Why do cats drink from the toilet?

Since you discovered that your cat was drinking water from the toilet, you systematically close the bowl. And for good reason, you find it quite disgusting! But what you don’t understand is how an animal like a cat, so strict about hygiene, can prefer to drink from the toilet rather than from its bowl. Especially since their overpowered sense of smell should make them smell the many germs that are there… So how can such behavior be explained?

1. They love moving water

You may have already noticed that your cat prefers to drink water that comes directly from the tap rather than that which is in its bowl. The explanation is very simple: our feline friends prefer moving water to stagnant water because they have learned, in nature, that the latter could be contaminated by bacteria.

In addition, flowing water fascinates them, whether by sound or by the movement it produces. So it’s no wonder our little furballs are drawn to the whirlwind of the toilet flush.

2. Toilet water is cleaner

Believe it or not, the water in your toilet is cleaner than the water in your cat’s bowl. Indeed, the water in the toilet bowl is constantly renewed. It is therefore always clean and fresh, which gives it a purer taste. On the other hand, the water in their bowl is immobile for several hours, even several days. It can therefore contain hair, food and all kinds of other impurities.

Thus, cats do not perceive the toilet bowl as a disgusting place but as a large container always filled with fresh water. In addition, they have the particularity of having a mouth full of microorganisms capable of eliminating contaminants from the toilet.

3. They want to be away from their water bowl.

As we said above, cats perceive their water bowl as a danger to their survival, since it promotes the development of bacteria. Thus, they prefer to drink in places away from this stagnant water, places that it could not contaminate.

However, the toilet bowl is generally far enough from their water bowl. By drinking directly from it, they are therefore guaranteed to find fresh and healthy water. In addition, the toilet is often a quiet place where they know they will not be disturbed.

How to prevent your cat from drinking in the toilet? 

In order to prevent your cat from drinking water from the toilet, it is essential to provide them with an attractive water bowl. For this, it is better to opt for a ceramic or stainless steel bowl, materials that give off less odors than plastic. The bowl should be wide so that their whiskers, which are very sensitive, do not touch the edges. In addition, it is necessary to change the water regularly (2-3 times a day) and place several bowls in the house, including one next to the toilet.

On the other hand, be careful never to place a bowl of water next to your cat’s litter box! This would have the effect of disgusting them and preventing them from drinking (yes cats drink in the toilet but they don’t want to drink next to their litter box…).

Finally, if you notice that your cat is particularly attracted to moving water, consider investing in a water fountain. The water is constantly filtered and therefore always clean and fresh! However, remember to clean it regularly otherwise your cat will return to drink in the toilet…

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