Cats are generally curious animals, but can cats drink chamomile tea? Pet owners often have this common question, and it’s essential to know the answer. Chamomile tea is a popular herbal tea with many human benefits, but is it safe for your feline friend? You must weigh the potential risks and consult a veterinarian to answer this question correctly.
In this guide, we’ll look at the benefits and risks of serving chamomile tea to your feline friend, so you can make an informed decision on whether or not it’s right for your pet.
Table of Contents
- What Is Chamomile?
- Is It Safe for Cats to Drink Chamomile Tea?
- What Are The Symptoms Of Chamomile Toxicity In Cats, and What Should You Do?
- What Should You Do?
- How to Give Chamomile to Cats?
What Is Chamomile?
A Chamomile Plant
Chamomile, also known as Matricaria chamomilla, is a flowering herb that belongs to the daisy family and is native to Europe, North Africa, and Asia. Due to its soothing properties, it has become a trendy ingredient many people use for herbal remedies and in teas. In addition to having medicinal properties, chamomile acts as a flavoring agent for foods like salads, soups, and bread.
Chamomile comes in two main varieties: Matricaria recutita and Chamaemelum mobile. Both varieties contain active ingredients like apigenin, quercetin, and various volatile oils, but the chemical composition of each plant differs.
Chamomile is many antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties. These properties are a valuable remedy for relieving nausea and indigestion. It also contains high amounts of antioxidants, which can help protect against cell damage and free radicals in the body.
Is It Safe for Cats to Drink Chamomile Tea?
Yes, cats can drink chamomile tea in small portions. Chamomile tea has a mild sedative effect on cats, but it is important to note that cats may have an adverse reaction if they consume too much. Additionally, ensure you cool the tea before offering it to your cat. Too-hot tea could cause lethargy or burns to their sensitive mouths and throats.
However, there are other ways to give chamomile to cats. A good example is chamomile oil which most cats tolerate and is also available for purchase. However, never use chamomile oil topically or orally on your cats without the approval of a veterinarian.
Chamomile Essential Oil
Overall, chamomile tea can be a helpful supplement for cats experiencing anxiety or stress. Despite this, consult your veterinarian before giving your cat chamomile tea or other herbal remedies. With the proper guidance and dosing, your cat could benefit from the calming properties of chamomile tea.
What Are The Symptoms Of Chamomile Toxicity In Cats, and What Should You Do?
Cat and a Chamomile Plant
The first step should be to confirm that your cat has eaten parts of the chamomile plant. If you can remove chamomile parts from the cat’s mouth, do so as quickly as possible. After removing it, seek proper veterinary care.
The symptoms of Chamomile Toxicity in Cats
Chamomile toxicity in cats can cause various symptoms, from minor to more serious. The minor symptoms may include:
- Difficulty in walking
Other severe symptoms of chamomile toxicity can include
- Cardiac arrhythmias
What Should You Do?
Veterinary Doctor and Cat
Start by removing any part of the plant from your cat yourself to prevent further ingestions. You can also seek veterinary care right away. The vet may administer activated charcoal or give other supportive treatments to reduce the risk of serious complications.
The veterinarian may also want to take a blood sample to check for electrolyte imbalances, which can cause chamomile toxicity. However, severe cases of chamomile toxicity may require surgery to remove the source of the toxicity.
How to Give Chamomile to Cats?
If you consider giving your cat chamomile, you should consult your veterinarian. However, if your vet has approved it and given you the go-ahead, here are some tips on how to give chamomile to cats:
- Decoction (Tea) – You can make the chamomile tea by steeping dried chamomile flowers in hot water for several minutes. Allow the decoction tea to cool before giving it to your cat. You can offer the tea to your cat in a bowl or add a few drops to their water.
- Fresh Chamomile – You can pick fresh chamomile flowers and treat them to your cat. You can chop the fresh flowers and add them to your cat’s water or food.
- Essential Oil – You can dilute the chamomile essential oil with a carrier oil and apply it topically to your cat’s skin. Ensure to follow the recommended dilution ratio before applying.
- Flower Water – You can spray chamomile flower water onto your cat’s fur. Additionally, you can apply it directly to their skin as a soothing agent.
- A Poultice or Topical Salve – You can make a poultice or topical salve from chamomile and apply it to your cat’s skin. This method helps to prevent irritation and inflammation.
- Tincture – You can add chamomile tincture to your cat’s food or water as a natural calming agent. However, follow the recommended dosage for your cat’s size and weight.
- The Homeopathy Product – You can give chamomile to your cat as a homeopathy product. To do this, follow the product label’s recommended dosage and administration instructions.
Chamomile tea has many benefits for cats, and you can give it to your cats in small amounts. However, it’s essential to ensure you only use a safe dose and talk to your veterinarian first. Too much chamomile can lead to severe toxicity and even death in cats, so it is best to apply caution when introducing this herbal remedy.