America’s dogs are getting high. Dangerously so. Owners are coming home to find their pooches nearly comatose, their eyes glazed over and their bodies twitching after ingesting large quantities of marijuana.
Evidently, cases of marijuana poisoning in dogs have been on the uptick as more states decriminalize the substance or at least pass bills permitting its full use for medical purposes. Many users consumer their weed in the form of baked goods and it's not uncommon for a dog to steal a brownie or two and end up with more than they bargained for.
In a post for the Los Angeles Times, Teresa Watanabe described coming home to find her own dog, Monte, nearly dead from an overdose.
“He tried to walk, but dragged his hind legs. He couldn't sit up on his own,” she wrote. “I was terrified that he'd had a stroke and was paralyzed. Or was dying.” Monte recovered but had to spend the night in the hospital with an IV drip. The whole ordeal ended up costing Watanabe over $700.
Watanabe also spoke to Bruce Castillo, an emergency veterinarian technician at an Eagle Rock clinic who says he usually treats two or three stoned dogs a night. He says that while most recover from an overdose, it can still be lethal for some dogs. Castillo cited the case of a Jack Russell terrier that died after ingesting “a huge amount of pot.” Two dogs listed in the Colorado study also died from eating marijuana-laced butter.
A five-year study on the subject found that incidents of marijuana poisoning in dogs quadrupled in Colorado after the state voted to legalize medical weed in 2000.