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How to entice dog to drink more water

5 months ago

I am on day 13 living with an adopted 5 year old 7.6 lb retired show dog, a Phalene - the drop eared variety of Papillon. I’m looking for tips for tempting her to drink more water. I am adding several tablespoons of water to her twice daily meal which is a mix of Nom Nom & dry kibble. I offer her water several times a day & she sometimes will take a good drink but not every day. I have seen her drink from her water bowls (3 placed around house) maybe 3 times in 12 days. I have added dog safe bone broth to water to tempt her to drink but no results. We take her outside every 3 hours, a daily walk which sometimes generates a poop but rarely a pee. We have her in our sight 100% of time & no slipups in house. We are logging her potty & eating times just to make sure we’re not forgetting daily results.


A few weeks before we adopted her, she was spayed & had teeth cleaned. No medical problems noted. We had requested a full chemical blood work panel, T4 & bile acid testing, all done & no problems. We requested these tests because just a few months ago we lost our first Papillon, a 10 year old, to a congenital liver shunt. This shunt was diagnosed at 9.6 years of her age & the fact that she lived so long before abnormal labs revealed the problem is not the norm for congenital liver shunts or PSS as it’s called. Thus, the extra tests before we accepted our new doggie.


This pup is a quiet personality & seems to be adjusting to her new environment, likes her daily walks & enjoys exploring our fenced backyard. She’s starting to show her fun side - more each day, The issue with her is water intake & urine output. Both very low & she will go up to 12 hours without urinating. When she does, it’s a very looong pee. A few days ago I was able to capture the first in day pee & took the sample to Vet for a UA. We don’t yet have results but expect to get that at our first ’meet & greet’ Vet appointment tomorrow.


Any folks with this kind of experience have any advice? I’d also welcome tips on helping her adjust to her new single dog home with people home with her 100% of time.

Thanks!

Comments (36)

  • 5 months ago

    We have a cat with kidney failure who needs to drink a lot. We have this fountain for him and he loves it - moving and circulating water is more appealing to animals - Cupcake Cat Water Fountain Porcelain, Pet Water Fountain for Dog and Cat, Pet Water Dispenser https://a.co/d/9Pc1sSV

    The motor in the pump just died & I didn’t hesitate to just order another. Disassemble and clean it regularly. Because he’s had urinary blockage issues, we also filter his water with a Zero water filter first. It removes basically everything from the water - especially minerals that affect taste and could form crystals in his bladder. Good luck!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked takingthedayoff
  • 5 months ago

    I’ve wondered about a circulating water bowl but always hear about it in connection with cats. I have changed her water bowl from a narrow deep bowl - hoping to keep her long ears out of the water - to a lower wide bowl. She took a drink on her own soon after that change but can’t determine if that was a fluke or the change of bowl style that made her drink. BTW - her kidney function shown on blood test was normal.

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  • 5 months ago

    Stax - Your Greyhound’s age - 23 years? That’s a typo, right? I should clarify too that my dog isn’t a ’rescue’. She is a retired show girl & ’rehomed’. These retired dogs don’t need rescuing in the usual sense of being lost / mistreated / at risk of being put down etc. She had a good life but had earned all of her show points & had 2 litters in her last couple years so it was a good thing for her to move to a more relaxed environment & for her prior owner to be able to have another female to show & possibly breed in her home. Ethical dog show folks limit the number of dogs in their homes & especially limit their breeding.


    But, to your question about why I think there’s a problem is that between the 5 other small dogs I’ve had, none of them drank so little water and went up to 12 hours between urination times. I can’t imagine this is a healthy practice but that’s why I’m searching for info. I’ve never adopted an adult dog who already has their life routines established - the oldest dog we adopted was 6 months so we went through the potty training trials. With this pup, the training is teaching her which door to go to for signaling she wants to go out. The prior owner said her group of dogs were let outside every 3.5 - 4 hours & were not kenneled in their individual sleep crates during the day but also didn’t have free access to entire house. I’ve emailed her asking for more info specifically on my dog’s potty habits so I might be able to share with my Vet.

