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South Jersey Regional Animal Shelter: Keep your pets safe and happy, not high.

Well, it’s time to have the conversation. As New Jersey figures out how to handle all the processes and ramifications of legalized marijuana, you may be in the position of having to sit down with your children and lay down some household laws on the issue. While you’re at it, educate yourself about the risks to your pets if they should become exposed to the drug and include that in the dialog with the kids.

Both ingestion and second-hand smoke inhalation can be dangerous for cats and dogs. Although the side effects are usually short lived, they can cause some very serious issues and even fatalities if medical grade marijuana is involved.

Once the “pot shops” open up, there will be all sorts of edibles available presenting what may be great temptation for pets, especially dogs. Brownies laced with drugs pose a double risk for dogs because of their sensitivity to chocolate.

Cannabis intoxication can impact pets in many different ways and should be addressed with a veterinarian immediately.

Some of the signs are as follows:

  • Hyperactivity
  • Weakness and wobbling
  • Disorientation
  • Excess vocalization
  • Dilated pupils (wild eyed appearance)
  • Excessive drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Urinary incontinence

In severe cases, they may experience tremors, seizures and coma.

Diagnostics for this intoxication in pets takes longer than it does for humans and are therefore not practical. It is crucial that you’re honest with the vet if you know or suspect that marijuana is the cause of your pet’s distress.

Treatment may include activated charcoal, fluids, anti-nausea medication and supportive care for blood pressure, heart rate, respiration and body temperature, according to the severity of the reaction.

Fortunately, these side effects are usually short-lived, but they can still be dangerous and make the pet quite miserable.

Keep your pets safe and happy, not high.

Shelter needs: Canned dog food, bite size training treats, hot dogs, cheese sticks, cat litter, and gift cards for pet supply and grocery outlets.

Source: South Jersey Regional Animal Shelter: Keep your pets safe and happy, not high.

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