How long your pooch will survive without water?

How long your pooch will survive without water?

Whether you want it or not, the dog will become one of your family members. It will require a lot of drinking water just like other family members. Unfortunately, it cannot access the drinking water source on its own. So, if there is no accessible water source, it will stay thirsty until you provide some water. 

Dogs do not consume enough water due to several issues. Underlying illness, anxiety issues, and lifestyle changes can affect the pet’s eating and drinking habits. Suppose your pet is not interested in drinking water, how long it will survive like this?

How long your pooch will survive without eating? It all depends on their size. The larger the dog, the longer they can go without eating before showing signs of hunger or thirst.

A study was done where researchers monitored dogs for eight weeks while following them around at home and observing what happened when these animals were food deprived; it turned out that despite being Gilligan’s Island style castaways (with only four individuals) not one died from starvation.

One parameter does not fit all dogs. The following things decide how long a dog can go without water:


Puppies can survive without water much longer than adult dogs. Tiny pooches do not need much water to soothe their thirst. Therefore, a puppy will be healthy and safe much longer than an adult dog. 

Adult and old dogs have already developed some health problems. They need a daily supply of food and water to stay healthy and strong. If an adult dog does not get hydrated properly, its health condition will get worse with every passing day! 


Dogs may not drink the necessary amount of water due to health issues. Pet parents pay more attention to the dog’s movements when it is ill. You should ensure it drinks water time-to-time to avoid further health problems. If the dog doesn’t drink enough water and shows signs of dehydration, you should consult with a vet! 

Weather conditions

Suppose your house is located in a mild climate region of the country, the pooch will easily survive without water. It can’t go on forever, but the dog will be fine much longer than the same type’s dog living in a dry, hot, or humid region. 

Every living creature loses more water due to heat. Dogs do not get dehydrated that easily when living in a cold or mild climate region. 


The dog won’t need water for a long time if it is a lazy in-house pet. It will stay calm and drink only when it is quite necessary. Active dogs, which like to run and play, cannot survive that long without water. They need to drink water more often than a lethargic dog. 

Dog breed

Dogs, which do not have thick and heavy fur, can survive without water much longer than dogs with a heavy coat. 

A dog will go without water for up to 10 hours if it is inside the house and not coping with harsh weather conditions. Suppose you are getting ready for work and the pet is knocking on its water bowl, it’s a sign that it is thirsty. You should fill that water bowl and leave for the office. 

Dogs can survive without facing serious health concerns for the next 72 hours if they don’t drink water. The signs of dehydration will appear, but the pet will be fine once it drinks some water. If the dog does not receive water after 72 hours, it may suffer from a serious health condition. Therefore, you should try your best to avoid such a situation! 

Why do some dogs avoid drinking water?

It is quite tough to live without water, especially if you are an active individual. Dogs do a lot of tiring activities. They need proper food and water to stay fit and enjoy a comforting life. If the dog is not drinking water, the following things can be responsible!

Health issues

Health issues can easily affect the desire to consume foods and drink water. It also happens to dogs, which are suffering from unknown health problems. Proper treatment can comfort your pet quickly and it can get back to its normal life without any issue. 

If your pet has oral injuries, it will not consume too much water. The situation will get worse if the pet also got a urinary tract infection. Quick recovery is the only solution for this issue. Take your pooch to the veterinarian and start the treatment as soon as possible. 

The water source is not easily accessible

Some dogs also avoid drinking water because the water source is not easily accessible. Pet parents should keep the water bowl filled with the water throughout the day. Suppose it is empty and you aren’t paying attention, the pet will rely on other water sources. It might not be able to drink enough water and then dehydration issues will affect the pet. 


Elderly dogs can stop drinking water due to health problems. Many vets recommend pet parents bring older dogs for a regular checkup. It becomes much easier to assess potential health problems and treat them before they affect your pet’s health. 

It can be quite problematic for elderly dogs to cope with dehydration. Therefore, you should always keep fresh water in a bowl to encourage your pooch to drink more often. Keep the water bowl close to your pet’s bed so that it can easily drink water without spending too much energy.  

Tainted water

If your pooch is refusing to drink water for no reason, the water might be tainted or contaminated. Dogs can taste and smell things way better than humans. If it finds the water tastes bad or contaminated, the dog won’t drink it! 

You should throw the water and clean the bowl to serve freshwater. If the dog starts drinking it, there is no need to worry. Keep your pet’s food and water bowls always clean to encourage it to have its meals on time. 

The dog had a traumatic experience

Dogs do not forget bad things easily. You may have seen many dogs afraid of going to the vet. They can easily recall the last experience at the vet’s clinic and therefore they refuse to go there. 

Similarly, if the dog had dental surgery, neutering, castration, or other such traumatic experience, it might not drink water. Dogs can suffer severe pain or shock during some treatments and it can easily affect their daily habits. 

What if your pooch gets dehydrated?

As mentioned earlier, a dog can easily survive without water for 8-10 hours. It will get a little restless if it cannot find water to soothe the thirst. Suppose the dog stays without water throughout the day, dehydration will affect your pet’s health. It may experience health issues and severe dehydration can cause irreparable health damage!

Tips to avoid dehydration in dogs

  • You should feed food with water or hydrated food to the pooch. Mix some water into the kibble before feeding so that the pet can swallow it easily. 
  • Always carry some water for the dog if you are going out with the pet. 
  • You should never feed salty food to the pooch. Such foods can make your pet quite thirsty and trigger dehydration. 
  • Water should be available to the dog 24-7. Do not make it hard for the pet to stay hydrated! 

A dog will survive up to 72 hours without water, but it will be quite a frightening situation for the pooch. Provide enough food, water, and care to avoid dehydration and other health problems!

Comments are closed.