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By Jonah13

Berkshire, United Kingdom Gb

Why do birds drink from bird baths like green swamps? They often turn green with algae, and I suspect they even drop their own excreta into it also occasionally, to make things worse. I replace the water regularly, but it turns nasty looking quite rapidly. I hope it never harms them. Always the worst time of year for the problem.



I don't know why they do, but they do!! Cats often drink "dirty" water as well. I'm sure they wouldn't do it if it harmed them - especially when you are providing fresh water regularly.

8 Aug, 2012


Presumably they know what they're doing, Jonathan - like Melchisedec, my cats spurned the clean, fresh water in their bowls, preferring instead to find some dirty, mucky puddle to drink from outside... Once I found one of my cats braced inside the toilet bowl, yowling like a banshee - she'd gone in to drink the water, and found she couldn't get out...

8 Aug, 2012


Strange. A bit difficult to understand.

8 Aug, 2012


Yep, can't understand it, just have to accept it!

8 Aug, 2012


Try putting an old copper penny in the water, it is supposed to keep it clean.
Our cats even push the green slime aside on the pond to drink.

8 Aug, 2012


We always have fresh water for the cat girls in the house - unless they can't get outside they will drink out of puddles, containers that Bulba has put water in to soak plants, the pond, the rain butt... the list goes on and on. In nature no animal or bird has access to 'clean' drinking water. With tap water I suspect the smell of the chemicals deters them. We don't put out water for the birds having a pond and other points they can drink from.

8 Aug, 2012


I agree with MG it may be the chemicals in your area. Round here we don't have a problem, fresh is preferred to dirty. except the dogs, they prefer the water out of the pond which has spring water running into it, but is also tainted with duck poo, still they eat that if i'm not looking.

8 Aug, 2012


Hi previous "commenters": in my place here in mid-France, I have supposedly pure "spring water" (it comes from just up the hill) ... (though we pay for it through rates & meter) - they give us an analysis yearly - no chemicals, etc. ... Soft water, lots of minerals, etc. , no pollutants (but the state of one's pipes eg old lead ones might be critical they say because this might be attacked by the nature of the water...)

My cat and I both drink it and she loves it as long as I let it stand after running it - but prefers even more to go outside and drink the rainwater residue from my plastic garden chair seats....

Cussedness of females especially in Cats? Maybe, but never believe they (or we!) 'know what's good for them' as has been reassuringly quoted in previous posts. I had a neighbour in UK whose cat died in agony, they think from drinking from a puddle polluted by car antifreeze... Many die each year from cancer because of drinking from ditches etc. polluted by agricultural chemicals...

I guess we have to balance the idiocy of our pets - and therefore perhaps by extension the idiocy of our wildlife from which originally they were perhaps bred... - against perhaps the idiocy of ourselves?

The thing is, if we breed them to be pets equals defenceless and trusting - we shouldn't equally trust them to know that anti-freeze-laden puddles of the water that they need to survive, might hurt?...

Sorry, I didn't mean to get disputatious... shall go away and post a picture tomorrow when my camera is charged up, an ID Picture of something I thought was calendula... but am now told it is a 'summer bulb' (?) pale pink open bell-like flowers

9 Aug, 2012


The chemical explanation was one I used to believe - but really, if my cat preferred to trap herself in the loo and drink that water, which must be chlorinated like all the rest, that explanation doesn't 'hold water' either, lol

9 Aug, 2012


yep you have to say we bow to the cussedness of cats (and female ones especially, as my "ex" points out.)

why do they eat grass, especially when you're watching?

9 Aug, 2012


They need grass periodically - it acts as an emetic and helps them to get rid of fur balls. When you see them eating grass, you can guarantee they'll sick up something within the hour...

9 Aug, 2012


yep, usually on my nice and expensive rug (there are acres of nice cleanable floor tiles all around instead)

bless... even french swear-words don't deter her... perhaps she hasn't learnt French?

Shoo shoo vas-t-en?

9 Aug, 2012

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