Pets and Illicit Drugs

Some people don’t stop at doing drugs and binge drinking themselves. Some give drugs and alcohol to kids, and some give drugs and alcohol to pets. Pets are taken to emergency vet clinics for drug and alcohol toxicity all the time, probably more than we would imagine. While some people feel that sharing their stash with Fido is just giving him a fun time, others consider it nothing short of animal abuse.

Fun at the Expense of a Pet

When people are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, it is natural for them to want to extend their entertainment, and to get someone else involved in the fun. Occasionally, when there are no sober people around, they will share the drugs or booze with the cat or the dog. An animal on drugs can provide amusement for people that are already under the influence, and they may enjoy watching their loving pet sadly stagger around the house.

Under the Influence

Other pet owners forget to secure their drugs, and without meaning to, leave their pot or cocaine in a place where their pet can get into it. Dogs especially don’t care what it is they are ingesting or sniffing, and will gobble things up while their owners are too busy being stoned themselves.

Drug Smuggling with Animals

Still another way animals get caught up with drugs is through drug trafficking. These smugglers will sometimes make animals ingest things like heroin and hallucinogens, in an effort to sneak them across the border.

Dangers of Illicit Drugs for Animals

Of course, giving drugs and alcohol to pets is not healthy for them. These animals do not have a way to defend themselves or to say no to the substances. Effects of drugs on dogs and cats is usually the same as on humans. Marijuana can make them lethargic, stumble around, and become nauseated. Meth can cause irregular heart rhythms, tremors, and high blood pressure. Other drugs can cause seizures, coma, anxiety, and even death. The danger with giving an animal drugs is that they are much smaller than humans, and drugs often affect them more severely than humans. We also can’t be sure how drugs are going to affect particular breeds of animals.

Getting Medical Help

Many people whose animal has ingested drugs are leery of taking their pet to the vet, for fear of getting in trouble. Those that do seek medical attention for their cat or dog may not be honest about the real cause of their condition. Most vets are mainly concerned with helping the pet recover, and won’t turn owners in to police. But that’s certainly a risk people have to face when they decide it’s a good idea to give their pet a recreational drug.  “It is recreational for people but not recreational for pets,” said Veterinarian Dave Roos of Adobe Animal Hospital.(1)



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