How to Make a Homemade Dog Water Feeder

Automatic dog water systems save time from filling the water bowl.

Automatic dog water systems save time from filling the water bowl.

Dogs require a continuous supply of clean water to maintain good health. A dog's body is comprised of 80 percent water. Too little water can lead to dehydration and cause kidney stores or organ failure. Dogs require 1/2 to 1 ounce of water per pound of weight per day. Making a homemade dog water feeder can supply your pet with fresh water continuously, even while you are away from home for long hours.

Measure the depth of a 10-inch stainless steel dog dish with a measuring tape. Subtract one-half inch from the bowl's depth.

Measure upward from the bottom of an empty, clean half-gallon plastic juice bottle. Mark the height at the bowl's depth minus one-half inch with a marker.

Place a 1/2-inch drill bit in a drill. Drill one hole on the mark on the juice bottle.

Pull off small bits of plastic around hole with your fingers and wipe away any plastic pieces with a washcloth. Rinse the juice bottle under a strong stream of water thoroughly and make certain there are no tiny plastic shards on the inside or outside of the bottle.

Place the dog dish in the area that you want the water feeder. Hold the juice bottle with one finger covering the hole in it. Fill the bottle with water and screw the lid on tightly.

Set the bottle inside of the dog dish and then release your finger from the hole. The water will fill the dish to a level just above the hole and maintain this level until the bottle needs filling again.

Items you will need

  • Measuring tape
  • 10-inch stainless steel dog dish
  • Half-gallon plastic juice bottle with lid
  • Marker
  • Drill
  • 1/2-inch drill bit
  • Washcloth
  • Household bleach


  • Place outdoor homemade water feeders on level ground to keep them from tipping over.
  • Make larger water feeders with a gallon jug and a dish that holds the jug while leaving a few inches between it and the dish sides for your dog to drink from it.
  • Automatic dog water systems form a vacuum inside the bottle. When water flows into the bowl and rises above the hole in the bottle, air cannot enter the bottle and the water flow stops. As your dog drinks from the bowl, air enters the hole to allow water to refill it automatically.
  • Clean the water dish weekly with soap and water, and then soak it in a solution of one tablespoon of bleach to one gallon of water for two minutes. Rinse the inside and outside thoroughly and let the dish air dry. (ref 3)


  • The lid of a water bottle must fit tightly for the automatic water feeder to work correctly and not overflow the bowl.

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About the Author

Mary Lougee has been writing for over 10 years. She holds a Bachelor's Degree with a major in Management and a double minor in accounting and computer science. She loves writing about careers for busy families as well as family oriented planning, meals and activities for all ages.

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