Just like human beings, your pets require adequate hydration to maintain their health and well-being. And keeping your furry friends hydrated require more than just placing a bowl of water in their presence. And unlike human beings, pets are not independent, they rely on their owners for food and water. As a responsible pet owner, you need to provide nourishment to your furry friends every day for the rest of their lives.

The fact is, domestic cats and dogs are susceptible to kidney disease and urinary tract infection. Unfortunately, most pet owners are putting more importance on pet food rather than the kind of water their pets need.

Image used under Creative Commons from Paul Fisher

Best Water Fountains for Pets

In this age, it is basically possible to get everything online, and at a good price. The advantage of buying online is the variety it provides. It’s also possible to get products from different suppliers in a single retail shop. Delivery is usually included in the mentioning price, so don’t worry about an added fee for the shipping.

The best water fountains in the market easily serve to make animals drink as much water as they need, while ensuring the water is clean and fresh. Amazon offers other new and used fountains, at reasonable prices, ranging around $40. The best fountain depends on the owner’s specifications. Some prefer stainless steel to plastic, while others love ceramic water fountains. The choice boils down to the style, capacity, and effectiveness in purifying the water.

PetSafe Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain

PetSafe Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain

PROS

  • Large capacity
  • Effective filtration process
  • Reduced slime buildup

CONS

  • Fragile construction
  • Prone to leaks

The Drinkwell Platinum pet fountain by PetSafe is a 168 ounce drinking fountain that comes with a free-falling water flow. The water flow is meant to encourage pets to drink more water. It is fitted with a carbon filter that eliminates impurities and bad odors in the water. The filtration system keeps the water fresh and delicious too! As the water circulates into the water fountain, it is infused with oxygen. This is something worth noting for those who are interested in providing oxygenated water to their pets. Of course, there’s limited information about the benefits of oxygenated water to animals.

The Drinkwell Platinum pet fountain comes with a larger reservoir so you don’t have to keep filling the fountain with more water. What’s more, the device is made from BPA-free plastic and it’s dishwasher safe for added convenience. As far as operation goes, this nifty water fountain worked quietly in the background. It does a great job of persuading pets to drink more water thanks to the mesmerizing water stream!

Because the Drinkwell Platinum pet fountain is made of plastic material, it won’t corrode. However, cleaning the device itself isn’t as simple. Although the device reduces slime buildup, you still need a vinegar-water solution to clean it. Some users also say that their Drinkwell Platinum pet fountain are leaking within just several uses. However, these issues are isolated ones. For this Amazon user, the Drinkwell Platinum pet fountain is durable and effective, just as advertised:

Excellent product that has been working 24/7 for a year now. One of our cats wasn’t drinking enough water but after we got this fountain that issue was solved. Update: One and a half years later, operating on a 24/7 basis, the Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain is still working perfectly. I love it!

The Drinkwell Platinum pet fountain is a mid-sized water fountain with a large reservoir. The device injects oxygen into the water plus, the water flow engages pets to drink more.

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The Pioneers Pet Raindrop Stainless Steel Fountain

Pioneers Pet Stainless Steel Fountain

PROS

  • Sleek, stylish design
  • Made from solid stainless steel
  • Easy to clean
  • User-friendly

CONS

  • Not big enough for larger pets

Pioneer Pet’s Raindrop drinking fountain feature a raindrop air flow that appeals to most pets. The device itself is made from solid stainless steel. It’s durable, it won’t corrode and it’s easy to clean. As an added bonus, this pet water fountain is dishwasher safe so cleaning it is a straightforward affair.

The Raindrop drinking fountain features a carbon filtration system that purifies the water. A replaceable charcoal filter eliminates bacteria and debris in the water while keeping it fresh for longer. It has a large, 60 oz. capacity so you don’t have to refill the reservoir all the time. What’s more, the spout, which is fitted in the center of the bowl, ensures smoother water flow. If you are looking for a quiet, sizable water fountain for your pet, this is a great choice.

It helps that the design is sleek and stylish. The shiny exterior attracts pets while the water flow makes them want to drink up! The device operates quietly, there’s no sound that could put off pets. It’s compact but holds a lot of drinking water. The water does not splash around or leak all over the floor.

However, some users say that their Raindrop drinking fountain were emanating a strong, rubber odor. We did not come across the same issue with our test unit. Our only gripe is that the size isn’t really ideal for larger pets – such as a mid-sized dog. The unit holds a lot of water but it’s still not enough to satiate a very thirsty pooch! It doesn’t help that the water fountain sits too low on the floor.

That said, this is a great drinking fountain for cats and smaller pets. In fact, this Amazon user loved his Raindrop drinking fountain because it encouraged his pet to drink more water:

I received this today, assembled and cleaned it carefully, and placed it in a new spot never imagining he’d drink (he’s normally fussy even when healthy). To our surprise, he immediately went to the fountain and drank, more than he’s drank in the past week. I cannot get over how silent this fountain is.

