How much water does your pet need?

Pets Just as gardens and their owners need more water in summer, so do our pets. What is normal water consumption for a cat or a dog? Their hydration needs vary hugely, depending on their size, their age and their general health, among other factors.

  1. Dogs can drink up to 90ml per kilogram of bodyweight per day, while cats can drink up to 45ml per kilogram per day. So a large dog, such as a cattle dog, needs about 2 litres a day, and an average cat about 200ml or 1 standard measuring cup.
  2. If your pet eats canned food, this contains water, so the amount of actual water he drinks will be less. But if he’s on a dry food diet, he’ll need more water. Whatever his diet, keep the bowl topped up, and refresh it daily.
  3. Your pet may drink more than usual in hot weather, of course. But drinking too much water may be a sign of an underlying health issue. Unusual thirst can be a symptom of diabetes, kidney problems or hormonal issues. So if you are worried, make an appointment to see your vet.

For more on the creatures that share your home and your garden, grab the February issue of ABC Gardening Australia magazine.