The Best Pet Fountain for Cats and Dogs
A source of clean running water encourages pets to drink—which can play an important role in long-term health, especially for cats. After three years of testing, we still think that the Catit Flower Pet Fountain is easier to maintain and easier for pets to drink out of than any other electric fountain we found.
How we picked
Easy to clean
We preferred models with dishwasher-safe parts that are easy to assemble and disassemble.
High water capacity
We favored larger water fountains that need fewer refills.
Low noise level
We opted for quieter water fountains that won’t disturb pet owners in the middle of the night.
A nice silhouette
We selected aesthetically-pleasing models that won’t look out of place in most homes.
The Pet Fountain was the easiest to operate because it’s simple to clean, a cinch to maintain, and very quiet. Its smooth surfaces, lack of crevices, and the small number of parts made cleaning and reassembling a breeze. While not explicitly dishwasher-safe, our test unit survived a trip on the top rack, and many people who’ve reviewed it indicate that it holds up over time as well. It holds enough water that you'll need to fill it only once or twice a week and replace the filter about every month. We also like that it runs silently, so long as it’s not running low on water. Like with almost every model we tested, the pump on the Catit fountain makes grinding noises when it's running low on water, but the sound isn’t as grating as it is with most other models. ;
Things you didn’t know about pet fountains
Just like you, it’s important for your pets to be well hydrated. A pet plastic drinking fountain offers many benefits for your furry friends as well as for you – they provide your dog or cat with access to fresh, clean water at any time while giving you peace of mind when you’re out and about.
1. Pet fountains improve the taste and smell of water
Cats and dogs both have an incredible sense of smell – indeed, depending on the breed, a dog’s sniffing power is around 10,000-100,000 times more superior than ours! So, even though we may not detect them, there are chemicals in tap water, which can give it a not-so-pleasant aroma which our cat’s and dog’s sensitive noses pick up straight away. Pet fountains will not only entice your furry friends, but most include filters that remove impurities from tap water and improve the taste and smell, again encouraging your four-legged friends to drink more.
2. They keep things cool
Did you know a pet fountain can keep the water 1-2 degrees cooler than a traditional water bowl? By keeping everything cool, flowing, and full of oxygen, your closest companions will be fully refreshed!
We’ve all heard the phrase ‘the dog days of summer', and the hottest time of year is when dogs and cats risk becoming dehydrated, so the cool water will coax them to keep topped up. Encouraging pets to drink is especially important for cats, as they aren’t inclined to drink much – in the wild, they’d get most of their water intake from their food. Regular drinking helps prevent health problems as well as an unpleasant vet bill. It aids digestion and helps flush out toxins that may build-up, which can cause kidney or urinary tract disease – research shows this can sadly be a leading cause of death in older cats.
3. They help you say goodbye to constant refills
Pet fountains can hold anything from one to over six litres of water. Pets need different quantities of water, depending on their size and the type of food they eat. By offering up to six litres, your four-legged friends will never go thirsty – they can dip in and out as they please, whether you’re at home or out and about. Not to mention the fact it means you don’t have to keep refilling the bowl every five minutes – especially if you have several fluffy friends!
4. They’re more hygienic than a traditional water bowl
Pet fountains not only do their bit to help prevent parchedness, but the circulating water can also stop any nasty build-ups in their tracks, keeping water clean and safe. What’s more, the filters in pet fountains will trap dirt and fur and any other nasties, and remove any chlorine and grotty odors.
Pet Ceramic Fountain
when diligently & responsibly made, do not wear or oxidize, Pet Ceramic Fountains can take heat and pressure and are resistant to chemical attack, they do not deteriorate in sunlight as does plastic and they exhibit extreme hardness. If properly made of quality materials and high fired to 2,232° F, the glaze penetrates into, binds with, and becomes a part of the clay so it can’t wear off. It is an impervious, utterly non-porous glass skin that is inseparable from the clay body.
Equally as important, they do not become scratched so don’t harbor bacteria and they do not develop biofilm. There is no environmental impact from the creation of ceramic pet fountains and every component that goes into the creation of a ceramic cat fountain comes from the earth. A well made ceramic pet fountain is food safe and with reasonable care should last a lifetime.
A ceramic fountain is not 100% food safe if it contains any toxic elements such as lead or any toxic colorants, or if it has too much of any colorant (which can leach out). For the fountain to be durable the clay needs to be of a certain density. (A less dense clay and the use of lead which greatly lowers the melting temperature of a glaze, both lower firing costs). As none of this is regulated in many countries, none of this can be known for any Chinese or foreign-made ceramic cat fountain which does not certify food safety.
Stainless Steel Cat Fountains
Generally, stainless steel pet fountains don’t become scratched and if they are made of all or mostly all metal they won’t harbor bacteria but be sure to examine them thoroughly to make sure there are no significant components made of plastic. Here are two commonly sold stainless steel pet fountains both of lightweight steel and one with considerable plastic.
There Are Many Classifications of Stainless Steel
Some stainless steel pet bowls made overseas have been found to contain lead and radioactive metals. There are also many thickness grades of stainless steel, so quality can vary. If too flimsy, they won’t last and may rust, even though they are stated to be rust-proof. It can be helpful to read some reviews, (though beware, up to 60% of these types of reviews on Amazon were paid for by shady third party companies or the manufacturers themselves). So when it comes to shopping on Amazon, just make sure to be extra vigilant and don’t take what is written ; as gospel. It can be highly informative to watch videos on Youtube to see what owners of these fountains have to say and to see what they show.
Plastic, ceramic, or stainless steel cat bowls? Why stainless steel cat bowls are safest!
PROS AND CONS OF STAINLESS STEEL CAT BOWLS ;
+ Sanitary and germ-resistant, because bacteria cannot enter hard, non-porous surface
+ Long-lasting and won’t easily scratch, stain, or rust despite constant use
+ Easy to clean and dishwasher safe
+ Attractive, modern look
- Quality may vary depending on grade of stainless steel
Rationale: Based on our testing, stainless steel is the best material for cat bowls. Frequently used in medical equipment and in cooking because of its antibacterial qualities, stainless steel is safest for cats. Its cleanliness and durability cannot be beat. ;
However, not all stainless steel cat bowls are created equally. Some bowls made overseas have been found to contain lead and other radioactive metals. Also, there are hundreds of grades of stainless steel, so quality can vary greatly. ;
PROS AND CONS OF PLASTIC CAT BOWLS
+ Inexpensive given light weight ;
- Can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Plastic cat bowls develop scratches over time. Scratches and plastic's porous surface trap bacteria, which thrive on leftover food and saliva
- Cannot be fully cleaned. Washing only cleans smooth surfaces, not bacteria within tiny scratches ;
- May cause cat acne. A cat's chin can become inflamed and infected from bacteria on plastic bowls
- May contain BPA, phthalates, and other toxins that can leach into food
Rationale: Although plastic cat bowls can be inexpensive, you get what you pay for. They can pose a number of risks. Cats can develop an infection or feline acne from bacteria in the cracks of a plastic bowl. They may also contain BPA, phthalates, and other potentially harmful toxins.
PROS AND CONS OF CERAMIC CAT BOWLS
+ Can feature fun, artistic designs
- Can develop chips or cracks, which harbor bacteria similar to plastic cat bowls
- Can shatter and break easily. Sharp shards can injure you or your cat
- Glaze may contain lead or other toxins that are not foodsafe
Rationale: Ceramic cat bowls are safer than plastic. But, their fragileness, ability to harbor bacteria if not glazed properly, and potentially toxic paint make them a gamble.
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