Should I Leave Water Out For My Puppy All Day? Vet Answered

Should I leave water out for my puppy all day

About the Author: Dr. Finlay Tayler (DVM), a Harvard veterinary graduate, brings his five years of diverse experience to MyPetDoggie. Passionate about all animals, and a proud dog owner, he balances full-time veterinary practice with contributing expert insights to our content. Dr. Tayler’s love for the outdoors, cycling, and love for dogs enrich his holistic perspective on dogs care.

You have adopted a puppy and he is growing well, now you are worried about his needs? My dear puppy parent, you are at the right place to get the answers to all your questions. Your little fellow is dependent on you for every basic need, even water. The question that took you here Should I leave water out for my puppy all day? is intriguing. The water needs of your little fellow increase as he starts to grow.

But you don’t need to worry about this anymore. You have come to the right place. Consider me your trusty companion. I am also a puppy owner and I understand your concern regarding your cute little puppy. I will get you covered with every in and out of your puppy’s hydration. From the maximum requirement to not overfill the bowl,  I will guide you and everything in the best way possible.

Let’s dive into this journey with me to maintain your puppy’s health. Don’t let any of your queries remain unsolved. Your new little fellow deserves the best care. Don’t delve into making poor decisions and make your puppy’s life miserable. Acknowledge yourself from the perks of leaving the bowl filled and let your puppy be energetic!

Should I Leave Water Out For My Puppy All Day?

Leaving water for your puppy all day is probably a good idea. The path to hydration will be smoother this way because whole day, puppies are indulged in many activities like playing outside, roaming in the house, or any sort of physical activity. Just make sure that they get between one half ounce and one ounce of water per pound of body weight in a day

Puppies require more energy and there are chances of getting thirst traps easily. In this situation, your puppy will always run to the bowl of water. Imagine he runs towards the bowl of water and the bowl is empty. An empty bowl means an upset puppy.

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Dog lying with his water bowl

You can’t be around your puppy all day long. So how will your puppy get water? A filled water bowl is going to help. However, control the water intake to avoid overhydration. Maintain a balance, and train your puppy to only have the appropriate amount of water.

Also, reduce the access to water some hours before bedtime. It will help him to have a peaceful sleep. Drinking more water before bedtime can increase the chance of urination. It might be difficult for your puppy to control the urine at young stages of life. 

Why is Water Necessary for Puppy?

Water is a basic necessity for everyone. An Animal’s body contains 60-80% water to maintain the body functions. Your puppy also has organs like you that need water to regulate properly. The kidney needs water to flush out the waste products from the body. Water also plays an essential role in adjusting the body temperature, to prevent overhydration or dehydration. 

Absorption of nutrients and digestion also need water. Water helps to distribute the nutrients all over the body. Puppies age faster than humans, thus their bodies grow faster. Fastly-growing bodies require proper hydration for their cells and growth. Water also provides lubrication to joints.

Other than these, water plays many essential roles in the body. If your puppy is not getting enough water, he will be affected by dehydration. Dehydration can be the leading reason for many health problems.

How Long Can A Puppy Go Without Water During The Day

Puppies have faster metabolism as compared to adult and grown-up dogs. It means they are more likely to suffer from dehydration. Their growing body needs water. They should be encouraged to drink more water. Some puppies don’t get familiar with drinking water easily. It is not recommended to leave your puppy without water for an extended period.

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A pitbull sleep peaceful on the bed

There is no exact duration measured for a puppy to live without water. The duration depends on age, size, breed, and many other factors. If you are not providing the required amount of water to your puppy regularly. Then there is a high chance that your puppy may get dehydrated. It is better if you examine your puppy’s response and activities before limiting his access to water.

At what age do puppies start to drink water

Puppies start growing teeth at the age of 3-4 weeks. At this age, they move from their mother’s milk to solid food. They require water to fulfill their hydration needs. Before this, all their hydration needs are fulfilled from their mother’s milk. It is also possible that they may hesitate to drink water at first. Be consistent and patient. Help your puppy and train him to drink water.

Pros of Leaving Water Out for Your Puppy

If I am not wrong then you are thinking about the perks of leaving water out for your puppy. Then no need to think about this anymore. I have sorted this for you. Numerous benefits will help your puppy to have a comfortable and healthy life. To have a curiosity-free mind, have a look at the benefits discussed below.


Your puppy needs to stay hydrated. You are not able to be there for your puppy all day. What if you are absent for a long time and your puppy gets thirsty? Do you want him to suffer all day from thirst? No water means no hydration. Leaving water for your puppy will help him to have a smooth way to hydrate. A healthy body needs to stay hydrated. To grow well, it is essential for your puppy to have the required access to water. 