Made from solid stainless steel, the Raindrop drinking fountain offers dependable performance. It also comes with user-friendly controls. It keeps pets’ drinking water fresh and clean and the design is quite stylish too!

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Drinkwell 360 Pet Fountain

Drinkwell 360 Pet Fountain 128oz

PROS

  • High capacity
  • Durable plastic construction
  • Adjustable water flow
  • Easy to clean

CONS

  • Prone to slimy residue
  • Prone to leaks

The Drinkwell 360 is a round, high capacity pet drinking fountain suitable for pets of any kind. It features a free falling streams that attract and encourage pets to drink more water. This pet drinking fountain is fitted with a carbon-based filtration system. The charcoal-treated filter removes bad odors and impurities in the water. A foam filter is added to prevent large debris – such as fur and dirt – from clogging the filtration system.

This pet drinking fountain features 5 removable free falling streams to customize the water flow according to your pet’s needs. This is a great feature if you have pets that are sensitive to sound. The gentle flow of water doesn’t put off pets and the operation is pretty quiet too.

The overall construction of the main unit is durable but the removable components are a little on the flimsy side. These components are made from the same BPA-free plastic that the main unit is crafted from. The drinking fountain itself is top shelf dishwasher friendly so cleanup is easy and convenient.

The Drinkwell 360 makes a great drinking fountain for pet owners who have more than one pet. The reservoir holds a lot of water so there’s more than enough fresh water for multiple pets, even big dogs. The bottom of the Drinkwell 360 features a rubber coated feet so the device won’t move around while your pet is drinking.

Now for the downsides, the Drinkwell 360 is prone to spills. The streaming water tends to go over the reservoir, creating a puddle. Our advice is to use this product outdoors so you don’t have to deal with the mess. On the upside, cats love the streaming water and would play for hours on end using the Drinkwell 360. For this Amazon user, the Drinkwell 360 is clearly loved by all 3 furry friends in his household:

Really, really pleased with this product. My gf and I have 3 cats and 2 of the three normally will not drink from a water bowl. All 3 love the fountain. Product works and flows really well. You can adjust your flow rate from a trickle to full flow and adjust the number of spouts from 1 to 5 depending on your needs. It is simple to clean, takes about a minute to completely tear it down.

The Drinkwell 360 is an affordable drinking fountain that will appeal to small to medium-sized pets. It comes with adjustable water stream as well as two-step filtration system.

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Cat Mate Pet Fountain

Cat Mate Pet Fountain

PROS

  • Tiered design, multi-level drinking stations
  • Durable construction
  • Powerful pump with adjustable water flow control

CONS

  • Prone to slimy buildup
  • Adjusting the water flow is cumbersome

The Cat Mate pet fountain by Ani Mate is a multi-height drinking fountain for pets with a polymer-carbon filtration system. The fountain features a small reservoir where water streams down gently into the base reservoir. The special design of the tiered water stations prevent splashing or leaks. The multi-height drinking stations means the product will appeal to multiple pets, even large dogs. The Cat Mate pet fountain can hold about 1.5 gallons of water to keep your pets satiated.

This water fountain is made from durable plastic. The removable components are dishwasher-friendly and easy to clean. The unit comes with a 3-year guarantee too, a nice touch for those who are new to Cat Mate.

The Cat Mate pet fountain is fitted with a polymer-carbon filter that ensures fresh, filtered water on the daily. The purification system prevents slimy build-up and unwanted debris in the water. That’s how you know your pet is only getting the freshest, cleanest drinking water. That said, you have to replace the filter regularly to keep germs and unwanted debris out.

The device features a powerful pump that comes with adjustable water flow. Just turn the pump’s water flow knob to customize the water flow with ease. We love how quiet this drinking fountain is. It’s also surprisingly energy-efficient! It only requires low voltage so there’s no nasty surprises once the energy bill comes in. According to the Ani Mate website, the Cat Mate pet fountain is especially designed to encourage cats and small dogs to drink and it works like a charm.

The Cat Mate pet fountain does a great job of filtering the water as it streams down but the bottom tier is prone to residue buildup. To remove the buildup, you have to clean the pet fountain regularly. It helps that this device is very easy to clean. Also, if you want to adjust the water flow, you have to unplug the unit and take apart the device to get to the pump. This can be cumbersome for some users. That said, this happy customer says the Cat Mate pet fountain does a fantastic job of keeping his cats hydrated and healthy:

Excellent product. I have used several other brands of pet fountains for my cats and this style is the best. First, it is very quiet and does not have the usual splashing sound. There are 3 pools of water from still water to a flowing stream and the cat can select which from which to drink. The water is filtered and a very strong pump circulates the stream.

With its tiered design and quiet operation, the Cat Mate pet fountain never fails to compel pets to drink more water. It’s easy to clean, the design is truly unique and the effective purification process keeps the water fresh for longer.

