Do dogs like weed? Should you give your pet marijuana treats that are high in THC?
These questions have always been on the minds of cannabis enthusiasts worldwide. To answer the second question, pets have low tolerances to THC, and high doses can lead to distress and possibly a trip to the animal emergency room. However, as you’re about to find out, there are special types of weed treats you can give your pets that won’t make them sick.
CBD, a cannabinoid that is effective against childhood epilepsy and acne in humans, has made its way to the pet medical sector, disguised as doggie treats. The cannabis compound helps canines cope with chronic pain, inflammation and anxiety- symptoms commonly associated with devastating (dog-related) diseases ranging from cancer and bladder issues to old age. The organic medicine can also be used as an alternative to prescription meds with crippling side effects.
Dogs are equipped with their own special endocannabinoid system that processes various cannabis components. In particular, anandamide and 2-Arachidonoylglycerol stimulate CB1 and CB2 receptors in their brain and body while partaking in the herb. Cannabinoids stay with the receptors for a long period of time, which contributes to the effects of the plant. Many pet owners have seen success in giving their dogs CBD treats. But this practice is not advisable for THC-heavy edibles that are specifically created for human consumption.
Outside of CBD-rich treats, high doses of marijuana have been known to have intense effects on canines. Due to their small, compact nature, most pets can’t handle THC very well. Furthermore, because they don’t understand the recreational aspects of the plant, their automatic response to the effects of weed is to fight it. “You would think they’d become sedated and wobbly, but almost a quarter of them become quite agitated,” said Tina Wismer, medical director of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. “They’re trying to pace. They’re panting. You reach out to pet them and they jerk their heads away.”
Accidental consumption of pot has become a problem for curious animals. The number of reports has increased prolifically, along with the popularity of edibles. During such cases, some owners try to induce vomiting, in order to prevent digestion. This requires serious effort on the part of the owner, because weed contains anti-emetic properties that can stop a dog (or human) from having the urge to puke. Hydrogen peroxide is an effective agent for promoting regurgitation, and is the remedy of choice for individuals who need an at-home cure for their furry friend.
One should carefully consider that if a dog starts showing signs of intoxication, it is vital to call the vet or head to the pet emergency room immediately. Wismer explained that some pets need to be hooked up to fluids and monitored closely during the ordeal.