I just adopted a cute little 1 year old and one of the first things I noticed when I brought her home is that she liked to knock over her water dish. What she would do is paw at the dish until some water spilt and then she would drink the spilt water. Sometimes it would just be a little and sometimes the whole contents of the bowl would spill. I have a pretty heavy glass bowl and the water is changed constantly.
So my question is, what causes this behaviour and how do I correct it?
This is cute, I never heard of this before though I have some suggestion to it.
1) Your cat is bored and some cats do like to play wtih water. Try getting some toys for her and spend some time every day to play with her.
2) The bowl you're using is too steep for her drinking. My cat prefers drinking water from flat and broad surface with a suitable height for her. It might also be the shape of the glass bowl use that makes her behave this way.
Something like this container's height will be good.
Just for the curious, we ended up putting a small amount of water on a small plate and replaced it with the bowl. She didn't try to tip it over anymore and just drank like normal. We make sure we change it regularly and that she always has enough water.
I've wondered about this and I have decided that the cat wants to be able to tell where the surface of the water is so as to not stick their nose in it.
I think they paw at the bowl to cause vibration and movement in the water to be able to more clearly see where the air stops and the water begins.
Others speak of fountains and such. Some cats, we've had a few, like to drink from the faucet and like the fountains. Also, I fountain will have movement on the surface of the water which, again, I think helps the cat figure out just where the water starts.
Cat's put very little in the water, just a bit of the end of their tongue and I simply think this is all about determining where the water starts.
That's my take based on the observation of a lot of cats.
I have 3 indoor male cats ages 20, 13, and 10. I have 6 water bowls throughout the house. The type of bowls containing various brands of daily changed bottled water and placement of the bowls have not changed since 2011.
About 3-months ago, my 12-yr old started scooping out most of the water with his paw. This later progressed to tipping-over the entire bowl. He doesn't do this all of the time, but often enough to cause concern.
Now all 3 cats are tipping-over their water bowls. I am not satisfied with people's assumptions that cats do this because of their whiskers, for play, or due to instinctively wanting or craving running water.
After all these years of drinking water normally, why this sudden change in behavior? I am looking into the theory that its a chemical in the plastic bottle as many brands have switched to a much thinner and flimsy type of bottle. Stay tuned.