September 05, 2006: Problem with dogs getting high.

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Pot-luck dog dinners a hazard, says vet

A Vancouver veterinarian who runs a 24-hour emergency clinic says she treats a surprising number of dogs who have overdosed on marijuana or other illicit drugs.

Dr. Suann Hosie says many of them have consumed large amounts of pot from their owners' stashes.

"They sometimes hallucinate. Certainly on marijuana, they have a dry mouth, their pupils are dilated, they stagger. They act just so weird that the panicky owner brings them in."

Hosie says the owners are often unaware the dog has eaten marijuana, or are just reluctant to tell her the truth.

She says in one case a young man finally admitted what happened after he went home from the clinic.

"He phoned me back after we had hospitalized his pet and he said, "I went home and my stash was gone."

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Drug testing for dogs

Hosie says she has begun drug testing dogs she suspects have overdosed on marijuana, using the same Rapid Response test marketed to employers and parents of teens in the U.S.

She says it eliminates any questions the owners may have about what their dog has consumed.

"When they see that strip turn green or purple, it's a positive diagnosis rather than us diagnosing it with the clinical signs," she said.

Hosie says the treatment in most cases is to induce vomiting and provide fluids, after which the dogs recover quickly.

But she has also treated dogs who have consumed harder drugs or chewed on their owners' asthma inhalers. She says both can be fatal.

The Vancouver vet says she sees very few cats with the problem, noting they seem to be a little more discriminating about what they eat.


Comments made

My Chihuahua ate 1/2 a joint about 2 hrs ago, and she is toasted, I'm freakin out, I had to pull up a site that dealt with it, I dont think its fatal (is it?)...I'll have to be more careful, I know, I had no idea she take it out of the ashtray
August 05, 2007 18:15:39 | Keep up-to-date -->  Subscribe to Comments... | Subscribe to Comments by Email
Hey Mason. Half a joint will do nothing to the dog. Your dog will be fine.
August 07, 2007 09:44:34 | Keep up-to-date -->  Subscribe to Comments... | Subscribe to Comments by Email

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