Cannabis legalization has been sweeping across America and Canada and thus far has been relatively successful. Many states now generate millions of dollars in additional tax revenue thanks to regulated cannabis sales. Legalization has also spared millions of people from criminal prosecution. However a troubling trend of cannabis poisoning pets is raising concerns amongst pet enthusiasts.
According to the American Veterinarian Medical Association, in the last six years, the Veterinary Services Poison Helpline saw a 448 percent increase in emergency calls about pets accidentally ingesting different forms of cannabis.
Cannabis Effects Dogs The Worst
Most pets are nosy. Nearly all pet owners know this and have experienced their pets chewing through something they weren’t supposed to at one time or another. That’s what makes animals so susceptible to ingesting cannabis edibles accidentally, and why owners should be careful where they place their cannabis products. While many pets have been unknowingly exposed to cannabis, “about 90 percent of the marijuana-related calls to the Animal Poison Control are about dogs” says an ASPCA veterinarian.
Lawrence Gerson V.M.D., in an article for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette said that, “Dogs have more receptors for the active ingredient of marijuana, and the physiologic effect is seen in much lower doses than in humans.” Gerson added that, “[Dogs] are more sensitive to THC and also consume more of the drug in proportion to body mass than a person would normally use.”
If a dog is affected by cannabis consumption, they will show many different symptoms including but not limited to, lack of coordination, slow heart rate, and dilated pupils. Symptoms may not show up instantly but when they do, it is important to visit a veterinarian and let them know that your pet may have accidentally consumed a cannabis product.
How To Protect Your Pets From Cannabis
Cannabis legalization has created many positive outcomes for people and even for pets. CBD treatment for pets has helped many ailing dogs and cats find a new lease on life. That does not mean that there aren’t inherent dangers with storing high-THC cannabis products improperly.
If you are a consumer of cannabis and have a pet, it is important to keep your cannabis in a safe and secure place that is out of reach of all your pets. This simple yet important preventative measures will help insure that your pet does not become a victim of accidental cannabis pet poisoning.
Lane is based in Southern California and is a content curator for Medical Marijuana 411. He focuses his research into finding informative stories that can help medical marijuana patients better understand their diverse medicine.