  • PRO
    5 months ago

    Can you serve him wet treats? My little guy loves watermelon and oranges for instance.

    KW PNW Z8 thanked HALLETT & Co.
  • 5 months ago

    My dog goes 16 hours in the house without going outside to relieve himself in the winter sometimes.

    KW PNW Z8 thanked ShadyWillowFarm
  • 5 months ago

    Hi KW. Our pup wouldn’t eat or drink the first few days we brought her home, and didn’t want broth either. The vet suggested a bit of apple juice, which she liked a lot. Then water it down more and more as she gets interested in drinking, until you’re back to just water. I hope she adjusts soon!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Little Bird
  • 5 months ago

    i second the idea of a fountain. the moving water is very attractive to dogs and most all of them come with some sort of carbon filter that keeps the water fresh. you buy replacement filters and put a fresh one in every few weeks. moving water also stays cooler.


    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago
    last modified: 5 months ago

    Thank you all for the great suggestions! I'll try every single one of them & I am looking into that recommended fountain water dispenser. I do have an update for today - some good progress. "Whisper" my pup, peed outside first thing - 6 a.m. Early this afternoon we went for walk for over an hour - the longest she's had with me. There were several wild spots along the way that I could lengthen her leash & let her smell & investigate & act like a dog -wild meaning no front yards that we passed - that's forbidden territory IMO & I always walk with my dog on street side so no slip ups. At one of those wild spots on the way home, she squatted & peed! Yippee! That was @ 1:15 / 7 hours from last pee. And, when we got in the door she went to her water dish and took a very long drink! I know - it takes so little to make me happy! It was the exercise that did it I'm sure but now we'll see if she goes again before bedtime!

    STAX - thank you for your edit of your Greyhound's age! It did make me smile though. Appreciate your note about my rescue vs rehome statement. But, I did think your Greyhound might be a rescue as so many of those racers were being destroyed but I hope not anymore with the public awareness & rescue groups. That's quite a change - Bulldog to Greyhound! I agree that pedigree makes no difference but really I've never had a dog with this camel like tendancy about drinking water! :-)

    Little Bird! Hi my Houzz friend! I'm so glad you found this post. I didn't know how to share my happy news with you after sharing my sad news last August. I can't seem to message you & didn't want to hijack your posts. My husband really wanted another dog in our lives which surprised me. We decided then a mature dog would be better for us & that it could not look like Ginger. We wanted another Papillon as we love the personality. So we went to dog shows again & met people who knew the person we got Ginger from. Connections! That's how we found Whisper. She is same color as Ginger - a red sable - but her markings are very different & Whisper has drop ears / she's a Phalene, not erect ears as Ginger, a Papillon. Also, Whisper is the more typical breed size - 7.3 lbs where Ginger was a tiny 4.4 lbs. We still miss Ginger terribly but our days around our home & in our yard have more life in them this past week. Also - thanks for apple juice tip - her prior owner said she ate apples as a treat so maybe the juice would appeal too.

    Shady Willow - I do understand a dog holding it for extended time during nasty weather. We've experienced that with our cold & wet sometimes torrential PNW winter rains. My concern is this seems to be more a pattern than an exception.

    Hallett - I'll try the watermelon - my last dog liked the watermelon treats she had but turned up her nose at the real thing. I'd never thought of oranges but looked it up & small amounts are A-ok!

  • 5 months ago

    A couple pics of the subject of my post. Whisper’s hair is short - it was cut in September when she had a litter of pups. We’re letting it grow out to the beautiful coat it was! But looking at her curled up tail in the 3rd pic, it’s easy to see why they call Papillons ”Squirrel Dogs”. They do love to chase squirrels too as most dogs do.







