More canine friends accidentally poison themselves as marijuana becomes common
According to American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, reports of marijuana toxicity in dogs have increased dramatically
following the widespread legalization of marijuana.
The national volume of calls for ingestion of cannabis increased from 1,436 to 3,923 cases between 2017 and 2020 noted Tina Wismer, Veterinarian and Senior Director of the New York-based ASPCA Poison Control Center, as reported by the Los Angeles Times.
It is important to note that these figures represent only a small percentage of the total number of cases due to the voluntary nature of the reports. In California, for example, where adult cannabis became legal in 2016, phone numbers jumped 276% between 2016 and 2020, and in Colorado, the numbers have increased eleven times since the state legalized cannabis in 2012.
Effects can be critical
The problem is much more serious than it seems because if a dog ingests THC-infused foods designed for humans, which weigh several times more than dogs, the effects can be critical. Plus, some of these treats may contain other chemicals as well, not just THC.
And while most incidents likely happen at home with the owner’s hiding place, the number of cannabis poisoned dogs outside is definitely increasing at a rapid rate.
Karl Jandrey, professor of veterinary science at UC Davis, and Wismer of New York noted some of the standard symptoms of cannabis toxicity in dogs: “instability on their feet, depression, dilated eyes, runny urine, sensitivity to touch and sound, slow heartbeat, and even low body temperature. “These signs tend to occur about 20 to 40 minutes after ingestion.
Wismer also pointed out that if a dog owner suspects marijuana ingestion, they should immediately call their vet.
The case of the “stoned” Chihuahua Terrier
One of the more recent cases involved a 12-pound Chihuahua Terrier mix named Bentley, who for the first time refused fries.
offered by its owner.
“He didn’t want to take them, so I knew something was wrong. He was just out of there, ”said Dana long, a resident of Tiburon, according to the LA Times.
Realizing that Bentley was not himself, Long quickly took him to the vet where he was told most likely Bentley picked up an edible chocolate on the sidewalk while walking near a neighborhood college.
“If you ask one of our ER vets, they’ll all tell you that the number of dogs addicted to cannabis has increased by leaps and bounds since the legalization of medical and then recreational marijuana for humans,”” Jandrey said.
What is the solution ? – Dog training
According to Jandrey, “Avoidance is the only prevention. “This means dog owners really should take dog training, and teach their dogs how to behave inside and outside the house.