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Pets and Cannabis

Do you know the effects that cannabis has on your pets? Do you know what to do if you suspect that your pet has ingested cannabis?

What is cannabis?

Recreational and most medical cannabis products are prepared using the Cannabis sativa L plant, usually by drying its flowers and leaves. More than 100 chemicals, known as cannabinoids, come from the cannabis plant.

Recreational cannabis, which is smoked, vaporized or baked into oral preparations for humans, contains high levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which causes psychoactive effects on the mind. This class of cannabis has the highest risk for pet toxicity.

Medical cannabis contains moderate to high levels of cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive cannabinoid compound, and lower levels of THC. These medicinal products may be prescribed to human patients for anti-nausea, pain relief and other medical reasons. But be careful because some of these products contain enough THC to produce toxicity in pets.

Cannabis that contains very low levels (less than 0.3%) of THC in its flowers and leaves is classified as hemp. This tends to be the most used ingredient for “medicinal” purposes for pets, with products including hemp oil, tincture or hemp powder. Effective and safe dosages of hemp products have not been studied.

Is cannabis safe for pets?

The safety and efficacy of these products are unknown. There’s also limited research on the use of these types of products in animals. Studies show that dogs have a higher sensitivity to cannabinoids than people, which may put them at risk. Cannabis of any type is not researched for use in animals, and giving products to your pet may have unknown side effects, unproven effectiveness and could result in a medical crisis. Hopefully in time research will be done and a safe and effective dose will be determined.

What are the signs of cannabis toxicity in pets?

  • Lack of balance and coordination
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Excessive salivation
  • Vomitingjnm
  • Dilated pupils
  • Tremors or seizures
  • Disorientation
  • Slow heart rate
  • Change in body temperature
  • Sensitivity to light and sound
  • Urinary incontinence

What should I do if I think my pet has ingested cannabis?

Take your pet to your veterinarian immediately.

Written by: Dr. Jennifer Merry, DVM

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Last updated: June 1, 2020

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 15, 2020 some restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.

1. WE CAN NOW SEE ALL CASES BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, heartworm testing, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

2. SAFETY MEASURES TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE

3. ONLINE CONSULTATIONS ARE AVAILABLE

If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

4. NEW PET OWNERS

Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

5. OPERATING HOURS

We are OPEN with the following hours:

Monday to Friday: 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
Saturday & Sunday: 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

6. GROOMING SERVICES

If your pet requires grooming, please give us a call and we will put your name on a list. Our groomer Stephanie will contact you directly to schedule an appointment.

7. COUNTRY TAILS DOGGIE DAYCARE

As of Tuesday, May 19, 2020, Country Tails Doggie Daycare is open! Their temporary hours of operation are 8:00 am - 6:00 pm. You may get touch with one of our daycare team members at (905) 690-8005 or at countrytails@clappisonvet.com

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Clappison Animal Hospital