Did you know that cats don’t like their food near their water? Crazy right? Most of us have a place in our house for our cat’s food and water dishes, but for many cats this causes some issues.
We are frequently asked by concerned cat parents why they “never” see their cat drink water. And while it’s true that you will rarely see your cat drinking if fed a moisture rich diet, every cat still needs access to clean, fresh water everyday.
Sidenote: You hear us say it all the time: A cat needs a moisture rich diet. They will not make up for the hydration they are intended to get from their food at the water bowl.
Back to the concerned cat parents: The first question we will ask if they never see their cat drinking is “Is the water bowl near where they are fed?”
This is where it gets interesting. And it’s also a great reminder of how smart cats are instinctively!
In the wild, cats know to keep their prey – their food – far away from a clean water source. They know that their prey could contaminate their fresh water source.
This is why feline behaviorist and vets recommend keeping the water bowl far away from a cat’s regular meal spot. Embrace your cat’s instincts. Help make your home a place where they can be who they are.
Incidentally, this is also why it’s recommended to keep your cat’s food bowl away from a wall (by at least 18 inches). Cats are predators – but also prey – and meal time is vulnerable for them. Provide their food (and water) in a place that allows them the ‘luxury’ of peripheral vision. Not a place with their back against the world.