9 Facts About Dogs and Excess Thirst

A cold drink of water on a hot summer day always hits the spot. When we’re thirsty, water is the quick pick-me-up that boosts our mood, energy levels, and more. So it’s no surprise to learn that water is an important part of life, even for our pets. Your dog needs water each day, every season.

However, many pet owners do not realize that excessive thirst could be a sign of a serious health problem.

Knowing when and how to react to excessive thirst in a dog can potentially save his life. Some conditions associated with excessive thirst in a pet can be deadly if left untreated.

The following facts about excessive dog thirst help pet owners better understand their pet’s situation.

How much water does your dog need?

Before you can decide if your pet is drinking excessively, learn the proper amount of water he needs each day. The amount may be considerably more or less than you think.

Vets recommend dogs drink about one ounce of water for every pound of body weight. So, a 10-lb. Dogs should consume 10-ounces of water every day. Keep fresh water in a bowl for your dog at all times.

Replace the water with fresh water every few hours if your dog doesn’t finish an entire bowl.

If your dog drinks more water on an occasional basis, there is probably no reason to worry. Regular excessive thirst, on the other hand, usually indicates a more serious problem that needs veterinarian care.

Monitor your pet’s diet

What you feed your dog matters. A nutritionally-balanced diet ensures optimal health for any dog. Avoid feeding him human food when possible.

Many foods safe for humans are not safe for dogs. They can cause a myriad of problems, including death. Read the label when choosing a dog food.

Anything that is high in sodium will increase your pet’s thirst. Keep in mind that salt is a hazard to your dog so he shouldn’t eat foods high in sodium at all.

How old is your dog?

The age of your dog affects the amount of water he drinks each day. Although one might think an adult dog drinks more than a puppy, the opposite is true.

If you own a puppy, he’ll drink more water, more often, than an adult dog. Pups are busybodies always in a hurry. Their frequent trips to the water bowl may simply be because they’re in such a hurry they forget to swallow.

Older dogs may consume less water than younger, more active dogs. Each dog is unique, keep in mind. Follow your dog’s patterns and behaviors to keep him safe.

Pregnant/Nursing dogs drink more water

Another cause of excess water consumption is pregnancy and nursing. Pups take a lot out of mom and she’ll need more water to replenish the loss.

Be sure to offer a pregnant or nursing mom lots of love and extra water when she needs it. If you think raising one baby is hard, imagine having an entire litter!

Is your dog active?

Some days prefer lying around the house doing much of nothing. Other dogs quickly bow with such dullness and never seem to stop.

An active dog drinks more water than a non-active dog. Replenishing the calories and water that he is losing through that activity keeps him healthy. Your active dog needs plenty of freshwater!

He’s thirsty

The most obvious reason why a dog drinks more water than usual is that he is thirsty! Before assuming the worst possible scenario, make sure that he simply isn’t more exerted, thus thirstier, than normal.

We drink more when it is hot outside. That is because heat quickly drains our body of water. This also occurs to your pet at even more rapid rates. When it is hot outside, your dog will drink more water.

Expect him to gulp up water more frequently when it is hot outside, especially if it is an outdoor pet.

Ensure he has access to plenty of fresh, cold water when it’s hot outside.

Dehydration is dangerous

A dog that doesn’t drink enough water each day can become dehydrated very quickly. The threat of dehydration increases during the spring and summer when frequent days of heat occur.

Dehydration is very serious for a dog. In fact, without fast medical attention, it can lead to death. Make sure you keep water out for your pet as suggested to reduce the risks of dehydration.

Additional steps can also reduce the risks of dehydration. Avoid taking your dog outside when temperatures reach 90 degrees F or hotter.

When you take Fido out for walks/play on hot days, bring water along. Your dog should get a fresh drink of cold water every half hour, at a minimum.

The illness causes excess thirst

Diarrhea, Cushing’s Disease, kidney disease, cancer, and other medical conditions can increase thirst. If your pet takes medications for certain illnesses, they can also cause excessive thirst.

Take your dog to the veterinarian once per year for a checkup to ensure his good health. And, of course, reach out to the vet any time there is a concern.

It is better to reach out to the vet and learn there isn’t a problem than to experience the potential alternatives.

Develop a routine

When a routine leads the day, life is simply easier. So there is little wonder why a water routine makes sense for a pet owner. Monitor your pet’s water consumption if there are concerns with the amount he drinks each day.

The best way to do this is by filling his bowl at the same time each day. Measure the amount of water you add to the bowl and the amount that is left when it’s changed.

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