Top tips for keeping your dog hydrated
It’s always important to keep your dog hydrated, it’s essential for keeping them healthy. It’s very important during the summer months but obviously is a problem all year round. Read the following to ensure your dog is drinking enough with our top tips.
How much water do dogs need?
Depending on the dog, it can be hard to keep track of exactly how much water they are drinking, but to be mindful of how much has gone each time you refill their bowl.
However much they are drinking, they’ll need more in warmer weather as they are more likely to become dehydrated. Dogs sweat through their paw pads, and also lose body water through panting. As they’ll do more of this when the weather is hot, you need to make sure they are taking on board plenty of water.
Dogs that are more active will need more water than sedentary ones. Dogs that go on regular long walks will need plenty of hydration; you should always take water with you.
You are what you eat
Your dog’s diet will also have an impact on their hydration levels. Wet food has a higher water content than dry, so it can be a good option. As always, if you do feed your dog dry food, you need to make sure that there is plenty of water close by.
Our top tips
Hydration on the move
Whenever you take your dog on a long journey or a walk, it’s important to take plenty of water or a Furr Boost to keep them suitably hydrated. If you’re going on a long car journey, we recommend you take at least five litres of water with you to ensure you have enough in case of a breakdown.
Collapsible water bowls and bowls with water bottles attached are great options for on-the-go hydration.
Freezing pet-friendly ice lollies are a fun way to provide your dog with extra hydration while cooling them down in hot weather. You could try filling an ice lolly mould with a small amount of Furr Boost and freeze it overnight.
It’s important to watch your dog to ensure they don’t bite the lolly as this may damage their teeth and could become a choking hazard. For this reason, we don’t suggest giving your dog ice cubes unless they are closely supervised.
Plenty of water bowls
Setting up plenty of water bowls throughout the house and garden will give dogs lots of opportunity to keep themselves hydrated.
Putting bowls in new or unexpected areas can also pique their interest and encourage them to drink. Placing them in areas that have less animal or human traffic will also make your pet feel more secure about taking time to drink.
Little and often
Serving your dog smaller, more frequent meals can encourage them to drink at regular points during the day, particularly if they have dry food.
Add some flavour
Adding a small amount of Furr Boost, into their water bowl can make it much more appealing to drink from. Remember to wash the bowl out thoroughly at the end of the day to stop it becoming smelly.
Adding water or Furr Boost to dry food
If your dog eats mostly dry food, you could try adding a small amount of water or Furr Boost to it to increase their water intake – many dogs also enjoy the change in texture. It’s important to introduce the extra fluid gradually, as adding too much, too quickly can be off putting. Remember to thoroughly clean out the bowl after they’ve finished and always avoid leaving wet food out in the heat.
How do I know if my dog is dehydrated?
Dehydration in dogs can result in the following symptoms:
- Excessive, ongoing panting
- Vomiting and/or diarrhoea
- Sunken, dry eyes
- Loss of energy
- Dry, sticky gums
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of skin elasticity
A good way to check if your dog is dehydrated is to gently pull up some of their skin near the shoulder blades. If your dog is well hydrated, their skin will instantly spring back into shape. If your dog is dehydrated, it will retain a ‘tent-like’ shape and take longer to fall back into place.
If you suspect your dog is dehydrated, contact your vet immediately.