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Can Cats Drink Soda? What You Need to Know!

Rachael Gerkensmeyer

By Rachael Gerkensmeyer


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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Tabitha Henson

DVM (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Cats are curious animals that like to test their boundaries and try new things. Sometimes, cats become interested in questionable things, and we must determine whether it is appropriate for them to consume whatever it is that they are after. One good example of this is soda. If you are sitting around enjoying a nice glass of soda on a hot day and your cat comes up to help themselves, you may wonder if it is appropriate.

Can cats drink soda? Is it safe for them? The short answer to both questions is no. Your cat should not be drinking soda. There are a few reasons that you should never allow your cat to consume soda.

The Risky Business of Giving Soda to Cats

There are many reasons not to give soda to your cat. First and foremost, soda is full of sugar. Even if real sugar is not present, artificial sweeteners are. Either way, no cat needs added sugars in their diet. They get just enough sugar in a natural diet that consists primarily of animal protein and complex carbohydrates.

Too much sugar in a cat’s diet can result in irregular blood sugar levels and can eventually lead to problems like diabetes. Many sodas also have caffeine in them, which can lead to side effects such as a rapid heartbeat and even signs of anxiety. Caffeine is toxic to cats and can produce problems even more severe than anxiety, such as cardiac arrhythmias.

Also, there are many acids in soda that can quickly damage tooth enamel and digestive issues. Damaged tooth enamel can be tough, if not impossible, to heal. Damaged tooth enamel could lead to other problems, like gingivitis and periodontal disease. Keeping soda away from your cat will help reduce the chance that you will have to deal with these dental problems in the future.

Image Credit: Lernestorod, Pixabay

Other Types of Drinks That Are Bad for Cats

The only thing that your cat needs to drink is water. It is arguably the source of life, and every living creature on this planet requires it. Anything else is just an additive or supplement. That said, there are some things other than water that your cat can drink occasionally, such as goat’s milk; bone, chicken, and vegetable broth. and tuna juice. However, your cat should never drink any of the following:

However, your cat should never drink any of the following:
  • Coffee — It contains caffeine, which is toxic to cats.
  • Cow’s Milk — It contains lactose, which most cats are intolerant of.
  • Alcohol — It could land your pet in the veterinarian hospital.
  • Fruit Juice — It’s full of sugars that could lead to problems like diabetes.

Any premade drinks in the grocery store are sure to have more sugar and additives that are safe for your little furry friend to endure. When in doubt, either stick with clean water or consult with your veterinarian. It is not worth giving your cat something to drink that may have a serious effect on their health.

What to Do If Your Cat Drinks Soda

If your cat drinks soda or any other questionable liquid, first look for signs of distress or illness. Is your beloved pet vomiting, shivering, drooling, or acting lethargic? If so, it is important to contact your veterinarian or visit an emergency vet clinic as soon as possible. Chances are that your cat will exhibit none of these signs, though.

Instead, your cat might be more active than usual or run away and hide in a corner for a while to deal with their anxiety. Your cat should bounce back and become their same selves in just a few hours. However, you may notice signs of deterioration that have significant effects on your cat’s health overall if your cat drinks soda or other sugary or alcoholic-rich drinks regularly.

Since the health results of drinking soda tend to show themselves over time, it is best to keep your cat from drinking the substance whenever possible. If your cat gets one or two licks of soda now and then, there is likely nothing to worry about. If they are getting a few licks’ worth of servings each day or week, that could become a problem in the coming months and years.

Final Thoughts

Cats should not drink soda under any circumstances because it will not hydrate them when water is unavailable and in fact, may work against them and make dehydration a worse problem. Always make sure your cat has access to clean water, and they will be less likely to want to drink other substances such as soda.

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Featured Image Credit: evelynlo, Pixabay

Rachael Gerkensmeyer

Authored by

Rachael has been a freelance writer since 2000, in which time she has had an opportunity to research and write about many different topics while working to master the art of fusing high-quality content with effective content marketing strategies. She lives off the grid in Hawaii with her husband, her garden, and her rescue animals including 5 dogs, a cat, a goat, and dozens of chickens. She is an artist at heart and loves...Read more

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