Pet Care 101: Are Cat Water Fountains Safe and Sanitary?

Pet Care 101 Are Water Fountains Sanitary and Safe

Are pet water fountains safe and sanitary? You’ll be amazed to know that pet and cat water fountains are completely sanitary depending on how well you take care of it.

Just with any other appliance, you need to consistently keep it clean and use the right type of cleaning products to keep it functioning at 100% every day.

Pet water fountains are known for being dirty and create slime. As a pet owner, you want to know you’re giving your pets the best water source ever. Hence, we will introduce you how to maintain the pet fountain properly, as well as tell you whether cat water fountains are safe or not.

What Makes Cat Fountains Popular?

Cat fountains are one of the best inventions for cats to get more water during the day. Many cat owners have made the switch from regular water bowls to pet fountains because their cats aren’t getting enough water during the day.

The reason why pet fountains are so popular is that cats have the instinct to drink from a water source that is already running. This would mimic how they would drink out in the wild.

While fountains are fantastic, they also offer you multiple benefits when it comes to owning one. Not only will they encourage your cat to drink more water throughout the day, but the water also goes through a repeated process of filtration.

Some makes and models have more than one filter, but most use a carbon filter to help sort debris or bacteria from the water. This includes pet fur and dirt.

What Makes Cat Fountains Popular

Are Cat Fountains Sanitary?

We’ve seen constant questions whether these cat fountains are sanitary or not. Many have reported that they are unsafe, have grown old, and even created a slime coating over the water.

The truth is, as we mentioned earlier, pet water fountains are sanitary as long as you’re following the instructions on when and how to properly clean the device. If you’re expecting it to clean itself, then you’re wrong, and while the filters do an excellent job at cleaning the water, they only can filter so much before needing to be replaced.

Ignorance from the owner and not following the manual or product description will end up in a poor and unsanitary pet fountain. Luckily for you, there are steps you can take to prevent any bacteria, dirt, or mold buildup from happening at all in your fountain.

Cleaning Cat Fountains

Marketing teams want you to believe that pet fountains can go around a month or more of not being cleaned, but this is usually where all the bacteria and slime grows. As long as you wash it every few weeks, you'll notice that it will stay clean and clear. No need to scrub or anything.

Put the parts in clean soapy water that is nontoxic to animals and then remove the housing cover for the pump. You’ll then want to completely clean the hood, as that’s where most bacteria will grow.

Change the filter and then continue to clean the pump. This should conclude how to clean a cat fountain. One side tip is that always make sure to replace the filter every two to three weeks or when the company recommends it.

Are Cat Fountains Safe

Are Cat Fountains Safe?

Another issue we hear is that cat fountains aren't very safe regarding functioning. The fact is, they’ve been enhanced and improved to be safer to use than ever.

There are no statistics for cats visiting the vet due to cat fountains. So, as long as you take proper care of the unit, you shouldn’t be afraid to use it.

The base of the bowl has been improved as well as the shape and length of the fountain. Most pet developers know that things tend to get knocked over, so there are some features to prevent that from happening. They are also made from durable materials such as ceramic, which help them stay intact while being thrown or knocked over.

Over the decade, they have taken out other aspects of a pet fountain. Some had extra bells and whistles for your pet to play with, and they would often try and skip out on installing a filter.

Now, you can find pet fountains that have even three filtration systems. The pet fountain industry is well aware of what happens if they make a model that doesn’t have a filter.

Just to reiterate, pet and cat water fountains are safe.


Our pets are just like family, and so it is only but right to ask the question "Are water fountains sanitary?" We also need to put in enough effort into investigating their food and water dispensers before we give it to them. No one wants a sad or ill cat, so following the cleaning instructions is going to be the biggest aspect when it comes to keeping the cat fountain clean and slime-free.

Even though manufacturers may recommend that you don't need to touch the unit for a month or so, ignore that. You should wash it every few days with non-toxic and pet-safe cleansers.

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Joe Hall - April 6, 2020 Reply

It’s helpful to know that they have some carbon filters in the fountains to clean out the bacteria and other particulates. My brother has a cat that is acting lethargic right now and is wondering if it’s the water source she is drinking from. I’ll try to let him know that he should find a vet to take the cat so that she can get treated right away.

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