Can Your Dog Drink Tea? Can dogs drink tea?


If you are among the many asking, “Can dogs drink tea?” You are in the right place to get the best answer to it. There are many opinions, like dogs can drink tea in moderation, herbal tea without caffeine, and should not drink tea, among others. It only adds to the confusion for people like you who care more for your furry friend. Since you only want the best for your pet, which is precious to you, continue reading to know the answer to your question.

Before diving deep into the answer to the question, “Can dogs drink tea?” We should know about tea, its types, ingredients, advantages, and disadvantages. People have consumed tea for thousands of years for its many benefits, including medicinal purposes. But the caffeine in the tea has a stimulating effect that could not be suitable for dogs. Hence, many related questions need answers to know the right answer to your question.

If you know the answers to the above questions, you can get the best answer to your question of whether dogs can drink tea. Hence, let us check out the scientific answers to the above questions.

Something About Tea

Tea is a drink dating back to the tenth century BC, made by boiling the cured tea leaves in water. Next to water, it is the most consumed drink worldwide, having essential oils to add flavor, polyphenols for its many benefits, and caffeine for an energy boost. Four tea varieties come from the same plant, Camellia Senensis, native to Asia but now grown globally. Though tea is the most enjoyed beverage worldwide, its culture is local as people prefer a particular tea type to refresh anytime. But can dogs drink tea depending on the dog’s health, tea type, quantity, time, and others?

Is tea caffeine harmful to dogs?

Though there are many beneficial components in tea, it also has caffeine, which many consider harmful to dogs. Dogs and pets are more sensitive to caffeine and may lose muscle control and have seizures or tremors.

Caffeine taken in large quantities raises the blood pressure enough to cause cardiac arrhythmias that can even be fatal. Hence, the amount of caffeine and the size, age, and health of the dog determine its harmfulness. But a few studies confirm that irrespective of all the factors, caffeine in tea may affect the significant organs of the dog, including the liver, kidney, CNS, central nervous system, and lungs.

Are tannins found in tea harmful to dogs?

Many types of tannins found in tea, like EGCG, or epigallocatechin gallate, belong to compounds called catechins. They act as antioxidants to slow cell damage caused by free radicals. They also have many health benefits, like inhibiting inflammation that reduces the suffering of dogs from chronic inflammations like hepatitis, enteritis, allergic dermatitis, and chronic arthritis and strengthens their immune systems. But some studies confirm that dogs dosed with excess tannin can have hemorrhagic gastritis, necrosis of gastric mucosa, liver alterations, colic jaundice, and nephritis.

What are the symptoms of dogs affected by drinking caffeinated tea with tannin?
The following are the symptoms your dog could show you if ingested with excess caffeine and tannin from tea or other sources:

  • They will be restless and hyperactive with abnormal heart rhythms.
  • Continued vomiting causes collapse or tremors and seizures.
  • Will have a high body temperature with elevated heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Suppose your dog shows one or more of the above symptoms. In that case, it could be high toxicity because of excess tannin or caffeine ingestion, and you should see a veterinarian immediately.

Is the L-theanine amino acid in tea good for dogs?

Your dogs can also get stressed because of being left alone or losing a family member. Also, your dog can become anxious because of traveling, loud noises, etc. Green tea, having L-theanine amino acid, is the best and natural treatment for reducing anxiety and stress for your dog to be calm and sleep like a baby.

Is sugar, dairy and other tea ingredients harmful to dogs?

In many parts of the world, people add milk to tea along with sugar for taste. Since most dogs are lactose intolerant and do not produce lactase enzymes, milk causes indigestion.

A few symptoms of lactose intolerance in dogs when drinking tea with milk are diarrhea, vomiting, not being hungry, and others. Also, sugar increases the chances of dogs getting type 2 diabetes. Hence, the answer to “Can a dog drink tea with milk and sugar” is a definite no.

Which tea type is best for dogs?

There are four major tea types: white, black, green, and oolong tea, all from the same source of the Camellia Senensis plant. The color and the properties change because of the tea leaves processing methods. Black tea is the most common tea consumed by millions of people daily. Its processing method involves complete fermentation of the harvested tea leaves to get the dark color because the green color oxidizes.

Quick-drying of harvested tea leaves to minimize oxidation is the opposite of black tea processing. Hence, it not only keeps the green color but also has less tannin and caffeine than black tea. The oolong and white tea processing methods are in between black and green tea, with partial oxidation to have less caffeine and tannin content than black tea but more than green tea.

From the above details, it is clear that green tea with fewer tannins and caffeine content is better for dogs than others. Additionally, it has many antioxidants and many health benefits for dogs. Avoiding black tea for dogs is better because of the high caffeine and tannin content.

And giving a moderate quantity of white and oolong tea, if required, is okay, but you should not add sugar or milk. But adding ginger, chamomile, rooibos, and peppermint to tea will freshen up dogs’ breath, calm anxiety, and ease nausea with their anti-oxidative properties.

