Before domestication, cat ancestors were desert creatures. That means they were reliant upon the water content of their prey to provide enough water in the wild. Since the prey of wild cats tends to be small animals made up of about 70 percent water, this was sufficient.
Domesticated cats eat whatever we give them, which generally falls into two categories: wet food and dry food. Wet food has a water content of about 80 percent, so cats eating it need only two to four additional ounces of water a day.
Cats eating only dry food need a bit more water, though, and given their ancestry, they’re not always the most diligent drinkers. Much more than dogs, cats have be enticed to drink enough water. First, their water bowl needs to be placed separately from its food. They prefer fresh water and are likely to think it’s contaminated when placed where they eat. Second, because they like it fresh, stale water will turn them off.
Fortunately, there are a number of cat-focused water fountains on the market. By circulating the water, a fountain aerates and keeps it fresh-tasting. This way, you can load up the water dish and leave it, even for picky cats. These fountains even have filters to remove impurities that might come from sitting out for any period of time.
The sound and movement of a cat water fountain mimics that of a running faucet, which is something almost all cats love, perhaps because their ancestors may have listened for the sound of running water.
If your picky cat is being stubborn about drinking, choose the best cat water fountain for you from our list of the top ten to make water interesting again.