It was supposed to be a fun, carefree weekend, but one of the guests had brought gummy edibles from California as a surprise.
However, when Sarah’s 3-pound Pomeranian-Chihuahua mix, Beans, ate 50 milligrams of THC from the gummies, things took a different direction. He started displaying symptoms that something was wrong – drooling, poor motor movement, inability to close his mouth, extraordinary eyelid activity – rapidly.
Firstly, Does Weed Affect Dogs?
To begin, it’s critical to comprehend that your marijuana will have an impact on your dog. Let us look at what marijuana is and why it has an effect at all to better understand this topic.
Cannabis is one of the most ancient plants on Earth; it did not evolve THC and CBD in order for some primate species to get high off of it — rather, they developed them to defend themselves.
THC and other cannabinoids were developed in cannabis plants to protect against grazing animals – it’s understandable that a plant doesn’t want to get munched on by some prehistoric version of a cow.
So, over a long period of time, the plant attempts to find methods to live. Some plants produce spikes; other plants develop potent poisons – cannabis does something unique.
Cannabis is known for its variety of cannabinoids, including THC and CBD. When you ingest THC, it produces a psychoactive effect. What do you think you would feel like if you ate a large pile of marijuana buds, stems, and leaves instead of smoking or consuming one joint?
Cannabinoids react with your endocannabinoid system after they are absorbed, a health mechanism that regulates a range of bodily functions, including pain sensation, neurochemical release, and inflammation response.
The primary endocannabinoid receptor, CB1 receptors, are activated by THC when you drink it. It binds to the CB1 receptors and sits there stimulating them, causing a variety of effects including the psychoactive high. This is because your brain has been overstimulated by these cannabinoids, causing it to panic and go mad with mental activities as a result.
We can now regulate these feelings with forced dosage control and selective breeding, but in the past… Your normal cannabis plant would not be meticulously blended for your desired effect.
The human body’s cannabinoid defense mechanism was designed to defend against cannabinoids. We are all mammals, and so is your dog. Cannabis has a similar impact on your dog as it does on you when you drink it.
So, what’s in store for your tiny dog? What sort of ramifications will he face?
What’s Going to Happen to My Dog if he Eats Cannabis?
When you hear that cannabis has the same effect on dogs as humans, you may feel intrigued by this news – your beloved canine companion can join in the fun, right?
Well, recall the time you had to give your dog painkillers and noticed that the dosage was significantly lower than what your doctor prescribed?
Your dog’s size means that each dosage has to be reduced. This implies that if your dog consumes one of your limbs, he won’t be intoxicated because he will be in the worst state imaginable. This is only enhanced by the fact that, most likely, if your dog stole from you, he didn’t stop after just one mouthful; instead, he ate a lot more.
So, here’s what you can expect.
If you’re fortunate, he’ll just start vomiting —dogs have a fantastic vomit reaction and are quite good at vomiting up anything their bodies consider poisonous. However, because cannabis has so many different tastes and smells, it’s frequently not recognized as poison since it contains so many different flavors; your dog likely thought you were hiding new kinds of goodies from him!
So if he is not sick, what will happen?
To begin with, you will probably notice your dog acting incredibly loopy and drugged – imagine the highest you or anyone you know has ever gotten, then think about how you would act if you were even higher than that.
That’s what Scruffy is feeling right now.
They might have trouble balancing themselves, as well as beginning to act really lethargic. If they stay at this stage, they are likely going to be fine – just keep a close eye on them.
This probably doesn’t seem too bad now, but it can get worse; they might start to have some breathing problems or suffer reduced blood pressure.
This is a result of the cannabinoids affecting their endocannabinoid system, causing them to start to experience all the different effects that cannabis can cause you to feel at once.
If it gets bad enough, it can actually become a serious medical emergency.
So, what should you do?
My Dog Ate My Weed: What Do I Do Now?
The most essential thing to remember is to maintain your cool; you must be there for your little buddy and ensure that he is safe. Take him to the first veterinarian you come across and leave him in their care. They’ll make him sick, as well as put him on a drip and medication to keep his heart rate and breathing regular.
After that, all you have to do now is wait for the drug to wear off. Because dogs are smaller than humans, they process medications like these a little quicker. Your canine companion might experience some anxiety and lethargy for a few days as a result of this event, but he will recover completely if you look after him.
He will also need to drink a lot more water than you might expect, as the process of pushing out the marijuana is very dehydrating for animals that aren’t used to marijuana consumption.
Make sure he gets plenty of rest and always has access to fresh water. Of course, you should be doing that anyway for your dog.
Also, don’t forget – weed isn’t all bad for dogs.
So, is Weed Completely Bad for Dogs?
Although it may appear as though everything cannabis is harmful to dogs, one thing must be kept in mind: cannabis affects dogs just like it does humans. This implies that we can utilize cannabis to cure dogs in the same way we do ourselves. Dogs may benefit from cannabis (or even CBD alone, according to a study by Samara et al.) for a variety of conditions and ailments, much like people.
The most common illnesses are things like epilepsy and arthritis, but it can also be prescribed for things like anxiety. However, it is important to note that you need expert advice as to how to properly dose your dog with marijuana.
If you start messing around without knowing what you are doing, you could risk endangering your dog’s life. They only need a very small amount compared to us humans.
Remember, according to a slew of studies, including one by Fitzgerald et al. for the Top Companion for Animal Medicine, the fatal dose for canines is 3 grams of THC per kilogram of body weight. So if your dog has broken into your stash and is acting loopy, he’ll be just fine since the lethal dose for dogs is only 3 grams of THC per kilogram of body weight.
Most dogs’ owners know that marijuana can be dangerous, particularly in large doses. However, many people do not realize the specific potency of cannabis in their dog’s food. Keep in mind that a typical gram of marijuana has about 200 milligrams of THC inside it, which is quite low. If your dog weighed 30 kg (the average weight of an adult male Labrador Retriever), he would need to eat 90 grams of THC to consume a toxic dose. This corresponds to 450 gm or nearly a full pound of cannabis.
If your dog has ingested a complete pound of marijuana from your stash, he’ll be just fine; he’ll simply need to be cared for for a while. Cannabis isn’t quite as bad for dogs as other drugs are, but they should only take it in controlled amounts with their veterinarian’s guidance and experience.
If you try to drug your dog yourself, he’s probably not going to like it. At the very least, you now know what to do if your beloved pet finds your hidden secret stash and consumes all of your marijuana. It’s most likely safe, but just keep an eye on him and take him to the doctor just to be safe.