If you’ve ever had a dog brought into your clinic that’s been intoxicated by marijuana, you’re not alone. VIN has reported that a California veterinarian saw one marijuana intoxicated dog daily, and during the harvest season there was one per hour! Most of these dogs were eating the plants, not the owners’ stashes.
An emergency veterinarian in Washington reported an increase in stoned dogs – about one per week – since three medicinal dispensaries were legally established near her hospital. However, she does not think the new laws in CA and WA to decriminalize casual use will increase the number of intoxicated dogs.
Symptoms of marijuana intoxication in dogs commonly include ataxia, disorientation, lethargy, slow reflexes, urinary dribbling, hypersensitivity to touch or sound, low heart rates and even coma. Death is rare.
Conventional treatments include inducing vomiting, activated charcoal and IV fluids. Holistic approaches such as acupuncture, Chinese herbs, homeopathy or Western herbs would be determined by the individual dog’s reactions – tongue and pulse, behaviors, prior problems.