Now that Marijuana has been legalized and is more easily accessible, we are anticipating more accidental exposure to our pets. Exposure can be in the form of second-hand smoke inhalation or from edibles.
There have been no concrete studies on the effects of Marijuana in our pets, so it’s safer to err on the side of caution and avoid its use in our pets…period. As they say “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
What we do know right now is that Marijuana can be highly toxic. Signs of toxicity include: central nervous system signs (e.g., ataxia, disorientation, hyperesthesia, agitation, hyperactivity, dysphoria, mydriasis, behavioural changes, tremors, seizures, coma), gastrointestinal signs (e.g., hypersalivation, vomiting), cardiopulmonary signs (e.g., bradycardia, tachycardia, hypoventilation), and miscellaneous other signs [e.g., urinary incontinence, temperature changes (e.g., hypo- or hyperthermia), death.
If you have questions about Marijuana use for your pet, it is advised to discuss with your Veterinarian.
More importantly, if your pet is exposed, it’s crucial that you be honest and up-front with the Veterinarian. We do not pass judgement, and the only way to properly and effectively treat your pet is if we know what the true problem is.
Thankfully, with rapid recognition of clinical signs and prompt treatment, the prognosis for marijuana toxicity is excellent with supportive care.
Written by: Mountain Road Animal Hospital