If you feed your pet a high-quality dry food, something critical is missing from your pet’s diet. Don’t panic – it’s readily available, simple to add at mealtime, and will keep your best friend happy and (spoiler alert) hydrated!
Kibble without any added bone broth, canned food, or water only provides 6-10% of moisture that pets need in their diet. This may not be surprising since it is dry, after all. Even though many households leave a water bowl out, they are still likely not receiving the proper amount of moisture needed to be healthy. Not to worry, there is an easy & beneficial fix… just add some water! There are many positives to adding some filtered water to your pet’s food. As with humans, water forms the basis for many functions in your pet’s body, assisting with the absorption of nutrients from their food. When your pet isn’t getting enough fluids, dehydration stresses their kidneys, which could result in kidney disease and even kidney failure.
You may be thinking to yourself, “doesn’t dry kibble clean my dog’s teeth?” The short answer is no. Think about kibble as a cracker or a pretzel. When we eat dry starchy foods, they get stuck in our teeth, and the same logic applies to our pets. With kibble being higher in carbs, those carbs break down into sugars, which then stick to their teeth, forming plaque & feeding oral bacteria. Adding moisture to the kibble assists the cracker-like consistency of dry food in sticking less to their teeth, much like if they were eating canned food, raw, or dehydrated formulas.
How to Get Started
- Use room temperature or warm water (not hot, or you might cook raw foods) to kibble to soften & add fluid to their diet.
- As far as the ratio of water to food, we suggest adding no more than a half cup of water to one cup of kibble. We do not want a bowl full of water and food floating around without the food properly soaking.
- After adding water, let it soak for 2-5 minutes, if you have the time. This should be enough to soften it without turning it into mush!
- Be aware of how long you are leaving out any kibble that has moisture added to it. We suggest not leaving it out more than 40 minutes so that it doesn’t spoil.
- Make sure to continue to leave out water for your pet to drink in between meals.
Urinary Health Benefits
Increased moisture content in your dog or cat’s dry food can reduce the risk of kidney stones and urinary tract infections, and helps the kidneys eliminate waste through urine. Cat parents, this part is crucial for you! UTI’s are unfortunately one of the most common health problems for cats, and they’re almost always caused by insufficient water intake.
Digestive Health Benefits
When you soak kibble, it actually helps make it easier for them to digest! Depending on how long you soak your pet’s food, it may be partially broken down by the time it reaches your dog’s stomach. Adding water makes dry food more digestible. Water also slows down the speed at which dogs eat their food, which helps avoid stomach problems such as bloat. Moreover, the added water aids in movement through the digestive system, making it easier for them to better absorb nutrients.
Weight Loss & Appetite Benefits
Do your pets beg for more food after breakfast & dinner? Adding water to their food can help! The added water increases the volume of your dog’s food without bumping up the calories, helping them feel fuller & more satisfied. Dry foods are so nutrient-dense that the volume of food that is calorically appropriate for their weight might not come close to filling up their tummies. If their meal is full of water, it increases satiety – that sensation of fullness. So say goodbye to your four-legged friends walking around the kitchen looking unsatisfied after their meals! When you add water to your pet’s kibble, it releases the irresistible, meaty aromas they cannot resist! This makes dry food much more palatable, and easier to uniformly add tasty raw toppers to soaked kibble! Plus, since moistened kibble is easier to chew, your pet will have a more enjoyable experience, which can absolutely help their interest in the meal! This is also great for those who have senior dogs & puppies with sensitive teeth.
Kibble feeders, we cannot emphasize enough the importance of adding hydrating toppers at mealtime. We understand that adding bone broth, goat milk, or canned food is not always an option for every pet parent. By simply adding water, you’re providing your pet the boost of hydration it needs to properly digest dry food, while making mealtime more enjoyable for your best friend!
Happy hydrating 😊