Prevention of Dehydration

If your puppy loves to play out, there are high chances of getting thirsty. He will need water again and again. Limited or no access to water can cause dehydration. Dehydration can be a major reason for many other health problems and if serious, it can lead to death. To save your puppy from dehydration, always remember to leave water for him.

Regulation of Body Temperature

Water plays a crucial role in maintaining the body temperature. In hot weather, it is very important to keep your puppy’s body cool. Water keeps the body cool in summer and warm during winter. Feeling too cold or hot is not good and comfortable for your puppy. 

Growth and Development 

Puppies grow faster, which means their body organs, tissues, and cells need proper development in a short period. Water helps in the growth and development. It maintains the fluid balance in the body.  It supports healthy muscle development and bone growth.


If you want to have an effective training session, try to give rewards in the end. There is no quick, easy access and beneficial reward than water. Whenever your puppy obeys you, don’t forget to offer him a sip of water. This will leave a positive impact and you will notice a better behavior next time. During heavy training sessions, thirst can also be a distraction. If your puppy is feeling thirsty during training, he will lose his focus. The immediate availability of water will help you in this situation. It creates an engaging, consistent, and productive environment.

Digestion and Nutrient Absorption 

Digestion starts from the mouth. The saliva in the mouth helps to break down the carbohydrates in the food. From the mouth, food travels to the stomach, where further breakdown and digestion take play. A dry mouth and a stomach with fluid can not digest the food properly. Moreover, food contains different nutrients like proteins, vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates. These nutrients require water for absorption. To provide the optimal conditions for digestion and nutrient absorption, your puppy needs access to fresh and clean water.

Prevention of Urinary Tract Issues

It is crucial to prevent any urinary tract issues, especially in female puppies. Water helps in the dilution of urine. It prevents the formation of crystals such as bladder stones. Concentrated urine causes blockage and irritation in the urinary system. Drinking enough water encourages frequent urination that helps to flush the bacteria. Water also maintains the pH level. Ensure the proper hydration to reduce the risk of complications in the urinary system. 

Prevention of Behavior Issues

Proper hydration plays a huge role in the behavior pattern of your puppy. In a situation where your puppy is not getting enough water to drink, he can get frustrated and disturbed. The lack of availability of water will affect the internal system of your puppy. The effects of internal disturbance influence the behavior and attitude of a puppy. Thirst also brings a sense of discomfort. Your puppy can lose his calm and focus.  A bowl of fresh water can help to prevent this.

Comfort and Well-Being

Now you must have been aware of the fact that leaving water for your puppy can be helpful for him. Drinking an adequate amount of water maintains the body and also comforts your puppy. If your puppy’s mouth and throat are moist, he is all set to have a good day. Being consistent and having a proactive approach can also help him to have a good life!

You might be interested in: Discover how long a puppy can go without water overnight and tips for their hydration needs.

How much water does an adult dog or a puppy need

The water requirement for an adult dog and a puppy is different. Puppy is at a growing stage and his body changes fast. On the other hand, an adult dog is grown up and is not prone to big changes. Adding to this, adult dogs are trained well. They can live without water. But don’t rely on the age factor.

A dog wants somethings in his feed bowl

There are many other factors such as breed, size, activity level, environmental conditions, and health conditions. These factors have a great influence on the water requirement of each puppy and adult dog. If you have uncertainties, it is always better to consult your vet. 

How Many Times A Day Should I Give My Puppy Water

Every puppy has different needs. A puppy of 8-12 weeks grows rapidly and thus needs access to water to prevent dehydration. As he grows and enters into the age period of 3 to 6 months, he gets trained well. But still, ensure to provide the required amount of water. A well-grown-up adult dog matures enough to maintain his water intake. Provide sufficient water after having meals and during physical activities. 

Water intake also depends on the climate and weather. During hot days, puppies need more water. Water is also needed frequently during active days. Be vigilant about your puppy’s behavior and health. If your puppy shows any signs of dehydration, seek professional help immediately. 

List of Factors that influence how much water a dog needs

Every dog’s water intake is influenced by various factors. These factors help to determine the average amount of water needed.

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The dog drinks water in his water bowl

Go through these factors in detail with me and after that apply these factors on your puppy to examine if he is getting enough water or not.

Size and Weight

Body weight and physical dimensions play a key role in determining the water needs. Larger dogs have a large body to support. They have more cells as compared to small dogs. So, they need more water than smaller dogs. Similarly, a heavier dog has a large body mass and metabolic demands. Their water requirements are slightly more than the lighter dogs. However, it doesn’t mean you should neglect the hydration needs of small and light dogs. 

Activity Level

The physical exercise and the expenditure of a dog’s energy regularly is termed as activity level. Dogs need to engage in physical activity to maintain their physical and mental health. More activity level requires more hydration. Dogs who are indulged in heavy exercise and more physical activity need more water to survive. It is better to monitor your dog’s activity level to provide him with an adequate amount of water.

