This is mostly for non fish owners, (nothing personal ) Though I wouldn't mind hearing some fish related opinions, as water is obviously a special concern there.
I know there is even "pet water" being sold now, which is more expensive than most bottled water. I operate under the theory that if I won't drink it, I'm not giving it to any of my animals. And my tap water leaves allot to be desired. I have been using purchased filtered water (reverse osmosis/uv sterilization), from the machines that have become common in the front of grocery stores here in the states. I have allot of animals, and I go through allot of water, and it runs $1.75/5 gallons on average. Hopefully I can get a good reverse osmosis system on my house at some point, and be done with it. What does everyone here use?
You can choose more than one option, if you use more than one type, or if you use something other than tap water, but would use tap water if you lived somewhere with better quality water.
Since you said fish owners opinion count, I am going to make this reply.
As a fish keeper, I use tap water treated with aquarium water conditioner. It is recommended to do it because it can avoid problems in case of you can't get the source of the water needed for a single water change. Fish like to have the same type of water with the same PH, same hardness, etc. Sudden large change will shock them and might result in deaths.
Saltwater aquarium owners often use RO water. But that's a different story.
I will always use local tap water as long as the tap water isn't extreme in hardness or PH.
Of course the fish owners count It's just that it is a while different story with fish than with providing water for drinking. I had heard it was better to use treated trap water because it still had minerals, our at least some hardness could you use RO water and add some of the mineral salts for freshwater aquariums?
We always gave our dogs’ tap water however our tap is attached to a water distiller and so it's already purified. Our tap water in New Zealand is incredibly clean, normally spring water which is also shipped around the world.
However I must admit the special pet water seems interesting even if it's just a gimmick probably from the same plant as human water and just labelled differently.
My cat just gets the same regular tap water that we drink. I can't see going out and buying special water unless your pet has some sort of medical issue or the water from your tap is just plain nasty. If I wouldn't drink it myself, I wouldn't give it to my cat.
06-09-2012, 06:13 AM, (This post was last modified: 06-09-2012, 06:15 AM by Ram.)
(06-08-2012, 03:09 PM)Fishbone Wrote: Of course the fish owners count It's just that it is a while different story with fish than with providing water for drinking. I had heard it was better to use treated trap water because it still had minerals, our at least some hardness could you use RO water and add some of the mineral salts for freshwater aquariums?
It is indeed better with tap water in most cases for fish keeping. RO water has 0 buffer due to there is no mineral in it. Fish don't really need those minerals, but if there is no mineral in the water = water hardness is totally soft with no buffer. Thus all fish keepers use RO water must add some kind of buffer products, or the PH can instantly crush as soon as there is even the slightest acidic element.
For my freshwater tropical fish, I will just stick with my tap water treated with Prime.
My cat gets plain old tap water (which is what the humans here drink), but my bird gets bottled water. He has liver problems, which means he has trouble with the chemical additives in tap water. Yes, I know, there's no guarantee that the bottled water doesn't also have that stuff, but the odds are lower. It doesn't cost all that much, since one 16 ounce bottle lasts two or three days (and that's with changing his water a few times a day).
I give all of my animals water from the reverse osmosis system in our house. We have well water, but I won't drink that water, so neither do my pets! The exception is my Tonkinese cat. He loves drinking straight from my bathroom faucet, which does not have the filtered water. I try to keep this down to a minimum, but he is a very stubborn, willful cat! I regret ever allowing him to drink from the faucet, but it was cute at first. The faucet is a dolphin and the water comes out of its mouth. I wish I knew how to put photos here of my Tonk drinking from it. Anyway, I'd like to break him of the habit since I don't think the water is any good for him, plus it has that salt from the softener in it.
We do a bit of both. At times, we give them the Brita filtered water. And at other times we just give them the tap water in their bowl. It doesn't matter what we do because our one cat absolutely loves the kitchen tap water and the other cat loves drinking from the shower tap. It's absolutely adorable watching both guys do what they do.
In the poll, I chose other because I didn't see rainwater on the list. Here, we have rain the whole year round, with a lot more of it at the end of the year. I used to have a few big drums set up under outside the house to catch the rainwater that comes off the roof. When it doesn't rain for a week or two, which is quite uncommon, I use water from the well.
I use these natural sources of water for my aquariums. For my cats and dogs, I give them tap water because the tap water here is drinkable.
The tap water here isn't too bad, and I myself drink it, but I always give bottled water to my pets. They don't have any health conditions, but prevention is always a better solution in my opinion. Now, my older cat doesn't seem to agree with me, since she insists on drinking exclusively from the tap. I'm saving up for a water fountain, I'm hoping that will solve the problem. The worst thing is, my younger cat is looking up to her and running for the tap too, but as long as he's drinking from his bowl he's not getting any.
It is safe for me to drink water from the tap, and my cat does not turn his nose up at tap water. I'm sure most cats and dogs ingest worse things when they are outside. Also, dogs and cats have been known to drink out of toilet bowls!
Even in poor water quality areas I think that boiling water and allowing it to cool would provide a safe drink for a pet. Buying bottled water sounds like a waste of money to me. No doubt some pampered pets are given nothing else, but I'm sure most pets do not notice the quality of their drinking water.
