Any cat owner will argue that cats can be some of the greatest companions in life. Naturally, if you’re like me, you’ll want to give them gifts when milestones such as birthdays come around. How do you choose a present for a cat, though? They don’t need much – food, water, a bed, and maybe a toy – limiting the creative aspect to gift-giving! I faced this dilemma this week when my cat turned three. After some serious research, I determined she might just like a water fountain.
Cats love flowing water because their instincts tell them that stagnant water could be contaminated. The last thing your cat wants is to expose themselves to bacteria, fungi, or parasites that might be lurking and festering their water source. This is why your cat might seek flowing water from your faucet to safely quench their thirst. Without flowing water, cats can become dehydrated even if there is plenty of water in their bowl. Water fountains are viewed as a solution to cat hydration problems and not as a luxury for your animal; they are recommended by many vets to keep your pets healthy.
There are many water fountain options available for your feline friend, making it difficult to know which model to get. When I searched for the right one for my cat, there were many things to consider. In the past, many water fountains were difficult to clean after inevitably being clogged with fur. Through diligent browsing, I found one that should stand the test of time: the Veken Pet Water Fountain.
First: Meet Toodles
Toodles turned three on Thursday. She’s come a long way since we found her under a U-haul as a six-week-old kitten. I fell for her adorable over-sized ears and her instant love. We connected almost immediately, and there was no option for me but to keep her. Toodles was her place- holder name until we got her to the vet the next day to make sure there were no issues that prevented us from keeping her (we had another cat already). However, the name stuck! Luckily, it suits her, though, as she’s a bit out to lunch.
Obsession with Drinking Fresh Water Develops
Toodles learned to drink water from the faucet at an early age after seeing the other cat, Fiona, doing the same thing. Toodles would sit by the sink and look at me with large begging eyes, desperate for the tap to be turned and delicious cold water to flow. Despite hating this habit (I find it frustrating when I’m trying to brush my teeth and there’s a cat in the sink), it’s impossible not to give in to that cute face. . I am a sucker when it comes to making Toodles happy. However, it turned out that the daily dribble at the sink wasn’t sufficiently satiating her water addiction.
Toodles drinks water from the bathtub too. She perches on the side of the tab, leans in, and drinks what seems like gallons at a time (see pictures above). I’m confused by this. Undoubtedly it tastes soapy from my bubble bath, and the water was warm. I didn’t understand the appeal. What’s worse is that she drinks the water left at the bottom of the tub after a bath or a shower. That’s pretty disgusting if you ask me.
In an attempt to break these habits, I thought a water fountain might do the trick. Her birthday seemed like a good excuse to get it, too! Additionally, Toodles moved this summer when my girlfriend and I moved in together. She is now one of five cats! With so many fur-babies around, I felt confident that one of them would like it! So, it wouldn’t go to waste even if Toodles was aloof toward it.
Considerations for a Pet Water Fountain
There are so many cat water fountains out on the market; it can be hard to select a model. There are many features to consider: size, noise, water flow, refrigeration, power supply, pump power, water flow rate, filtration, price, and footprint size. With all these factors, deciding on the right model can be a labyrinth that’s hard to navigate.
After some extensive internet shopping, I decided to buy the Veken Pet Water Fountain for Toodles and her four feline siblings. It had everything I was looking for: quiet, different flow settings, large volume, and a filter to catch the cat hair. I clicked order and waited ’til the big day to set it up.
First, the fountain came quickly – the next day via Amazon. I was lucky enough to get it on a lightning deal, so it was a few dollars cheaper than the list price. I will say that the $25 listing for this is a fair price, so don’t be put off if it isn’t on sale.
The packaging was of decent quality, bringing confidence in the manufacturing process immediately. The unit itself was well contained by interior cardboard, ensuring that it didn’t move during transport. Each part was individually wrapped, so the product arrived unscathed from shipping.
Putting this together won’t involve trying to understand poorly written instructions or squinting at elementary drawings to try to understand how A attaches to B. The booklet they send is perfectly understandable. However, the parts are so simple that you could forgo instructions and intuitively put the water fountain together.
In my model, the pump was already in place, so I didn’t have to follow step one. Once it is in place, the rest of the assembly is straightforward. There is an excellent diagram to follow if needed.
- Build Quality:
When buying something from an unknown brand, you’re always taking a chance on the product’s quality and longevity. Veken didn’t disappoint me. This water fountain consists of well-fitting pieces, and the unit feels solid when put together. All the plastic is BPA-free, so there are no concerns over pets drinking leached toxic chemicals. The mat is thick enough that I have no worries over that lasting either.
I chose the 2.5-liter option, which is about five times as much as I can fit in one of their water bowls. I think this is wonderful as it will be easier to fill and run this when you leave them on their own for a weekend compared to setting out several dishes full of water. However, all that water does make it heavy, so put the fountain in place before filling it right to the top!
While annoyance is of concern to us humans, cats would also be less likely to drink from something that made an awful sound, so minimal noise was essential. I was amazed at how little noise this made when I turned it on.. I could barely hear it. The motor and pump are exceedingly quiet. In fact, I cannot detect it unless I put my ear right next to the unit on the floor. If you have the flower spout on, you will hear the sound of water trickling if the ambient noise is low, but it’s a pleasant sound.
This water fountain is well designed. It is simplistic in its construction, which bodes well for its longevity. The pump takes water from the reservoir, sends it up through the sprout, and then it diffuses through the filter back into the tank. The result is clean water; fur and dust get caught in the filter rather than ending up in the pump. A pristine pump is essential to it working correctly, and it also makes the fountain easier to clean.
- Flow Rate:
Water needs to flow pretty slowly out of the spout for a cat to want to drink from it. I’ve noticed this when Toodles drinks from the faucet; if it’s too powerful a flow, she will sit there and stare at it with confused eyes. The flower design allows for the selection of various flow rates, so you’ll be able to tune it to your pet’s preference. You can also remove the flower entirely and have more of a ripple bowl, which some cats may prefer (this is also the best setting for dogs). All in all, you should be able to find a flow rate that works for your feline friend.
- Value for Money:
This is a mid-range priced pet water fountain. Therefore, I expected something functional rather than a perfect product. However, I’m not sure what else I would want from a pet water fountain. In addition to a great unit that works as expected, you also get three filters included. Therefore, your pet is set for liters and liters of fresh water without any further investment.
Overall, out of the box, I was delighted with the water fountain.
Buy yours at Amazon.com today!
Did the Cats Drink from It?
Regardless of everything above, if a cat doesn’t drink from it, then the water fountain would become another pointless thing in the house. Luckily, Toodles and Severus love this thing.
Severus was first to it (even though it was Toodles’ birthday gift, go figure). You can see from the video below how much he enjoyed the fountain. We captured him drinking from the ripple, the fountain, and via a paw dip.
Toodles was a bit trepidatious of the flower to start with, choosing to drink the rippling water during her first interaction. I have seen her drink from it since, though I didn’t have my phone handy to capture it!
While our remaining adult cat showed no interest in the fountain initially, she drinking from it now! Our two kittens think it’s a great toy and love to put their paws in it every time they pass. They do drink from it too. 🙂
Of all the things I could have bought Toodles this year, I’m delighted I went for this. She didn’t need another toy or another place to sleep (we have tons of those!). I feel more fulfilled knowing that I bought her something that could improve her health through better hydration. I’ve had the unit going for over a week, and it has worked flawlessly in that time — five out of five for this one.