Benefits of Green Tea for Dogs
Moving on to the letter G in our A to Z Dog Food Ingredient series, today we discuss the benefits of Green Tea for dogs.
What is Green Tea?
Green tea is made from the leaves from the plant Camellia sinensis. Unlike black tea, green tea leaves have undergone minimal oxidation during processing, and hence contain higher levels of anti-oxidants.
Common names for Green Tea
Common names for green tea include green tea extract and Chinese tea.
Why is Green Tea in dog food?
Green tea is used as an anti-oxidant, flavor enhancer, and to promote fresher breath.
Is Green Tea a commonly used ingredient in dog food?
Green tea is becoming a more popular ingredient in pet foods. It is present in almost 5 % of all dog foods. However, only about 1.5 % of dog foods use a decaffeinated form of green tea which might be safer (see below).
Common benefits or risks of Green Tea
Green tea is often used by herbalists for stomach problems, to reduce cholesterol levels, tooth decay, and blood pressure. It is used as a supplement for dogs to help keep breath fresh and poops less smelly. Green tea is also suspected of helping to prevent cancer although those studies are mixed.
Because green tea contains caffeine, only very small quantities are considered safe for dogs. Decaffeinated green teas and extracts are obviously preferred to the regular ones containing caffeine.
Slimdoggy Ingredient Comfort Level
Green tea, in small doses, can provide some health benefits to dogs. To be safe with the caffeine risk, it should not be a primary ingredient (in the top 10) in the food’s recipe. We give green tea a neutral rating.
Miscellaneous facts about Green Tea
Green tea originated in China.
Many of the studies that support green tea’s efficacy in preventing cancer were done in vitro, which means that the tests were done in a ‘test tube’ or culture and not in vivo (in a living body). Often, in vitro results do not apply in vivo.
Sources and further reading
We're joining the Tasty Tuesday Blog Hop sponsored by Sugar, the Golden Retriever and Kolchak from Kol's Notes: