Fountains can be bought with a capacity ranging from one litre to over five. The larger the capacity, the less it should have to be topped up over the week, but the harder the filter will probably have to work too, so it is all about finding balance.
There are roughly two choices – mains and battery. The former is usually the least bother but you are restricted to certain placements and ensuring there are no trip hazards, and that your cat won’t be drawn in by the power cable.
Batteries are a good idea for anyone who wants to have a flexible placement or maybe doesn’t like the idea of their plugs being on all day if nobody is in to watch what is going on. Batteries do tend to last a few months, and they are also a good idea for anyone who is maybe going to be leaving a fresh supply of water outside or in an outbuilding for an outdoor cat.
There are a few models around which don’t need any power at all but they tend to be dispensers as opposed to a fountain, so the water in the bowl is only replaced when drunk out of. Some others use gravity to draw in old water, but this is at a much slower rate than electronic models.
This is how many power or speed settings are on the unit, as in how fast you can choose the water to flow. Ones which can be adjusted to low are good for more nervous cats, who don’t like noise or movement.
Quicker flows will usually keep the water the absolute freshest though as it will be sitting there for less time.
Often a choice between plastic, ceramic and stainless steel.
The latter two are the best for ensuring a clear, neutral flavour of your water, and they are also the best at keeping bacteria at bay. The former is the most popular, however, and is great for keeping the price low if you want something under £50. But it can become scratched and worn over time which reduces how well it can stay clean, and some give off an odd smell which may be off-putting.
How To Get Your Cat Used To A Water Fountain
If they aren’t used to drinking out of them then it could be a big deal. Keep it off but filled with water at first so they understand that this is their new water source and it isn’t a scary item. Then take it slow; maybe pop the fountain on for a few hours per day or every two days just to get them used to the noise and splashing.
If they drink from it, give them a reward. Continue this until they are going and drinking out of the fountain of their own accord.