Under certain conditions in which food provides an adequate caloric intake but too little water to sustain a cat or a rat in euhydration, these animals can be shown to depend for survival on their intake of sea water. They will generally drink enough sea water ad libitum to thrive, even overcoming thereby a previously induced water deficit; or, they will readily eat their food, mixed with sea water in amounts which can vary widely, with similar benefit. Without sea water they undergo progressive hydropenia and die. Along with experimental verification of the potability of sea water a theory of sea water drinking (mariposia) is presented, based upon the concept of urinary osmotic space.
- Copyright © 1959 by American Physiological Society