Product Recommendations

Cat Water Fountains: Fancy & Affordable

I’m a big fan of cat water fountains, because I firmly believe the sound, smell, and sight of moving water makes cats drink more of it. With hydration a key component to health, you can see why this is important. My issue: I’ve always struggled to keep cat water fountains clean.

While many cat water fountains were okay in the beginning, after a few months, I was washing them constantly. The pumps kept clogging with fur and other gross stuff.

I’ve recently replaced all my cat water fountains with new ones that have spout features. The water flowing from the spout mimics that of a faucet and the cats love it. Although I often avoid plastic (it tends to grow bacteria), all three of these plastic fountains work great, with less bacterial growth and clogged pumps than my previous fountains. These are the three fountains, from good to better to best, I’m using and loving right now.

Good: Lictin 2.8L Cat Water Fountain

teal and white cat water fountain
The Lictin Cat Water Fountain holds 2.8L of water aka a lot! Plus, there is a large spout at the top.

Location: Foster Room

The Lictin 2.8L Cat Water Fountain is fabulous. The water pours from the spout into a plastic bowl where it drains through small holes. It then passes through a common polyester carbon filter and re-enters a lovely, large 2.8L reservoir. Most cat water fountains come with carbon filters to remove fur, dirt, chlorine, sediment, and other things that can give water an unappealing odor or taste. This fountain comes with four carbon filters, so you’ll stay stocked for the first few months.

Peek Inside

pump and filter inside fountain
A nylon filter protects the pump from fur and dirt.

The inside is designed nicely too. A nylon filter is pressed against the pump to grab more fur and random debris and keep it from getting into the pump. I just clean the nylon filter once a week and replace the carbon filter every 2-4 weeks, and it’s good to go.

I’m so glad this fountain and the others I’ll discuss have a nylon filter to block fur from getting into the pump. I can’t even describe how much of a difference this makes in keeping fur out of the pump AND keeping the pump clean.


With a large wet surface area (the white part on top), I’ve seen more bacteria growth than the other fountains I’ll cover, but it’s still much improved over my older fountains. I wipe the spout and top down every few days when I refill it. One big con: There is no water level indicator, so the only way I know it’s time to refill is the annoying noise it makes when the water level is low. Another issue is the filter seems to get dirty much more quickly that the next fountain I’m going to review.

Teal and white cat water fountain
Here’s the fountain in bright light before I filled it up. The colors are really appealing, and the spout is huge.

Better: VinDox Cat Water Fountain

flower cat water fountain
The VinDox Cat Water Fountain holds 2.5L of water, has an awesome flower spout, and a light-up water level indicator.

Location: Kitchen

My VinDox 2.5L Cat Water Fountain is heavily used by residents and fosters. Another spout fountain, cats lap up the water as it drips from a plastic flower. Different from the other two cat water fountains in this post, I like that the top portion is stainless steel, which is better at prohibiting bacterial growth than plastic. Unlike the Lictin, there is a lit water level indicator, which is extremely helpful.

Peek Inside

The VinDox Cat Water Fountain functions very similarly to the Lictin. The water pours from the flower spout, onto the stainless steel top, flows through holes along the edges, passing through a carbon water filter, back into the reservoir, through a nylon filter and into the pump. Again, the nylon filter helps a lot with keeping the pump free of fur and clean. This fountain comes with three replacement filters as well as a different type of spout with two large streams instead of the flower, which has six smaller streams.

water fountain pump
A nylon filter prevents fur and dirt from entering the pump in the VinDox Cat Water Fountain.


I wish it was more aesthetically pleasing. Although it’s cute, I’d rather it had a more modern look. The next fountain on my list is attractive and would work with most home decor.

Best: The Magic Feline Fountain from My Lovely Feline

blue cat water fountain
The Magic Feline Fountain is made by My Lovely Feline. You’ll notice fresh filtered water pours from the spout. The clear container makes it easy to check the water level.

Location: Lucy’s Room

Last, but by no means least, The Magic Feline Fountain from My Lovely Feline. Full disclosure, I received this as a gift for doing and interview for My Lovely Feline’s blog. Receiving it before I bought the other two above, it was my first fountain with the trickling effect with the spout, and I was really excited to try it out. I decided to give it to Lucy, who lives in one of my bedrooms because she can’t be around other cats (it’s not pretty and better for all of us that she has her own space). Lucy began lapping from the fountain as soon as I set it up, and I loved the modern design, soft edges, and calming color.

