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Two dogs show signs of drug toxicity after walking on same Guelph trail
GUELPH -- A Guelph animal hospital is warning dog owners to keep a close eye on their pets after two dogs who walked on the same trail got sick.
Both animals showed symptoms related to drug toxicity.
The dogs have since recovered, but one of the dog owners describes it as a terrifying experience.
Carrie Spencer says her one-year-old lab, Capella, fell suddenly ill after going on one of their daily walks last week.
The area in question: a forested area behind an elementary school near Colonial Park Drive.
The dog started acting strange, suddenly unable to walk home the rest of the way.
"She could hardly walk, she was very jolty. When she did hear a noise, she kind of jumped and then she'd fall back down. Then she had, it was like a swaying movement," Spencer remembers.
"But no vomiting, and it wasn't until I called the vet that they even said, 'well, maybe she's gotten into something.' I assumed something was wrong with her."
The veterinarian says she was showing signs of drug toxicity believed to be the result of cannabis.
"Same like a cigarette but, they just discard the butt into the ground, but because it has a very distinct smell, dogs are quite interested in it," explains Dr. Caitlin Forbes at the Southgate Animal Hospital.
Dogs can be sensitive to THC, with symptoms that include a low heart rate, dribbling urine, as well as the symptoms that Spencer's dog experienced.
Another dog owner who went for a walk in the area with their pet experienced something similar.
"She fell up the stairs, she couldn't walk very well, she had peed herself," says Pauline Moebus.
Her dog Jada ate something on their walk along the path, she says.
Forbes says it's hard to say for sure if it was cannabis that the dogs ate, but based on past cases says it also could have been edibles.
Over the holidays, though, a third dog owner says their pet got sick after walking on the same trail and threw up the butt of a cannabis joint.
If a pet owner suspects their animal has ingested cannabis, it’s best to take them to the vet where they can help induce vomiting. In some cases, the vet may also administer activated charcoal to help absorb the cannabis.
With files from the Canadian Press.