Signature Montana Magazine Spring 2021

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SiG MT 90 n 2020, Montana residents voted and passed I-190, the Montana Marijuana Legalization and Tax Initiative, legalizing marijuana consumption for adults 21 and older. Since then, Montana veterinarians are seeing an alarming increase in pets with signs of marijuana intoxication. With the legalization of Cannabis in many states across the country, the number of households using marijuana for recreational and medicinal purposes has skyrocketed. As weed has become easier for people to access, it has also become a hazard for pets. In 2019, the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center reported a 765 percent increase in calls regarding Marijuana or Cannabis ingestion by pets compared to the same time last year. e main toxic component of marijuana that poses a significant poisoning threat to pets, especially in dogs, is the psychoactive chemical called tetrahydrocannabinol (or THC). is substance makes people high but for pets, it is toxic. Dogs can experience toxicity by ingesting the Cannabis plant directly, inhaling second-hand marijuana smoke, or eating edible pot products like brownies, candy bars or other foods laced with the substance. Some of these products may also contain additional toxic compounds, such as chocolate or xylitol, a highly toxic artificial sweetener. With dogs, most exposures happen when they eat a product containing THC, such as edibles, whereas cats seem to be aracted to the dried bud form. Signs of Exposure Should your pet get into any product containing marijuana, it can cause them discomfort and unpleasant symptoms. Signs of exposure can appear 30 to 60 minutes aer ingestion, or sooner aer inhalation. Symptoms include: • Extreme sleepiness • Dilated pupils • Vocalization of discomfort (whining, crying) • Aggression • Increased or slow heart rate • Dry eyes/bloodshot eyes • Dribbling urine/loss of bladder control • Sensitivity to sound and touch • Low body temperature • Incoordination or walking wobbly/drunk like • Vomiting • Seizures PET HEALTH 101 TEXT BY DAWN MILLIGAN POISONED PETS The Downside to Legalized Pot I

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