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Waterbite: Gelled water for traveling with dogs

Photo by Waterbites

Photo by Waterbites

A while back, I posted a description of Waterbite portable water and implored its maker to package it in TSA-friendly 3-oz. packages. No progress on that front, but my mother had the brilliant idea of re-packing the gel into the small (2-oz.) Nalgene screwtop jars you find at The Container Store and putting a handful of them into my 3-1-1 bag. So I went ahead and bought an order of Waterbites. They arrived today, and we submitted the gel to Chloe for testing. Results were very positive, so we’re a go on the re-packing plan. I think it will work, even though the gel turns out to be not so much “squeezeable” as “breakable into smaller, really-firm-jello-like pieces.”

Fingers crossed that the gel remains a hit in the field (that is, inserted into her carrier during flight) — I would be really happy not to have to hold ice cubes in my hand, head pressed against the seat in front of me and arm stuck into Chloe’s carrier, for her to lick. Our next flight with her is in about a month, so I’ll hold off on posting this until we have a final report for you.

a month later

Alas, in practice it didn’t work so well. Chloe showed no interest at all in the Waterbites gel en route, even when I broke off pieces and offered them to her as treats. It’s back to the ice cubes for us. I still believe, though, that the idea is essentially a good one — consider giving it a try with your dog. (And on the ground, Waterbites remain a hit with Chloe — we’ll keep a stock on hand for day hikes.)


  • Jenn

    I do think it’s possible that a dog doesn’t need to have water for even 8 to 10 hours on a long flight. They sleep without waking to drink, and they are capable of fasting for medical care, so why not in flight? The odd ice cube makes a nice treat, but I don’t think we should feel bad for witholding water during flight – provided, of course, that we take care to offer water immediately AFTER the flight, and (in limited quantity) during long enough stop overs. 🙂

  • Jenn

    Oops, wanted to add to comment above that this of course assumes no medical condition requiring the dog have access to water at all times.

    Left to their own devices, our own dogs drink once per day, about 2 hours after they eat, like clockwork. They may take a few laps one other time during the day, to taste, but not in any quantity that would suggest they NEEDED it. I am sure they could go 10+ hours without needing water in flight, and it’s been about that long since either of them has left their nest bed to go drink today.

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