Should You Leave the Water Bowl Down for Your Dog All Day?
While it’s true that every animal needs water to survive, there are some animals, like the koala, sand cat, and kangaroo rat, that can go their entire lives without drinking a drop of the stuff because they get all their hydration from their food. Dogs, on the other hand, are not one of these creatures. Dogs need regular access to water to avoid dehydration, which can be dangerous and even deadly.
Some pointers for you and your water-drinking companion:
Leave the water – usually
- Dogs are pretty good at self-regulating water consumption
- They won’t over-drink if water is left out all day
- Many experts say never to leave your dog without water; this puts her at risk of dehydration
- Change her water at least twice a day
A dog’s daily water needs
- Your dog should drink roughly 0.28ml per 450g.
- So a 12kg dog should be taking in at least 1,5l of water per day; more if it’s hot or if she’s been exercising
Signs of dehydration
- Look for lethargy, dry gums and sunken, darkened eyes
- If you pinch your pup’s skin, it should snap back into place; if it moves slowly, this can be a sign of dehydration
- Press on your dog’s gums. They should go from white to pink in under two seconds. If it takes longer, dehydration is a possibility
- Seek the immediate attention of a vet
Exceptions to free water access
- Monitor, but don’t deny access, when house training
- Puppies may sometimes drink too much when they’re hot or have just exercised, so do monitor how much they drink in these circumstances
- Your vet may occasionally ask you to limit access to water prior to an appointment or surgery
- If there’s a small child in the house, be vigilant; infants can drown in less than two inches of water
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