Dogs are just like people: they need water to survive. And just like with people, there’s nothing worse than not drinking enough water. But how much water should your dog drink? How can you tell if he’s dehydrated? To help you understand what your pet needs and how to make sure he gets it, here’s everything you need to know about dogs and their thirst.
What to look out for
Water is essential for your dog’s health. Dehydration can lead to serious health problems, including kidney disease and even heart failure. If you notice that your dog is drinking more water than usual, it could be a sign of dehydration that requires immediate treatment.
To prevent dehydration:
- Make sure your dog has access to fresh water at all times.
- Always make sure your pet’s bowl is full of water before you go to bed or leave the house for extended periods of time.
What causes an increase in water intake?
- Excessive activity
- Hot weather
- Illness, including pregnancy and lactating
- Thirsty breeds
Some dogs have a high metabolism, while others have a low one. A dog with a high metabolism will naturally drink more water than one who has a low metabolism. Dogs with high fevers or low fevers may also consume more fluids in order to stay hydrated.
How do you calculate how much water your dog should drink?
The answer to this question will depend on two factors. The first is the type of your dog, and the second is its activity level.
Dogs that are active need more water than dogs that are not active. This includes young puppies and large breeds such as German Shepherds or Great Danes (who may be more prone to overactivity). If you have one of these dogs in your home, you’ll need to ensure that they get enough water through their diet or at least one cup per day out of a bowl for every 20 pounds they weigh. For example, A 90-pound pooch needs about 18 cups of H2O each day—so be sure he gets his fill!
Dogs that are overweight need more water than dogs that are not overweight. The same rule applies here as it did above—just substitute “overweight” for “not active” in those examples above. Pregnant female dogs should get even more H2O than other females; pregnant females need double what non-pregnant females do. If you’re concerned about how much your pup should drink daily, check out this handy chart below!
When should you take your dog to the vet?
If your dog is vomiting or has diarrhea, it’s a good idea to bring him to the vet. If he’s not eating or drinking, then this is also a sign of illness and should be addressed with a visit to the vet. If your dog seems lethargic, or if he’s having trouble breathing, then this may be another reason for you to take him in. The same goes for if your dog has a fever—it could mean that there’s nothing wrong with him but at least it’s worth checking out!
A good general guideline is that a healthy dog should drink between ½ and 1 ounce of water per pound of body weight each day.
If a puppy drinks water at night, it can cause them to need to go out within a few hours. If you’re asleep, you likely won’t take them out. Obviously, this can cause all sorts of issues. Therefore, some people recommend not giving your dog water at night, as it will prevent their bladder from becoming full.
Puppies are also most likely to use the bathroom within fifteen minutes of eating or drinking. If you’ve fed your puppy recently or observed it getting a drink of water, try to take it out within ten minutes and walk until it relieves itself.