How Do I Get My Cat to Drink Water | Chewy
How to Keep Cats from Drinking Out of Glasses
Some cats love to stick their paws or head into your drinking glass. While this may look cute, it is an important habit to stop because your cat could become sick from what it drinks. Additionally, your guests may not appreciate cat hairs in their beverages. In order to keep cats from drinking out of glasses, it’s important to train your cat to not drink from glasses, make sure it stays away from glasses in the future, and talk to your vet about possible problems with your cat’s water consumption. Keeping your cat from drinking out of glasses can be challenging, but it will make your cat better behaved and more likely to obey you in the future.
Training Your Cat to Not Drink From Glasses
Remove from glass if you catch it drinking.Cats can be sneaky, but you will sometimes catch it drinking from your glass. If you catch them, take them immediately away from the glass.
- Your cat may run away if you catch it drinking from your glass. This is good, since it means they at least know they are not allowed to be doing so.
- If your cat does not run away when you catch it, take it away from the glass immediately. You can say something like "bad girl" or "bad boy" so it knows it has done something wrong.
Create negative associations for your cat.When your cat drinks out of your glass, you can try to make it think negatively of your water glass. If it finds that the water glass tastes bad, it may stop drinking from it.
- Cats do not like water that much. Some cat owners use a spray bottle of water to use with their cats, though this can sometimes make your cat distrust or dislike you.
- Additionally, cats don't like loud noises. You could try clapping your hands every time you see your cat drinking from your glass.
Reward your cat for good behavior.You may notice your cat looks at your water glass, but does not drink from it. If you see it is choosing to not drink from the glass, be sure to give it a treat as positive reinforcement for its behavior.
- You can give your cat a treat if it doesn’t drink from your water glass. Small treats are best so you don't disrupt its eating or drinking schedule.
- Saying things like "good boy" or "good girl" can also be useful. If you have an affectionate cat, give it plenty of physical affection when it doesn’t drink from your glass.
Trade treats for verbal praise.Too many treats can make your cat overweight. It may also learn to beg for treats if it is rewarded too often with them.
- Once your cat has stopped drinking from your glass, slowly phase out treats as a form of praise. This will make sure it stays at a healthy and comfortable weight.
- Your cat may expect treats if you give it treats too often. It will begin to beg for treats, which can be frustrating and damaging to your relationship with your cat.
Leave a cat bowl full of water in the room.Your cat may be drinking water out of your glass because it is thirsty. Always leave a cat bowl of water in any room with a glass to present your cat with a distraction and a choice.
- Cats are easily distracted. If you place a water bowl in the room when you leave, your cat will be interested by it.
- In case your cat does drink from your glass, redirect it to the water bowl. This will show your cat that it can (and should) drink from the bowl instead of your glass.
Don't punish your cat.It can be tempting to yell at your cat, but it's not effective. It may make it afraid of you and less likely to listen to you.
- Yelling at your cat can make the original behavior worse. It won’t understand why it is being yelled at and become more stressed.
- Your cat may also begin thinking of you negatively and avoiding you. This will make your relationship tense and unpleasant.
Making Sure Your Cat Stays Away from Glasses
Cover your glass when you leave the room.You can use tin foil or plastic wrap. This way, your cat will not be able to gain access to the glass.
- You can also use a glass that come with a lid. Your cat will not be able to access the liquid if it cannot access it.
- Be careful not to leave any loose tin foil or plastic wrap, as your cat could eat it and choke. Make sure the foil or wrap cannot come off either, since that could be dangerous to your cat as well.
Put a slice of lemon in the glass.This will make the lemon float on the top, but move back when you tilt the glass to drink. Best of all, most cats dislike lemon and won't be tempted to try it.
- Cats really dislike bitter or sour tastes. It will likely spit out any liquid and run away from the glass.
- Lemons or limes are also good because these additives do not change your behavior drinking out of a glass. Ideally, you should not have to change anything to get your cat to stop drinking from your glass.
