Help! My Dog Ate Marijuana! What Should I Do?

Detail of cannabis leaf and rottweiler dog isolated over white - medical marijuana for pets concept

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Let’s be honest. Marijuana legalization is becoming a thing. No judgment here. If you use it, that’s your decision. However, it’s imperative that you do so responsibly. You must make sure to at least keep the weed out of reach of those who can get hurt by it, including dogs.

That being said, accidents happen. Dogs get into things they’re not supposed to, especially when it comes to edible marijuana products. Call your vet right away if your dog eats something they shouldn’t.

Should your pup manage to get into your stash, take the following steps to ensure they’re safe and cared for in an emergency situation of over-consumption and overdose.

Observe Your Pet

Some pets may only become slightly wobbly or lethargic after consuming marijuana, but this doesn’t mean you get a pass to relax.

Three grams of THC — the reactive ingredient in pot — per two pounds of your dog’s weight can be lethal. That’s a lot of weed, to be fair, and probably more than your dog would ever eat.

However, smaller amounts may still lead to seizures or comas. So in the event your dog starts exhibiting these severe symptoms, you should get them to an emergency vet immediately.

Additionally, medical-grade marijuana can contain far more THC and take much less to be dangerous for dogs. That’s why it’s so important to keep it out of reach.

Record any symptoms your dog might be having. Try to find out exactly what your dog ate and when. You should have this information ready for your vet, as it will help them provide the right kind of treatment.

Be Aware Of The Signs Of Marijuana Toxicity In Dogs

Dog Ate Pot - sick dog

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Regardless of whether your dog has eaten a lot of marijuana or just a small amount, you should still call your vet as soon as you can. Symptoms from small doses will usually not be much concern, but it’s best to be safe.

Here are a few signs of mild to moderate marijuana poisoning in dogs that you should watch for and report to your vet:

  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Wobbly, uncoordinated movements
  • Disorientation
  • Barking, howling, or whining
  • Dilated pupils or unusual eye movements
  • Incontinence
  • Slowed breathing
  • Changes in body temperature
  • Lethargy
  • Hyperactivity or agitation
  • Rapid heart rate

Most of the time, these symptoms fade quickly, but they can make your dog very miserable. It’s best that you call your vet and get their advice for treatment. In the meantime, keep your dog hydrated with plenty of water.

Signs of more severe marijuana poisoning include tremors, seizures, and coma. You should contact an emergency veterinarian right away if you see these symptoms.

Take Your Dog To The Vet

If your dog starts to have seizures or becomes comatose or unresponsive, take them to the emergency vet immediately. These may be signs of overdose poisoning, and at that point, your vet is the only one who can successfully treat your dog.

Your vet will inevitably ask you if your dog consumed any substances.

Whether your dog got sick from marijuana that you have in your home legally or illegally, tell the truth.

It’s not your vet’s job to report you to the authorities, but it is their job to save your pet. They can’t do this if you don’t tell them what happened.

Everyone At Home Needs To Prevent Further Risks

Dog Ate Pot - puppy at vet

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Make sure everyone in your home knows to always keep any drugs out of reach of children and pets. This is the most important move and best way to ensure your pets stay safe.

A small dog can eat a stray joint left on a coffee table and get very high or sick. So everyone living in and visiting your home needs to understand the dangers and risks and be willing to take precautions to keep your pup safe.

Tell all of your household members where to find your vet’s phone number in the event of an emergency when you’re not home. If you have to work long hours, you may want to assign a trusted caretaker to keep an eye on your pet when you’re at work.

You may be able to notice even slight changes in behavior for your dog. However, if you live with roommates or other people, they may not be as in tune with your pup as you are. Go over the possible effects of marijuana on dogs with them so they know what to look for and report to the vet.

Don’t Let This Happen To Your Dog

One of our readers came home from work to find their Pug acting very strange one day. It took about an hour for him to realize that his pup ate a joint that his roommate had left on a table while he was at work.

He questioned his roommate, who told him that the pup had been acting strange all day long. The dog parent determined that his Pug likely ate the marijuana earlier and was luckily on the tail end of the effects. He decided to monitor the pup, feed him a meal of scrambled eggs, and keep him hydrated.

This time, things turned out fine, but that’s not always the case, and it’s always better to call your vet for advice. The whole situation could have been avoided if the roommate knew the dangers and took better care to keep his weed out of reach.

All members of the household need to be careful if a dog lives in the home.

Does everyone in your home know to keep harmful substances out of reach of your dogs? Has your dog ever accidentally eaten something they shouldn’t have? Let us know in the comments below!

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