Contributed by: a76virgo
So here is what I have found out about those pet water fountains. Yes, pictures and ads of pets drinking from a pet fountain is JUST SO CUTE so how could you possibly go wrong.?.?.? After all they look healthy and attractive so how could you not want to get one for your pet? Do your pet, yourself and your wallet a favor. I recommend that you skip buying this type of product. Here is why....
I picked up a Drinkwell® Platinum Pet Fountain, as an example, from Petsmart which currently has a regular retail price of $69.99.
Here are a couple things to consider:
First - It is power operated. Not only does this hit your power bill you will also need to have a plug nearby. For some homes this may not a problem however for others this could be a big issue for placement and/or the need for an extension cord.
Second - This comes with one charcoal filter. This means that there are frequent maintenance items that you need to consider. Currently Petsmart retails a 3 pack for $11.99! They say to replace them every 2 to 4 weeks.
Third - This thing holds 5L of water or 1.32 gallons. I water 1 cat and 1 small dog and that much water can last for well up to a week. And here is another thing, I'm sure I am like most people and if there is water in it then why bother with it? Pets need FRESH water daily. Sure the water circulated but you would not believe what can collect in the bowl!!
Here is an overview of my experience. The capacity is great but only if you were in the need of temporary extended water coverage. The water collects food particles, pet hair, dust and dirt, bugs, etc, etc. Over time a nasty slimy film builds up on the interior surface area. The pre-pump screen attracts large particles and hair as it should however if you ignore it the buildup can cause the bowl to overflow due to lack of water movement to the back where the pump is. There are tight crevices that are near impossible to clean by hand. The overall size of the unit is impractical to put in the dishwasher. Grime also gets into the pump itself. And those filters? Try every week! And if there is an outbreak of insects they love to lay their eggs which in turn get caught in the filter.
Every time I go to service this thing I just get so disgusted that my animals are having to drink water from thing thing. I don't service it daily because, I mean who wants to toss and fill a gallon and a half of water daily? Better yet change a bowl daily, keep the water fresh and keep your pet healthy. Save your money! Your pets will thank you for it I'm sure.