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Unread 05-03-2015   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Unanswered: Older cat, need help.

I've been scrounging the internet without much luck, so here's hoping someone here can give an assist.

My cat is a rescue cat. I've had him for eight years. He was probably 1-2 years old when I got him. He has a thing about the vacuum, but that's beside the point. I cannot get him to drink. His teeth have always given him trouble, and about eight months ago we had to switch him from dry cat food to canned. He would try to eat the dry, get it in his mouth and do this odd thing with his head to try and swallow. Half the time the food fell out, or when he bit it it came out in pieces.

So, we switched to canned. Ever since, he will not touch water. During the winter this wasn't such an issue, he still urinated plenty in the litter box. The weather here is now reaching the 90's, and he's complaining very loudly. He wants the food more often. I feel it is simply to get the liquid, rather than the fact that he's actually hungry. He's not fat, but he definitely doesn't need any extra pounds.

Is there any way to entice him to drink water again? Bowl on the floor near food just gets his nose turned up. Dripping faucet is somewhat interesting, but not to the point where he wants to investigate closer. I've looked at several kitty water fountain drinking filter mechanisms, but I'm looking for something that actually works and doesn't get all slimy/bacteria-infested. We had an automatic water dispenser that was supposedly anti-microbial, but the wet cat food turned him off it. I think he used it twice after that, but food on his face got in the water and he ditched it.

So, any ideas? Here's hoping.
~Ashara (Spunky's human)
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Unread 05-05-2015   #2 (permalink)
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A cat on a wet food diet doesn't need to drink water. You did the absolute best thing you can do for a cat when you put him on a canned diet.

Cats are designed to get their moisture from their food, which he is now doing.

My cats are canned and raw fed, they never go near the water bowl.

Have you had him to the vet about his teeth though? Do NOT let the vet talk you into some crappy "dental" kibble. It's pure junk. Keep him on the wet diet all his life, but he may be having mouth pain which of course you will want to take care of, not to mention dental problems can lead to other health problems.

But don't worry about the not drinking. The canned diet is giving him sufficient moisture in his diet

Dry fed cats cannot drink enough to make up for the lack of moisture in the food, they are perpetually dehydrated. You did the right thing

PS you can add a little water to his canned meals, if you think he needs more moisture.
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Last edited by acerlt; 05-05-2015 at 07:10 AM.
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Unread 12-24-2015   #3 (permalink)
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Your old cat is less able to groom efficiently so you may need to wipe away any discharge around its eyes, nose or anus using separate pieces of cotton wool for each area moistened in warm water. You may also need to brush your cat using a soft brush and fine comb but care should be taken to ensure you are gentle, as older cats tend to be thin with very little padding over their bones so vigorous combing can be painful.
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