Q: My sweet cat, Cubby, has developed an annoying problem. He has always played with his water, burying his toys in the water dish and dragging them out. He also puts his dry food in the water and scoops it out with his paws. This is cute, but his latest antic is very dangerous. My cat now takes his paw, grabs the edge of the bowl and slops water all over the kitchen floor. Instead of drinking out of the bowl, my cat licks the water off the floor. As careful as I try to be, I have slipped and fallen several times.
A: Your cat might enjoy playing with water, or the water bowl may be contributing to his new water-sloshing games.
Your choice of water bowls might annoy Cubby. His bowl could be too small or deep. Because cat whiskers are sensitive — containing nerves and blood vessels — most cats don’t like to feel the sides of bowls with their whiskers. Upgrade your cat’s water bowl to a large, shallow ceramic bowl. Find one that has a wide solid base that can’t be flipped or easily tipped. Be safe and place the bowl in a shallow under-the-bed plastic storage box. The short sides will keep the water contained if Cubby starts flinging and sloshing water around.
Your cat might also enjoy playing and drinking out of a dog and cat fountain. Many dog and cat water fountains are on the market in all sizes and shapes. They are perfect for cats who are fascinated with moving water. Another option is a motion-sensitive faucet adapter. These water faucets are great for cats who enjoy water play — easy for them to turn the water on with a movement from their heads or a swipe with a paw. In addition to hydrating cats, they provide hours of entertainment for cats and their people.