Your retriever mix Rudy is the most rambunctious pooch you’ve ever met. This four-year-old canine housemate regularly romps at the dog park, and his daily walks often resemble brisk trots. During fetch games, he almost knocks you over with his enthusiasm. To fuel his energetic lifestyle, he consumes a hearty vet-approved diet that contains vital nutrients. He also swigs plenty of water daily, helping him to stay hydrated regardless of the weather. Even better, your veterinarian has provided advice that should help Rudy avoid potentially dangerous dehydration.
Rudy’s body literally can’t function without water. First, water moves nutrients into his cells, and transports waste products away for elimination. This essential liquid also helps him digest his food and maintain a constant body temperature. Water cushions and lubricates your companion’s joints, making movement considerably easier. His spinal cord and internal tissues also welcome water’s cushioning effects.
If your active dog’s body doesn’t receive enough water daily, he’ll likely become sick and experience dehydration. If his condition isn’t quickly addressed, his organs can become damaged from lack of sufficient moisture. Eventually, the organs could begin to shut down; and he might not survive. Clearly, you want to avoid this devastating scenario.
Each morning, fill Rudy’s water bowl with plenty of fresh, cool water; and refill it throughout the day. If he spends time both indoors and outdoors, place a water bowl in each location. As a general guideline, he should drink roughly one ounce of water per pound of body weight daily. If he enjoys vigorous exercise, or the weather’s on the warm side, he might crave additional water. This is especially true if he’s panting quite a bit.
If your companion eats a canned food diet, he’ll receive an extra infusion of water daily. In fact, most canned formulations are comprised of 70% to 80% water. If he regularly chows down on these tasty meals, he might drink less water than his canine buddies who crunch their dry food diets.
If you notice a change in Rudy’s water consumption, or he seems to lack some “oomph” in his daily routine, take him to your veterinarian immediately. The vet will determine if your dog is experiencing dehydration symptoms, and can quickly provide appropriate treatment.