Marijuana Poisoning in Dogs – Symptoms and Treatment

Poisoning by hashish or marijuana in dogs is not always lethal. However, ingestion of this plant or its derivatives can cause serious side effects that put the dog’s health at risk.

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In this article of YourCatCareguide we speak of marijuana intoxication in dogs as well as the symptoms and treatment to be able to perform a first aid intervention in case of overdose. You should remember that prolonged exposure to marijuana smoke is also harmful to the dog. Let’s explain everything, keep reading!

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The Effects of Marijuana

Marijuana and its derivatives, such as hashish or oils, are potent psychoactive substances obtained from hemp. Tetrahydrocannabinol acid is converted to THC after the drying process, a psychotropic compound that acts directly on the central nervous system and the brain.

It usually causes euphoria, muscle relaxation and increased appetite. Despite this, it can also cause some side effects like: anxiety, dry mouth, reduced motor ability and weakness.

There are also other effects of marijuana on dogs:

  • Exposure by chronic inhalation of marijuana can lead to bronchiolitis (respiratory infection) and pulmonary emphysema.
  • Moderately lowers the frequency of the dog’s pulse.
  • Too high an oral dose can cause the dog to die from intestinal bleeding.
  • Excessive intravenous dose may lead to death from pulmonary edema.

Symptoms of hashish or marijuana intoxication in dogs

Marijuana usually works 30 minutes after ingestion, but in some cases it can take effect an hour and a half later and last for more than a day. The effects on the dog’s body can become serious and, although marijuana itself does not cause death, clinical signs can trigger.

Clinical signs that we can observe in case of intoxication:

  • Tremors
  • Diarrhea
  • Difficulty coordinating movement
  • Hypothermia
  • Excessive salivation
  • Abnormal dilation of the pupils
  • Disorientation
  • Vomiting
  • Glasses eyes
  • Somnolence

The heart rate in a cannabis intoxication may slow down. Therefore, it is important to remember that the dog’s normal heart rate is between 80 and 120 beats per minute and that small breeds have this frequency a little higher while the large breeds lower.

In addition to these signs, the dog can become depressed and even switch states of depression with excitement.

Treatment of intoxication by hashish or marijuana in dogs

Carefully read our explanation of the first-aid step-by-step that you can apply to treat marijuana intoxication in your dog:

  1. Call your veterinarian, explain the situation and follow his advice.
  2. Make the dog vomit if it has not yet been 1 or 2 hours since the use of cannabis.
  3. Try to relax the dog and observe all the clinical signs during this process.
  4. Observe the dog’s mucous membranes and try to measure the temperature of the dog . Make sure he breathes and has a normal heart rate.
  5. Ask a family member to go to the pharmacy to buy activated charcoal, an absorbent and porous product that prevents the absorption of the toxicant in the stomach.
  6. Go to veterinary clinic.

If, from the outset, you notice that the dog has dramatically decreased the temperature or that the effects are causing excessive malaise, rush to the veterinarian. Your dog may need gastric lavage and even hospitalization to keep vital signs stable .


  • Roy P., Magnan-Lapointe F., Huy ND., Boutet M. Chronic inhalation of marijuana and tobacco in dogs: pulmonary pathology Research Communications in Chemical Pathology and Pharmacology Jun 1976
  • Loewe S. Studies on the pharmacology and acute toxicity of compunds with Marihuana activity Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics Oct 1946
  • Thompson G., Rosenkrantz H., Schaeppi U., Braude M., Comparison of acute oral toxicity of cannabinoids in rats, dogs and monkeys Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology Volume 25 Issue 3 Jul 1973

This article is purely informative, in we do not have the capacity to prescribe veterinary treatments nor to make any type of diagnosis. We suggest you bring your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or malaise.

If you want to read more articles that may be products related to Poison Intoxication in Dogs – Symptoms and Treatment , we recommend that you enter our First Aid section 

Emily Harris

Hi Guys, Girls, and Cats:-p I am Emily Harris, and you can see in above pic. She loves me I swear. I saved her from a dumpster a few weeks back.

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