With fewer restrictions on legal cannabis, more dogs are falling victim to poisoning from eating it.
A new University of Guelph study recently published in PLOS Global Public Health found “an association between the reduction in penalties for cannabis use and possession and dogs being poisoned with cannabinoids,” according to Mohammad Howard-Azzeh, the study’s lead author and a PhD candidate, in a post on the school’s website.
The post notes that while the study is based on U.S. data from between 2009 and 2014, problems are similar on this side of the border.
“The study also found that accidental poisoning is more common in jurisdictions with high income variability, in urban rather than rural areas, and in smaller, male and intact (not spayed or neutered) dogs,” the post adds.
“The researchers suspect a dog’s risk of cannabis exposure is associated with its socioeconomic environment.”
“A growing number of research efforts are aimed at understanding the effects of less restrictive legislation on human consumption, health and abuse of cannabis products, but little is known about the effects of these factors on dogs,” Dr. David Pearl, a professor in the university’s Department of Population Medicine who worked with Howard-Azzeh on the study, states in the post.
“Dogs are not very discriminating in what they eat and are known to snatch food from kitchen counters and bedside tables as well as eat things off the floor or ground,” adds Howard-Azzeh.
“Those eating habits appear to extend to cannabis products”