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The Importance of Hydration in Pets

A cat or a dog’s body is made up of 70% to 80% water. On average, a dog or a cat must drink at least an ounce of water per every pound of weight. If say, you’re not filling your pet’s water bowl fast enough or the water isn’t clean, your furry friend is not getting enough water.

Active puppies will need more water to stay healthy that’s why it’s critical that your pets have access to fresh, clean water every day. In addition, you have to wash your pets’ water bowls using soap and water to get rid of bacterial buildup.

Signs of Dehydration in Pets

Dehydration is a serious problem for pet owners and once it sets in, it wreaks havoc to a pet’s body immediately. If your pet’s skin has lost its elasticity or the moistness of its gums are dry and sticky, these are signs that your pet is in dire need of hydration. Other dehydration symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, and fever. If your dehydrated pet isn’t drinking enough water for long periods of time, it will collapse in shock and it may die.

If you suspect that your pet is suffering from moderate dehydration, try administering an electrolyte solution of 1 to 2 ml. per kilogram of your pet’s body weight per hour. Or better yet, take your pet to the nearest veterinarian for observation. The same thing goes if your pet is suffering from severe dehydration, seek immediate medical assistance. Your vet will administer the electrolytic solutions intravenously.

To prevent dehydration in dogs or cats, administer electrolytic solutions. Do this until symptoms have subsided. If your pet is suffering from mild dehydration, try adding ice cubes to their water bowl or a little water to their kibbles or use a pet fountain. These tricks will encourage your pet to drink more water.

Benefits of a Pet Water Fountain

If you’re a busy pet owner who can’t seem to get his or her pets to drink more water, a pet water fountain makes a fantastic investment. A pet water fountain ensures that your furry friends have access to fresh, clean water everyday. Cats and dogs are playful by nature and seeing the moving water encourage these pets to drink more. The fact is, a pet water fountain could very well save your pet’s life! But if you need more convincing, here are some of the benefits of a drinking fountain for pets:

Fresh, Filtered Water Everyday!
A pet water fountain is not your ordinary water bowl. This device is fitted with a filter that eliminates impurities in the water. These impurities could be anything from sediments to muck. You don’t want these nasty impurities to end up on your pet’s water bowl! Higher end pet fountains come with sophisticated oxygenation system on top of their filtration system. These devices are able to generate fresh drinking water that your pets will love.

Moving Water
A pet water fountain offers a continuous flow of water. On the other hand, a simple water bowl leaves the fluid stagnant. This can be problematic because the water will attract germs and impurities. Because the water is not moving, insects – like mosquitoes – could lay their eggs in the stagnant water. This will contaminate your pet’s water, causing sickness that requires immediate medical attention.

The water from a water fountain is much cleaner because it flows freely. The movement discourages insects from contaminating the water. Impurities that may end up in the water are also filtered away.

Healthy Pets
Most pets are given a dry diet, which contribute to pet dehydration. Pets that eat dry food are only getting half of the water they need to stay healthy compared to pets fed with wet food.  A pet that drinks more water is less likely to develop lower urinary tract diseases. A water fountain encourages pets to drink more water, preventing kidney disease.

Factors to Consider When Shopping for a Pet Water Fountain

Affordability
Pet water fountains vary in prices, entry level devices are priced about $15 and below while higher end pet fountains retails for over $60. When shopping around, go for a quality pet fountain that’s priced reasonably. Selections for pet water fountains are quite extensive so you’re bound to find a budget-friendly device that works for your needs.

Quality
A pet water fountain is a great investment. Since the device will be used daily, always go for quality over quantity. Choose a pet water fountain that’s made from durable plastic or metal material. Ceramic pet water fountains are great but they break easily, not ideal for playful pets. Also, the material must be easy to clean and hygienic.  Finally, check the wattage of the device. It should keep your pet’s water clean but it shouldn’t make your energy bill soar.

Design, Size, and Type
Pet water fountains come in a variety of types and designs. Those that feature a downward flow of water is called a gravity fountain. On the other hand, continuous fountains circulate filtered water around the bowl. The right water fountain for your pet will depend on your preference! As for the size, it will depend on the size of your pet.

For smaller pets – such as rabbits or gerbils – a mini pet fountain should suffice. For a mid-sized to large cat, opt for a medium-sized fountain that does not sit too low. Cats prefer wider bowls and a higher reservoir for easy drinking. Of course, a large dog or cat requires a supersized drinking fountain!

Filter
Most pet drinking fountain comes with carbon filter, which is treated with charcoal. The filter works by attracting impurities in the water, including bacteria. The chemical process keeps the water clean and fresh, it also eliminates foul smell from food debris. Some pet water fountains also come with a pre-filter. The pre-filter eliminates larger debris of impurities. The filter has to be replaced regularly, about two to four weeks. Our advice is to check the manufacturer’s manual to determine the lifespan of the filter.