Is Your Dog Drinking Enough Water?

Original post from Care2




Water makes up around 80 percent of a dog’s body and its consumption is essential for optimum health, but how much is enough and is there such thing as too much?

Looking after an animal is a great responsibility as they’re dependent on us for their every need. We tend to assume that as long as we provide our dogs with a water bowl they will drink the amount they need, but unfortunately this is not always true as some dogs are under-hydrated, while others drink too much and are over-hydrated.

Water’s Vital Role in the Body

Water is the basis of life as it hydrates, nourishes and cleanses the body. While your dog can survive for a long time without food, incorrect water consumption can be seriously damaging to the body, and in a relatively short period of time just a 10 percent drop in hydration can be fatal.

From mental alertness and ease of breathing, to optimum digestion and bowel movements, every metabolic process in a dog’s body will be affected by their level of hydration

Blood flow takes oxygen around the body and removes toxins, and poor hydration can lead to a buildup of toxins in the muscles and organs, causing a huge array of health issues. Dogs regulate their heat by panting, and this heavy breath causes a lot of moisture to leave the body, very quickly on a hot day when they’ve been exercising.

Lack of water can result in dehydration, organ failure, and kidney stones or other urinary tract problems, but apart from these direct health issues, lack of water consumption can be an indicator of existing problems.

Water Consumption Can Be a Health Indicator

Dogs who are not drinking enough water or who have an insatiable thirst could be displaying signs of more serious health problems, which is why it’s essential to keep a close eye on their drinking habits.

Dogs with illnesses such as parvovirus, pancreatitis and leptospirois (as well as many others) do not tend to drink much water, so if you notice that your dog is barely drinking anything, it may be worth taking them for a check up. On the flip side, dogs with bladder infections, diabetes and Cushing’s disease (among others), are often extremely thirsty and can be observed drinking excessive amounts of water.

While it’s important to watch out for how much your dog is drinking, it’s also important to keep things in perspective with their other behaviors, temperature conditions and so on, so that you don’t become overly worried every time your dog has a big drink of water!

So How Much Water Does Your Dog Need?

A dog’s water needs vary from breed to breed, and also depending on size, age, diet, activity level and environmental conditions.

The recommended intake of water for a dog is approximately one ounce of water per pound of bodyweight, per day.

Your dog’s diet will play a big role in the amount of water that they need to consume, as dogs eating solely dry biscuits will be getting significantly less hydration from their food than those on moisture rich diets.

During the hot weather, if your dog is very thirsty after a long walk or play session, it’s a good idea to let them rehydrate over a period of time rather than letting them guzzle down too much water at once. If they finish all the water in their bowl, wait for half an hour before refilling it so that they have time to rest and digest. You can also help keep them hydrated during their exercise time by giving them access to water, little and often is best.

To test whether your dog may be dehydrated, you can lift the skin on the back of the neck and watch to see how quickly it returns to its normal position. If it forms a sort of tent, and doesn’t fall back into place immediately, then your dog may be dehydrated.

Nobody knows your dog better than you, and by keeping a close eye on your dog’s behaviour you can tell if they are happy and healthy, or if they’re showing signs of dehydration or illness. Monitoring their water intake should be a part of your behavior observation as it can tell you a lot about their health and wellness.  ………’


Obesity; Ban Fast Food

Obesity appoint Tsars

An obesitytsar’ should be appointed at every NHS trust to tackle a crisis affecting  millions, leading doctors say. Is this feasible, can the NHS afford for each trust to appoint an Obesity Tsar, when apparently there is already a NHS funding crisis.  Wards closing, fewer nurses and complaints rising, perhaps an additional member of staff for each Trust is pushing it.

But what can be done, lets have a look.  Over the years some other activities have been cause for concern and they were or are being dealt with.

Cigarettes are bad for your health, so they are heavily taxed, advertising is virtually banned, plain wrapped cartons with explicit health warnings. Alcohol is bad for health, still heavily taxed and threat of minimum prices and buying offers to be banned to try to restrict binge drinking.

Now it is obesity, lets look at some causes, lack of exercise, bad diets and drinking. What more can be done about drinking, with the exception of banning it completely. Oh, just a minute, tried in the USA 1920-1933. Exercise, favourable taxes could be applied for Gym membership, but this would favour some of the rich (Labour and Lib Dems object) and no money available due to current financial circumstances of the country.

I know, what about banning or heavily taxing fast food, precedent set , see cigarettes and to some extent drinking. This is unlikely to affect the rich, therefore Tories may be in favour. But just a minute, what about the not so rich, Oh go ahead, does anyone care.

But obesity is a problem, but is mainly of ones own making, the only way for obesity to be tackled is for everyone who has an obesity problem, to want to over come it. But in the first instance, it may be convincing some people that they have an obesity problem.  Possibly a second is the thought that they have a right to be obese, if they so wish. Obesity will be a major problem for some time, possibly for ever, do you have the answer?

Now it is too much sugar

So The Royal College of Physicians needs to alter their thinking, an ‘Obesity Tzar’ is not required, just reduce sugar content.

But if sugar content is reduced, how will the food taste, we have all grown accustomed to the sweetish taste in our foods.

Lets face it, ingest too much of anything and it is in some way not good for you.

There are now so many answers to so few questions, so how do we know what to do?