Clean Water - A Basic Life Requirement
Dogs should always have access to clean water for a number of reasons:
Water is needed for every bodily function. Water dissolves nutrients to prepare them for digestion and transports them through the intestinal wall.
If s dog is denied water he would not usually survive for more than a few days. If the body loses only 10% of the water it needs then the dog can become seriously ill.
Dogs drink about ten times a day on average (dependent on type of food fed, ambient temperature, and various other influences).
Dry food and kibble lead to the need for more water.
If a dog drinks insufficient water then the urine becomes too concentrated and stones and crystals can form. And bacteria also feed off the nutrients in urine so it is important to keep this concentration of nutrients low.
Water lubricates and cushions the joints, and makes movement easier.
The spinal cord and other internal tissues are cushioned by water.
Water also serves to cool the body down and works to maintain a normal body temperature.
As a rule of thumb, a dog should drink approximately half to one ounce of water per pound of body weight each day (30-60g per kg).
However, having access to clean water is not always sufficient. You should be aware of how much water your dog normally drinks, and monitor for any changes in this – if a dog becomes unwell, it may not drink sufficient water of its own free will, and it may be necessary to bait the water.
If the dog is less mobile (due to age, or health) then it might be necessary to assist the dog to the water, or bring water to the dog.
Also note that the water provided should be filtered water, not tap water. Normal tap water contains high mineral elements, particularly calcium and magnesium, and there has been shown to be a direct health link between this and urinary health issues. Also, if your water has fluoride added, this should definitely be avoided.