Do you know the amount of water your dog should be drinking? Some dog owners don’t know whether or not their pups are getting too much or too little, so it’s very important address this concern. Every dog is different, meaning that some breeds drink more water, some innately know the right amount they need, and others don’t drink enough. Staying on top of your dog’s water consumption is necessary because dehydration can lead to health complications and over-hydrating can be toxic.
The general guideline for your dog’s water consumption goes as follows: a healthy dog should consume a half and one ounce of water per pound of body weight every day. For example, a Golden Retriever weighing 65 pounds should drink between 33 and 65 ounces of water each day. Younger dogs and puppies should drink smaller quantities of water every few hours throughout the day. If your dog consumes mainly dry food (which is not encouraged) then he will definitely need more water to compensate for the lack of moisture in the dry food. It’s recommended that dogs eat canned food, which will increase the amount of water your dog gets from each meal.
I’m sure we’ve all seen our pups run to the water bowl after playing or a period of intense exercise. Proceed with caution, as constantly refilling the bowl with water after he finishes each one could do more harm than good. If your dog aggressively slurps up his bowl, wait before refilling again, allowing him relax a little bit. It’s always a good idea to have water handy with you outside while your dog plays. Giving your dog short and frequent water breaks will definitely keep him hydrated and energized throughout his playtime.
Also, the amount of water your dog consumes can be indicative of an underlying health issue. For example, dogs with pancreatitis or leptospirosis tend to drink less water. Dogs with bladder infections, metabolic diseases, or diabetes causes increased water consumption. It’s important to keep an eye on your dog’s water drinking habits to see whether they are drinking less or more than normal. If you notice any of these behaviors, consult with your veterinarian to make sure your pup’s health is in check.
If you’re unsure whether your dog is hydrated, a quick trick is to lift up some skin on the back of the neck and slowly releasing. A well-hydrated dog’s skin will quickly fall back meanwhile a dehydrated dog’s skin will fall slowly back into place. Another method is by simply checking your pup’s gums. Moisturized gums indicate hydration and dry, sticky gums indicate dehydration. If your dog is dehydrated, be careful to not overindulge him with water because he can drink excessive amounts, which is dangerous. The over-consumption of water leads to water intoxication and has various symptoms to look out for: loss of coordination, nausea, bloating, difficulty breathing, excessive salivation, glazed eyes, dilated pupils, and light gum coloring. Become familiar with these symptoms in order to prevent water intoxication and to ensure that your dog isn’t over-indulging.
Written by: Callie T.