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Why Do Cats Drink Toilet Water?

Why Do Cats Drink Toilet Water?

Toilet water is disgusting to humans because we know what goes in there. However, cats do not know that; therefore, they do not see it as wrong. 

If your cat is drinking toilet water, it is an unhealthy habit that you need to get them to stop. Only one drink out of the toilet can cause your cat to become sick. 

Therefore, you have to stop your cat from continuing this behavior regardless of how much they love it. 

Why Does My Cat Drink Out of the Toilet?

Your cat drinks out of the toilet for several reasons, which may include the following: 

1. Clean and Fresh Water 

Cats are clean animals, and you can see how they groom themselves and ignore things they deem unclean. You should provide water for your cat alongside their food. However, you should be intentional about changing your cat’s water bowl often. 

The water in your cat’s bowl is often exposed for hours, and your cat may not see it as fresh. Cats retain their wild animal instinct despite being domesticated, and this instinct draws them to running fresh water, like a stream or river. The closest thing to that in your home will be running taps and toilet bowls. 

If you often flush your toilet, then the water in the bowl is always fresh and smells clean. Your cat may be drawn to the smell of fresh water coming from your bathroom and will go there to get hydrated. 

2. Access and Location

If your cat has open access to your bathroom, it will eventually figure out that there is water in the toilet bowl and will drink from it when it wants. 

Your cat will have unrestricted access to the bathroom if its litter box is there. You probably will not follow your cat to the toilet when it goes there, as you will assume it needs to use the container. 

Your cat may use the box and realize it needs to drink water. It looks around in curiosity for the closes water supply. The tap is turned off, and the shower is dry, but there is water in the toilet bowl. Therefore it takes a satisfying drink out of the toilet bowl before heading out of the bathroom.  

If your bathroom is the closest location where your cat can get water, it will often go there for a drink. Cats are curious, and they know there is always water in the bathroom. Therefore, if your cat’s water bowl is dry, the first place they are likely to look for water is your bathroom. 

Cat sitting in basket

3. Cool Water

Water closets are made out of porcelain which causes the water in them to stay cool. Since you flush often, the water will always be cool. If you leave the water in your cat’s bowl out for long hours, it will become warm, and your cat may not want to drink it.  

Your cat may seek cooler water and be drawn to the one in your toilet. Cool water is refreshing to drink for anyone, and your cat knows this hence why it looks for one. 

4. Entertainment 

Cats are social animals, and when they are not sleeping, they are looking for fun. If your cat has siblings, they will often play together, but if it doesn’t, your cat will look for other ways to have fun. This way may include playing with you or household objects. 

Another way your cat can entertain itself is to play in the bathroom. If your toilet bowl water runs, your curious cat will want to feel it. The cat will play and try to hold the water in its paws. 

Your cat may try to scratch the water surface, among other things. If the cat needs water during the play, it doesn’t need to step out of the bathroom, and it will drink out of the toilet. 

5. Attention 

How often do you play and pay attention to your cat? Cats will do anything, including being mischievous, to get your attention. 

Cats are smart, and they know when you are warning them off or telling them what to do and not do. If you’ve made it clear that you do not want your cat drinking out of the toilet and it doesn’t stop, your cat could be sending you a message. 

Your cat may not be acting stubborn; doing what you disapprove of may be the only way to get your attention. Other things your cat may be doing to get your attention are scratching at your phone and playing with your favorite items. 

Cat drinking water

How Can You Get Your Cat to Stop Drinking out of the Toilet

Drinking from the toilet is unhealthy for cats. The water may appear clean, but the chemicals used in cleaning the toilet bowl are harmful. If your cat drinks water contaminated by these chemicals, it could be fatal. 

Therefore, you should do all you can to discourage your cat from continuing this behavior. Some of the things you can do are as follows. 

  1. Change the water in your cat’s bowl several times daily. It is not enough to change this water only when you feed your cat, and changing it often means your cat always gets fresh and clean water. 
  2. Use scented deterrents to discourage your cat from going in the bathroom. Some smells that irritate cats include citrus, pine, mint, and cinnamon. If your cat’s litter box is in the bathroom, you might consider changing its location. 
  3. Keep the toilet closed. You can close the water closet so that your cat doesn’t have access to the water. Cats are smart and may figure out how to open the lid. In this case, you may want to use a clip to keep the toilet cover shut. 
  4. Close the bathroom door. Your cat will most likely not be able to open the bathroom door if it is tightly shut. 


Toilet water is always cool and smells fresh due to constant flushing. The smell of clean water may attract your cat to the toilet, and it may drink from it. 

Your cat may be drinking out of the toilet to get attention, be mischievous, or just get a freshwater supply. Regardless of the reason, drinking toilet water is bad for your cat. The water may contain bacteria, bleach, and other cleaning chemicals. These chemicals can cause your cat to become sick, and if they get an infection from bacteria, they may easily pass it to you. Therefore, you should do all you can to discourage your cat from drinking toilet water.