Even though it’s plastic, I haven’t noticed significant bacterial growth. I think there are a few reasons for this:

  • First, Lucy doesn’t like things touching her, so she doesn’t paw at the water or fountain at all. This extremely cuts down on bacteria that could transfer from her paws.
  • Second, she laps from the flowing water or the small pool of water, so her tongue, mouth and saliva don’t touch a lot of the fountain.
  • Third, the drinkable water is contained in a small area, as opposed to a large surface area (the two fountains above have a larger bowl on the top). With the moisture in a confined area, bacteria decreases because there’s less space to grow.

The Magic Feline Fountain‘s clear exterior also makes it easy to see the water level, and it’s easy to wipe down and clean. There is an additional nylon filter (for fur and debris) inside that I clean about once a week, and it honestly doesn’t get that visibly dirty.

Peek Inside

inside blue cat water fountain
Inside The Magic Feline Fountain by My Lovely Feline, you’ll see the filter in the middle, along with an off-white nylon filter on the right to catch fur, dirt, and debris, preventing them from entering the reservoir and getting anywhere near the pump.

In addition to the external style, the internal design of The Magic Feline Fountain is very smart. Older fountains typically have a plastic case in the reservoir contained pump and the filter. The pump isn’t in direct contact with the filter, causing bacteria to grow everywhere and fur to clog the pump i.e. the problems I mentioned in the intro to this post.

This doesn’t happen with The Magic Feline Fountain. Instead of the filter being in the same compartment as the pump, the filter is directly on top of the pump. So the water is pulled through the pump, pushed UP through the filter (most fountains filter downward, including my Good and Better choices) and out the spout. This eliminates clogged pumps and extra plastic pieces to clean.

water fountain
You can see the filter resting on top of the pump in The Magic Feline Fountain. The water enters the pump and is then pushed up through the filter for drinking.

Because Your Cats Deserve a 5-Layer Filtration System

water filter
There are five layers of filtering inside this filter cartridge.

The filter itself is actually a filtering system, not just one filter. Most cat water fountains come with a polyester charcoal filter that catches fur and remove chlorine, sediments and other things that can cause bad odor and taste (like the two I already covered). Typically, they need to be replaced every 2-4 weeks. The Magic Feline Fountain has a 5-layer filtration system encapsulated in a hard plastic container, and you replace the entire filtration system every 2 months. Layers include:

  • Fine nylon filter mesh to get small particles
  • Coconut shell activated carbon to remove heavy metals, chlorine and odor.
  • Mineral stones to supply healthy minerals.
  • PUROLITE iron exchange resin to soften water.
  • Silver ion formula to kill 99.9% of germs.


The price is a bit higher compared to other cat water fountains. The engineering is much better with this fountain, but I can understand why someone might choose another if they are on a tight budget. If you fall into that category, just remember that you will be buying a lot more filters with other fountains, so be sure to include that when calculating the overall expense.

The other con is the 1.5L size. Yes, it’s plenty for most cat homes, but if you have more than four cats and are not home during the day to fill it, you’ll likely need a second fountain.

See for Yourself

The cats and I are super happy with these three fountains. Check them out for yourself and let me know what you think.

Good: Lictin 2.8L Cat Water Fountain

Better: VinDox Cat Water Fountain

Best: The Magic Feline Fountain by My Lovely Feline

Hydration & Health

Hydration is so important to the health of your cat. Here are just a few other posts I’ve written on cat health.

Monitor your cat’s health with nail trimming, ear cleanings, and brushing.

Reasons you should spay or neuter your cat.

Destress vet visits.

By LizsKittyBootCamp

Hi, I'm Liz, and I'm a cat behaviorist who provides advice and insights on cat behavior.

8 replies on “Cat Water Fountains: Fancy & Affordable”

[…] Water fountains: Find a place away from your cat’s food bowls to put their water fountain. Cats don’t associate eating with drinking, so it doesn’t make sense to put them next to each other. Their fountain will also stay cleaner if it’s not right next to their food bowl. If you have a senior cat, I recommend putting at least water fountain on each floor. Need help shopping for water fountains? Here are my three picks. […]

Just wanted to thank you for your thorough reviews of these fountains. I’ve been wanting to get my cats (one cat in particular who HAS to drink out of the bathroom sink!) a water fountain for quite some time, but keep putting it off because of negative reviews I’ve read. I decided to splurge and go with the 3rd fountain- Wish me luck 🙂

Hi Kelly! So glad they were helpful. My Lovely Feline has articles on their site about how to get your cat to use it. They also have a guarantee so you can return it if your cat/cats don’t like it.

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