Dog Daily Water Requirement

By Manuel Villanueva, 2004, Updated 10/2/20

Definitions & Formulas

daily energy requirement (DER)
DER represents the average daily energy expenditure of any animal, dependent on lifestage and activity.
resting energy requirement (RER)
RER represents the energy requirement for a normal but fed animal at rest in a thermoneutral environment.
dog daily water requirement
The daily water requirement of dogs and cats, expressed in milliliters/day, is roughly equivalent to the daily energy requirement (DER) in kilocalories/day (for dogs 1.6 x resting energy requirement [RER], for cats 1.2 x RER).
dog daily water requirement
(70 × (Weight in Kilograms)0.75) × 1.6 = milliliters/day

Example

What is the daily water requirement of a 24 pound cocker spaniel?

  • 24 pounds converted to kilograms (24 ÷ 2.2) is 10.91 kg
  • (70 × (10.91)0.75) × 1.6
  • 70 × 6 × 1.6
  • 420 x 1.6 = 672 milliliters (ml)
  • 672 ml = (672 / 236.6) 2.84 cups or 2 cups & (0.84 x 8) 6.72 ounces

General Rule

I hope you found this page interesting and informational. Although, a dog's water requirements are dynamic and very day to day. ALWAYS PROVIDE YOUR DOG WITH CLEAN FRESH WATER unless your vet specifies otherwise. Your dog is the best judge of how much water he needs. Just keep that bowl full 😁

Water Requirements for Cocker Spaniels

This applies to pets lying around the house. Pets playing outdoors will need more water.

American Cocker Spaniel

24-28 pounds

672-755 ml/day

English Cocker Spaniel

26-34 pounds

714-873 ml/day

For Dogs at Risk for Kidney Stones

  • Ensure multiple bowls of fresh water are available in prominent locations in the dog's environment. This may mean providing several bowls outside as well as inside including each level of the home.

  • Add small amounts of flavoring (e.g. salt-free bouillon) to make water more palatable.

  • Offer ice cubes as treats.

  • Use canned dog food to help prevent concentrated urine.

  • If dry food is used, add liberal amounts of water.

Anecdote

This seems like a lot of water but don't forget your pet gets water from his food as well. Dry foods contain around 8% water while canned food contains about 75% water. I've search several sources on their recommendation with varying results. Information by the Canadian government suggests dogs should have 80 milliliters of water per kilogram of body weight. Veterinarian, Janet Tobiassen Crosby, recommends dogs and cats should have 30 milliliters of water per pound of body weight which comes close to the formula on this page.

I've never really paid attention to how much my cocker Gabby drinks. His bowl holds 2 ½ cups of water. It seldom goes empty but then again we're always filling it with fresh water. He's a fat boy at 36 pounds so he should need about 4 cups of water a day.

References

  • Hand, M. S., Thatcher, C. D., Rimillard, R. L., & Roudebush, P. (Eds.). (2000) Small Animal Clinical Nutrition. (4th ed.). Marceline, MO: Walsworth.
  • Warrington, P. D. (2001, September 17). Animal weights and their food and water requirements. Retrieved from http://www.elp.gov.bc.ca/wat/wq/reference/foodandwater.html
  • Tobiassen, J. C. (n.d.). Veterinary Q & A - Should I Call The Vet? Part I. Retrieved September 19, 2005, from http://vetmedicine.about.com/cs/diseasesall/a/whentocallvet.htm