putting paws in the water bowl

This is a place to gain some understanding of cat behavior and to assist people in training their cats and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other cat owners and lovers...not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

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Miss Pup - "Loves to play- fetch"
Purred: Tue Sep 6, '11 3:40pm PST 
my mommy is getting frustrated because i keep putting my paws into my water bowl and making a big mess ! i seem to prefer licking the water off my paws and dipping my food into the water.. my mommy has tried different bowls including a moving water bowl but nothing seems to help!

why am i doing this???

Ralphie & Randy

Purred: Tue Sep 6, '11 4:46pm PST 
Randy does this too. I don't know the reason. He seems to find it entertaining. He only occasionally licks the water off his paws - he mostly sticks his paws in the water and then flings it around and makes puddles. Then he sticks his paws in the puddles and flings it some more. He does this not only with his water bowl, but also any water glass left on the end table or water drops in sinks, and lately he's enjoyed climbing into the washing machine to play with the water drops in there.

I'm sorry you're frustrated by this behavior. I have no suggestions for how to stop it, as it's not something that bothers me. I actually think it's kind of playful and cute. If I see water drops or puddles I just wipe them up.


Purred: Fri Sep 9, '11 11:08am PST 
Takoda AKA "The Water Cat" loves his water and does this as well - at times splashing it up the wall when you don't look - he is always jumping in the bath water for splash time (see his profile page for pictures of him in the bath) as well and sits on the side of the bath when you are in the shower.

I'm not sure how you will stop the behavior but I put a large tray under the water dish with a lip so I don't have to constantly sop up water.


go getter kitter
Purred: Fri Sep 9, '11 7:30pm PST 
Some kitties just like to drink this way--if they had thumbs those cats might drink from an itty bitty cup instead! Yeah, just put a tray under it,I don't think this is changeable.


Purred: Fri Sep 9, '11 10:59pm PST 
I would have suggested getting a fountain but it sounds like you tried that already correct? Sometimes cats put their paws into a water bowl because it's hard for them to see the water sitting flat in a bowl which is one reason fountains are recommended, they can see the water moving. They stick their paw into the water to find it basically but since your kitty seems to be doing it for fun, I'm not sure what you can do! You can throw a towel under the bowl or as someone else suggested a tray. I suppose you could ask your vet next visit what their opinion is. Good luck, I hope she grows out of it smile


Stella- Felinis--Queen- of All Kitties!
Purred: Sat Sep 10, '11 9:28am PST 
It's Stella. We got 4 cats here: me, 5 years old and the leader in crime, and the two grays, 4, avid followers, plus Delyte, age 16, a copycat if there ever was one. We ALL put our paws in the food dish, and also move bits of food, dry and wet, into the dish, so that it needs to be cleaned at least twice a day. We had a fountain, years ago, but I learned how to take it apart and play with the wet soggy filter which I would bat around on the soaking floor. Not a great thing for my aged person to discover first thing in the morning!

We've all learned to drink water off our paws, but the weird thing is that the cat who did that all the time has been dead since long before we Grays were born. Our person had a cat, Peri, who had a defective tongue and could not lap up water, so she would drink it with her cupped paw. Delyte used to copy her sometimes, although his tongue is fine. Peri died in 2003. We Grays must have seen Delyte doing it, because now we do it at least half the time. Weird proof of transmittal of learning through generations of cats!

Purrs to you all! big hug


I do a trick,- you give me your- sandwich.
Purred: Sun Sep 11, '11 1:58pm PST 
I used to love doing this out of my bowl and from the fish tank filter. Now we have a fountain instead, and the fish tank has been moved (cat saliva isn't good for fish). No one has seen me do this in a while now, unless I have just been super sneaky.....


I still suck my- thumb...
Purred: Sun Sep 11, '11 4:55pm PST 
Coop plays in his water bowl sometimes. He bats at it, then licks his paws. And if it's a very hot day, and I try to put some ice in his water...he'll keep himself entertained until it melts.

His older brofur, my bridge baby Felix, used to actually dip his paw into the water bowl...and then WASH HIS FACE with the wet paw. He used to make my mother giggle endlessly when he'd do it.

Coop's Mom


Japanese Bobtail
Purred: Mon Sep 12, '11 11:40am PST 
We have a fountain and always test the waters with our paws before drinking.. we have to do the little dab dab to see if its still there.. MOL


Purred: Wed Sep 14, '11 4:08pm PST 
I used to play this game with my brother, we would wait until my human put fresh water down then we would splash in it and turn the bowl upside down and have a puddle fight, flicking water everywhere. We grew out of it after a while

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