We’ve all heard the tale — your dog ate your pot cookie and will not move. Watching your fur baby’s lifeless body lying on the floor, unresponsive but still breathing can be a horrifying experience for a pet parent.
While cannabis consumers know the feeling of “couch lock,” pets are unfamiliar with this sensation and first react by, well, not moving. Of course, this is an oversimplified explanation of their behavior. In fact, a lot of potentially dangerous things are happening to your dog when he or she consumes edibles. But immobility is the surest sign something has gone terribly wrong.
Thankfully, this has never happened to my dogs, Charger and Mary Jane. While much of this is due to the fact that they’ve had a pretty disciplined upbringing and know not to get into food that is not theirs, it’s also because I take precautions to be sure they can’t get into it even if they wanted to.
Now, if I could only get them to stop barking at the front door whenever someone knocks or rings the doorbell, I’d be sitting pretty with the greatest dogs of all time. Anyway, back to safety.
Prevent pets from getting into your cannabis
Always keep your cannabis products stored in a safe location where pets and children cannot get to them.
I decided against your traditional medicine cabinet or child-proof bag and instead keep all my supplies in a bright, mid-century-modern-style cabinet. It blends seamlessly into my home decor, and while people assume it’s filled with old DVDs from the 1990s, its actual intent is to store every piece of cannabis paraphernalia I own. Sneaky, sneaky. Except I just told the Internet, so I guess the jig is up.
Keep your consumption space tidy
One of the biggest generalizations about stoners is that they’re lazy and messy. Not so, friends. Many of us treat our cannabis products just like any other type of medication or food product. You wouldn’t leave an open bag of Cheetos on your coffee table for a week, would you?
But if you are one of those who gets too high and forgets to clean up after yourself, prepare for an increased risk of a pet getting into your stash.
Cannabis edibles are delicious. Why wouldn’t your dog or cat be intrigued by that half-eaten bag of gummy bears sitting unsecured on your table? If you don’t leave things lying around, it won’t be a problem to begin with.
Too late. Pet ate weed. What now?
The level of cannabis toxicity depends on the amount of THC consumed and the weight of your pet, and there is a limited window where it’s safe to induce vomiting.
You know your pet better than anyone else. How are they behaving? Do they seem lifeless or just sleepy? Are they vomiting? The symptoms of intoxication people experience from cannabis also appear in pets: dilated pupils, anxious behavior, and lethargy, among others. Serious symptoms can include coma and seizures.
If you’re freaking out, your pet is freaking out. Take them to the vet. At this point, if your pet doesn’t appear to be handling things well, any treatment will need the attention of a professional, so reduce risk by calling your vet or taking your fur baby to the nearest available urgent care center for animals.
And next time, remember to store everything safely so you never have to go through this again.