Categories: cat welfare

Is it safe for cats to smoke marijuana?

I’m surprised that people ask the question, “Is it safe for cats to smoke marijuana?” Patently it is unsafe. Come on, there are stories on the Internet and in the newspapers about people who smoke marijuana suffering mental health problems as a result. In addition, there are websites about mental health which tell us that there is growing evidence that people with serious mental illness including psychosis and depression are more likely to use cannabis or have used it for long periods of time in the past. Regular use of the drug appears to double the risk of developing psychotic episodes or long term schizophrenia.

Photos in public domain

Yes, I know that cannabis can have medical uses and that it is legal in many US states but this does not mean it is safe for all humans and under all circumstances. I’m also told that some veterinarians use cannabis treatments. They are using medically prepared cannabis in a controlled way. It is not designed to get a cat high but to provide a treatment.

The sort of marijuana that you buy on the streets varies tremendously in quality and strength. It can be extremely potent and pure and is obviously designed to alter brain chemistry. Personally, I think it is utterly foolhardy to alter your brain chemistry in a careless fashion. You don’t know the long term consequences. The same applies to your cat.

It would be highly irresponsible to blow marijuana smoke into your cat’s face. Not only would it be a form of animal cruelty, you don’t know what the medical consequences might be; you don’t know how your cat’s brain will respond.

I’m convinced that if a cat owner blew marijuana smoke into his cat’s face and it was videoed, which is quite likely (so that there was good evidence), the person could be successfully charged under animal welfare laws for the crime of animal cruelty. Therefore, in answer to the question in the title, it is not safe to blow marijuana smoke into your cat’s face and it is probably a crime. Don’t even consider it.

It’s actually worse than that because there is the issue of passive smoking. And this applies to marijuana smoke, cigarette smoke or any other kind of drug based smoke. We know that cats can passively smoke if their owner is a cigarette smoker. It can cause an allergic reaction and ill-health in your cat. It may cause cancer in your cat. These arguments are commonsense. They don’t really need to be stated but I’m doing so the sake of clarity and because some people ask the question in the title which is highly surprising to me.

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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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