequents around the house, that could actually convince them to drink some water.
It is possible that they are not drinking water because they do not see it often enough. Placing the water basically everywhere eliminates that excuse.
Give Them Fresh Water
Granted, some dogs will drink any kind of water from basically anywhere. However, it is possible that your dog is picky and will only drink clean water. Keeping their water fresh could really encourage them to drink.
Even if your dog is one of those that will drink anything, it is still important that you keep their water fresh because it is healthy.
Note, though, that if you place water bowls outside, you’ll have to change it more frequently than once every day.
Consider A Drinking Fountain
Some dogs will drink more water if it is coming from a running source. So, consider installing a drinking fountain in your yard for your dog.
A good number of drinking fountains are self-purifying. So, you won’t have to go through the hassle of constantly changing out water in water bowls.
Allow Them Exercise
A dog who is really active will generally crave water more than a dog who isn’t and the basic reason is exertion. If they are exerted enough, they’ll probably seek water on their own; this is basically a reflex action.
So, if your dog is not a working dog or generally doesn’t exert themselves so much, you’ll have to make sure they get in a decent amount of exercise every day. And once you notice them begin to pant, offer them a drink of water.
Allow Them Pee
Funny enough, if your dog pees regularly, they’ll probably need more water. Reason? They lose water by peeing and so will need to replace what they’ve lost.
Now, it is important that we train our dogs to not pee around the house. However, you also have to make sure they go regularly.
Because if your dog only learns not to go in the house, what they’ve probably decided to do is not drink a lot of water so that they do not need to hold in so much pee.
So, if your dog learns that going in the house is not accepted but they can go when they need to, they might feel free enough to drink as much water as they need.
Consider Ice Cubes
Giving your dog ice cubes to chew on could be a fun way to get some water into them. You could also try freezing some of their chew toys or favorite treats.
Consider Adding Some Flavor
It could be that your dog isn’t drinking water because it doesn’t seem ‘enticing’. Adding some broth (nothing artificial and definitely not sugar) could make the water ‘enticing’ enough to drink.
Teach Them To Drink On Command
This is something interesting you could try as suggested by Fidose of Reality.
You could pick any word and teach your dog to drink whenever you tell them that word. This way, you can be sure that your dog is taking in a decent amount of water.
This video summarizes the basic ideas of how to get a dog to drink more water.
Can A Dog Be Over-Hydrated?
Interestingly enough, there is such a thing as too much water. So, while you are learning how to get a dog to drink more water, you also have to make sure that they are not drinking too much.
Over-hydration is not really common with adult dogs.
However, with puppies who are still being breastfed, it is important that you do not force them into drinking so much water, seeing as they are already getting a decent amount from being breastfed.