Do Pets Need Drug Classes Too?

by Mike Miller April 24, 2014

Fido – put down the crack pipe! As crazy as it sounds, the number of pets being treated by veterinarians for poisoning from recreation drugs is a very real problem. One veterinary emergency room in San Diego, California sees at least one pet per week suffering from poisoning from marijuana.

San Francisco veterinarian Jill Chase had a frightening experience. She had just finished hosting a birthday party for her son 10 years ago when her dog went limp. After investigating what might have caused the problem, she discovered the culprit: cannabis-infused butter that a neighbor had dumped in the garbage down the street. Her dog, a Tibetan terrier who was a habitual trash surfer, had eaten a large dose. As reported in

Marijuana poses a much more serious problem for digs, especially when they have ingested enough THC to get a rhino high. Her dog was completely ODd in a coma for three days on the bathroom floor with an IV but eventually recovered.

As marijuana becomes more prevalent in society and more widely-accepted the problem posed to pet appears to be increasing. Cases of marijuana poisoning in dogs have increased, particularly in states like California where medical marijuana is legal. As one veterinarian put it, our dogs are "munching out." Dogs are known to be indiscriminate eaters, going after paper, trash, random objects on the street and, now, their best friend's cannabis.

The Pet Poison Hotline, which takes calls from around the country and Canada, noted a 200 percent increase in reported incidents of poisoning in the past five years. Dr. Lori Green, a critical care veterinarian at the San Francisco SPCA Veterinary Hospital, says the clinic treats as many as three dogs a week for symptoms of marijuana toxicity: trembling, vomiting and walking troubles.

There is no such thing as medicinal marijuana for pets. Online drug classes for adults will help keep munching pets safe.

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