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Pets and Beyond

July is Pet Hydration Awareness Month!

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Staying hydrated is as important to pets as it is to humans. Sufficient daily fluid intake is essential to maintaining appropriate health. According to WebMD’s pet section, 80% of your dog and cat’s body consists of water.

Dehydration affects circulation, digestion, and waste removal. It most commonly occurs when there is reduced water intake such as in hot weather, or if your pet is losing fluids due to a bout of vomiting or diarrhea. Puppies, kittens, and older pets that suffer from illness are the most vulnerable.

Dogs are more obvious when they hydrate. However, when cats take a drink, owners do not generally observe them. Cats may not even drink fluids until their water content has decreased 8%. The best way to prevent pet dehydration is to be informed and proactive. When the heat of the summer bears down on you, think of your dogs and cats to keep everyone healthy and happy.

First, know the symptoms!

Dogs

Sunken Eyes

Lethargy

Loss of Appetite

Dry

Mouth

Depression

Cats

Sunken

Eyes

Lethargy

Loss of Appetite

Dry mouth

Depression

Elevated Heart

Rate

Decreased Skin

Elasticity

Panting

How can you prevent it?

The Basics:

  • Frequently change water for freshness.
  • Wash your pet’s bowl every day to prevent bacteria formation.
  • Change fountain filters every two - four weeks.

DOGS

  • Monitor water intake -- one ounce per pound of your dog’s weight.
  • Use a weighted bowl to minimize spillage.
  • Check your dog’s mouth for sores, burrs or sticks if they’re not drinking.
  • Bring extra water when traveling or exercising with your dog.

CATS

  • Cater to your cat -- use that certain favorite bowl, tap or bottled water, fountains, or multiple bowls around the house.
  • Cats are prone to motion sickness, but still need regular access to water when traveling, especially after flying.