Veterinarian-written / veterinarian-approved articles for your cat.

Why Does My Cat Drink from the Faucet?

Cats can see and hear running water better.

Many people notice that their cats love to jump onto the counter or into the bathtub and lick water as it drips from the faucet. These same cats might avoid drinking out of their water bowls or slap at the water in their bowls with their paws before drinking.

Why do cats do that?

Cats Don't Usually Drink Much

Cats were initially desert animals, and they evolved being able to live without drinking very much water. Most of their moisture actually came from their prey—cats are obligate carnivores that must have meat to survive, and there's high water content in that.

So, in general, cats have a low thirst drive compared to many other animals. The problem is that, when a cat is fed a diet of dry kibble, they don't get much moisture in their food, like they would if they were eating their natural diet of prey.

Cats Love Running Water

In general, cats like to drink moving water more than still. There are a few reasons for that:

  • They can't always see the still water too well.
  • They feel unsafe sitting at the bowl and drinking, afraid they could be ambushed.
  • They are evolutionarily hard-wired to be wary of standing water, which is more likely to be stagnant and bacteria-laden than running water in nature.
  • The sound of running water draws cats to it—it's easier for them to find than still water.
  • Water from the faucet might be more refreshing and taste better than water that has been sitting in a bowl, especially a plastic or metal one.

What Can You Do?

If your cat likes to drink from the faucet, it's a signal to you that he wants running water. And that's excellent information because keeping your cat well-hydrated is critical for his continued good health. In fact, kidney failure is widespread in cats, and increasing water consumption may help stave it off.

But what if you don't want to have your faucet running all the time? Or it's not too fun to have to avoid spitting toothpaste on your cat's head every time you brush? Consider getting a pet water fountain. They keep water continuously flowing for your cat, and the Pagoda Fountain has filters that remove objectionable tastes and odors from the water. It's beautiful and has a nice sound, which is excellent for both your cat and you.

You May Also Like These Articles:

Why Do Some Cats Dip Their Paws in the Water Bowl?

Tips for Helping Your Cat Drink More

Kidney Disease in Cats

Should You Get Your Cat a Water Fountain?

Does Your Cat Need a Pet Fountain?

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