  • 5 months ago

    Oh my goodness, what a cutie! You must be so in love! I’m glad to hear that she seems to be turning a corner. It can be hard for a dog to adjust to a new place, even if it’s a warm and welcoming home like yours. I’m not sure why I don’t have messages; might be a setting I don’t turn on. But feel free to hijack any of my posts - I’m always happy to hear from you, dear friend!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Little Bird
  • 5 months ago

    she's so cute!!! sounds like she's beginning to feel at home, yay!!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago

    10:45 PM - last out before bedtime - SUCCESS! That’s 3 times today! Good day / Good night all! 😁

  • 5 months ago
    last modified: 5 months ago

    Hello - wanted to give you a bit of update. Whisper had her first check in with our established Vet. She did well & was pronounced in good health. Weighed in at 7.2 lbs so she’s now at a healthy weight. Our Vet noted that it’s obvious she’s a show dog by the way she stood very still allowing Vet to poke, prod & feel her body. Very calm. Her UA showed no issues so low water intake & urine output not a physical problem. We did get a Pet Safe brand circulating water fountain for her yesterday. She’s pretty leary of it. She did lean in to check it out then went to her water bowl that was placed close to it. 🤣 Really big news is that she went to laundry room door & sat. That’s the door we always use to take her outside. My husband dashed out with her & she ran down to yard & got right down to business! Yippeee! Today was sunny & dry so I took advantage of that to do some maple tree pruning. I got Whisper a bright color fleece coat to wear for warmth while in back yard with me so that I can spot her in undergrowth. She spent over an hour scouting for squirrels & birds & just sniffing, exploring and being a dog. Great day for both of us!

  • 5 months ago

    thanks for the awesome update! i bet it was pure pleasure for your vet to have such a cooperative little girl!

    it may take her a while to figure the fountain out. a few of my past danes were leery at first but took to it after a while. pippin almost always uses the fountain yet i have to keep a bucket of water out for her brother because he's a big chicken. 😂




    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago

    Hilarious! Our pet’s personalities are so much fun to figure out. Isn’t is just amazing how we arrange our home’s functions for the convenience of our beloved pets? My dad said more than once that if reincarnation is really a thing that he hoped to come back as one of my pets.

  • 5 months ago
    last modified: 5 months ago

    My dad said more than once that if reincarnation is really a thing that he hoped to come back as one of my pets.

    my dad used to say the very same thing to me!!! how funny! i would almost (not quite, just almost) be embarrassed to tell you the lengths i have gone to to rearrange things for the convenience of my dogs. i recently traded my SUV for a mini van to make it easier for them to get in and out because let's face it, lifting dogs that outweigh me by as much as 30# just ain't gonna happen!

    on occasion, i will fill frank's bucket with bleach water to disinfect it. i leave it in the kitchen sink for a few hours. he is so averse to using the fountain, he does this instead...



    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago
    last modified: 5 months ago

    Nina - your pics of your pups drinking water reminds me just how massive Danes are - a 5 gal bucket for snout to fit into & a tall bird bath so easily reached! Wow! Certainly looks like you have the space & property for them. Trading for a mini van really makes so much sense for helping you as well as them! The lower threshold makes it easier to load more than big dogs. Looking at your pics reminded me of a funny thing we saw happen many years ago with a Great Dane. Years ago when we lived in Omaha courtesy of the USAF, we saw a Harlequin Great Dane walking down the sidewalk. The dog alone created an impressive sight but seeing the dog along side its diminutive owner was attracting quite some attention. A young boy called out to his mom - “Look - a Dalmatian!” This statement was made funny because there was a revival of the old Disney movie 101 Dalmatians playing at the theater just down the block.

  • 5 months ago

    We have water bowls in three locations around the house…our kitchen, master bathroom and lower level (in the summer another is placed outside)—he drinks from all of them.

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Missy Bee
  • 5 months ago

    Hi Missy Bee - yes, having water available wherever our pets spend most of their time is very important. We also have 3 water bowls available - kitchen, upstairs bonus & laundry. We also have a water bottle in car with lid to drink from for when we’re out about with dog in tow. Outside water in summer is really important too.

