As a dog owner, seeking out natural remedies that can help your dog lead a better quality of life is something that is only natural. However, some new products that are hitting the market can be relatively new to pet owners, with those marketing the substance saying that it’s safe but not talking extensively about both the advantages and disadvantages of taking it. For example, one of these new products that are starting to make their way into dog treats is kratom. But what is kratom, and is it safe for your dog to have? If kratom has come to your attention, let’s take a closer look at what this substance is and whether or not it’s right for your pup!
What Is Kratom?
Kratom is a plant native to Southeast Asia that belongs to the coffee tree family. Workers in regions where this plant has grown have long since chewed on these leaves or brewed them into tea in order to experience the benefits that kratom has to offer. Now, this supplement has become very popular in the Western world where users will take it to either experience greater energy or improve their sense of relaxation, all depending on the dose that they take.
What Are the Benefits of Kratom?
The biggest issue with kratom, as it is with most natural substances, is that there’s not enough research to fully back the claims of benefits being made by users. This is why it’s sold as a supplement rather than as a legitimate medication with practical applications. With that in mind, some of the benefits of kratom that are reported include pain relief, stress relief and increased relaxation, improved energy, stronger focus and motivation, and more. The effects vary depending on the dose (lower doses are said to result in more energy while higher doses may offer stronger pain and stress relief benefits) as well as the strain of kratom that the user decides to take.
What Are the Side Effects and Drawbacks?
Once users have the answer to their question, “what is kratom?” and have a better understanding of what types of benefits are associated with this plant, they may then ask whether or not they can give this substance to their pups to try to treat the same ailments.
What’s important to remember is that the companies marketing these products to you and your dog rarely highlight the negative aspects of kratom. Their job is to make the product more appealing so that you try it out. Fortunately, our job is to make sure you have all the information you need to make an educated decision about your purchase. So, what are the side effects and drawbacks of kratom in humans?
- There Is Potential That One Can Develop a Dependence on Kratom: Kratom has become a popular pain reliever because, like many prescription medications designed to target pain, kratom has opioid-like effects. Because it’s natural, many assume that it’s a safe replacement. However, those who take it can develop a dependence on it over time, which not only opens them up to the possibility of an overdose as well as symptoms of withdrawal but exposes them to long-term consequences of using kratom too.
- The Side Effects of Kratom Are Myriad: Some of the side effects associated with kratom use include numbness of the tongue, nausea and vomiting, dry mouth (which can lead to increased thirst and increased urination), constipation, aggressive behavior, hallucinations and delusions, and thyroid problems. Put simply, the side effects of kratom can be quite unpleasant.
- Overdoses Are Severe But Can Be Hard to Spot: Kratom overdoses aren’t always easy to spot when they occur, which is what can make them so deadly. Some symptoms associated with a kratom overdose include heart palpitations, seizures, agitation and irritability, drowsiness, coma, hypertension, and nausea.
Many only see kratom through the lens of a natural remedy, which may lead them to believe that taking it will result in minimal side effects. However, unlike other substances you may have encountered on the market like CBD for dogs, kratom can be far more hazardous than many users know it to be.
Is It Okay to Give My Dog Kratom?
As we’ve illustrated above, kratom can have far more potential drawbacks than benefits, making it not only an unsafe option for humans to take for pain relief and other needs but for dogs as well. Until more research comes out to identify the potential for this substance, it’s best to avoid kratom altogether as there are numerous alternatives out there that can help your dog with any issue above that they may be experiencing. If it’s toxic for humans, it’s a safe bet that it’s probably not great to give to your pup!
Hopefully, this guide has not only answered your question, “what is kratom?” but provided you with a better overview of how it impacts humans and why it’s advised against to be giving it to your dog, even if companies out there are marketing products that include kratom in them. As always, do your research, ask your vet about any natural substance you may be thinking about giving your dog, and follow their advice for any medications or treatments that you should be applying. When it comes to your dog’s health and well-being, there’s no such thing as being too safe!