How Do Dogs Drink Water?

Aha! Have you ever wished you could peer inside your dog’s mind and know exactly what it wants? Above all, have you thought about how your pet performs various rudimentary tasks, including drinking water?

You will likely assume that dogs stick out their tongues and lap at the water to quench their thirst, and it is what everyone else thinks. Yet, this assumption is wrong. The following insights will help you understand how your dog drinks water.

Look At The Tongue

Dogs follow three steps when drinking water: lap, gulp, repeat. A dog laps by splashing its tongue into the water. As this tongue keeps flying into and out of the water, water adheres to its front, depositing it in the dog’s mouth. While this process might seem messy, it is efficient.

As the dog laps the water, its tongue curves backward to enable it to scoop enough liquid per lap. The scooped amount is often more than the dog can get with a straight tongue.

In addition, dogs have incomplete cheeks that help improve this process, as they make lapping easy by ensuring that the cheeks do not close completely. It is a canine feature often associated with increasing their bite force. Since the cheeks cannot close completely, they cannot create enough sucking motion to draw in water.

Is the Process Sloppy?

Generally, dogs are a little messy when drinking water, and spill water on the floor during the process. However, despite this sloppiness, the process is significantly efficient.

Your dog will build momentum by moving the cheek rapidly, ensuring that the water does not shoot itself into the mouth. However, while the force used ensures that the dog gets enough water, it can be too much that it significantly disturbs the water.

How much Water Does a Dog Need?


Enough drinking water is essential in cushioning your dog against dehydration. On average, dogs require about one ounce of water for every pound they weigh. For example, a ten-pound dog needs about ten ounces of water daily.

Puppies require more water than adults since they are more active and their bodies are still growing. However, the amount of water decreases with the softness of the food the pup consumes.

Related: How Long Can a Dog Go Without Water?

Final Thoughts

While your dog can be sloppy when drinking water, they are efficient. Dogs rely on a backwardly curved tongue to scoop water to quench their thirst. The information above indicates how this happens.

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