Can cats get high? Let me tell you a quick story. 

A cat got into my friend’s Mary Jane stash and ate it. It looked stuporous, a little bit drunk, and uncoordinated. Also, it giggled a lot, ate all the Cheetos, and changed its major from engineering to philosophy. 

Just kidding. While your cat won’t start pondering the meaning of life, giving it marijuana causes some side effects. Let’s see what will happen if your cat finds your stash:

Marijuana and Cats

Have you ever wondered how many cats are in the world and whether all of them have receptors to get high? While cats have cannabinoid receptors, they aren’t the only ones. Fish, birds, mammals, and reptiles can experience the marijuana effects, too. 

But that doesn’t mean we should trigger these receptors. Unlike us, animals can’t decide to get high. And that act of “surprise-high” can get them on a rollercoaster that might be too much to handle.

Can Cats Get High on Secondhand Smoke?

Yes, but no animal should ever be forced to “smoke” marijuana. Plus, cats hate smoke as it burns their eyes, and it may also lead to infections or, even worse, blindness. While they can get intoxicated by inhaling secondhand smoke, getting high with a burning eye sensation isn’t a good combo. Inhaling kush is strongly inadvisable around cats that suffer from asthma or lung diseases.

Can Cats Get High from Blowing Smoke in Their Ear?

Feline and canine ears aren’t the same as ours. Their ear canals are long and thin, with a 90-degree bend into the deeper parts. While no evidence shows that blowing smoke in cats’ ears activates their receptors, dogs get high from it, and their ears are almost identical. Besides, the smoke around your cat can land on the fur, so whenever they start to lick it, they’ll likely ingest some THC.

What Does Weed Do to Cats?

By now, you know that marijuana isn’t recommended for cats. But if your cat gets high by accident, you should know what to expect.

Extreme Sleepiness

Have you ever wondered why cats sleep so much? Maybe they’re naturally high as hell. It would explain some of their behavior. Sleepiness is one of the many marijuana side effects for cats and probably the best one. If it happens, your cat may have a pleasant high after all. 


Hypersalivation or excessive drooling is a common marijuana symptom. Like humans, cats can get stuck in a loop of numbness and lose control of their tongue and mouth receptors. That’s due to the high relaxation levels. 

Dilated Pupils

Dilated pupils are among the expected effects of marijuana on cats. It’s a result of the excitement or fear they experience on a high. That’s also the first sign that marijuana starts to hit, similar to humans. 

Low blood pressure

The main signs of low blood pressure in cats include hunger, restlessness, shivering, incoordination, disorientation, seizure, and coma. While it’s not 100% certain that your cat may experience these symptoms while being high, it’s best not to interfere with blood pressure. 

A white cat looks highly dramatic sitting on edge

Is Weed Toxic to Cats?

Cats have more cannabinoid receptors than humans, meaning they get more dramatic and toxic highs. All it takes is a small amount of cannabis for cats to experience anxiety, drooling or decreased body temperature. 

Weed is hazardous for cats suffering from heart problems. Besides, they probably won’t appreciate the high sensation, so think carefully before getting your cat high. Keep an eye out for coconut oils infused with THC or cannabutter as they’re palatable to cats.

What Should I Do if My Cat Accidentally Gets High?

Can cats get high on accident? Yes, but the chances they’ll do that on their own are meager. Cats are famously picky eaters, so it’s less likely for them to eat a bud.

If it happens, make sure your cat has water at all times. But don’t force it to drink water, as your cat might get even more frightened or anxious. Also, if you don’t want to cause aspiration, avoid making your cat vomit the weed. If you recognize some of the high symptoms, take your cat to the vet and ask for professional advice. In between, keep your cat hydrated and hope it will fall asleep. 

What Else Can Get Your Cat High?

So do cats have cannabinoid receptors? Yes, they get stoned to the bone. But marijuana isn’t the only substance with that effect. 

Can Cats Get High Off Catnip?

Catnip is a herb that cats love to inhale, and it makes them act kind of wasted. But what exactly is catnip?

It’s a shrub in the mint family called Nepeta Cataria, which produces the nepetalactone chemical. That’s found in the leaves, stems, and seedpods of the plant. Whenever your cat rolls around in catnip, it causes the plant to release nepetalactone. Essentially, it triggers a reaction that makes cats intoxicated and euphoric. Still, about 20%–30% of cats don’t react to it at all. But the ones that do experience the same effects. 

Can Cats Get High From Psilocybin?

Psilocybin mushrooms are very popular psychedelics, also known as magic mushrooms. They contain psilocybin and psilocin — compounds similar to LSD. As people tend to keep their stash at home, there’s a high chance (no pun intended) for cats to find these mushies. According to the ASPCA, possible symptoms from magic mushrooms include instability, agitation, sensitivity to sound and touch, vomiting, diarrhea, or mild to severe depression.

Can Oregano Get Cats High?

Oregano doesn’t contain substances that can get cats or any other living being high. Unfortunately, while it’s delicious to humans, it can be toxic to cats

Cats lack the enzymes to break down oregano’s essential oils, known as phenols and terpenoids. These poisonous chemicals will upset a cat’s stomach, causing vomiting and oral discomfort.

How Long Will My Cat Stay High?

Marijuana can make cats get high, and the effects depend on the dosage. When cats get high on catnip, it usually lasts for 10–30 minutes. The first 15 minutes are generally enjoyable, and they start getting back to their senses soon after. Still, inhaling marijuana may last longer, especially if the dosage is high. It can take up to two hours for cats to fully recover. 

Getting Your Cat High on Purpose 

Never, and we repeat, never purposely make your cat consume marijuana or any psychoactive drug. It’s cruel and inhumane. Pets know what herbs to take from mother nature, and that doesn’t include marijuana.

How About CBD for Cats?

CBD is a non-psychoactive compound in the hemp plant. 

While cats don’t tolerate anti-inflammatory drugs, CBD is ideal for their pain. For instance, the best CBD oil for cats is beneficial for arthritis. Plus, it’s safe to give long-term with no severe secondary side effects. 

As opposed to THC for cats, CBD can also help with urinary tract disease. It’s a natural anti-inflammatory substance that can soothe the cat’s bleeding inflamed bladder walls. What’s more, CBD can ease cats’ anxiety, so consider adding some CBD cat treats to your pet’s diet. Felines prone to epilepsy or inflammatory bowel diseases may also benefit from these treats. 

If that’s not enough, CBD can decrease pancreatic inflammation in diabetic cats by triggering insulin production. Plus, it might be beneficial for cancer, too. At the very least, the substance can provide pain relief and stimulate your cat’s appetite. But can cats get high from CBD? No. They can only get healthier.

Final Thoughts: THC vs. CBD for Cats — The Toxic Compound and the Life Saver

Many people use cannabis for medicinal reasons, while others take it to relax and unwind after a long day at work. Whatever the case, be cautious when you use it around your cat. So, can cats get high? Absolutely. Marijuana sends kitties to Wonderland, but not in a good way. If you want to help your cat and not traumatize it further, offer it a CBD oil or treat instead of getting it high.

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