When you have puppies at home, too many questions pop up to the mind to help you become a better pet parent. You worry about what food to give, how to hold your young pups, how to train them, and even how much water should your puppy drink.
Here at dogschool.com, we strive to help every dog owner become better. We delve into studies and research to provide the answers to your questions.
In this blog post, we present to you the results of our research on how much water to give your puppy to drink.
AT A GLANCE (SEE ON AMAZON):
The General Rule
We all know that keeping our puppy hydrated is important to keep him away from health issues caused by the lack of it (like dehydration, for one). Most vets recommend that in a day, we should give our puppies one ounce of water per pound of body weight.
The amount of water a puppy need is, of course, lesser than that of adult dogs. As these young pups are still growing and drinking their mothers’ milk, they tend to consume less water.
On the other hand, older puppies, especially those starting to eat solid foods, need a regular intake of freshwater daily.
So, how much water should a puppy drink?
Again, a good rule to go by is about an ounce of water per pound of body weight per day.
To illustrate and assuming that your pup is not into too much physical activity, a 10 lb. puppy should drink 10 ounces of water daily. And a 20-pound dog may need around 20-30 ounces of water intake daily.
However, this is not a fast rule to strictly go by. The amount of water your dog drinks may vary depending on their size, age, activities, and other factors. Hence, in some instances, it is alright not to observe strictly the above general rule.
Large breed puppies need more water as they also weigh more than smaller breed puppies of the same age. Also, as your dog ages, he needs more water to supply what his growing body needs.
When your puppy is into lots of activities, exercises, and playtime, his body needs more freshwater to stay well hydrated.
Depending on your puppy’s activity level, make sure to give your pet, on average, a cup of water every two hours.
Bringing a portable dog water bottle like this would ensure that your pet never runs out of water.
When the temperature is high, your puppies need to drink more to replenish the amount of water they sweat off.
Keep enough water on your dog’s water bowl for him to drink every time he feels the need to cool himself.
Your pup needs to drink enough water to keep him in the best of health and not the other way around.
Over-hydration happens when you put too much in your pet’s water bowl and your puppy drinks uncontrollably.
It may also happen when our pups go swimming or playing in water and take in, unintentionally, excessive water.
Too much water intake can affect our dog’s health and cause them to get sick.
Can You Give A Puppy Too Much Water?
Simple answer, yes! Drinking too much water can be as dangerous as dehydration.
When our young dogs are starting to drink water, it is important to keep a close eye on them. Ensure that they are drinking enough water every day but never too much.
When you think that your puppy drank too much water, observe if he manifests symptoms of overhydration. These symptoms include nausea, vomiting, bloating, dilated pupils, loss of coordination, pale gums, and salivation.
If any of these signs are apparent and you fear that your dog may be overhydrated, take him to the vet for a proper diagnosis. Your veterinarian will also prescribe the proper remedy for the same.
Why Does My Puppy Drink So Much Water?
It is also worthy to visit the vet as excessive drinking among dogs may be a sign of a more complex ailment. These internal complications include kidney disease, diabetes, and infection of the uterus, among other health concerns.
Of course, this is only worrisome when, given normal circumstances, your puppy still drinks excessively.
During summer days, it is but normal for our young furry pets to drink more water than what they usually intake on a much cooler day due to the high temperature. Drinking water is their way of cooling themselves.
On days where your pups are undergoing training, exercises, or playtime, your furry friends may need to drink more as they sweat off some of the liquid on their bodies and need to get back some of the fluids they lost.
There may be a day when your pups would be drinking too little water. When this happens, they risk being dehydrated.
Canine dehydration happens when our furry friends consume less water than what their bodies require.
Besides not drinking enough cups of water every day, dehydration can also happen when our puppy is frequently vomiting, has excessive urination, or has diarrhea. When your dogs experience any of these ailments, we need to immediately take them to the vet for proper medication.
When your dog starts eating solid foods, his water intake must also be monitored. Dry dog food requires water to be digested. Without enough water intake, this dry dog food utilizes the body fluids in our dogs during digestion. Hence, not drinking enough water can cause dehydration.
How Do You Know When Your Puppy Is Dehydrated?
You would know that your dog is dehydrated when his average freshwater intake is far lesser than that recommended by your veterinarian or proposed in the general rule mentioned above.
Of course, strict adherence to the said rule is not required as it may vary depending on your dog’s activity level, age, size, and other factors.
However, if you could not monitor how much water your dog drinks or are unsure that your dog is getting enough water to keep him healthy, there are other signs that could indicate a lack of water intake.
To check that your dog is drinking enough water, hold your puppy, stretch out a piece of skin along his neck, and then let it go. Notice how fast the skin snaps back. The skin should snap back into place immediately. If it does, as far as his water intake is concerned, your pet is healthy, and there’s no need to worry. But if the skin snaps back into place slowly, your puppy might be experiencing dehydration.
You could also identify if your dog is dehydrated by running a finger on your dog’s gums. If they are dry or sticky, it is an indication that he needs more water.
Another way would be to press the skin on the gums. While pressing his gums, you will notice that the skin would turn white. Immediately release the pressure and observe how fast (or slow) the skin turns back to its pinkish color. If it took longer than 2 seconds, then your puppy needs more water.
How long can a dog go without water?
In general, dogs can survive without water for approximately 2-3 days. But take note that just because they can survive without water does not mean that it’s alright not to give them any. The lack of water in the body could harm their system which would affect their vital organs. The failure of the vital organs to perform properly may cause our dogs to be seriously sick and could even be fatal.
How To Make Your Puppy Consume More Water
Some dogs are not just fond of water. If your dog is one of them, it is important to remedy the situation and get him to drink more to keep your dog in the best of health. To achieve this, you could try the following easy tips:
- Always make sure that your dog only drinks fresh, clean water. Water that has been on your dog’s water bowl for some time does not seem to be too enticing to drink. Replace the water in the bowl after it has stayed there unconsumed after some time.
- Just with any other training, give your pup some treats every time he drinks water. Reward your pup with positive reinforcement to encourage him to drink water. Over time, your dog will associate drinking water with a reward and would develop the habit of drinking regularly.
- Put his water bowl near his food bowl to encourage your dog to drink after every meal. Sometimes your dog forgets to drink water after eating since he cannot find his water bowl after a meal. You can also use a double bowl with both food and water bowls together.
- You could add up some chicken broth (or any other flavor your pet loves) to make the water more palatable for your dog. We know that water is tasteless. Your dog has the same perception. Adding some flavors to the water will get them to drink more.
- Let your dog drink by lapping or chewing through ice cubes. Make sure though that your pup is not experiencing any ailment which could be triggered by the coldness of an ice cube (like a toothache, for example).
- Accessorize. Using a dog water fountain like this one may encourage your dog to drink more as it is like he is having fun while drinking.
If these home remedies do not work, take your pet to the veterinarian. Your veterinarian would know better how to address this concern.
Why Is Water Important?
We must ensure that our growing pups are drinking the right amount of water per day. Proper water intake prevents your pet from getting dehydrated.
Water also helps regulate digestion and other bodily functions. It lubricates the body tissues of your growing puppy for better muscular development. It also cools down body temperature, preventing your puppy from being lethargic and guarding against fever.
A dog needs the correct amount of water intake as well for proper blood circulation. It results then in better brain development and overall well-being.
Seeing that water is important for our dogs, ensuring that they take in enough, and not too much, is a necessity.