Post 606: The fountain water tastes like kitty — time to clean the fountain!

The boys drink from a fountain that aerates and filters the water. When the fountain is freshly cleaned, it spouts lovely streams of clean water from four spouts. The boys love it!

There is no magic timetable to use to clean the fountain. Some places say once a month. Others suggest more frequently. When you have two Persian kitties using it, however, that time is clear: When their shed hair clogs to openings and water mostly dribbles down the spouts.

This morning, I decided I’d better clean it while the water level was down. I have two of these fountains. I like to clean one before I dump the other because the boys become anxious when I remove their water.

fountain 2I have to carry the fountain about twenty feet to empty any water in it. If you have cats, you know that I always have two of them weaving in and out in front and behind me for that short walk, and today was no exception. (You were especially naughty while doing it, too, Dougy! Bad kitty! I almost dumped the water two, maybe three times.)

The cleaning process if simple, even though there are lots of little parts on the inside, all of which are necessary, some of which can be assembled onto the stack at least two different ways, though there is only one way that works. Until I did this often enough to have the routine down, I used to have lots of “Oh sxxx!” moments where I had to dis- and reassemble the blasted thing to get it to work.  Those days are over!

I soak the parts on vinegar. The water here is heavily mineralized. Tastes good, but have a constant drip of it from a high place to a lower one, and you get a lesson in stalactite making! Or making kitty fountains look like crud even after they are cleaned. You can see the mineral deposits on the central column in the photo. Yes, it looks just that ugly in real life!


There are a couple solutions: switch to distilled water or immerse the parts in vinegar. I’m sure the distilled water would be a hit…! The vinegar soak, however, requires a fair amount of vinegar and a deep enough container to do it in. I typically use a full gallon of the stuff soaking the parts that need demineralization. The column never gets a full soak, just the bottom part. I try to scrape as much of the build up off as possible, but, as you can see, it still looks like hell. I rinse the soaked parts off in fresh water.

But the kitties run right to the fountain when I fill it up and lap up that most wonderful of all water, water that doesn’t taste like cat spit!


I note that I am not promoting any particular brand of pet water fountain. This just happens to be the one I have. I suspect it works as well as any of them, but the main thing I like about it is the boys always have filtered aerated water. They drink it regularly, which is great since part of their diet is dry food. I was just kidding about the cat spit. The charcoal filter deals with that.


18 thoughts on “Post 606: The fountain water tastes like kitty — time to clean the fountain!

  1. When my cat passed almost two years ago I decided to wait three months to see if the urge to visit the homeless society for kitties passed. It did. My clothes are a lot cleaner. 🙂 Regards

    • Andy and Dougy came to me at a time I didn’t think I was ready for cats again after Louie the ginger cat died of lymphoma. I fell under their spell when the woman who owned their parents showed them to me at the clinic on two separate occasions and asked if I’d like to have them. Both were really cute little guys, and I was hooked. Nothing has been hair-free since they came into the house! I should go back into the early posts to see if I documented the arrival of the boys. I wasn’t blogging as regularly back then.

    • I had to put up lots of night lights for the same reason. Two black cats running around in the dark put up quite an obstacle to staying upright! Even with the lights, the main thing I see is dark movements at the foot level. I try to bang around with my cane to make sure they stay out of my way, and it helps.

    • That is another benefit of this sort of water source. Cats seems to prefer moving mater. With the filtering, it probably tastes much better than stale old cta bowl water, too!

    • It’s a popular spot, fortunately, since cats can be pills about drinking adequate amounts of water if they have dry food in their diets. I split part dry and part wet.

      I’ve tried a stainless steel version of this same brand and style fountain, but find the plastic one easier to disassemble. I guess some cats get feline acne on their chins when they use the plastic version. (???- That’s what I read in comments on Amazon!) Neither Dougy nor Andy has that problem. That is the justification for the stainless version, plus new it looks pretty sexy! The stainless version looks even grimmer when the calcium deposits build on it, however, and is harder to clean of same.

      When I first got fountain, Andy and Dougy were so tiny, they barely could reach the rim unless they put their front paws on it, and they lapped the water from the basin instead of the filtered fountain spouts: They were wet-your-pants cute doing this, I swear!

        • This one is pretty basic at that. There are others that filter the water, but the water cascades down a slope instead of splashing around from a height. I like the fountain I have because the boys’ chin hair tends to get all soggy if they drink directly from the basin, which they sometimes do if the spouts are running a bit low. I guarantee they come right over to me for a scritching when they have wet “chin whiskers”! Ha!

      • A fountain would be ideal for the girls as it is for your boys. Unfortunately I tried it and Shoko was scared of it! She would creep into the dining room on her tunmmy and pass the fountain on the other side of the table….it was embarrassing. Kali liked it but Shoko was, “get that odd, water noisy thing outta my house.” Kali has feling acne and can’t have plastic toys, bowls etc. So I had chosen a stainless steel fountain. A week later Shoko was treating it the same so I had to take it back.


        • Wow! Talk about every negative possibility happening! Though my boys like their fountain, they’ve used this type of fountain since they were under three months old. That probably makes a difference. I personally like the sound of the water cascading out of the spouts, but that could be tedious to some. As far as plastic vs. stainless, I was disappointed in the stainless version of this fountain. Aside from costing a lot more, the method for affixing the central tower to the base was “iffy” (four plastic clips that slipped over the side of the basin, and end of which lightly pressed against the edge of the tower, but not so well as the twist to lock in place business of the plastic one, where the tower is held securely in place with one simple motion). The type where the water is filtered but flows over an incline probably isn’t so noisey, but I don’t think my boys would like licking the water off the incline.

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