cat drinks lots of water in boston, ma

Why Does My Cat Drink So Much Water?

Do you have a cat who drinks a lot of water? How much is too much water for a cat to drink regularly? Is there something wrong with your cat, or should you be worried about this behavior?

Many times, cats have the opposite issue: they do not drink enough water. If your cat is drinking a lot of water and you find yourself worrying about them, it may be time to see a vet. Drinking too much water can be an indicator of a variety of underlying health problems, which we will outline in more detail through the article below.

High Temperatures

When the weather turns hot outdoors, it’s not uncommon for cats to feel this change indoors, too. Even if you keep your home cool and air conditioned, your pet will be hotter on a warm day, just like you are. When cats become too hot, they drink more water to help stay cool.

If your cat’s excess water intake only occurs on very hot days, or if the problem only lasts a day or two, it’s safe to assume there’s nothing to worry about. Pay close attention, however, for any signs that your cat is still drinking too much water after a couple of days.

Salty Food or Treats

If you feed your cat a lot of human food, or if you provide a lot of treats throughout the day, they may have too much sodium in their diet. Cats who eat too much salty food are likely to drink excess water, just like humans who have too much salt in their diet may do the same.

If your cat has salty food or treats every once in a while, this is nothing to worry about. However, if you give your cat salty food often, you should cut back. It is not healthy or safe for cats to have too much salt in their everyday diets.


Cats who are suffering from a fever due to any underlying cause may drink more water to help cool down and reduce the risk of dehydration. Cats who have mild fevers may be able to stop themselves from becoming dehydrated; however, if your cat’s fever is high, they need to go to the veterinarian right away.

Fevers are usually indicative of other health problems in cats. Your vet will need to diagnose your cat’s health condition and help you figure out the best treatment or management options moving forward.

Upset Stomach

If your cat has an upset stomach that is causing them to have diarrhea or vomiting as a secondary symptom, they will probably drink more water to make up for the fluids lost during this time. Cats who are sick for only a day or two can usually replenish their own fluids, but if your cat is having vomiting or diarrhea symptoms for more than a couple of days, they should see a vet.

The longer a cat goes without having enough fluids in their body, the easier it becomes for them to grow dangerously dehydrated.

Kidney or Liver Failure

If a cat goes into kidney failure or liver failure, they will likely start drinking more water to make up for the lack of functionality from these important organs. Kidney and liver failure are typically eventually fatal, but these conditions can be managed for some time with the help of a veterinarian.

If your cat is suffering from any type of organ failure, or if you suspect that they might be, take your cat to the vet right away. The sooner you figure out a plan of action, the better off your pet will be.


Perhaps the most common cause of excess water intake in cats is diabetes. Cats are prone to diabetes, especially if they are allowed to free feed without having their food amount monitored by their pet parents. A cat who becomes sick with diabetes is likely to show symptoms including increased water intake and increased urination.

Cats with diabetes may also lose weight quickly, or they might be significantly overweight. The sicker the cat becomes, the more lethargic they may appear. Take your cat to the vet at the first sign of diabetes to either come up with a management plan or rule out this serious health condition.

Talk to a Vet About Your Cat

If you find your cat is drinking too much water and the condition doesn’t clear up in a day or two, this may mean it’s time to see a vet. If your cat’s excess water drinking only happens for one or two days, it could be associated with a benign cause, such as a high temperature outside.

It’s up to you to consider the possibilities and think about the potential causes of your cat’s excess water intake. Check your cat carefully for other signs and symptoms that could point to the underlying problem as well.

Book an appointment online at Boston Veterinary Clinic to talk with a vet about why your cat is drinking so much water.