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How do I convince Gizmo to drink out of his water bowl? I'm worried he's going to get dehydrated. When we feed him his food is soaked in water till its mushy, so when he eats hes getting his water, but we're beginning (Or at least we're going to on saturday) to soak his food for less and less time until he's eating dry food. But now, he shys away from the water completely.

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Flavor it with a little chicken or beef broth. Or make soak just a few pieces of kibble in it, make a kibble soup, so he gets used to the idea of slurping. Gradually reduce the kibble or broth over a few days until he's drinking plain water.

 

Thanks for taking him in, again!

 

Ruth

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Is there a back story here? Is he afraid of water?

 

I like to provide several different options for them. My dogs have two water dishes in my office -- each of them tends to have their preference for whatever reason. I have two water dishes in the house at home and a 2 1/2 gallon bucket outside. The bucket seems to provide them the majority of their water intake during the warm months -- Because they will go load up there after playing with each other, fetching or training.

 

During the winter months their water intake goes way, way down. They eat a lot of snow instead, it seems.

 

If provided access to clean, fresh water, I don't believe an otherwise healthy dog will dehydrate themselves. If you want him to drink more, I'd suggest increasing his activity -- as that always makes mine drink.

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As Karissa alluded to, I'd look to see if there's something about the way the water is being presented that turns him off: metal bowl, small enough bowl that his tags hit the side and it unnerves him, the taste (do you use a water softener or similar), loccation? I have variously used plastic, ceramic, and stainless steel water bowls and plastic buckets or tubs outside without issues, but I know folks here in the past have noted that some materials tend to be offensive to individual dogs, so I would look for signs that there's something about the bowl that's bothering him.

 

Also as Karissa said, different dogs prefer different drinking locations. For some reason, mine prefer to drink out of the little SS buckets that I have hanging in the crates, or in Jill's X-pen in the house, even when there's a full bowl nearby. I have no idea why they have a preference for those buckets vs. the bowls, but they always have!

 

J.

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I have never hand raised an orphan puppy like you are but have done so with a couple kittens.

 

I got them to drink by doing just about what Ruth said above. The only difference was that I mixed the water with canned cat food instead of dry. The canned food was very easy to mix into a "soup". It never took very long for them to catch on to drinking that stuff and I was always able to transition to plain water over the course of a week or two. I regarded the canned food as a baby food and once I was feeding canned food separate from the water then I would start mixing dry cat food into the canned stuff to get the kitten switched over to a mostly dry food diet.

 

I don't know if that is how you are supposed to do it but the kittens did really well.

 

If you use the canned food you better be ready to wash a little face! I used to have to wash my kitten all the way to his shoulders! He would put his front paws in the bowl and knead.

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I have experienced various types of bowl preferences in dogs. Some are for stainless steel bowls, some prefer crocks, glass or (rarely) plastic. I can relate to this. I don't like to use silver forks or spoons. I swear it affects the taste of the food. I like stainless steel. I have a friend who is the opposite. And I hate plastic forks, spoons, etc.

 

Dogs also tend to be very different in their fussiness about how fresh the water is. I make it a point to keep the water and food bowls in separate rooms. A dog that has just eaten and not licked his face clean will leave an invisible film on top of the water bowl. Some don't like it - most cats hate it, to the point of drinking insufficient water - I wash and refill the water crock twice a day, and the animals are both there for the fresh supply. The cat drinks first, deep and long, and then the dog. They have a clear preference for the "just poured" water, even though on a walk, Sugarfoot will drink from the foulest muddy puddles if thirsty.

 

If you have cats you will know that a dripping tap is a cat magnet, and then there's the toilet... I keep mine clean - and closed. But think about it - the water is "changed" several times a day. Of course they would go for it. It's the "freshest" water in the house.

 

But stock tanks are the best. When I lived on a farm the dogs loved the stock tank for drinking and swimming. Better if it has luxuriant green algae growing on the sides! I can still remember the barn cats balancing on the rolled galvanized edge of the tank, drinking daintily, and walking across its frozen surface in the winter to get to the side where we had chopped a hole so the cows could drink.

 

Oh, and metal tags clanging on the rim of a water bowl is the best reason I can think of for getting Boomerang collar tags!

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We are feeding 4 week olds who still nurse off their mom when she lets them. Bad mom. But, we give them a very flat style dish to eat and drink off. I wonder if trying something of your kitchen dishes would be best at first since he's so little. I'm sure weaning him off the bottle isnt easy either. Currently I use divided kids trays I bought at Target (think old school lunch trays. Giving him a large quanitity of water at first is just going to encourage a mess for you. I'd do the swirl method too but, I guarantee he will walk through it.

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My advice would be to not try to convince him to drink. He'll drink if he's thirsty. You're probably doing more harm than good by "trying". If you're adding water to his food, he's getting enough water.

 

If you force the issue, its bound to become more of an issue. I say the same thing to people who tell me their dog won't eat their food. They get all panicky and then start giving the dog ever more enticing treats and then wonder why the dog passes up kibble when he starts getting bacon and eggs every morning.

 

Relax, and let nature do its work.

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Well, he's a five week old puppy, he isn't afraid of the water, I think he actually enjoys it. We had to give him a bath (HAD to, he rolled ALL over in his own poop, and paper towels and water just weren't going to cut it. He splashed around in it and only complained when we took him out) We tried the mixing a few peices of dry kibble into his water and it worked really well! We gave it to him before the kibble was at all soaked, and he drank the water then ate the kibble. He's drinking well now, he dips his nose into it, and only after he's snorted some up, does it take little tenative laps of water.

 

Thank's all, I really apprieciate it!

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:lol: :lol: :lol: We are all going to have to get together and send you a video camera! My mental image is pretty funny, but I'm really craving a picture!

 

It's good to hear that he's doing well. Pretty amazing, indeed, he's come so far.

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:P I did I did promise more. Until I posted the pictures of him the first time, I hadn't really realized how much he's changed.

 

 

post-12230-024199200 1306713325_thumb.jpg This is one of the best pictures I have of him, he doesn't want to take a good picture (more shall be in the picture section.) I shall also get a video of him drinking soon ;) It's really cute

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