If your dog is on edge, or has the sort of personally where they need to just chill every once in awhile, you may have thought about giving them some marijuana. One of the effects of the drug is to induce a state of drowsiness, and some owners would welcome this in an overactive dog.
After extensive research it appears that the best answer is no. Marijuana AKA weed or pot is simply something that you don’t want to expose your dog to. The effects do not help them, their bodies are ill suited for it and the whole experience can be a traumatizing for them.
If your dog has a medical problem, like arthritis, or anything else that puts them in a constant state of pain, there are better solutions available to help them cope with the pain, and that has less side effects than marijuana. Take your dog to the vet and they can put them on a treatment plan that is specific to their needs, and possibly even fix the problem that is causing the pain. What you’ll be getting is something that is pre-approved for the canine species.
Can I Give My Dog Marijuana? Answer: No
It’s simply not a good idea to give your dog recreational drugs, whether it be pot, alcohol, or anything else.
The effects that it creates are not extensively studied, there isn’t much data on how they’ll react. One thing is for sure, it’s not natural for dogs to smoke, and therefore it can’t be as good for them as not smoking anything is. You really are imposing your will on them by giving them pot.
Some owners wonder if they can give their dog marijuana because of a medical condition that it might help treat, even for things like anxiety.
Since marijuana is prescribed to humans for problems ranging from cataracts to terminal illnesses, it only makes sense that we might make the jump to thinking of giving it to our dogs if they’re suffering from the same or similar conditions.
Alternatives to Marijuana
It seems unfair that dogs don’t have a catnip equivalent, something that is harmless to them but alters their state the way catnip does for cats. Dogs are so in the moment, so supercharged, they’re already having an altered life experience.
They don’t really need anything to help them out. Some herbs like basil can have a mild calming effect but nothing near marijuana.
You might think marijuana or Cannabis would be good because it would help mellow them out so they’re not going at Mach 5 all the time, or if you have a jumpy dog it would help soothe them and let them relax a bit, especially when you’re not in the mood to play.
Unfortunately most reports are that you should keep your supply away from dogs, and that it’s not something they should take part in with you. Of course there are plenty of owners that say it’s OK and that nothing bad happened to their dog, but how do they know? Are they vets? Did the dog tell them of their experience? They’re just guessing.
Not Natural for Dogs
If dogs were left by themselves in the wild they would never have the opportunity to smoke marijuana. They might run through an entire field of it, but aside from eating the leaves, they wouldn’t have the capacity to smoke it. Therefore it’s simply nothing that needs to enter into their experience, and there’s simply no reason to go out of your way to give it to them.
Second Hand Smoke
If you’re worried that you’re doing your dog harm by smoking marijuana in their vicinity, you should make an effort to confine them to a room where there isn’t any smoke around, or put them outside while you’re doing it.
They simply don’t need to be exposed to it, and while other owners might relay funny stories about what happened when their dog smells it, it’s not very responsible pet ownership.
UPDATE: Since Colorado legalized marijuana there seems to be much talk about dogs getting their paws on pot lately. It has been in the news that vets are seeing a big uptick in dogs needing to be treated for consuming edible weed. I really can’t explain this but I would attribute it to novice pot smokers who can’t stash their weed properly or just immature kids who get a kick out of watching a dog experiencing the effects of marijuana.
Either way there is no excuse for it. Don’t get me wrong! I’m all for recreational and consensual pot smoking but this is not that. Dog’s deserve better especially when they are supposed to have someone looking out for them. Let’s hope these dog owners are more responsible with the new found rights they have been given.