A Friendly Reminder For Those In States With Legal Pot: Keep Your Edibles Away From Pets

(Brian Jackson Now)

They might get mad if you take the cookies away but pets and pot don’t mix.  (Brian Jackson Now)

Just think about how much people food your dog could put away if given unfettered access to the kitchen. Now imagine you live in Washington or Colorado, where it’s legal to have edibles — cookies, butters, oils, bread, whathaveyou — infused with marijuana. Cue really important lesson for pet owners to keep the pot from your pooch.

While the idea of a dog getting baked might sound funny in your head in a movie scenario kind of way, it’s a very serious matter, veterinarians warn. There’s been an uptick in incidents where dogs have scarfed down marijuana, and because their bodies can’t metabolize it as fast, the effects last a lot longer.

So if your pup is glassy-eyed or stumbling around, it’s not looking for White Castle, it needs help.

“We see dogs stoned out of their minds for days. They’re a mess,” Tim Hackett, director of the Colorado State University veterinary teaching hospital tells USA Today. “The pot goes in cookies and butters. Dogs love that stuff, and they won’t eat just one.”

He worked on a recent study that tracked marijuana “intoxication” in dogs and found that there was a connection between how available pot was and the number of animal overdoses in Colorado after the state approved it for medical use in 2000.

The decision to make marijuana legal for recreational use in the state will likely lead to another increase, he says.

Your best bet is to lock up any food products, because dogs probably won’t chow down on a bag of marijuana by itself. It’s not so much the marijuana that’s harmful — though it can cause dogs to have trouble breathing — it’s that eating a pound of butter is dangerous no matter the form.

“It’s so readily available… and dogs are gorgers,” says Animal Planet’s Emergency Vets Kevin Fitzgerald, who also worked on the study. “A person would eat one brownie. A dog will eat the entire tray. And therein lies the danger.”

Puppies on pot a growing hazard [USA Today]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.