Dog Days of Summer: Tea for Dogs
August 3, 2021
Can dogs drink tea? Citizens may be surprised to learn that the answer is yes! Herbal tea is rich in antioxidants and other nutrients that may naturally help to remedy issues like indigestion, nausea, stress and anxiety. Certain herbs may also freshen bad breath, ward off fleas and keep your pup’s coat shiny and healthy.
As we are currently in the midst of the dog days of summer — the period from July 3rd to August 11th when temperatures reach their peak — we are sharing several of the healthiest herbal teas for dogs. Below, learn how to prepare tea for your dog correctly and discover the best teas to share with your canine companions.
Note: Dogs should only be served caffeine-free herbal tea. Caffeine elevates the heart rate and can be toxic to dogs if they consume too much.
How to Prepare Tea for Dogs
To prepare a cup of herbal tea for your dog, add 1 herbal tea bag (or 1 teaspoon of full leaf loose tea) to a bowl or mug. Heat 1 cup of water to a rolling boil, and pour over the tea leaves.
Steep for 5 minutes, then allow the tea to cool completely to room temperature before serving to your dog. Do not add milk or sweeteners, as these can upset your dog’s stomach.
Tea serving recommendations for dogs:
- Small dogs (1 to 20 lbs) – ¼ to ½ cup daily
- Medium dogs (20 to 50 lbs) – ½ to 1 cup daily
- Large dogs (50 to 80 lbs) – 1 to 2 cups daily
- Extra-large dogs (80+ lbs) – 2 to 3 cups daily
Among the best herbal teas for dogs is chamomile. This herb has been used by humans for centuries to ease stress and anxiety, soothe upset stomachs and heal wounds. Today, many vets and animal caregivers are now using chamomile to support canine wellness.
Chamomile has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties, which may help to soothe skin itchiness, redness and irritation. It may also help relax muscles in the stomach and bowel, which can aid digestion.
Chamomile tea is a natural way to calm agitated or anxious dogs. Because the effects of chamomile are mild, it may safely be combined with other soothing herbs like valerian root.
Peppermint is widely used as a flavoring agent, from toothpaste to breath mints to gum. Similarly, peppermint tea is a natural way to freshen up your dog’s breath and curb the growth of bacteria in the mouth. Peppermint may soothe nausea and other digestive issues, including motion sickness caused by car rides.
Menthol also creates a cooling sensation, which may soothe irritated and inflamed skin. The fragrance of peppermint is believed to naturally repel fleas, helping to keep your dog’s coat healthy.
Ginger tea is one of the healthiest herbal teas for dogs. It is primarily used as an anti-nausea and anti-vomiting supplement for pets, but ginger may also provide anti-inflammatory, circulatory system and cognitive support benefits.
Dogs suffering from motion sickness, stomach upset and arthritis may benefit from ginger’s high levels of antioxidants. Ginger may also help to keep your dog healthy as they age, thanks to its ability to support immunity and strengthen the body’s natural defenses.
Dandelion is one of the most complete foods on the planet, and is naturally rich in many of the vitamins and minerals your dog needs to remain healthy. The lecithin in dandelion may help support the gallbladder and liver, in addition to soothing skin irritation.
Meanwhile, the dietary fiber in dandelion may help to support healthy blood sugar levels, especially in diabetic animals. Dandelion is believed to stimulate appetite and encourage digestion, making it a wonderful supplement for dogs that are prone to stomach upset.
As we wind down the hottest weeks of the year, steep a pitcher of one of these herbal teas for yourself and your canine companion, serve on ice and savor sip by sip!