Providing your tarantula with proper care includes ensuring they have enough water to drink. While tap water can be safe for tarantulas to drink, there are times when this might not be the case. Only giving your tarantula safe drinking water is critical to their health.
Tarantulas can drink tap water if it is safe for humans to drink and does not have an unpleasant taste or odor. Not all tap water is safe for tarantula or human consumption.
While tap water is generally considered safe for tarantulas to drink, there are times when this isn’t true. Giving your tarantula tap water that is of poor quality could make them ill or potentially kill them.
Is it Safe for Tarantulas to Drink Tap Water?
Tap water is safe for tarantulas to drink as long as it’s also safe for humans to consume. The water should not have any unusual and unpleasant tastes or odours. That can be a sign it contains something which could be dangerous.
While most tap water is safe for tarantulas to drink, not all of it is. Some tap water is not suitable for humans to drink due to contamination of potential toxins and other unsuitable additions. This can include a breakage in the waterline, malfunction at a treatment plant, lead from old lead piping in the house and more. Problems such as this are rare but not unheard of in large modern cities.
Tasting and smelling the water first before giving it to your tarantula will confirm if the water is safe or not.
What Chemicals that might hurt Tarantulas are found in Tap Water?
Tap water can contain different added chemicals to ensure the water is safe for us to drink. Chemicals such as chlorine, chloramine, fluoride and more can all be found in tap water. No problems have been documented so far from tarantulas who drink tap water.
Chlorine and fluoride are the most commonly found chemicals in water, followed by chloramine, a more stable form of chlorine. These chemicals are present at levels that have been confirmed to be safe for human consumption, and pets such as dogs, cats, birds and rodents get no ill effects from the water. Research into the safety of these chemicals on invertebrates such as tarantulas is non-existent, but keepers have never reported harmful side effects from giving tap water to them.
- Chlorine – A primary and very common water disinfectant that is not very stable in water which means it will break down relatively quickly
- Chloramine – Formed of chlorine and ammonia, it’s a water disinfectant that provides longer-lasting effects.
- Fluoride – While sometimes added to water, it can also be a naturally occurring mineral that helps to prevent tooth decay. This is why it’s commonly added to dental care products (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/fluoride/).
- Lead – If you have lead pipes, there may be lead in your water which is highly poisonous. Soft water areas are more at risk from this, so those areas might treat the water with phosphoric acid to reduce any lead content.
The number of chemicals and potential toxins will depend on your region. What is added to the tap water will also depend on your region. It’s best to research tap water in your area to ensure it is safe to drink for you. If the water is not safe for you, it is not safe for your tarantula.
Should I be concerned about Chlorine in Tap Water for my Tarantula?
Chlorine is added to tap water to kill potentially harmful bacteria, viruses and parasites. Drinking it in small amounts is known to be safe for humans, and while there are no studies on tarantula health, there have been no documented cases of tap water hurting a tarantula.
Chlorinated water is toxic for aquatic animals (https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/drinking/public/water_disinfection.html), which absorb water directly into the bloodstream. Animals such as humans, dogs and tarantulas that drink water will be less at risk of harm. Chlorine is unstable in water, so it can take up to 24 hours to no longer be present in the tap water.
If the tarantula does not immediately drink from the water dish, the exposure to chlorine would be extremely low. Even if they drink some water, the risk of harm is very low from chlorine.
Should Tarantulas only Drink Bottled Water?
Tarantulas don’t need to drink bottled water as long as the local tap water is safe. If the tap water is safe for humans, the tarantula can drink that from the water bowl. Tarantulas should be given safe water from another source in areas where tap water is not safe for humans, such as water bottles.
If the local tap water is safe for human consumption, there is no need to give the tarantula bottled water or any other potential drinking water. There has been no documented benefit of providing a tarantula with bottled water instead of tap water.
Do Tarantulas require Specialist Water to Drink?
Tarantulas do not require specialist water. They can drink regular tap water without any problems if it is safe for human consumption. If the water is safe for you to drink, it’s safe for them to drink.
While they don’t need specialist water to drink, some keepers prefer to use bottled water for aesthetic reasons. Tap water contains minerals, and if it gets on the enclosure glass, it will leave white marks behind once it dries.
Cleaning the mineral deposits inside a tarantula enclosure is stressful for them and you. Many keepers will use only bottled water in misting bottles when spraying the enclosure.
What type of Water is best for my Tarantula?
There is no single best drinking water for a tarantula. If tap water is suitable drinking water for humans, it is good for a tarantula. Bottled water and distilled water are also suitable. Rainwater might be another appropriate option, but this depends on your region.
Tarantulas can drink any water that is safe for human consumption. Distilled water has all the minerals removed from it, making it less beneficial for humans. There has been no research into whether the minerals in water are essential for invertebrates, but natural water does contain minerals, so that mineral-free water would be unnatural.
Rainwater is a potential option, especially if it has been cleaned and prepared for human consumption (https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/can-you-drink-rain-water). Rainwater can contain toxins, especially if you live close to highly industrialised or polluted areas. Chemicals and pollutants can be absorbed into rainwater which could be dangerous to drink, but it’s also possible for it to contain parasites, viruses and harmful bacteria. Rainwater must be purified first before it’s safe for you or your tarantula to drink.
How should I provide my Tarantula with Drinking Water?
Tarantulas should have access to a water dish at all times. They will also drink water droplets on their webbing, the enclosure walls and any accessories inside the enclosure. In nature, tarantulas will drink from any available water source.
Most of the water they need is absorbed through eating, but tarantulas also need access to fresh drinking water. A water dish is the best option, but tarantulas will also drink water droplets from other sources. Using a misting bottle to spray the sides of the enclosure or onto a section of webbing also provides clean drinking water.
Should I only use Distilled Water in Spray Bottles for Tarantulas?
Using distilled water for misting is for aesthetics, not the tarantulas’ benefit. Distilled water contains no minerals and will leave no unsightly mineral deposits on the enclosure glass or plastic. Using tap water will leave watermarks behind on the walls.
It’s not essential to use distilled water for misting the tarantula enclosure. However, it does reduce the need to clean the inner walls of the enclosure. Mineral deposits can be challenging to clean from the plastic or glass walls and make it harder to see inside the enclosure. Using tap water for missing is perfectly fine for the tarantula and will not harm them. The decision to use distilled water instead of missing is purely aesthetic.
Any tap water that is fit for human consumption is also suitable for tarantula consumption. The tap water should not have any strange smells or tastes. If it does, the water may contain contaminants that could harm a human or tarantula. Bottled water and distilled water are good options for drinking water; however, distilled water does not contain potentially beneficial minerals. Rainwater can work for tarantulas, but it must be purified first and made safe for human consumption.