Temperature and Weather

The outer environmental conditions have a great influence on the inner conditions of the body. Animals including dogs show different behavior in response to different weather conditions. Temperature change fluctuates hormonal response. In hot temperatures, hormones are released to relax blood vessels and cool the body. Just like this in cold temperatures, such hormones are released that constrict the blood vessels and keep the body warm. 


A dog with a healthy diet is less likely to be affected by a deficiency of water. His diet is healthy enough to maintain the balance of fluids in the body. On the other hand, if a dog’s diet is poor. He will be quickly affected by the unavailability of water. His diet lacks such ingredients and nutrients that help him to regulate his body functions. Besides water needs, don’t compromise on your dog’s diet. A healthy diet is a sign of prolonged life.


Growing puppies need more water as compared to the grown ones. Until six months, take care of your dog’s water needs consistently. Give him easy access to clean and fresh water. Once your dog is grown into an adult, he becomes more responsible and mature about his food and water needs. He can also control the urge to drink water for a long time. But this doesn’t allow you to be negligent about his requirements. Your carelessness can cause adverse effects too.

Health and Medical Conditions

Medical conditions can have a huge impact on a dog’s water requirements. A healthy dog can manage well. A dog suffering from any disease like kidney problems, diabetes, gastrointestinal issues, or any sort of infection can have different water habits. Dogs under cancer treatment or having any allergy are alleged to drink more water. All these problems somehow increase the thirst rate. It means an unwell dog needs more consideration in this regard. 

Pregnancy and Lactation

During pregnancy, the body changes. The body provides support to another developing body and hence the volume of the body increases. An increase in volume needs more water to regulate the body’s functions. The mother’s body provides nutrients to the developing puppy. Water makes the flow of nutrients easy from mother to baby. During pregnancy, dogs experience frequent temperature changes in the body. To prevent overheating, provide proper hydration.

After birth, the newly born puppy depends on his mother for food. Until 3 weeks, his food requirements are filled by his mother’s milk. Mother’s body produces and provides milk. Milk contains significant moisture to keep the puppy hydrated. This moisture is restored from the water in the mother’s body. So it becomes extremely essential for lactating dogs to stay hydrated.


Medications are used to treat several diseases but they also have side effects. They increase the thirst. Many medications affect the body’s functions, such as they can affect the ability of the body to handle fluids. Other than this, some medications increase urine production to compensate for the effect. In this case, dogs need to drink more water to stay hydrated and to avoid the loss of fluid from the body.


Different breeds have different genetics, physiology, and lifestyle. Large breed dogs need more water to maintain their large body mass. The metabolic rate of different breeds is also different. Dogs with high energy require more water to regulate their metabolic activities. Breeds like Huskies have thick coats and thick coats are more prone to overheating. To avoid this overheating, they need more water as compared to dogs with a single coat. All these can influence but still, it is recommended to pay heed to your dog’s behavior, activities, and habits. This will provide you with great help to adjust his water availability.


A comprehensive care routine requires proper grooming. Grooming involves brushing the coat and teeth, trimming nails and paw care, eye and ear cleaning, and bathing. When your puppy is perfectly groomed regularly, he looks more fit physically. A clean body also brings comfort and peace to mind. A well-cleaned body is less likely to get infected. It means a puppy with a proper grooming routine has good health and doesn’t require extra water to survive.

Stress and Anxiety

Stress and anxiety can have different impacts. They can cause an increase or decrease in water needs, depending on your puppy. You need to know this by examining your puppy’s behavioral pattern. Stress can increase the heart rate and it can also cause an increase in water loss. To compensate for this fluid loss, the puppy needs to drink more water. On the contrary, anxiety causes a decrease in water consumption. If your dog is showing frequent changes in behavior, it is better to consult the veterinarian.

Best Ways To Offer Water To Your Puppy

I’ll provide you with some tips to offer water to your puppy. It is essential to provide water in the right way so it can be healthy and helpful for your puppy to stay hydrated.

A dog drinking water in his waterbowl

Clean and Fresh Water

Ensure that the water you are providing to your puppy is clean and fresh. Puppies are less likely to drink dirty water. If the water is not fresh and clean, it can cause many health problems in your puppy. It can affect the digestive system and also increase the rates of infection. Change water at least once a day to avoid contaminants.

Stainless Steel or Ceramic Bowls

Try to avoid plastic bowls and use stainless steel or ceramic bowls. They have many advantages over plastic ones. Stainless steel is more durable and economical. They are suitable for both hot and cold water or food. Plastic bowls can cause allergies, but steel bowls are allergen-free. They are easy to clean and more hygienic. Ceramic bowls have various designs and colors that make them more attractive. They tend to remain cooler than plastic. They are heavy and are less likely to tip over. You can choose a bowl according to your preference. 

