According to an Oregon veterinarian, there is a rise on marijuana related dog poisoning.

Dr. Adam Stone, who is a veterinarian at Bend Veterinary Specialty & Emergency Center, has said, “We saw more cases of marijuana toxicity in the first couple months of 2016 than we had in the previous year.”

She added, “There was a pretty severe increase once it was legalized recreationally.”

“We see anywhere from one to three in a 12-hour shift that present with signs of toxicity that could be attributed to marijuana,” he said of the Emergency Clinic in Bend where he works.

“We usually see it solely in dogs. There’s a very classic subset of signs that we see in dogs. Cats [are] not nearly as common, although sometimes it’s suspected.”

According to 24-hour animal poison control service, Pet Poison Helpline, there has been a 448 percent increase in cannabis cases over the past six years.

Redmond Veterinary Clinic veterinarian Dr. Curt Nitschelm remarked, “It’s definitely more frequent with the recent laws. It’s usually dogs, and it’s usually the edible products. From what I understand they have a higher concentration of marijuana or the active ingredient.”

“Most of the cases that we see, it’s been the higher concentrated products like butter, and edibles, brownies, those types of things,” Nitschelm added.

“In rare cases, the ash from a joint can cause some dogs to react,” Stone explained. “Someone will toss out a roach, or the end of a joint, and a dog on a hike will just snack on that. And just that little, tiny quantity — in some cases maybe a quarter of a gram, a tenth of a gram — can cause severe signs in some animals.”

Tandi Ngwenyama, who works as a clinical instructor of emergency and small animal critical care at Washington State University, said of the symptoms, “They might be a little bit more depressed or agitated; they’ll walk around like they’re drunk. Also pretty classic is they seem to be dribbling urine.”

“When we see a dog that comes in and it’s lethargic, dribbling urine and having trouble standing, it’s almost a sure-fire sign that the dog has gotten into marijuana,” Stone said.

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