10 Reasons to Add Water to Your Dog’s Dry Food – PETSHORT


As a child, I remember my Mom preparing our dog’s dry food, or kibble, for meals.

She added in lots of things to make it more nutritious and engaging, including water.

This was before the web so she should have learned it from a book, magazine, or it was passed along from knowledgeable dog owners.

A number of years ago I believed I heard some “recent information” about this practice that said that what she had been doing was mistaken – that it’s a very bad idea so as to add water to dry kibble.

But I’ve done it myself through the years for various reasons and, logically, it didn’t make sense that it was harmful.

So I made a decision to do a little analysis to unravel the difficulty – to substantiate that either adding water to kibble was helpful or proof that it was not a very good practice.

Should You Add Water to Dry Dog Food?

I’m unsure where I got the impression that adding water to dry kibble was harmful because my research revealed more advantages than negatives.

The negatives will not be insignificant, but they’re more of a caution, or things to pay attention to, than outright dangers.

Advantages of adding water to your dog’s kibble:

1) Increased hydration

Water is required for all cellular, organ, and tissue functions of the body.

Basically, dogs should eat one ounce per pound of body weight day by day to be sure that they’re hydrated. (source)

In case you dog doesn’t drink enough water, they might be come dehydrated. This, in turn, could lead on to health issues.

Adding water to your dog’s food will help increase their overall fluid intake.

Keep in mind that decreased thirst might be an indication of an underlying medical problem so in case you dog’s drinking habits suddenly and significantly modified, check with your veterinarian.

2) Slows down aggressive eaters

In case your dog has a bent to gulp, gobble, or eat their food very fast, gulpers, adding water to your dog’s dry food may cause them decelerate.

In case your dog eats their food too fast, it may well cause bloat, choking, gagging, and vomiting.

I’ve found that the water method to slow eating is simplest while you add enough water that the kibble barely floats (think bobbing for applies) and I don’t let it soak in.

3) Urinary tract health

A dog’s urinary system is what processes and removes waste from the body and this method will depend on water to maneuver waste through the system.

Adding extra water to your dog’s dry kibble can increase water intake.

4) More easily digested

Moistening dry pet food will help break down the food, making it easier to your dog to digest and absorb the nutrients.

5) Weight reduction

In case your dog must drop some weight, you possibly can replace a part of their normal portion with the same volume of calorie-free water.

Doing this can help your dog feel full and satisfied regardless that they’re eating less kibble.

6) Entice picky eaters

While many dogs are food obsessed, some dogs are picky eaters.

Adding water to melt your dog’s kibble could make it more enticing since it smells and tastes higher, resulting in increased appetite and pleasure of mealtime.

7) Easier to chew

In case your dog has dental issues, missing teeth, or has difficulty chewing, moistening the food could make it easier for them to eat and digest.

8) Cost savings

All pet food has some moisture in it, even dry kibble (you possibly can see this in dietary evaluation breakdown on the back of the package).

But, obviously, dry pet food has less moisture than canned or raw food.

Canned and kibble are typically dearer than kibble, which suggests a part of what you might be paying for is water.

9) Consistency preference

Some dogs may prefer a softer, moister texture of their food, and adding water to dog kibble will help achieve this.

10) Bloat prevention

A dog fed a moist food regimen – raw, canned, or moistened dry food – is far less prone to develop bloat, also generally known as gastric dilatation and volvulus, which is a potentially life-threatening condition in dogs.

Explanation why you would possibly not need to add water to your dog’s dry food:

There are some drawbacks to adding extra water to your dog’s food.

These include:

1) No teeth cleansing motion

I’m mentioning this one since it’s a typical claim that onerous, dry kibble will help your dog’s teeth stay clean on account of the chewing motion.

Nonetheless, this has not been my experience.

First, a dog must actually chew their food for this to be effective, and lots of just swallow it.

Second, my dogs have eaten different diets through the years and I saw no difference within the cleanliness of their teeth regardless of which sort – raw, canned, or dry kibble – they were eating.

Nevertheless it is feasible that chewing hard kibble will help keep some dog’s teeth clean so sofening with water would negate that profit.

Personally, I don’t depend on my dog’s food regimen to assist maintain dental health. As a substitute , I exploit this at-home teeth cleansing technique (it’s not brushing).

2) Increased meal prep time

You’ll see below that it’s best to add the water at supper time after which wait 1-5 minutes for the dry food to melt, thus adding significant time to meal prep.

In case you’re in a rush, or prefer to keep the method and quick and straightforward as possible, then soaking your dog’s dry kibble in water might not be for you.

