The benefits of alkaline water for dogs are obvious: elevated energy levels, chemical changes in the body that will convince them to drink more water to stay hydrated, and poo that stinks less. But what about cats? Is alkaline water safe for cats, too?
Here’s what we know.
Alkaline water is perfectly safe for cats. For starters, it can be more easily absorbed by the body tissues of your feline friend, giving way to better hydration levels. This, in turn, can flush dangerous toxins out of your cat’s system, leading to better overall health.
That’s where the good news ends.
Alkaline water, as good as it is for cats, isn’t recommended in all scenarios. To be more precise, there are two specific situations when your feline friend should not drink alkaline water. Read on to know what those scenarios are and what type of water is best in those situations.
What is Alkaline Water?
Alkaline water is one whose pH ranges between 8 and 9. The pH level showcases how acidic or alkaline any substance is. It’s measured on a scale of 0 to 14. Any substance with a pH level of less than 7 is acidic, whereas one whose pH level is above 7 is alkaline or basic.
That said, pH isn’t the only indicator of whether your drinking water is acidic or alkaline. Alkaline water is alkaline because it has minerals (calcium, magnesium, bicarbonate, potassium, etc.) and a negative oxidation-reduction potential ORP (which measures how oxidizing or reducing a substance is).
Alkaline water has a negative ORP. This means it can quickly give up its electrons to any other substance in the event of a chemical reaction. When we (or our cats) drink alkaline water, these electrons are absorbed by the body, after which they destroy free radicals.
Is Alkaline Water Safe for Cats?
Alkaline water is safe for cats unless you are giving it to them when they’re taking medicine, having meals, and while you’re nursing them (reasons discussed below). Here are the benefits your cat can get by drinking alkaline water:
1) Helps with urinary conditions
Vets agree that increasing water intake can sometimes help your cat with urinary conditions. This can happen due to the water flushing out the bladder, the kidneys and the rest of your cat’s urinary tract of toxins responsible for urinary conditions.
2) Helps with kidney disease
It’s a well-known fact that cats with kidney disease aren’t able to control their urine. This means they urinate more often than they want to, leading to dehydration. Alkaline water, due to its better absorption by the body tissues, can counteract this issue.
3) Reduces acid reflux in the body
Did you know that a cat’s metabolic system is similar to us humans? This allows their stomach to produce acidic waste when digesting food, which can lead to acid reflux in their boxy. Alkaline water can help reduce the acid-reflux by its alkaline pH.
4) Prevents joint issues
Most of us know that cats and dogs, like humans, develop painful joints as they grow old. What we don’t realize, however, is that alkaline water can be a panacea to this problem. By maintaining the health of cartilage, the tissue that keeps joints pain-free, alkaline water can help your cat stay mobile.
5) Improves overall health
Calcium, one of four major minerals in alkaline water, is crucial for your cat’s bone health, as well as nerve, muscle and heart function. Calcium is also crucial to your cat’s strong teeth and its deficiency can force your cat to become weak, restless, irritable and hypersensitive.
When not to give alkaline water to cats?
Here are three scenarios when you shouldn’t give alkaline water to your cat:
One hour before or after the medication
Alkaline water will boost your cat’s metabolism, allowing them to digest the medicine faster. That’s something you don’t want as it’s crucial for the medicine to be released into the body at a medically prescribed rate. Otherwise, it might fail to give the intended results.
When your cat is nursing
According to studies, animals absorb more calcium from alkaline water than intended when nursing. This, in turn, might lead to hypercalciuria, a condition which may cause problems with the cat’s kidneys, nervous system, and cardiovascular system.
With your cat’s meals
Since alkaline water has the tendency to neutralize everything it comes in contact with, it might neutralize your cat’s stomach acids if given with meals. This might lead to slowing down in digestion, something which you don’t want. Keep alkaline water away from your cat one hour either side of their meal.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is alkaline water good for cats with kidney disease?
Alkaline water might be good for cats with kidney disease. A cat’s body starts to experience excessive acid buildup, known as metabolic acidosis, when their kidney isn’t performing its function. Alkaline water, by neutralizing the very acids, might help with kidney disease.
How to get your cat to drink more water?
Cats are notorious for shying away from water. Luckily, there are a few strategies you can implement to get them to drink more water. They include:
- Adding some flavor to their drinking water
- Placing water bowls throughout the home
- Refilling their water bowls as often as possible
- Feeding your cat wet food
What are the signs of dehydration in cats?
General symptoms of dehydration in cats include dry and tacky gums, sunken eyes, loss of energy, panting, and refusal to eat. Watch out for signs of dehydration as it might expose your cat to potentially life-threatening diseases.
Alkaline water is safe for cats as long as you keep its bowl away from your feline friend when they’re nursing, one hour either side of taking meal and before and after medication. As long as you take these necessary precautions, your cat would be able to enjoy the benefits that come with drinking alkaline water.
I graduated with a degree in Chemical Engineering and have written for a number of nationally recognized publications in the home improvement space. My skills include fluid mechanics and process engineering and I have worked on numerous projects, including in waste water flow rate calculation and heat balance of steam rollers in the paper industry. My goal as a technical writer is to make complicated topics easy to understand for the average person.