This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Which cat fountain is best?

Your pets need proper hydration throughout the day, especially during the hotter months when you might not be home that often. Most owners put out a bowl of water, but you can’t predict how thirsty your pet will get.

An excellent solution is to get a cat fountain for your feline friend. With a steady supply of fresh, cold water, you can leave the house stress-free knowing that nourishing fluids are always available. The Catit Fresh & Clear Stainless Steel Cat Water Fountain is an excellent choice, as it has a large capacity and is partially made from metal.

What to know before you buy a cat fountain

Close to a wall socket

Any pet fountain must be placed close to a wall socket. The small internal water pump needs electricity to push the water through the system, or it won’t work. However, there are fountains that have a USB connection. These can plug into a wall socket through an adapter but can also operate off a power bank in an emergency or power cut.

Limited capacity

A cat fountain doesn’t connect to your main water line and has a limited capacity for water storage. When the levels get low, you must top up the tank. Depending on how many cats you have and average summer temperatures where you live, you might find yourself adding water more regularly. If tank capacity is a concern, it’s best to get two cat fountains and place them in different spots in the house.

Metal is better than plastic

Aim for a cat fountain made of metal instead of plastic. Not only does a shiny metal fountain look better, but it keeps the water fresher. Plastic can, over time, alter the water’s taste. Also, some cats can develop feline chin acne when eating or drinking from plastic bowls. It is essentially a cat allergy to plastic and should be avoided.

What to look for in a quality cat fountain

Filtration system

Stagnant or dirty water is dangerous to pets, especially cats with a delicate immune system. A good-quality cat fountain has a multi-step filtration system that clears the water of dust particles, debris or harmful elements. It’s not as complex as household filtration systems, and much easier to maintain.

In most cases, you simply pop out the filter and replace it with a new one — but there is a catch. It’s rare to find interchangeable filters between different brands. Usually, you can only use the same filters as the fountain maker. 

Large water tank

With limited capacity, it’s essential that you get a fountain with a large water tank. The tank’s size determines the fountain’s overall height, but it shouldn’t be a problem for any cat to reach. A larger capacity means that more water is available during the day, and you wouldn’t need to top it up more than once or twice a week. 

Easy to clean

Another crucial element of a cat fountain is maintenance. You don’t want to drink water from a dirty glass, so your cat shouldn’t have to drink from a dirty fountain. The water filters are simple to replace, but you must give the fountain a thorough cleaning regularly. A good-quality cat fountain makes this easy by being made of only a few components, and having them be ones that come apart and can be washed by hand or in a dishwasher.

How much you can expect to spend on a cat fountain

A cat fountain isn’t as expensive as you might think. A basic fountain with a replaceable filter costs $20-$30, while a metal fountain with a large water tank runs $40-$50. The filters are usually sold in packs of three or five, and go for $10-$25.

Cat fountain FAQ

Do you use tap water or bottled water for a fountain?

A. Tap water is perfectly fine for a cat fountain, as long as the water is also fit for human consumption. There’s no need to use bottled water — the filtration system will take care of any impurities.

How do you clean a cat fountain?

A. While water circulation prevents bacteria from growing, you can never be too cautious. Simply take the fountain apart and rinse it under hot water. Some fountain components are suitable for a dishwasher, too. 

What’s the best cat fountain to buy?

Top cat fountain

 Catit Fresh & Clear Stainless Steel Cat Water Fountain

Catit Fresh & Clear Stainless Steel Cat Water Fountain

What you need to know: This cat fountain has a plastic base and tank but there’s a metal water bowl on the top.

What you’ll love: The recirculating system cools and aerates the water while the internal carbon filter cleans the water of any debris. The tank has a capacity of around 64 fluid ounces.

What you should consider: The fountain comes with a 5-foot cable. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Chewy

Top cat fountain for the money

Petkit Eversweet Solo Dog & Cat Fountain

Petkit Eversweet Solo Dog & Cat Fountain

What you need to know: This half-gallon cat fountain is perfect for small to medium pets, as you can monitor their liquid intake through the transparent sides.

What you’ll love: The fountain has two operating modes: one that continuously circulates the water, and one that runs in a cycle of three minutes on and three minutes off. It’s made of plastic and includes a carbon filter.

What you should consider: It uses a USB cable, so you’ll need an adapter for a wall socket.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Chewy

Worth checking out

Petdiary Automatic Cat Water Fountain

Petdiary Automatic Cat Water Fountain

What you need to know: This 101-ounce fountain is made of food-grade melamine and has five filtration layers.

What you’ll love: The transparent sides let you keep an eye on the water level, but it has built-in dry run protection. There is also a light that turns on when the surroundings get dark.

What you should consider: It has a wall socket connection, so it isn’t compatible with power banks.

Where to buy: Sold by Chewy


Want to shop the best products at the best prices? Check out Daily Deals from BestReviews.

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Charlie Fripp writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2022 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.