If you love the bubbly and refreshing taste of sparkling water, you may get the idea that your cat might like it too. After all, for the most part, it’s just water.
But the truth is a little more complex than that. Several factors come into play, including quantity, as well as additives like sugar, artificial sweeteners, and sodium.
Without getting too deep into the details, is carbonated water safe for cats to drink? For the most part, yes — it is okay to offer your cat small quantities of sparkling water on occasion. But there are a few very important things to know before offering carbonated water to your beloved cat, dog, bird, or any other pet.
Is Sparkling Water Good for Cats?
Cats, like us, need water to survive. They can develop serious health problems when they do not consume enough water. Chronic dehydration in cats can lead to kidney disease, feline lower urinary track disease, and other serious issues.
If your cat is not drinking enough water, it may be enticed by the bubbly excitement of sparkling water. It may actually help your furry friend to start drinking more of it.
So how can you safely give your cats carbonated water? One important thing to note is that quantity matters. If you offer sparkling water to your cat or cats, it should be a very rare treat. Too much sparkling water can cause bloating, which can lead to negative health outcomes.
When it comes to offering human foods and beverages to your pets, you should always consult your vet to ensure it does not contain anything that may be harmful to the animal. Most vets would likely suggest offering cold or running water before considering carbonated water. Running water is easily attained with a cat fountain — some of which can actually cool the water too!
Can Cats Have Flavored Sparkling Water?
Plain, unflavored carbonated water is safe for cats to drink in small quantities. Be sure to read the label on your carbonated water before offering it to your cat. If the drink contains artificial sweeteners, sugar, sodium, or even natural flavors, it can be harmful to your cat.
Because it can be difficult to know how any flavor additions may affect your cat, they are best avoided. LaCroix Pure (unflavored) sparkling water is an example of a carbonated water that does not contain any additives, so it is safe to give to your cat in small quantities.
How Much Sparkling Water is Okay for Cats to Drink?
Since sparkling water is not intended for cats to consume, it is difficult to know exactly how much is too much. Use your best judgement and consult a vet if you feel it is necessary. A few tablespoons should be fine, but a whole can of LaCroix would be a very bad idea.
Not All Sparkling Water is Safe for Cats
As a cat owner, you are likely aware of many foods that are toxic to cats. Similarly, there are several things that could be lurking in carbonated beverages that may be harmful to your cat.
Avoid offering your cat sparkling water or other beverages that contain any of the following ingredients:
- Flavoring (natural or otherwise)
- Fruit juice
- Artificial sweeteners
- Acesulfame K
- Steviol glycosides
- Any others
Any other additives not listed here should also be avoided.
Do Cats Like Sparkling Water?
Sure, you could pour a splash of sparkling water into your cat’s bowl — but would it even like it? There’s only one way to find out, and that’s by giving it a try. Just like people, cats have their own individual tastes, and some may be turned off by the slightly bitter flavor.
Many cats enjoy water that is cold, because they may recognize it as being fresher than room temperature water. It’s also very common for cats to enjoy running water, again with the idea that it may taste fresher than still water.
Sparkling water is a novelty for any animal, but cats have been known to enjoy it. Cats are curious by nature, and anything out of the ordinary with their water will likely be intriguing. It is also possible that your cat dislikes or fears the bubbles. Like us, cats have different tastes and personalities that will determine their reaction to new things.
Is Sparkling Water a Good Idea for Cats?
Offering sparkling water to your cat is certainly not necessary. If you do decide to bring carbonation into your kitty’s life, just be sure to avoid any harmful additives and only offer very small quantities in rarity. Doing otherwise could harm your cat’s health needlessly.
If you decide the risks associated with offering sparkling water to your cat are not worth it, there are other great alternatives to help your cat drink more water — from chilled water to running water from a cat fountain.