How much water is your cat drinking?

Dr. Gary Edelson, DVM

Ask Dr. Gary

"My cat keeps drinking and drinking and drinking..."


Dear Dr. Gary:

For some reason all of a sudden my indoor 8-year-old tabby cat, Stripes, is drinking a lot of water. What is going on?


Dr. Gary says:

Excessive water consumption by dogs or cats is never normal unless it occurs after a change to a salty diet. The most common causes are diabetes, urinary tract infections, kidney disease, and over production of cortisol caused by a tumor.  

When a pet begins to drink more than usual, it is time to see your veterinarian. The veterinarian would start by checking both the blood and urine of your pet. Urine testing can even be performed at home using the Petnostics urine test kit. Results are easily shareable with your veterinarian. Depending on the results, further testing like urine culture and abdominal ultrasound may be necessary to let you know what is the best treatment plan.

If caught early, most of the diseases responsible for increased water consumption are treatable and can return Stripes to a normal life after changing the diet and administering the proper medication.

Do you have pet diabetes or health questions? Ask Dr. Gary, email him at

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