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Our dogs and cat share an almost three gallon watering system bowl. Until recently it hasn't been a problem but, Vinny, the one eared cat, has taken to splashing water out of the bowl and creating a river in our kitchen.

He doesn't do this during the day, while we're away and he is basically free to roam with one of the other dogs, the other stays in a crate.

He also doesn't do it all the time, but it is becoming more frequent.

We do have toys, but the younger, more aggressive dog, the one that stays in her crate, likes to take them and hide them, usually in her crate, which she is very territorial over.

What can we try to solve this problem? Please note that a puzzle feeder is completely out of the question, as we feed them all at the same time, and when this occurs it's not because he's hungry.

I think it's sadly become fun and a game for him and we don't know what to try to stop this behavior.

Any suggestion will be tried and feedback given

  • Can you correlate the increase in this behavior with any other change in his environment? Knowing what might have prompted it could lead to better answers. Is the younger, more-aggressive dog new to the household? – Monica Cellio Dec 17 '14 at 14:34
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Place the watering unit inside a low walled cooking tray. At least this will help to contain the water that gets splashed out.

If the watering unit is one that bubbles inside as the water is used up on the outside it could be that the cat has realized that by splashing out the water that he/she can cause the watering unit to gurgle. Cats can get totally enamored with things like that and become almost obsessive. If this is the case then another type of water unit may be in order.

Reminds me of a story a friend told me about years ago where he taught his cat to use the toilet stool instead of a litter box. Then he got the idea to teach the cat how to flush the toilet. It turns out the cat loved watching the water swirl down the toilet. Seems as the friend got an unexpected huge water bill one month only to later discover that the cat was spending the whole day flushing the toilet while he was away at work.

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Cats also like clean, running water over stagnant water. If a cat sees a pool with still water, there is an instinct to brush the surface to expose clean water to drink. This might be what he is up to with the refilling bowl.

An alternative might be to get him (or all your pets) a fountain that continuously flows the water in the reservoir, simulating running water. If the fountain is just for him, he might leave the dog's alone. If the fountain is for all, then there will be no need to splash.

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  • I like this. I was actually looking at these earlier today! This might be the best way to go. – ElefantPhace Dec 18 '14 at 21:51
  • Worth trying the fountain -- though mine, even though they like playing with sinks, weren't all that impressed with a cat-fountain. I suspect that if I could adjust it all the way down to a trickle, or drip, they might be more interested... but haven't figured out a good way to test that. – keshlam Dec 24 '14 at 23:38
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I have a feeling it might be connected to the younger dog hiding the toys. The cat is bored, so he finds a way to amuse himself. Try getting him toys that dog won't be interested in, or train the dog so she doesn't steal the toys.

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