ENVIRONMENT
10/11/2013 05:44 pm ET Updated Oct 13, 2013

Veterinarians Say Pot Poisoning In Pets Is On The Rise

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Veterinarians have have seen an increase in animals with pot poisoning, a KTVU report says.

According to veterinarians at the Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital, the majority of incidents are accidental and the result of pets sneaking snacks from their owners’ medical marijuana products, most notably baked goods.

The veterinarians also cited the increasingly strength of pot-laced goods.

“We're seeing more I think for a number of reasons. Probably one is the potency of the THC in the marijuana has increased, so that the animal consuming the pot gets more of the active drug,” Rick Benjamin from the Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital told KTVU.

The increase is not unique to the Bay Area. A five-year study in Colorado found that pot-poisoning in dogs quadrupled after the state legalized medical marijuana in 2000.

Many pet owners and some veterinarians say that in controlled doses, pot has actually helped sick and dying pets feel better and gain an appetite, just as it does with human patients.

Benjamin claimed that one instance of pot poisoning did lead to a patients’ deaths, as the dog had consumed the entire plant. "[The dog consumed] a huge quantity and got a true marijuana toxicity,” he told KTVU.

In most instances, vets pump activated charcoal into the animal to filter the drug out of their system.

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