Cats drink relatively little water, compared to dogs and humans. But that does not mean they don’t need water. The fluid intake recommendation is approximately 50ml of water per kilogram of body weight a day. A healthy cat weighing 4kg should drink about 200ml of water a day.
If you feed your cat wet food only, it should be consuming enough daily fluids. Wet food contains approximately 80% moisture. Part of that moisture is added, and part comes from the meat itself. The daily dietary advice for a 4kg cat is approximately 300gr of wet food: with a fluid percentage of 80%, the cat will digest about 240ml of fluids a day. While that’s more than enough to keep your cat happy and healthy, it is advised to provide your cat with fresh water alongside a wet food diet.
Cats whose diet consists exclusively of dry food need additional water. Dry food consists of approximately 8% water, meaning your cat is far from getting their recommended daily intake. A fresh bowl of water a day is unquestionably a requirement.
Too much water
When a cat starts drinking more than it normally would, it is most likely a sign that there is something wrong. If you notice your cat drinking and peeing more than usual, contact your vet. There could be various causes for this change in behaviour that can only be determined by a veterinary doctor. It could be a sign of a simple bladder infection or a symptom of kidney disease or diabetes.
Too little water
If you exclusively feed your cat dry food and notice that your cat seems to be drinking too little, mix some wet food in with the kibble. Cats generally find wet food tastier and that way, it will be consuming some additional fluids. A combination of dry and wet food is recommended, rather than choosing for one or the other: wet food provides additional moisture, and hard kibble minimizes dental plaque on your cat’s teeth. Giving your cat different types of wet food each day also offers a wider variety of flavours.