What is the appropriate amount of tea to avoid causing harm to dogs?

Even if you are not giving tea to your pet dogs, they are likely eating tea bags to ingest high caffeine to cause mild to serious issues, including death. Hence, you need to know how much caffeine intake is toxic to cause severe problems for your pet dogs. If your dog eats over 140 mg of caffeine for every kilo of its body weight, or 63 mg for every lb of weight, it will show toxic symptoms. For example, if your dog weighs 30 pounds, it should not consume more than 1890 mg of caffeine.

And if your dog weighs 12 kilograms, it should not consume more than 1680 mg of caffeine. The caffeine levels should not increase above the mentioned levels for your dog to eat the tea bags and give them the many tea types.

Hence, the moderate tea quantity you should not exceed depends on the tea type and the number of milligrammes of caffeine content. Hence, if you wish to give your passionate pet a cup of tea, check the caffeine content per gramme in the ingredients to avoid any mild to severe issues.

What is the best way to serve tea to dogs?

If your pet dog likes tea, you need to serve it the best way possible to do more good to it than harm. First, as said earlier, you need to know to avoid mixing tea with sugar or milk, as both are not suitable for dogs. While sugar causes obesity and type 2 diabetes, milk causes indigestion, as most dogs are lactose intolerant. Hence, to replace them, you could add cinnamon, ginger, peppermint, and many others for taste, flavor, and many health benefits.

Next is to brew the tea well and allow it to cool down, as hot tea could harm your pet dog. Serve the tea at room temperature, and if needed, add water to reduce the temperature for your dog to drink it fully. And it is better to use decaf teas or herbal teas instead of black teas to have many health benefits for your precious pet. If your dog suffers from separation anxiety, it is best to give it chamomile or lavender to calm it. Adding ginger root will reduce your dog’s nausea and enable easy digestion.

When is a good time to give tea to dogs?

Decaf tea or herbal teas are best for your dogs to avoid colds, flu, and other winter-related ailments. During the cold winter months, there is nothing more comforting than a warm cup of tea for us and our pet dog. Giving them herbal tea during the winter will help boost their immunity and prevent illnesses. Also, giving tea to dogs when they suffer from stomach upset is a good idea. The many health benefits will clear the stomach to reduce gas, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The benefits and drawbacks of dogs drinking tea

Based on the answers to the preceding questions, you should be able to tell whether dogs can drink tea. And to make things easier for you to get the best answer to it, the following list of advantages and disadvantages will help.
The Benefits of Dogs Drinking Tea

  • Tea has been a natural remedy for people to treat many health issues for thousands of years and could be beneficial for dogs.
  • Drinking tea provides many health benefits to dogs with many natural polyphenols like catechins, L-theanine amino acids, and others.
  • Green tea with minimal caffeine and tannin content is ideal for dogs as there is less harm because of them but many health benefits with its antioxidants and others.
  • Drinking tea without exceeding the recommended caffeine levels will do more good than harm to dogs.
  • Serving tea in the best way possible at the right temperature, using herbal teas is not harmful and has many health benefits.
  • Drinking tea is the ideal solution to prevent many winter-related ailments like the flu and others like an upset stomach.
  • Many herbal teas have calming and anxiety-relieving properties and are ideal for dogs to reduce their stress and be active.

Disadvantages of dog tea drinking

  • Although caffeine in tea stimulates the senses to be active and serves as an energy booster, it could be dangerous for dogs if it exceeds the recommended levels.
  • A few studies confirm that irrespective of the caffeine quantity and the dog’s health, age, and size, it affects many vital parts of the body and even causes death.
  • Drinking black tea with high caffeine content harms dogs as it can even attack the CNS or central nervous system.

There are steps to take if a dog consumes caffeine more than the recommended levels. If your dog, by mistake, eats tea bags or you serve tea with more caffeine than the recommended levels of 140 mg for a one-kilo dog’s body weight or 63 mg per pound, it will show many of the symptoms mentioned above. Hence, you need to take the following steps to treat the dog and save its life. Do not panic and check if the dog’s symptoms are mild or severe.


The above questions and answers, along with the advantages and disadvantages, answer your question of whether or not dogs can drink tea. At best, it is better to avoid giving tea to dogs as the plain water is enough for hydration. But if your dog likes tea, give him decaf or herbal tea in moderate quantities. And also, during winter, to avoid any illnesses related to it and settle the dog’s stomach upset. But it is essential not to exceed the recommended levels of caffeine, and in the event of such a situation, seeing the veterinarian will help to keep your dog safe, healthy, and happy.


A coffee enthusiast from Asia keeps trying new hot beverages and sharing all his experiences with the internet. Aayush is a writer by profession who only thinks about coffee. He loves to brew and create unique recipes and share them with the public. Aayush had tried different types of coffee from different sides of the world. His favorite coffee is the Hawaiin Kona Coffee.

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