Cat Drinking a Lot of Water

Many cat owners, especially first-time cat owners, notice that their cat takes a long time to drink water. If you don’t measure the amount of water the cat drinks, it may seem like the cat has drunk as much as 5-10 gallons of water. But it’s actually simpler than that. Let’s look at when you THINK the cat is drinking a lot and when it ACTUALLY is.

When getting a pet, a person always keeps an eye on its behavior and health. After all, cats themselves can’t tell the owner about their problems. Sometimes a person notices that his pet is thirsty. This causes concern and a search for the reason why the cat drinks a lot of water?

Perhaps there is no problem at all. The fact is that a cat’s drinking technique is quite simple. She dips her rough tongue into the water and then takes her tongue back into her mouth to swallow what is on her tongue. Thus, the drinking process for a cat is quite long compared to that of a dog, which draws water with the curve of its tongue. And if you didn’t know this before, you might think that the cat is taking too long (a lot) to drink, which means it is thirsty and probably has some kind of health problem.

Causes of cat drinks a lot of water

There are many reasons why a cat drinks a lot of water. They may be natural or have a pathological nature. Also, this phenomenon is possible when treating the pet with medications. All of these reasons should be considered in more detail.

Natural factors

A cat may drink a lot of water due to the influence of natural causes that are not related to health problems and do not require treatment. The following phenomena may cause a desire to drink water:

  1. Pregnancy of the cat.
  2. Feeding kittens with mother’s milk.
  3. Increased physical activity.
  4. Hot weather conditions.
  5. Foods high in salt or other thirst-inducing foods in the cat’s diet.

All these factors are not dangerous. Once they are eliminated, the cat will once again consume a normal amount of water.

cat is drinking a lot


Often the reason that the cat began to drink a lot of water is some kind of pathology. In order to identify it, it is necessary to see a doctor and have the pet examined.

The most common cause of thirst is diabetes. This disease occurs not only in humans, but also in cats. You can determine the pathology by the following signs:

  • Increased blood sugar levels.
  • A large volume of urine, as the kidneys begin to work harder.
  • Constant desire to drink water.

To detect diabetes, it is enough to take blood, urine for analysis, undergo an ultrasound examination of the pancreas, check the level of hormones.

The second common ailment, due to which the cat drinks a lot of water, can be renal failure, occurring in a chronic form. This disease occurs in cats for a variety of reasons. It may be hereditary predisposition, poor diet, age.

Often renal failure appears in those pets who are fed only fish. This product contains a large amount of minerals that are poorly absorbed by the body. As a result, they begin to deposit in the kidneys in the form of stones.

The reasons why a pet drinks a lot of water may also be due to other pathologies. They are less common, but still it is impossible not to mention them. Such diseases include:

  • Hyperthyroidism.
  • Insulinoma.
  • Pyelonephritis.

In no case can you limit the cat’s water intake if the thirst is caused by diseases. It is important to make sure that there is always liquid in the bowl. Otherwise, it is possible to develop a fluid deficiency in the body, which leads to dangerous consequences.


Another reason why a cat often drinks water is medication. Some medications can cause cats to be thirsty. However, this phenomenon is not considered the norm, it is a side effect of the medication. It usually occurs because the cat is prescribed the wrong treatment.

Lead to the fact that the cat suddenly began to drink running water in large quantities, can diuretics and corticosteroids. In rare cases, taking Xylazine can cause the ailment.

If one notices during therapy that the cat is drinking a lot of water, the veterinarian should be informed. It may be necessary to change the treatment regimen by changing the dose of the drug or abandoning it altogether.

What to do about thirst in cats?

my cat is water drinker
my cat is water drinker

If the owner notices that the cat is drinking a lot of water, urgent action should be taken. To begin with, the exact cause of this phenomenon must be identified. If natural factors have influenced it, there is no danger. For example, a nursing cat often makes water drinking only until the kittens are weaned. After that the volume of fluid intake will normalize on its own after a few days.

If it is a matter of the cat’s diet, it is necessary to adjust its diet. It is worth remembering that dry food always makes animals want to drink a lot of water. Therefore, it is not necessary to feed the cat only with it. The food should be varied, it should have little salt.

If a person notices any pathological symptoms, you should immediately show the pet to the veterinarian. It is worth paying attention to manifestations such as vomiting, diarrhea. The cat becomes lethargic, inactive. The doctor will conduct a complete examination of the cat.

It will be necessary to undergo a laboratory examination of blood, urine, as well as instrumental diagnostic methods. Only after receiving the results and finding the reason why your cat is drinking so much water will the veterinarian prescribe the appropriate treatment.

Reyus Mammadli/ author of the article

I have had pets since childhood: cats, guinea pigs, rabbits, geese, chickens, ducks, parrots, aquarium fish and dogs (in the yard). Of course, I constantly encountered diseases of pets and treated them. Glad to be able to share my skills and experience, as well as advice on caring for and adapting these critters and birds.

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