There was a great article from WebMD.com this morning on making sure your dog is getting enough water to stay healthy. I thought I would share the information with you.
Even though the temperatures have dropped considerably from the summer, our canine pals still need plenty of water to stay hydrated. Dogs lose water through sweating through their paw pads and panting, as well as when they pee and poop. It only takes a loss of 10-15% of the water in their bodies for them to become severely dehydrated so it is essential that they are replacing that water.
The rule of thumb is one ounce of water with every one pound your dog weighs; ie: if he weighs 15 pounds, he needs to drink 15 ounces of water each day. To ensure he is drinking enough, keep fresh water handy all the time. Keep his bowl clean and change the water frequently. Since dogs can often spill their water making it appear they have drank more, get a bowl that doesn't tip over and have more than one around. If your dog is outside for a better part of the day, be sure there is a clean bowl of fresh water out there for him.
Signs of dehydration include: low energy, no appetite, sunken eyes and a dry mouth. If you think your dog may be dehydrated there are two ways to check. Pull up the skin behind his head on his neck, it should go back immediately. If it doesn't, he is dehydrated. Also, you can check his gums by pressing lightly on his gum so that it blanches. The color should return immediately after removing your finger. If it doesn't, he is dehydrated. Since dehydration can be life-threatening, get the dog to the vet or an emergency clinic as soon as possible to get fluids.
Remember, he is counting on you to keep him healthy, so keep that water clean, fresh and available.