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Cats and Water

June 21st, 2007, 03:08 AM
Does anyone else have cats who move their water bowl and stick their feet in while drinking? I have no idea why they do this, but I have a theory. I wonder if *maybe* they associate moving water with fresh running water, so they think it's more palatable. I have one cat who races us to the upstairs bathroom so that he can have his "drink from the sink" as often as possible. He tries to turn on the taps himself, but thankfully he hasn't figured it out yet!

I once saw some kind of waterer in a pet store that had a filter in it so that the water was constantly moving. I'm thinking of investing in one of those for him!

Anyone else? Or are mine just really weird???

June 21st, 2007, 07:01 AM
Yes, I had a cat that used to move his water bowl before drinking and would put his foot in it also. His true preference was drinking from a dripping tap so in his senior years when his kidneys were failing, I would leave the bathroom tap dripping for him.

We purchased a water fountain with a filter for him too, thinking he would prefer that, but he would not drink from it.

June 21st, 2007, 07:20 AM
Yes I have 2 who stick their paws in before drinking, and one who actually moves the bowl around before drinking.

I had one of those water bowls that had the water bottle atached and my one boy "Boowee" loved to hear the "glug glug" sound, so would keep shaking it, until all the water ended up on the floor!!:eek: Needless to say, I had to get a different watering bowl.

I believe they do this to check the water level so they don't stick their nose to far into the water :shrug:

June 21st, 2007, 07:37 AM
Other than the outdoor cats who prefer the pond water, the indoor cats like their water very fresh and in a deep bowl, even the outdoor cats will drink from a big deep bowl that I have out there for the dog. They only stick their paws in the bowls if some unfortunate bug is drowning in it. :laughing: Gabby like to drink from a dripping tap too, she'll get herself soaked pawing at the drips and sticking her head under the tap. :laughing: As for the moving water, I have 2 waterfalls on the pond, and the outdoor cats do like to drink from the bogs that feed the waterfalls, the water is in motion so the moving water may be something they really do like.


June 21st, 2007, 08:10 AM
Some cats (especially the oriental types) don't have good depth perception, so they stick their paw in to know where the water level is. One of my cats does this, the other does not. Like other's cats mentioned here, the one who puts her foot in the bowl is the same one who much prefers to drink out of a dripping tap than out of a bowl.

June 21st, 2007, 12:06 PM
My kitties love fresh COLD water. The sink is their favorite spot. And when they do drink out of their bowl most of them kind of dig around the bowl first... have no idea why. Don't have any that actually stick their paws in, but one that puts his nose right in then sneezes into the bowl.

I have one of the fountains, be careful not to purchase one that is all plastic, the area that they drink from needs to be glass or stainless steel... plastic bowls are a cause of feline acne. (Black spots under the chin.) I believe someone said you can get the stainless ones at feed stores/ pet stores. Most only have the Cat-It type plastic ones, so make sure you shop around. The cats do love them though, they keep the water moving and fresh. (and water stays cooler when it is in motion.):)

June 21st, 2007, 02:42 PM
Mind don't move the bowl, but I have two bowls I fill with water yet they both only drink out of one.

Vlad is fascinated with the faucet. It doesn't matter where he is, if he hears it turn on, he bolts towards it. My goodness I've never seen a cat move so fast! He sits on the counter (I've given up trying to keep him and Oksana off) and watches the water. Sometimes he tries to swat it, other times he tries to bite it. When I turn the faucet off he'll sit in the sink and lick it. I've left the water on to see if he tries to drink from it running but he doesn't.

When I see him licking I usually get him out of there and put him in front of his bowl. Oksana of course watches him and you know she has to do the same thing as her big brother.

kashtin's kin
June 21st, 2007, 06:21 PM
Out of our 6 cats, 2 of them are certified paw-dippers. Our first dipper was a hit-by-car rescue, who had improved from real problems with equilibrium/balance after a year in foster care (went from falling a LOT, to strolling around with a bit of a headtilt). We figured that 'Goose's' water eccentricity was due to the balance factor, and perhaps her literal visual perception.

However, one of the ex-ferals who just celebrated his first year with us is also an inveterate dipper etc., and he certainly doesn't have Goose's challenges. I keep the large/deep water bowl as clean and filled up with cool/cold beverage as possible, and was really surprised when I put a second smaller bowl upstairs for the ferals-mistakenly filled with WARM water-and they seemed to prefer that!?

p.s. I've read that no matter what the temp is (i.e. winter or summer), horses usually like their water tepid!

June 21st, 2007, 10:11 PM
Thanks for all of the replies :) I'm glad that No-see-um isn't the only water obsessed cat out there!

Kashtin, I've heard that about horses. Apparently some won't drink really cold water and that the incidence of colic goes up dramatically in the winter because of this. I haven't noticed anything like that with my own horses, although they definitely consume less water on frigid days. My dogs seem to prefer really cold water. On hot days I usually dump a tray of ice cubes into their water bucket to keep it cooler longer.

The barn cats and 2 pigeons often rush over to the water hydrant in the barn when I'm filling buckets, even when they have a full bowl/bucket in front of them. I guess it just depends on the animal. I've seen the cattle drink out of filthy mucky puddles when they have a trough of fresh clean water nearby.

If only animals could speak English! I'd learn so much from them :)