Cats need water just like any other living creature, and dehydration can lead to severe consequences if not addressed as soon as possible. If you are concerned about your feline friend, a trained veterinary expert can provide comprehensive information and resources during a consultation.

Dr. Hunter Finn understands that cats are active animals, so providing adequate water is essential for their well-being. Call our professionals at Pet Method to learn how to spot dehydration and what steps are necessary moving forward.

Our McKinney, TX team is dedicated to promoting proper pet health through education and support. Our services help your beloved companion stay happy.

What causes dehydration in cats?

Just like with humans, dehydration is caused by many different factors. Hot weather and heatstroke are common culprits, especially if a cat does not have access to plenty of shade and clean water. Cats also become dehydrated due to vomiting or diarrhea, fever, diabetes, certain medications, or inadequate nutrition – all of which require the help of a veterinary expert.

First sign of dehydration: tacky gums

A cat’s gums should appear pink in color and moist to the touch. But if the gums are dry or “tacky,” this could be a sign of dehydration. Pet parents can check their cat’s gums by carefully running a finger along their gumline. Be on the lookout for discoloration, which could indicate a more serious underlying condition.

Second sign of dehydration: skin tenting

Hydrated skin is elastic, meaning it should bounce back when lightly pinched. So, if your cat’s skin is slow to return to its normal shape, they may not be getting enough liquids in their diet. Tenting is an easy test to assess hydration levels, and you can do it yourself at home. Try not to pinch too hard, as this could be painful for your cat.

Third sign of dehydration: concentrated (yellow) urine

Monitoring your cat’s litter box is the best way to identify signs of dehydration and other common medical conditions. If you notice that the urine looks unusually concentrated or darker than usual, it could be a sign of water deficiency. Your furry friend might also show signs of lethargy and lack of appetite.

What to do if your cat is dehydrated

Dr. Finn recommends that pet parents take the necessary steps to address dehydration in cats right away. During an assessment in McKinney, TX, our veterinary expert offers advice and treatments based on your cat’s age and condition. In the meantime, we recommend the following:

  • Provide fresh water throughout the day: Replace their water daily, or even multiple times a day in hot weather.
  • Add wet food to their diet: Wet food is more hydrating than dry food, and it provides additional nutrients that can help with hydration.
  • Encourage your cat to drink: Adding a few drops of tuna juice or chicken broth will make the water even more appealing.
  • Get to know your cat’s preferences: Some cats like drinking water from a dish, while others prefer a running tap.

Encouraging proper pet health at Pet Method

Dehydration in cats is a serious matter and should not be taken lightly. If you have concerns about your feline companion, do not hesitate to contact Pet Method for a pet health evaluation. Dr. Hunter Finn can ensure your pet is receiving the nutrients and hydration they require for a long and healthy life in McKinney, TX.