Do you know if your cat is dehydrated or not? Felines are desert animals and they have a low thirst drive. Since our cats are not big drinkers naturally, it can be difficult to get enough water or moisture in them. This is especially true if you are feeding a highly processed dry food.
Let’s first talk about why keeping our feline friends hydrated is so important. Proper hydration is needed to keep our cats happy and healthy. When your cat is getting enough water and staying hydrated this can actually prevent urinary disease. It also keeps those kidneys working well which flushes out toxins. Kidney health is so vital for our cats. It’s crazy to think that about 1 in 3 cats will develop kidney disease, this is the leading cause of death in our precious kitties. A well hydrated cat also has a healthier coat and skin! So as you can see, getting enough moisture into our beloved kitties is very important.
When a cat gets sick and is vomiting and/or has diarrhea, they can dehydrate very quickly. This can become a medical emergency and you should get your cat seen by a vet as soon as possible. Our vets can give sub-Q fluids to our cats to get them hydrated and feeling better.
How do you know if your cat is dehydrated? Here is a simple, quick test:
- gently grab a piece of their skin above their shoulder blades
- pull the skin up and then release
If the skin snaps back down, they should be good. However, if the skin slowly goes back to the normal position, that is a good indication they are dehydrated and need medical care.
Keeping our cats hydrated is essential for overall good health. As mentioned our kitties have low thirst drives naturally, they should be getting most of their water from a moisture rich diet. We can accomplish this by switching to a wet food diet and getting them off the dry kibble!