3) Unappetizing texture

While some dogs prefer to eat soft, moist food, some don’t.

Adding water to your dog’s kibble may make the feel unappetizing and fewer enjoyable.

4) Wasted food

Moistening your dog’s dry pet food can reduce the shelf life.

Since it’s best to place any uneaten soft kibble within the refrigerator, there’s potential for it to dry out and not taste good to your dog.

Also, any moistened kibble ought to be thrown out after 24 hours if not eaten to cut back the risks of spoilage.

Which means that you could end of throwing out a few of the pet food that you just purchase.

5) Water intoxication

Imagine it or not, it is feasible to over-hydrate your dog. It’s called water intoxication, or hyponatremia in medical terms.

In case you add an excessive amount of water to your dog’s food, it’s possible to overhydrate them, which could be harmful to your dog’s health.

When a comparatively great amount of water is consumed in a brief time frame, the balance of electrolytes within the dog’s body is disrupted, which might cause a disturbance in brain function.

Symptoms of water intoxication include staggering, lack of coordination, lethargy, nausea, vomiting, dilated pupils, light gum color, and excessive salivation.

While water intoxication is comparatively rare, and dogs that swim, drink excessive water after exercise, or “catch” pressurized water from the hose are at the best risk, it is feasible it could occur from putting way an excessive amount of water in your dog’s food.

Make Your Own Determination

It’s necessary to make your personal determination when deciding so as to add water to your dog’s dry food or not.

Consider the professionals and cons above and choose in case you think it might help your personal dog.

Then give it a try to see if it really works for you and your dog likes it.

If you might have concerns or notice any negative changes in your dog’s health after adding water to their food, it’s best to stop and seek the advice of together with your veterinarian.

In case you do resolve to place water in your dog’s food at mealtime, follow the directions below.

Learn how to Add Water to Your Dog’s Food

Adding water to your dog’s dry food seems pretty straightforward but there are some nuances to enduring it’s effective and protected.

So as to add water to dry pet food, follow these steps:

  1. Measure out the proper portion of dry food based in your dog’s size, age, and activity level.
  2. Place the dry food in a bowl.
  3. Pour 1 Tbsp. to 1/4 c lukewarm water (not hot or boiling, water over the food to stop any risk of them burning their mouth), deepening on the quantity of food and the scale of your dog, over the kibble.
  4. Gently mix it with a spoon to assist moisten all the pieces.
  5. Let the food soak for 1-5 minutes until it reaches the specified consistency (typically, partially softened but not mush).
  6. Stir the food again to evenly distribute the water and softened kibble pieces.
  7. Serve the moistened food to your dog immediately.

Put any moistened food your dog didn’t eat within the refrigerator to supply at the following meal.

In case your dog doesn’t eat it after 24 hours, throw it out to cut back the chance of it spoiling or becoming contaminated with bacteria.

Alternatives to Water

Adding water to your dog’s kibble is the only solution to gain the advantages of moistened kibble.

Nevertheless it’s not the one way.

There are other liquids which you can use that can nutritionally enhance your dog’s meal.

Bone Broth

There are lots of advantages of bone broth to your dog, including promoting a healthy gut, supporting the immune system, and tempting picky dogs.

Bone broth can be a natural source of glucosamine to assist support healthy joints and cartilage.

You’ll be able to buy pre-made bone broth at most pet stores or use this easy bone broth recipe to make your personal.

Goat’s milk

While your dog shouldn’t drink cow’s milk, goat’s milk raw goat’s milk incorporates far less lactose than cow’s milk and is usually protected.

Goat’s milk is a source of probiotics, that are good for digestive health, and will help generally support dog’s with health issues.

Dog hydration/electrolytes drink

In case your dog is dehydrated, vomiting, or has diarrhea, they could need electrolytes along with extra water.

Electrolytes help to take care of normal fluid balance within the blood and tissues.

You’ll be able to add electrolytes to your dog’s meal by utilizing something like Nulo Hydrate or Vet Classics Pet-A-Lyte (affiliate links) rather than plain water.

Final Thoughts

There are lots of advantages to adding water to your dog’s dry food like helping to stop dehydration, increased digestibility, making it easier to chew, and helping with weight reduction.

You may as well swap out all or a part of the plain water with other liquids, like goat’s milk, bone broth, or oral electrolyte solutions, for extra advantages.

If you might have concerns or notice any negative changes in your dog’s health after adding water to their food, it’s best to stop and seek the advice of together with your veterinarian.


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