Can My Dog Drink Green Tea?

Can My Dog Drink Green Tea?
May 26, 2019


If you’re looking for a relatively short answer to the question ‘Can My Dog Drink Green Tea?’ the answer is probably going to be no.

Even though green tea may have plenty of beneficial qualities which humans can take advantage of, when it comes to your pet, it’s recommended that you stick to water! While dogs may be able to benefit from some of the properties of green tea, there are also plenty of other properties which won’t be kind on your dog’s immune system such as caffeine. Whilst there are caffeine-free alternatives of green tea available on the market, it is still advisable that you treat any of your dog’s ailments under the advice of your vet. That may not necessarily mean your dog will require medication. Sometimes, dietary changes are all it takes for you to improve your dog’s health.

Why is Green Tea Good for Humans and Not for Dogs?

 Green Tea is a popular health food (or beverage) for many people mainly due to the anti-oxidant qualities found in the tea. The natural anti-oxidants come with a myriad of different benefits from aiding digestive health to even promoting fresher breath. While those are two things that it isn’t all too common for dogs to suffer from, there are still plenty of better ways to remedy them without offering them green tea – which is only available for sale for human consumption.

A dog’s bad breath could be due to many factors, from bad dental hygiene to signs of more serious health problems which could have the potential to become terminal and life-threatening. So, while home remedies will always have their place, covering up symptoms such as these aren’t recommended – especially before you have had made an appointment with your vet. Once any underlying problems have been investigated, you will be able to aid a dog’s bad breath by giving them dental chews which are specifically designed to help keep a dog’s mouth clean.

If your dog has digestive problems, they may have a health problem which should be checked out by a vet. Or, it could be as simple as they just need a change of diet. There are plenty of foods available designed for more sensitive digestive systems. It may take a while for you to find out what is aggravating your dog’s digestive system. But you can always get help from your vet to figure it out through trial diets. And remember, if your dog is experiencing digestive issues, always give them food which is intended for dogs – as tempting as it may be to give them scraps from your plate, they won’t thank you for it.

Other great benefits of green tea are reduced cholesterol which can be a serious health problem for dogs – especially those who are obese or have been obese in the past. Yet, this will also be much more easily managed through your dog’s diet along with keeping to a strict exercise routine to make sure that your dog is in the best health as possible.

High blood pressure can also be resolved by drinking green tea. Yet, remember that there is a small amount of caffeine found in green tea. There isn’t anywhere near as much caffeine in green tea as there is in coffee or regular breakfast tea but the trace amount will still act as a stimulant to dogs – and stimulants for dogs should be avoided at all times.

What Will Happen to My Dog if They Drink Green Tea?

 If your dog has polished off your cup of green tea – don’t worry. The effect of the green tea won’t mean that you’ll see an adverse reaction with your dog. However, if you’re constantly topping up their bowl with green tea instead of water, don’t be surprised if you find that your dog is slightly more energetic than usual.

Humans may not be able to feel the boost of the trace amounts of caffeine which are found in green tea, but dogs are much, much more sensitive to the effects of caffeine.

While humans benefit from vitamin water or other anti-oxidants such as Green Tea water really is the only fluid that your dog will ever need.

If you have been giving your dog green tea over an extended period of time, it is possible that they may be suffering from caffeine toxicity, and you should be especially vigilant for these following symptoms. Alternatively, if your dog has ingested a high amount of caffeine (defined as a teaspoon or more of caffeine) you should contact your vet.

Symptoms of Caffeine Toxicity in Dogs

  • Hyperactivity and destructive behaviour
  • Restlessness and unwillingness to go to sleep as per the usual routine
  • Vomiting or any other signs of digestive problems
  • Elevated heart rate – place your hand on their chest to check
  • Elevated blood pressure – this will need to be confirmed by your vet 
  • Abnormal heart rhythms – this will also need to be confirmed by your vet
  • Tremors 
  • High body temperature
  • Seizures
  • Collapsing
  • Death

While it is very rare for a dog to die from caffeine toxicity, it is always a possibility if they routinely ingest high amounts of caffeine over a long duration of time. So, always take caffeine toxicity seriously. 

The advice given in this article is not intended to replace the advice from your vet – if you are worried about any aspect of your dog’s health don’t hesitate to seek help.