If you smoke cannabis, chances are you have a stash at home, and if you have pets, it wouldn’t be the most surprising thing in the world if they sniffed it out and ate some of it. If this is ever does happen to you, don’t fret if its only a small dose – this will likely just induce a bit of tiredness in your dog or cat. However, if your pet has munched quite a fair bit, then it might be a good idea to take him or her to the vet.
There are lot of different ways a dog can get high, such as directly eating weed or edibles, or even being exposed to second-hand smoke. If the situation ever arises in which your dog eats an edible, like a brownie or a space cake, you should definitely take them to a vet. This is because the high will be potent and prolonged, and if the edible has chocolate in it this can be extremely toxic. Typically, if you’re dog eats some weed it probably won’t be fatal because your dog would need to consume about 3kg of THC per 1kg of bodyweight. Small amounts will likely induce little to no side effects, though large ones can induce symptoms such as seizures, agitation, and vomiting.
If you think your dog has gotten into your stash and they are displaying the symptoms listed above, the best thing to do is to call a pet poison helpline. The person on the other end of the phone will guide you through what to do and assess whether your pet needs medical care. If you’re dog has to go to the vet, its likely they may be given sedatives and placed on an IV drip to help stop the vomiting.
Cats can also be intoxicated by cannabis if accidentally exposed. While it is quite rare, cats can exhibit negative side effects if they eat weed or are around cannabis smoke. There isn’t much known about marijuana toxicity in cats, but there are some indicators your cat will give you if they need help, and some of these indicators are pretty severe. For example, your cat may vomit, have diarrhoea, start yowling or make other vocal sounds. Extreme cases can result in loss of consciousness, bradycardia, depression, and hypothermia. The same course of action should be followed for cats as for dogs, call a pet helpline and, if need be, take your cat to the vet.
Fortunately, not all weed is bad for pets, as it is actually THC that negatively affects them. In fact, there is actually a large, emerging market based on medicinal cannabis for pets which incorporates the non-psychoactive compound CBD, known for its wellness properties. More research definitely needs to be done in the area, but it’s nice to know that CBD has the potential to help our furry friends as well as our human ones.