Elevated Bowls

Elevated bowls are placed at a height from the ground. It is placed on a stand. It can be of any material, either stainless steel or ceramic. Elevated bowls provide a comfortable drinking posture for puppies. There is no chance of strain on their neck and back. If your puppy is suffering from any medical condition then elevated bowls are the best choice. But be careful while placing the bowl. The height should be reachable by your puppy. Choose a stand that can firmly hold the bowl, so it may not move while drinking water. 

Monitor and Refill

Keep track of the water throughout the day. Don’t let it empty for a long time. If the bowl gets empty, refill it. Especially in hot weather or in such conditions when your puppy needs more water, be careful. No access to water for a long time can affect your puppy. If your puppy is playing outside, check the bowl again and again. More energy expenditure increases the thirst.


Supervision is essential when it comes to your puppy. Your carelessness can make you regret it later. If you overfill the bowl, it can cause trouble for your little puppy. Don’t allow your puppy to overconsume the water, it will lead to overhydration. To avoid this you can make a schedule for water breaks. During house training, supervision should be your priority. Once your puppy is trained well then you can be lenient. But before this keep your eyes open and mind working.

Limit Water Before Bedtime

It is better to limit water to a couple of hours before bedtime. A puppy at a growing age is more likely to urinate frequently as he can’t hold it for long. If he is not trained, then there are chances that he will urinate anywhere. To avoid such accidents, limit access to water before bedtime. Once he is trained, then it’s up to you to manage hours according to your puppy.

Temperature Considerations

The temperature affects the puppy’s water needs. So you should give water according to the temperature. In hot weather, thirst is increased and puppies are more likely to get dehydrated because of excessive sweating and panting. In cold weather, thirst decreases, so don’t let your dog overconsume the water. Make sure the water you are providing is not cold. During stable temperature conditions, provide a moderate and appropriate amount of water.

Observe Hydration

To observe hydration efficiently, it is important to tailor the water intake and behavior of your puppy. Keep a record of water intake throughout the day. Ensure that water is not more or less than required. Pay heed to urination habits. If your puppy is getting adequate hydration, his urine should be regular, clear, and light yellow. Dark-colored urine can be an indication of dehydration. Observe the hydration of your dog regularly.

How to check if your puppy is drinking enough water

To make sure about the well-being of your puppy, you should be aware of his water intake. For this purpose, you can check the bowl frequently. Check the water level, if it is decreasing it means your puppy is drinking water adequately. Note the amount of water your puppy drinks throughout the day. Your puppy’s behavior can also be an indication. If he is behaving normally, calmly, and well, it means he is getting the right amount of water to function properly. 

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A husky puppy tries to sleeps on the carpet

Consider the urine output of your puppy. If the urine is yellow-light in color and dilutes, then he is all set. Also, check the mouth of your dog. A dry mouth indicates a sign of less water intake. You need to be active in such situations.

Signs of dehydration in dogs and puppies

Dehydration can have a bad influence on puppies. Major signs of dehydration include dry mouth and nose, sunken eyes, excessive panting, decreased urination, loss of appetite, weakness, vomiting, diarrhea, and increased heart rate. Although these signs can be less or more severe depending on the severity of dehydration. If you catch some of these signs at an early stage, it is better to provide your puppy with professional help and proper medication.

Common Question:

Will I have to take my puppy out more times if they drink a lot of water?

Most probably yes, if your puppy is consuming more water then he needs to go out more frequently for bathroom breaks. It’s better to maintain a balance between over and reduced consumption to avoid any discomfort later.

My puppy does not drink enough water?

If your puppy is not drinking enough water, then check the quality of the water whether it is clean or not. You can also try giving water at different temperatures. Try to use alternate options like ice cubes or frozen treats. It’s always recommended to ask your vet.

Is leaving water out for my puppy at night a good thing?

It’s a good thing to practice but you should be sure about the requirements of your puppy. Nut if your puppy is not trained, you should be careful about this.

Is drinking a lot of water harmful to my puppy?

Yes, it can be harmful to your puppy. Overconsuming water can lead to overhydration. Overhydration can have adverse effects on health.

Ending Note

Wrapping up the discussion by recommending you to be more considerate, responsible, and careful while leaving water out for your puppy. Your puppy needs access to clear, clean, and fresh water. In the growing period of his life, he needs adequate hydration to balance his body functions. However, different factors like age, breed, size, and weight could have different influences on the water needs of a puppy.

In order to grow into a healthy and physically well dog, your puppy needs water to support the growth of his cells and muscles. You should supervise the water consumption of your puppy throughout the day. I hope this guide helped you to solve all your queries. If it helped you then don’t mind sharing it with other puppy owners to benefit them as well.

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