STATE WIDE–Marijuana isn’t legal in Indiana for either medical or recreational purposes. But, some people have given it to their pets. Dr. John Howe, immediate past president of the American Veterinary Medical Assoc., says doing that can be dangerous for pets, and can also lead to some expensive vet bills.
“It affects pets differently than it does people,” said Howe, preparing for the associations annual convention, which will be all virtual this year. “People think that they’re gonna get high and so if their dog gets it, he’s just gonna get high. But, that’s not the case.”
LISTEN: Dr. John Howe talks marijuana overdoses in pets.
Howe said their discussions this year will include both marijuana consumption and coronavirus in pets.
He said people used to give their pets pot in the 70s. But since 2010, marijuana consumption by pets has been happening more frequently, and so have the visits to the vet.
“They can have seizures or actually go into a coma,” said Howe. He recalled treating a dog that was in a coma.
“After thoroughly questioning the people and saying, is there any prescription medication their dog might’ve gotten into, they said, well doc if you won’t call the cops on us. I said, no I won’t. They said, our dog ate a pan of marijuana brownies.”
Howe said the dog was on IV fluids and a respirator for two days, along with a temperature warmer, to get the dog out of the coma. “A very expensive treatment,” he said.
In addition to a coma and seizures, pets can get depressed, their temperature goes down, they can vomit and drool excessively and howl. Those are all signs of THC poisoning.
Howe said people should also refrain from giving their pets CBD products.
“CBD is not supposed to contain any more than .3 percent THC. But, it’s not regulated. There are no FDA-approved CBD products for pets. The sky’s the limite as far as what you get out there,” he said.
Howe said some research shows there may be some benefits for pets from CBD, but until that research is tested, it should be considered dangerous for pets.
The website for the American Veterinary Medical Association is https://www.avma.org/