  • 5 months ago

    i've had danes for over 16 years and i often forget how they must look to others, especially people who have never been up close and personal to one. so often i hear "who's walking who?" but that's just never a problem for me because i strive to train good leash manners. one of my past danes was a harlequin and one time, a little boy said to his mom, "that lady's walking a COW!" 😂

    i live on 20+ acres way out in the country and have a huge part of my section of the farm fenced. we also make lots of trips to town 10 minutes away and i turn them loose in the 4-H fairgrounds horse arena where they can run full speed until they wear themselves out. we go early in the day because those trips always lead to 3-4 hour naps and that's when i get lots of non-dog stuff done!






    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago

    Nina - great action shots of —- Frank? It’s easy to forget Danes are so agile & fast. I know they were used for hunting and also that they can run!

  • 5 months ago

    frank is a true ninja, he can jump and twist and run like the wind. there are times when i hold my breath and pray he doesn't blow out a knee but there's just no keeping him down. pippin (the brindle) is also very agile and loves to play but she wears out sooner even though she is a couple of years younger than frank who will be 6 next spring. pip turns 4 in february, she's been with me since she was 11 months old. frank arrived like a bulldozer 18 months ago. he strolled in as if to say "hey, frank's here and it's time to get this party started!"

    they bonded the instant they laid eyes on each other for the first time. 💘

    sorry, i seem to be hijacking your thread!





    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago

    Nina - Oh my goodness - those two are such a pair! It really warms my heart to see happy doggies. I bet most of us are used to seeing the regal stance of Great Danes but never see this playful dog side. It’s eye opening! The ”Big Smooch” is priceless! Is that a trained trick or was it a spontaneous occurance? I recognized that Pippin is a brindle but what is Frank’s coloration called? It’s something I’ve seen in Aussies but never in a Dane. You’re definitely not hijacking my thread - we can all use some lightness and joy in our discussions with our friends these days - both virtual and IRL!

  • 5 months ago

    Nina, Frank and Pippin - what a love story! Heartwarming…. Your picture of Eden - what a silly doggie! My suggestion is that if you haven’t already done it - gather your wonderful portfolio of Dane pictures and create something with them for many to enjoy! You have a gift!

  • 5 months ago

    you're so sweet, KW! i have often had people suggest i should write a children's book about frank and pippin. i wouldn't even know where to start.

    i often have to pause whatever i'm watching on t.v. because their favorite game of "bitey face", apparently, needs to be played up close and personal. i wonder if they think i should participate? 😂



    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago

    A children’s book with photos, not drawings! Perfect! Even their names lend themselves to a great title - “Frank and Pippin Share their Life of Love” Maybe their bitey face game is their opinion and reaction to what’s on the news? 😊

  • 5 months ago
    last modified: 5 months ago

    Maybe their bitey face game is their opinion and reaction to what’s on the news? 😊

    😂😂😂 you win the internet today!!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Ninapearl
  • 5 months ago

    It sounds like things are going well! My advice would be to try different types of bowls. My dogs definitely prefer ceramic bowls over plastic or metal water bowls. Perhaps your pup has a preference also? Pic of my papillon/cavalier King Charles mix

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Laura S
  • 5 months ago

    Hi Laura,

    Thanks for your advice. I did change out the original main bowl in kitchen about a week ago & Whisper did take a couple drinks from it soon after. I’d read that sometimes it’s a simple as a bowl change so I thought to try it. It’s a much wider bowl - too big it looks like but -hey - if she thinks it’s better, who am I to disagree! 😊 Both bowls are ceramic but this new bowl is much wider. I’d put a deep & narrow bowl down first thinking it’d be better to keep her drop ears dry as her hair grows out & gets back to the longer look. Your pup is so cute - I can see the King Charles in features and the Papillon in the markings / coloring. It’s funny that watching Whisper explore in her new backyard is reminding me of my parents Shih Tzu - both parents & Shih Tzu gone - the demeanor while in my back yard & what she’s interested in & focusing on is so similar to their dog. Whisper is so very different than my little Ginger was & for that I’m happy. We weren’t looking for a replacement but wanted that happiness and fun that dogs add to our lives back in our home. This is my Ginger that we had to say goodbye to.




