A glass of wine after a long day… a beer with friends after work… These simple pleasures are some of the greatest perks of being human. And for those of us who are pet lovers, some of us have sometimes wondered what it would be like to share a happy hour with our four-legged besties. But now with the invention of cat wine and dog beer, this dream is a reality — kind of. Sure these beverages don’t contain any actual alcohol (alcohol is dangerous for pets!), but they will add a little extra fun to your next happy hour.
With cat wine, your kitty can be your new drinking buddy. Cat wine is generally made with several ingredients including beet juice, preservatives and catnip. Again, the wine doesn’t contain any alcohol but since it contains catnip, it does have a bit of a mellowing effect on cats.
While cat wine is alcohol-free, you should check in with your veterinarian before serving it to your cat. Some of the ingredients might result in an upset stomach. Beet juice in particular is high in naturally occurring sugars which can be bad news for diabetic pets or cats prone to gastrointestinal issues. Though none of these ingredients are toxic, they won’t necessarily do your cat’s body any favors either.
Maybe your veterinarian urges you not to give your cat the cat wine or maybe the ingredients make you nervous. Luckily, there are alternatives to cat wine that you can serve your cat at home. These options have fewer problematic ingredients. You can try making “catnip tea” for your cat by distilling catnip in water. Make sure, of course, that this beverage only contains catnip and water and no other ingredients. You can also freeze chicken broth into ice cubes and serve a cube in your cat’s water dish.
For our canine friends, there’s dog beer. This non-alcoholic drink is safe for our pooches to drink. It won’t give them any kind of buzz, but the ingredients are safe for doggie consumption. Dog beer is made from vegetable broth and spent grain, also known as wort, that’s left over during the human beer-making process. Beermakers would otherwise toss out the wort, so using the ingredient is a lot like recycling and good for business.
So what does it taste like? The mock beer is sweet and you might detect notes of caramel and malt. You can serve dog beer alone or poor it over dog food to give it a fun kick. We also highly recommend checking in with your veterinarian before giving your dog this mock brew. A vet always knows best!
Lastly, we’d like to remind you that you should never serve your pet any beverage that contains alcohol or isn’t made especially for pets. Alcohol is super dangerous for cats and dogs. Alcohol poisoning in animals can cause diarrhea, vomiting, depression, lack of coordination, trouble breathing, coma, seizures or even death.