Your cat is dehydrated, and you’re contemplating giving it Gatorade, so your cat can feel better. Should you do it? Can your cat drink Gatorade?
The short answer is yes and no. While your cat will drink Gatorade and will even feel better after a while, Gatorade is not a healthy drink for animals. Gatorade has ingredients that can be harmful and even fatal.
Let’s have a look at what these ingredients are and why your cat shouldn’t drink Gatorade.
Can My Cat Drink Gatorade?
A sneaky lick from a spill or a bottle won’t cause any undue harm to your cat. However, that is not an excuse to pour the whole bottle into its bowl.
Gatorade may be a simple drink to us, but its list of ingredients is alarming for cats and even dogs. Gatorade is made from the following ingredients, including:
- Natural and artificial flavor
- Citric acid
- Sodium citrate
- Blue 1
- Modified food starch
- Monopotassium phosphate
- Glycerol ester of Rosin
The list may be small, but what’s most alarming about these ingredients is the addition of sodium citrate, salt, and citric acid. All such ingredients are toxic and potentially dangerous to cats. Even in small amounts, it’s not wise to feed your cat anything that may damage its health.
Is Gatorade that Bad?
Consider how refreshing Gatorade is for humans. But compare the same amount to your cat’s system, and you’ll know that Gatorade spells bad news. It’s a noble effort on your part to find ways to keep your cat hydrated.
But Gatorade is not a wise choice. The good news is that there are many other options if you want to keep your cat hydrated. But you have to know whether your cat needs water replacement in the first place.
How to Know if Your Cat is Dehydrated
Dehydration is not an invisible illness in cats.
If you’re worried about your cat not drinking water, but your cat still acts, as usual, it may be that you’re replacing the water content with wet food.
If your cat is dehydrated, it may show signs of dehydration through the following symptoms:
- Dry gums
- Sunken or hollowed eyes
- Frequent urination
- Lack of energy
- Poor skin elasticity
- Lack of interest in eating
Alongside these, another symptom that confirms dehydration is skin tenting. This trick involves pinching the skin behind the cat’s neck and pulling it up slightly. Once released, if the skin remains tented, this means your cat is severely dehydrated and may require medical assistance. If their skin bounces back, your cat may not be as dehydrated.
How to Keep Your Cat Hydrated?
Mild dehydration is easy enough to treat at home. Here are some things you can do to keep your cat well-hydrated:
1. Use Tuna Juice or Bone Broth
Anything low-sodium works well. But if your cat is particularly averse to drinking water, try tuna water or make bone broth from chicken and meat bones. You’ll find tuna water from any tin of cat food.
Mix one part tuna water with one part water and serve twice a day. This low-sodium mix will hydrate your cay enough and will appeal to your cat’s specific taste buds too.
2. Use Cat Milk
Cow milk is not safe for cat consumption since it can cause intense gastrointestinal problems.
Instead, use kitten or cat milk. You’ll easily find such milk in any pet supply store. But, if your cat is allergic to certain ingredients, you’ll want to ask your veterinarian for a particular recommendation.
You don’t want your cat to have an upset stomach. Otherwise, that will worsen its situation.
3. Use Ice Cubes Instead of Water
If you’ve been experiencing some scorching weather, it pays to have some ice cubes in your cat’s bowl of water.
Cold water or ice cubes are suitable for cats since they can lick the ice cubes and get their hydration fix. Try not to give your cat too many ice cubes, though. Cats have sensitive tongues, making them vulnerable to a nasty case of brain freeze.
4. Boil Chicken Then Puree with Water
Is there any treat better than chicken for a cat?
If your cat has difficulties with food or water, boil a skinless chicken breast, then puree it with water to make it into a slurry. Even if your cat is feeling weak, it won’t have any problems having any food.
However, if your cat feels lethargic, you’ll want to feed it the slurry through a syringe.
5. Use a Water Fountain
This is especially important if you want to keep your cat’s water habits healthy. If your cat is generally alright but not feeling thirsty, a water fountain is the best thing to regain its attention.
Water fountains cycle water and keep it tasting fresh, thanks to the filter and pump. They’re also easy to clean and maintain, so even if you have two water fountains in the house, you won’t likely have any problems with anything.
How Much Water Does My Cat Need?
Keeping the cat’s weight in mind, you’ll want to give it about 100–140 ml per every five pounds. If your cat is a little one, it should be no problem giving it about two bowls, each placed in a quiet, calm place in the house.
Cats like to have their water bowls away from their food bowls and in a place where they can drink peacefully without worrying about getting attacked. Keep in mind, cats are predators, and they want to feel safe during any vulnerable moments. Place the water bowls underneath a chair or with enough space beside the wall that they can drink with their back to it.
Your cat will love you for it.
Can I Give My Cat Anything Like Gatorade?
If any of the tips mentioned above do not work for your cat, the best option is Pedialyte. Pedialyte is a simple, no-nonsense treatment that works for children and small animals.
If your cat isn’t feeling well and has lost the want to drink because of an illness, give your cat a small amount of Pedialyte and give your cat some water periodically. Pedialyte is a good choice for electrolytes and replaces any wasted hydration.
Pedialyte works as a safe, helpful tool that efficiently treats dehydration.
As listed above water, broth, tuna water, and kitten or cat milk are all safe options for your cat.
But be safe when treating your cat for dehydration. If your cat isn’t feeling well, it will vomit out the water if you overfeed it.
What To Do with a Dehydrated Cat
It is concerning if your cat doesn’t drink any water at all in 24 hours. If that exceeds this limit, you will want to take your cat to the vet.
You’ll also need to make a note of any times when your cat may have urinated, vomited, or expelled any body fluids. This information will give your vet a good idea of how long it has been since your cat had its water and how much it needs now.
A dehydrated cat is not a happy cat.
Hydration is a crucial component of a cat’s well-being. And as its parent, it’s your responsibility to be sure you’re doing everything in your power. Do not feed your cat Gatorade and follow all the information provided above, so your cat gets every chance to get hydrated.
And if all else fails, take your cat to the vet. They may give your cat some fluids subcutaneously to help them rehydrate fast. But don’t let it get to that level. With due diligence and some hard work on your part, your cat will come to love water and enjoy it for all its days.