Cannabis Poisoning in Dogs Has Increased

Recent study by veterinarians in the United States and Canada found an increase in cannabis toxicity in dogs. Moreover, new information on symptoms, treatments, and results has also been gathered. Richard Quansah Amissah and colleagues published their findings in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on April 20, 2022.

According to ScienceDaily, pets are most usually exposed to cannabis through ingestion. However, the pets may experience varied degrees of cannabis poisoning, also known as cannabis-induced toxicosis.

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Cannabis poisoning in dogs
(Image source: unsplash)

While the previous research suggested that pet cannabis poisoning is on the rise. However, the exact magnitude of the problem has remained unknown.

To acquire a better understanding of cannabis toxicity in dogs, an analysis of survey data from 251 veterinarians was done in Canada and the United States.

Following the legalization of cannabis in Canada in 2018, the number of cases of cannabis poisoning grew dramatically in both the United States and Canada. Unattended consumption of cannabis edibles was the most common cause of poisoning. However, it was unclear what proportion of cannabis products were acquired for human use vs medical use by dogs.

The authors pointed out that the increase after legalization could be linked to increased cannabis use. Moreover, another reason could also have played a role and that is the greater reporting. Dogs were the most prevalent victims of cannabis poisoning. Although it was also detected in cats, iguanas, ferrets, horses, and cockatoos. The reported symptoms in dogs were, urine incontinence, confusion, and an unusually slow heart rate.

This shows that more research needs to be done on the effects of cannabis on dogs. This will assist veterinarians to devise policies to keep pets healthy amid the rise of cannabis production.

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