Should I provide a pet fountain with flowing water for my cat?

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Cats were descended from desert animals, which might explain their aversion to water. It’s not just swimming or taking baths that they hate, but they also tend to not drink water often. They are curious, though, and they just love rippling water—which accounts for their love of drinking from faucets– so your best solution may be to consider one of those cat drinking fountains.

A pet drinking fountain constantly oxygenates the water so you’ll always have a steady, fresh, clean supply. Because it’s fresh, the water is cold, and cats do prefer colder water.

Proper hydration is crucial to any pet, but especially if yours has kidney or other health problems. The extra water prevents the formation of crystals in the urine and promotes kidney function. It also helps prevent bladder infections. A fountain will not only provide a continuous supply of fresh, clean water, but it may also encourage yours to drink—she’ll be so fascinated by rippling waves she might just indulge.

There are many models on the market today. Stainless steel or ceramic may be better for cats that are prone to skin problems. They may also suit your decor better than the plastic models. Some models have a kind of ramp that the water flows down, while others have a spigot like output that mimics a running faucet.

Specifically, consider:

• Standing water doesn’t circulate and becomes stagnant; it often doesn’t taste very good and could even harbor some bacteria. Many fountains have circulation systems so that the water is constantly purified and oxygenated.
• Drinking fountains take the worry out if you’re away from home for any length of time, because there’s always a supply.
• A cat drinking fountain might actually help your cat drink more. The cat will be so curious—some even have pedestals–that she’ll want to examine it, and maybe even take a drink while she’s at it.

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