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economical water filtration for cats?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Lately, I have been finding heavy (calcium deposits) around the sink nozzle. It looks like snow accumulation! I have to clean the deposits every week. We have told the apartment complex, but they aren't very responsive. We are moving out soon because of the rude staff here! We don't feel safe consuming the tap water. It doesn't taste good anyway, what tap water does? Anyhow, the way I see it, if we don't feel safe drinking the water, why would I make my cats drink it? I extend the same respect to them as I do myself.

So my question is, how can I give them filtered water without it costing a fortune? Right now I'm giving them purified drinking water from the grocery store, but this is just a quick fix, it's obviously too much money. Do those drinking fountains work? Can the cats splash around it creating the potential for a electrical fire?


post #2 of 5
Your apartament complex has nothing to do with the calcium deposits in your tap water. Calcium deposits are caused by hard water (which has a large amount of dissolved solids), the geography of your region determines the hardness of your city tap water. Dissolved solids have no health effects on your (or your cat's) body, but iron and other salts may affect the taste of your water. Only RO (Reverse Osmosis) filtration or DI (DeIonization) technology can clear out the all dissolved solids. Water softeners use ion exchange resins to replace the heavier ions (calcium, magnesium, iron, etc...) with sodium ions, which are more readily soluble in water, this will help with the lime buildup and with the taste of the water. Applying any of these solutions to an apartment building is a major undertaking (right out in the case of RO), so blame your location and not your apartment (though that certainly doesn't absolve them of any other issues) for your water.

PS The filters in a cat drinking fountain will do nothing to the hardness of the water, all these filters can do is filter chemical impurities, not dissolved solids. So while the water will be cleaner it will still be just as hard and minerally.

PPS In blind taste tests over seven out of ten people prefer New York City tap water to any brand of bottled water. In most locations people prefer the taste of the city tap water to bottled water. And the EPA standards for city water are much higher than for bottled water (not that bottled water isn't clean and safe, it is, but city water is cleaner and safer, statistically speaking).
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Cool, thank you, how did you learn so much? As long as the water is safe for my cats, I won't spend a fortune giving them purified water, as long as they can stand the taste. It's aweful.

And, yes there are endless reasons for us leaving this apartment complex other than the water!
post #4 of 5
Well, in all fairness, New York has a superb filtration system - I, as a bottled water drinker, even liked New York water more than bottled water. Now, elswhere is not so nice. When I was visiting my sister in Virginia, there was so much chlorine in the water I could only stand the taste if it was really really cold - the tap water smelled just as strong as any swimming pool. A filter CAN remove chlorine; which, in addition to tasting bad can dehydrate you.

You can get around the hard water issue by buying distilled water - which newer studies seem to indicate can be better for cats - particularly if they are prone to urinary tract infections. My grocery store has distilled and purified water for 39 cents a gallon. The typical cat only needs about 8 ounces of water a day, so a gallon would last you a while. But I don't know how concerned you are about hard water.

A lot of people get their cats fountains to encourage them to drink, not so much for the purification value. Cats tend to like to drink running water, so many will drink more water if there is a fountain in the house. The filter is there more to grab hair and debris to keep the water fresher day after day. - I don't think they make any water purification claims.
post #5 of 5
I use the fountain because my cats are prone to UTIs and they need to drink more water, they do like it and drink more than before. I don't know how well it filters though. Good luck moving!
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