    This is Whisper, our new companion




    They are the two different versions of Papillon - erect eared & drop eared or ”Phalene” as they’re called. Whisper is the more typical size at 7.2 lbs.. Ginger was tiny at 4.4 lbs. Ginger drank lots of water & pretty much pottied on command. Whisper - well, as you read from my post, is a work in progress!

  • 4 months ago
    last modified: 4 months ago

    Hello everyone,

    An update on my initial issue - water intake & output. I did get a small Petsafe brand 50 0z capacity water fountain dish for Whisper. Big fail. She seemed afraid of it. Maybe a good thing as the bubbling fountain in my kitchen wasn’t working for me either! I do have a big outdoor water feature that I can hear in kitchen with doors open in spring / summer & that's ok. The water dish now lives with a neighbor who brought in a beautiful all black stray cat & is challenged with making it happy being an indoor only cat. ”Punkin” loves it! But, my good news is that Whisper, my new friend, is now going pee 4 times daily reliably! No more 12 hour hold it in stuff! First thing in morning, just before bed & twice in between. She’s also drinking from two of her water dishes a couple times a day. Great progress! She doesn’t make it obvious when she needs to go out but does twirl in happy circles if we ask her if she wants to go out & runs to laundry room door - so she is making the connection of where to go to get outside. I wonder if her bladder is being retrained / reprogrammed from her prior structured life to our more relaxed style. I am still keeping a log of successful outdoor trips so I can verify & see our progress. She continues to surprise us - she’s so much more confident out on walks in new places & going into places where dogs are welcome - Petsmart / Home Depot etc. She’s gaining confidence and seems to like going for rides too. Happy New Year to all of you!

  • 4 months ago

    Our long haired chi (10#) looks a bit like ginger….

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Missy Bee
  • 4 months ago

    KW, I’m happy to hear that Whisper is doing so well! I love her long pretty ears, very glamorous. Libby, on the other hand, is having a bad hair day

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Little Bird
  • 4 months ago
    last modified: 4 months ago

    Hi Little Bird! How was your trip? Fabulous & a grand experience I hope! Did Libby have a spa vacation while you were away? 😊 Her ears are huge on that little body! Her ear fringe is so pretty. She looks camera shy - a book I have on ”dog language” notes that most dogs turn away from a camera - interesting - how do they even know what it is? Unless it’s the attention focused on them while having picture taken.

    Missy Bee - your Chi does look part Pap! It’s her markings - amazing. Her tail looks quite full too. Does she carry it curled over her back? That’s a Pap trait too. We were often asked if Ginger was a long haired Chi by those unfamiliar with Paps. We thought the guess was due to her size - tiny like Little Bird’s Libby - and also her ears. I found a forum with a long discussion about the difference in their ears - how the hair grows on each breed’s ears & the position of the ear set on each breed’s head. Interesting - maybe only to a person have one of either breed though! 😁

    Whisper’s hair is growing out - I’m thinking of trimming a bit around legs & her ears which seem to be different lengths. I have to admit that it’s much easier to keep all the fir tree needles out of her shorter hair & she’s such an explorer in back yard that she’s under & behind every shrub so she picks up a lot of debris. This pic looks like she’s having a bad hair day too - she’s been out in wet yard.



    Her new trick - standing on top of her sleep crate to look outside. Perfect height for low windows. I now have to raise the blinds daily so she can see outside better. She’s so much bigger / taller than Ginger was & so has a higher jumping range - something we’re getting used to.



  • 4 months ago

    Haha, I think Libby was looking away because she knew she was having a bad hair day. Here, she’s looking right at the camera. Whisper looks like she’s a very happy dog!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Little Bird
  • 4 months ago

    Very pretty girl!

    KW PNW Z8 thanked Missy Bee