Accidental THC consumption could be deadly for pets

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — The legalization of recreational marijuana is for people aged 21 and older and is relatively safe for careful adult use. With THC added to common treats, the dangers of improper storage of THC products, specifically edibles, could be toxic to your kids and deadly for your pets.

Edibles infused with THC that often look like brownies, gummy candies, cookies or chocolates present a concern regarding children, particularly those under the age of 12.

According to Children’s Hospital Colorado, accidental ingestion and subsequent overdose by children often require hospital admission due to the severity of symptoms. Parents who partake should consider keeping the number to the national Poison Control Hotline (1-800-222-1222) at hand and call immediately if you suspect accidental ingestion.

Kids aren’t the only ones susceptible to accidental ingestion of cannabis products. Pets are at risk, too.

Dr. Cathy Lund, of City Kitty Veterinary Care for Cats, explained pets are easily susceptible to the effects of THC and a little will have a huge impact.

“They’re much more sensitive to the hallucinogenic component of marijuana than humans are. They have more receptors for it in their brains,” said Lund.

This means while adult humans can consume with little worry, pets are at risk for seizure, coma and death from consuming THC.

Lund advises using lockable containers for the safest storage of THC products. She also notes pets can be creative and motivated to find treats.

Dogs have been known to chew through packaging to get to edibles, and they don’t have just one. This is a dangerous situation for pets as THC can be extremely toxic and even fatal to companion animals.

Lund emphasized, “Don’t make the mistake if you think your dog or cat has gotten into this. Please, please call your veterinarian because this can be a matter of life and death.”

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