Are you looking for ways to improve your cat’s hydration in the hot summer months? If so, you are probably wondering what water temperature is best for your fur-baby.
So, do cats like cold or warm water?
In a nutshell, cats like both warm and cold water, but the preferences of individual cats may vary. For most cats, though, cold water seems to be their favorite choice because of its cooling effect in hot weather.
If you are curious to know more about your cat’s water preferences, this article might give you some ideas – so read on!
Your cat’s ideal water temperature
Cats may have different preferences when it comes to their drinking water. For example, in winter and spring, your cat may prefer to drink warm water, but in summer they might want cold water. In most cases, a little experimenting is all you might need to determine which water temperature your cat will enjoy.
Generally speaking, cats prefer their water within the range of 50 – 72 degrees Fahrenheit. A typical human’s preferred water temperature is also roughly in that range. Cats are ultimately individuals and thus have varying preferences, so give them the opportunity to decide whether they agree or not!
If your furry friend is a little finicky and tends to avoid their water bowl, then at this point it might be worth considering the temperature of the water. Fortunately, there are many creative ways to convince your kitty to drink more.
Your vet might suggest adjusting the temperature or giving them a running fountain to increase their hydration. Giving them cold treats or ice cubes might also work to lure them to drink more.
Do cats like cold or warm water to drink?
Cats are finicky eaters. They can be quite picky about their food and the way they eat it. And naturally, the same goes for their drinking water. For example, they do not like drinking from a bowl filled with stale water. At times they might prefer warm water to drink, but they might also like ice-cold water when it is hot outside.
Cats drink water primarily to cool off. During the summer season, a bowl of ice water might be more appealing than a bowl of warm water due to its cooling effects. If it is available, your cat will likely appreciate some cold water to quench their thirst and stay cool. Plus, ice cubes are quite fascinating and fun to play with!
However, some cats might prefer warm water over cold, and even more so during the colder months. Warm water can also have a soothing effect, as some cats are reminded of the warm milk they got from their mother during kittenhood.
Whatever your cat’s preferences, the most important thing to remember is that their water must be clean and safe for them to drink. Consider your local weather conditions, too, as your kitty’s preferences might change with the seasons!
Is warm water better for cats?
Cats are born with a keen ability to gauge the temperature of their environment. This is why they hide under blankets during winter and sleep in cooler spots during summer.
Thus, when it comes to drinking water, you should keep in mind this sensitivity to temperature changes. Your cat may feel uncomfortable if their drinking water is too hot or too cold. And, for many cats, cold water can be more enjoyable and soothing. It may be a matter of perception: the cat thinks the cold water is fresher than a bowl of warm water.
The bottom line, though, is that it does not matter too much whether you serve your cat warm or cold water. As long as it is clean and safe to drink, your pet should benefit from the hydration they get from their water bowl.
Tips to encourage cats to drink more
1. Add wet food to your cat’s diet
Cats are carnivores, so their system is designed to eat meat which provides part of their daily hydration. If you have a cat that is not getting enough water, try adding wet food to their diet. Canned tuna, for example, is a great way to increase their hydration.
You can also mix a few tablespoons of water into their regular cat food every day. The extra moisture in a wet food diet will make it easier for your cat to stay hydrated.
2. Consider a cat water fountain
Want your kitty to drink more water? You can help by providing them with a water fountain. Cats love drinking from water fountains because they are clean, fresh, and fun.
Place the water fountain in a spot that is convenient for your cat to access at any time during the day. If possible, place it somewhere that your cat likes to hang out. Keep the water running so that they associate drinking water with something fun or enjoyable.
3. Use frozen treats
Cats are notorious for avoiding their water bowls. If this concerns you, you can help your pet stay more hydrated by giving them frozen treats. Try blending tuna or pureed banana with water and place this in an ice cube tray. This is an easy way to make sure your cat is getting enough hydration!
To keep your cat healthy and hydrated, it is important that you always provide fresh water in a clean bowl. While the temperature of the water does not matter too much, most cats will probably prefer cold water to warm, especially in the summer.
All in all, if your cat is healthy and happy, let them drink what they want. Their water intake is more important than keeping the water temperature consistent. If you really care that much, try getting a cat fountain so the water will constantly circulate. But be sure to clean it frequently – your cat will thank you for it!
Image: istockphoto.com / Nils Jacobi