Everyone loves drugs.
Whether it’s a cigarette break after a high-powered business meeting, a cold beer after a hot day on the job or a half-ounce of shroom juice injected directly into the scrotum to ease the stress of writing, people love their intoxicants.
But it turns out that it’s not strictly a human convention. Experts have found that animals also seek out a quick chemical high from plants, bugs and, well, wherever they can find it.
8 Animals That Love Getting High More Than We Do
Elephants drugs of choice are liquor and opiates.
Throughout history, elephants have been worshiped as gods, lauded for their wisdom and memory, and made into mascots for the Republican Party. Like people, elephants are very complex, social animals. This means they exhibit a lot of humanlike behavior. They nurture their young, mourn their dead and love to get absolutely fucked up. Seriously.
In October of 2007, six young elephants charged into an Indian village, broke into their beer supply, got drunk, uprooted an electrical pole and died horribly. In 2002, another squadron of alcoholic elephants rampaged through a different village, killing six people.
Drunk Elephant Sex Party
Horses prefer to get high on potted locoweed, a type of legume that acts as a mind-altering drug.
Apparently locoweed is to horses what nicotine is to people: an extremely addictive drug that kills them slowly over the course of several years. During the lean winter months, locoweed is the only green plant available in some pastures.
Horses first seek it out for its nutritious goodness, but keep coming back for its psychoactive effects.
Long-term users exhibit signs of depression, weight loss and behavioral instability.
Latawnya, The Naughty Horse, Learns To Say “No” To Drugs – A Dramatic Reading
Bighorn sheep like to get high on narcotic lichen.
And luckily for them, in the vast wilderness of the Canadian Rockies lives a unique species of yellow-green lichen that will fuck you up.
The lichen is extremely rare (it can take decades for them to grow over a single rock) and only grow in very inhospitable regions of the Rockies. Despite the fact that it is dangerous to get at and contains no nutritional value, the sheep will risk life and limb to get some.
Once they reach the lichen, they will rub their teeth down to the gum line to scrape off every last bit of it – in the process getting super high.
Reindeer apparently love shrooms, their favorite being the amanita muscaria strain.
Let’s talk about urine for a moment.
The body does not actually metabolize psychedelic mushrooms, so most of the psychoactive compounds get washed out with the user’s pee. If you collect that urine and drink it, you will trip almost as hard as if you’d eaten the mushrooms yourself.
Many native Alaskan tribes stretch out their supply of mushrooms this way. The priests eat the ‘shrooms and the followers drink their urine. How does this tie into reindeer?
Like most wild herbivores, reindeer have a very firm constitution that allows them to eat all manner of nasty plants and fungi without getting sick. Many strains of hallucinogenic mushrooms are toxic to human beings, but not toxic to reindeer.
Being the practical sort of fellows that primitive shamans were, the priests started collecting reindeer urine and drinking it to get high. But the piss train didn’t stop there. The reindeer discovered that they could get the same high off of human urine. Thus was born…
THE CIRCLE OF PISS:
- Reindeer eat mushrooms and pee.
- Humans collect the pee and get high.
- Humans pee, and reindeer drink their own people-filtered-urine to get high again.
- The reindeer pee, and the circle begins anew.
Would you drink this guy’s piss?
Bees get high on Satan’s Bathwater (alcohol). As it turns out, the bee, nature’s communist labor drone, is also another one of nature’s alcoholics. Since they have a similar nervous system to humans, scientists love to provide captive colonies with alcohol to test the effects of intoxication.
Scientists have noted that drunk bees are less likely to fly, less likely to engage in social behavior and prone to random fits of violence.
Some bees get so blitzed that they lose the ability to do anything but lay on their back and kick their fuzzy legs feebly in the air.
Jaguars drug of choice is banisteriopsis caapi, a root found in the jungles of South America.
Jaguars love to get high, and their choice in intoxicants is badass. Wild cats looking for a high will seek out the roots of the caapi plant and gnaw on them until they start to hallucinate. It looks even cuter than it sounds.
Jaguar Gets High
Caapi root contains a variety of powerful MAOIs (chemicals like you find in antidepressants), which allow the animal’s brain to be flooded with DMT, causing them to trip balls.
In fact, some scientists believe that humans first learned to use the root by observing jaguars getting high off of it.
Capuchin Monkeys and Lemurs
These two species love to get high on hallucinogenic millipedes.
Yes, both capuchin monkeys in South America and lemurs in Madagascar have learned how to get high off of passing insects. Apparently, several species of millipedes squirt out a poisonous compound when agitated.
By covering themselves with the poison, lemurs and monkeys are able to ward off parasitic insects and get a delightful narcotic buzz.
Unfortunately, millipede venom is also filled with cyanide, which is deadly to pretty much everything.
Of course the risk of agonizing death has never stopped anyone from getting high, so the capuchins (one of mankind’s closest relatives) gather in huge groups and swap hits of ‘pede.
Drunken Monkeys and Smashed Lemurs
> 7 Species That Get High | Cracked