25 October, 2021

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Is THC Bad for Dogs?

Have you ever considered giving your dog some hemp? A lot of dog owners have been thinking about this in recent years. Their main argument is that if THC products have some good medical benefits for humans, then dogs should be able to enjoy the same as well.

The question, however, is this: is THC good for dogs like it is for humans? In order to answer this question, there are a few things about that you have to know about THC first, before you attempt to apply it to your dog.

Pot for Pets: Is it Safe for Dogs?

Delta 9 Tetrahydrocannabinol, THC in short, is one of the main compounds found in medical hemp. In fact, most medical hemp today have been genetically altered to produce more THC oil than their more naturally grown counterparts.

When the body consumes hemp, the THC activates several receptors in the body, producing that trademark “high” or euphoric state in the person. In short, the THC in hemp is the one that produces the substance’s iconic psychoactive effects.

Dogs and other animals can also experience this state through THC. In fact, dogs can get high in a number of ways, which include:

  • Directly – Ingestion of natural hemp, buds, and leaves.
  • Indirectly – Consuming food infused with THC oil.
  • Secondhand – Being exposed to smoke from THC-laced products.

Does THC Have Health Benefits?

Surprisingly enough, THC oil does pose some benefits for dogs. These would include the following:

  • Relaxation – Due to the natural properties of THC, it is quite effective in treating dogs that suffer from anxiety and panic attacks. This also helps in treating dogs with disturbed or irregular sleeping patterns. It can also help dogs that suffer from seizure attacks.
  • Appetite Enhancement – THC can stimulate the body’s metabolism, making it want to consume more. This is ideal for dogs that have an eating disorder and have lost their appetite due to an ongoing medical condition or treatment.
  • Antiemetic Properties – If ingested in just the right amount, THC can also help a dog deal with nausea and vomiting. This is quite helpful for dogs undergoing treatment as some medications do cause imbalances in their body, leading to the symptoms mentioned above.
  • Pain Relief – As THC attacks the neural receptors in the body, it can produce effects similar to an analgesic. It can help a dog deal with pain, especially if they have been recently wounded or are suffering from some internal discomfort like gastrointestinal issues. This also makes THC highly effective in helping dogs deal with arthritis, muscle cramps, hip dysplasia, and other mobility-affecting conditions.

The Effect of THC on Dogs

As with humans, dogs are not immune from overexposure to substances like THC. In fact, it is not recommended that you have a dog ingest THC on a regular basis as it could result in a number of symptoms, that include:

  • Drowsiness – The dog can experience a decrease in physical activity and response to outside stimuli. This can be problematic for working breeds and other dogs that are known for their high energy levels.
  • Hunger – If THC can stimulate the appetite, too much of it can make the dog hungrier than usual. If not addressed immediately, the dog could suffer from hunger pangs, which would affect them psychologically.
  • Lack of Coordination – Dogs that consume too much THC are not as coordinated as you would expect them to be when they want to move. Some dogs even lose their sense of balance, which is why some prefer to just sleep it off.
  • Incontinence – THC can make every muscle of the body relax, and this includes the ones nearest to the bladder and stomach. As such, dogs that are in a THC-induced high often have little or no bladder control and can experience diarrhea.
  • Nausea – Perhaps one of the worst effects of THC, the euphoric state induced by the substance can negatively affect the dog psychologically, which can cause nausea. If the nausea is too strong, the dog can experience bouts of vomiting until it wears off.

Are Products that Contain CBD and THC Safe for Pets?

Like THC, CBD is a naturally occurring substance in hemp. However, unlike THC, CBD does not have the psychoactive effects of THC.

So, is a product laced with both THC and CBD good for your pets? The answer is No. The presence of THC only counters whatever advantage CBD offers.

It is recommended, then, that you use only one or the other for your pet so as not to expose the dog to more intense side effects. In fact, CBD is the better alternative for your dog as the worse that the substance can bring is diarrhea and lethargy (both of which rarely occur).

THC is not the most recommended hemp substance for dogs. However, that is not to say that you can’t have your dogs ingest it from time to time. The key here is to introduce the substance in small, controlled portions so its side effects can be minimized.

In other words, proper care and precaution are necessary if considering letting your dog have THC from time to time. Properly consulting with a local veterinarian before including THC in your dog’s diet is highly recommended.

What CBD-Based Products Can You Use for Your Dog?

If you wish on including hemp in your dog’s diet, it is recommended that you find the right brand.

Pet Hemp Company is one of such brands as they offer a variety of CBD-infused products for dogs of various breeds and sizes. They make sure that all of their products are made with the beneficial substances found in hemp. 

With this, only the best possible benefits can be experienced by your dog, while the worst side effects are avoided.