Image for article titled Yes, Your Dog Can Drink Too Much Water (and How to Tell)

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Like people, canines can get overheated in heat or scorching climate. However not like us, they’ll’t use phrases to inform us after they want a break or some water on a sweltering day. They do ship us indicators, although—like panting, searching for out (and sitting in) the shade, and plopping themselves down (wherever they really feel prefer it) and refusing to stroll any farther. And if we, as their people, ignore them, our pups can overheat, or even get heatstroke.

A giant a part of maintaining canines protected in scorching climate is ensuring they’re consuming sufficient water. And whereas your pooch could also be more than pleased to come back in from the yard and chug all of the water of their bowl after which let you already know that they need extra, it’s vital to remember the fact that canines may drink too a lot water and turn into overhydrated. Right here’s what to know.

What occurs when a canine drinks an excessive amount of water

Overhydration—a uncommon, however harmful situation formally referred to as “hyponatremia,” however generally known as “water intoxication” or “water poisoning”—happens when a canine drinks a large amount of water in a short period of time.


It tends to occur most often when canines have access to a source of water apart from their typical bowl—like in the event that they’re taking part in in a stream or lake, strolling close to a pitch, or frolicking within the sprinkler for hours at a time.

Like people, when canines drink an excessive amount of water, it throws their electrolyte ranges off stability and depletes their sodium ranges to the purpose the place it could actually turn into harmful.

The symptoms of overhydration in dogs

While water intoxication is rare, it can be fatal in dogs, so it’s important to be familiar with the indicators and signs so you may take motion immediately, if crucial.


The most common symptoms embody:

  • Lack of coordination
  • Lethargy
  • Bloating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Drooling
  • Dilated pupils
  • Glazed eyes
  • Pale gums
  • Extreme salivation.

Extra extreme instances can also contain the canine:

  • Having problem respiratory
  • Collapsing
  • Dropping consciousness
  • Having seizures

Once more, every part occurs fairly shortly: Comas and demise can happen in a matter of some hours and even much less, so in case your canine is displaying any of the signs above, it’s greatest to get them to their vet right away.


Present the vet with as a lot data as doable, like how a lot water your canine may need drank (if you already know), whether or not they had been taking part in within the water (and for roughly how lengthy), and the place the water got here from (e.g. the faucet, a stream, a ditch, and many others.).

How a lot water ought to canines be consuming in scorching climate?

The quantity of water your canine must drink on a scorching day (or any day, actually), will depend on a number of factors, together with their dimension, age, exercise stage, weight loss plan, and the way a lot time they’re spending outdoor within the warmth and humidity, versus inside an air conditioned house.


The general rule is that canines ought to drink roughly one ounce of water (1/8 of a cup) per pound of physique weight every day. Anticipate them to drink extra on scorching days, and through/after they’ve exercised. You may also use a water consumption calculator, like this one, to do the maths for you.

Sadly, as a result of water intoxication occurs most frequently when dogs are playing in the water and taking it in unintentionally (like when taking part in catch or swimming, versus intentionally consuming it), all these mouthfuls can add up shortly, making it laborious to gauge their precise consumption.


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