How to Make a Dog Drink Water when Sick
Water is fundamental for all living beings; hydration is essential for processes such as digestion, kidney function and the production of saliva, as well as to maintain the activity of the brain. Dogs drink water on their own, and you must make sure your pet always has a bowl with fresh, clean water at hand. If your dog stops drinking water due to illness, you'll have to take action and help them stay hydrated.
In this oneHOWTO article we'll explain how to make a dog drink water when sick, an essential step to ensure their health and well-being. Read on!
Unlike cats, who do not usually drink plenty of water, dogs have no trouble drinking when thirsty. If your dog stops drinking water, it's a sure sign that they are sick. If your dog has some disease or condition and loses the desire to drink, they may become dehydrated and their state of health can become much worse. If you're wondering how much water should your dog drink, as a rule of thumb you should know that they should drink 2.5 times the weight of their food.
If your dog has stopped drinking, you must first of all check whether they are dehydrated. You can know if your dog is dehydrated by pinching their skin. If it does not go back to its normal position, they may be in serious need of water. Another symptom of dehydration are dry gums.
If you notice your dog has stopped drinking, check their water bowl. If it is very dirty or the water is not fresh, clean the bowl and add clean water. Maybe your pet has just stopped drinking because the water does not taste good; make the change and see if the dog starts drinking again. Remember that the best and most practical bowls for dogs are stainless steel ones.
If you have a big house, a good way to make your dog drink water when sick is by placing several water containers at points where your pet often rests. This way you are making it easier for your dog to hydrate more frequently, especially if they have difficulty moving.
There are times when we need our dog to drink more water because of a specific health condition that affects hydration, such as diarrhea, consecutive vomiting or fever. In such cases you can try some tricks to attract the animal's attention and get them to effectively re-hydrate:
- Add a teaspoon of sugar to your dog's water bowl. The sweet smell will attract them and get them more excited about drinking water.
- Give your dog ice cubes; this is a good way to facilitate their hydration.
- If your dog does not respond to these tips, get a cotton ball and soak it in water. Then, squeeze it over their mouth so that they lick the dribbling water. You can also try the same with a large syringe.
Note that if your dog suddenly stops drinking water and seems apathetic, with little desire to play or eat, it is important that you take them to the vet as soon as possible. Various serious diseases like distemper or parvovirus decrease the wishes of the animal to drink water, which could seriously affect their health.
Has your dog ever been ill? What are your tips on how to make a dog drink water when sick? Tell us in the comments section!
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