Put the drink in a place your cat cannot reach.Many cats can jump nearly everywhere, but they need to climb up to high places. If you can find a tall surface without any medium sized surfaces near it to act as a springboard, this would be ideal for placing your glass out of your cat's reach.
- Your cat cannot leap directly onto high surfaces. Place your glass on a high enough top without other surfaces nearby to get your cat to stay away from your glass.
- Cats dislike sticky surfaces. You can also put down double sided tape near your water glass so your cat will not go near it.
Give your cat something to distract it.Try a toy or a cat jungle gym. Cats are curious, so giving them something to do will make them less likely to drink our of your glass.
- Your cat may be getting into your glass because it has nothing else to play with. If you have toys, you can play with your cat and give it something to do when you're not in the room.
- A cat jungle gym can also be a lot of fun for a cat. Your cat will usually stay entertained for a long period of time when using one.
Determining Why Your Cat Drinks From Glasses
Observe why your cat is drinking from glasses.Cats may drink from your glass for many reasons. Watching your cat while it drinks can tell you its motivation for drinking from your glass.
- Your cat may stick its paw in your glass and drink from its paw. This may mean it is soothing its paws or interested in tasting what’s in your glass.
- Cats are driven by instinct. They may be trying to satisfy some need (thirst) or instinct (aversion to threat) in drinking from your glass rather than its water bowl.
See if your cat drinks more from glasses of certain liquids.Your cat may try to drink from your water glass, which can mean it is simply thirsty. It may also want to drink from more flavorful liquids, which can tell you what supplements may be useful in its diet.
- Cats are drawn towards sweeter liquids. They can’t taste sweets, but enjoy the smell and texture.
- Many liquids are dangerous for cats, including tea, coffee, chocolate, and alcohol. If your cat is trying to drink any of these liquids out of your glass, stop this behavior immediately.
Change your cat’s bowl.Your cat may not like its bowl, so it prefers to drink from your glass. Not changing out the water regularly can cause the water to become stale and unappetizing to your cat.
- Cats are sensitive to the size and shape of its water bowl. Try a few different sizes of bowls to see which type your cat likes best.
- Fill the bowl each day with roughly one day’s worth of water. You’ll want to clean the bowl with soap and water every day as well.
Figure out if your cat has to fight for its water bowl.Having multiple cats in your household can lead to them to fight over water. If one cat is drinking more from your glass than another, see if it is not getting enough water from the water bowl.
- If you have more than one cat, they can be territorial about their food and water. One cat may be scaring off others from going to the water bowl often.
- Observe your cats during feeding time. If you find that one cat is bullying another, use a verbal command such as “No!” to get them to cooperate together.
Seeking Veterinary Care
Notice if your cat seems sick or dehydrated.Your cat may also be drinking out of your glass because it is not getting enough water. Any increase in water consumption by your cat should be some cause for investigation, since it can be the sign of disease.
- There are a few signs to tell if you cat is dehydrated. Its coat may look rough and the skin on its back may be inelastic. Additionally, whitish gums are a sign of dehydration.
- Besides drinking a lot of water, your cat may exhibit some behavior common to dehydration. If your cat is particularly lethargic, has a low pulse, but a high heart rate, than it may be dehydrated.
Give your cat wet food.Cats that eat mostly dry food need more water. Mixing in canned food into its diet will give your cat additional water through its food.
- Both canned food and dry food benefit your cat. While dry food is good for your cat's teeth, canned gives them important moisture and keeps them better hydrated.
- Try mixing both canned and dry food in your cat's diet. If you find it is drinking a lot of water, increasing canned food in its diet may be a good idea.
Take your cat to the vet if it seems sick.If your cat seems particularly tired and dehydrated, it can be a sign of a larger issue. It's a good idea to get your cat checked out, so you can prevent long-term issues from your cat being sick.
- An increase in water consumption can be a sign of kidney disease, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism. These are costly and life-threatening illnesses, so bring your cat in immediately if they seem ill.
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