We give our girls (two cats) tap water as well. It's treated water from our local lake, so it has chlorine in it, which I know some people find undesirable. We (the humans in the house) drink the tap water as well. I like it. My critters don't have any noticeable adverse affects, nor do we. I actually have never even considered (that is, thought of!) giving them anything else.
I used to give my dogs filtered tap water. It's what the whole family drinks in France where I live. The water quality is pretty good in the area (from spring water in the Pyrenees) so we have no complaints. In Malaysia where I grew up, I used to use filtered water as well but luckily I lived (at the time) in an area near huge limestone caves with good mineral deposits in the local water supply.
For my fish pond in Malaysia, I used to use tap water that I would turn on very low until it comes out in a trickle. When changing water, I would flush out about one quarter of the water level and then turn on the tap at a low trickle. The water would slowly trickle to fill up the pond and this helps to maintain the water temperature as too much tap water suddenly added into the pond will change the temperature and possibly give the fish a shock. This way, they have time to adapt to the new temperature.
Well, just for the record, I don't think that just because an animal drinks it that means it's healthy, lol. They drink because they are dehydrated and need water. I have nothing against tap water, it's just that here when I pour a glass straight out of the tap it is so cloudy it is hard to see my fingers on the other side through the glass....
Tap water almost anywhere is suitable for pets. If it's missing something they require they will drink somewhere. How many times have you seen your cat jump onto the loo to drink the water. Dogs quite often will lap from a muddy puddle. it's not neccessarily because they are de-hydrated, quite often the water contains bacteria or minerals that the animals want. Sometimes tap water can be to pure.
The water in the area I'm living in is pretty good and I never had problems because of it, it's clean, it doesn't need boiling and it never turned to any strange color. I drank it all my life and it has never been bad for me, so that's the water I give to my pets. None of my animals got sick because of the water I gave or give them.
As for the 'special water for pets', I would never buy it. I would prefer boiling the tap water or give them the water I buy for myself.
I give tap water to my cats because in our area the water quality is good and I also drink the same tap water. If the tap water's quality would decrease at any moment in time I would not hesitate to buy bottled water because I then would be drinking bottled water myself.
I think the quality of water is the most important issue here and not the fact whether it comes from a tap or not. I do not have problems with people giving bottled water to their pets because it is only natural to give what is best to your pet.
The only issue I have with bottled water is that when you use bottled water you should make sure it comes from a re-usable bottle. Plastic bottles are known not to decade very fast in nature and are cluttering our oceans. Subsequently the oceans are full of plastic and animals living in the ocean get sick or die because of eating plastic.
From what I have read on the subject, a lot of the bottled water that is sold on the market is simply filtered tap water, bottled and sold as spring water, or whatever label they want to put on it.
I have a water distiller, but it takes it all day long to purify a gallon of water, so we also use filtered water for most of our water needs.
I used to give my dogs plain old water from the faucet, but you read about so many contaminants in water nowdays, that I always give them the same water that we drink. When it is not, I add ice cubes to keep it fresh for them.
I also add about a third of a capful of apple cider vinegar to keep their Ph balanced and prevent parasites.
We buy purified water for us humans to drink and sometimes I give my dog that. He particularly enjoys cold water so on a hot day I would sometimes pour some cold water into his bowl. On normal days, i just give him tap water. Tap water is relatively safe although I would recommend that people attach a filter on their faucets and boiling it for extra precaution. I haven't encountered any problems with giving my dog tap water. I mean, what is good enough for humans should be good enough for dogs right? Anyway, what I do is throw away old water before I pour in new water into his bowl or bottle just to make sure that it is clean. If we just keep on just refilling their bowls and bottles, there might be "germs" that have accumulated there that might make them sick.
I live in Mexico, where everyone drinks bottled water due to the poor state of tap water. We used to give our pets tap water when we first moved here, but then it clicked that if we're not going to drink it, they probably shouldn't either. I give my pets the same bottled water I drink, though I'm not entirely convinced it's necessary, given the way they lick their own unmentionables and like eating food off the ground Better safe than sorry, though!
I do wish both they and I could drink the tap water. It would be incredibly convenient and save a fair bit of money. At the very least, the water I buy comes in 100% recycled plastic containers, and I've been saving them all up to recycle them again. Makes me feel a little less guilty about all that waste.
(06-28-2013, 01:09 AM)Rube Wrote: Even in poor water quality areas I think that boiling water and allowing it to cool would provide a safe drink for a pet.
I've seen some debate about this, since boiling will kill parasites but won't remove minerals, toxins, or debris. Don't quote me on that. I just figure if the people who have lived here for generations refuse to touch the tap water, I'd better follow their lead. I know my father has bought water testing strips (not entirely sure what they test for), and the tap water has always come up in the far-red danger zone. Scary!
08-15-2013, 10:50 PM, (This post was last modified: 08-15-2013, 10:51 PM by Writer E.)
I have a chinchilla that used to get bottled water. Then I had some hard times and had to cut some expenses. Now that things are better, I guess I could go back to giving him bottled water, but he has gone this far with tap, I think he will be fine. He is now 13 years old.