The BC SPCA is warning pet-owners to practise vigilance after a husky puppy named Bear nearly died from a drug overdose.
In addition, the BC SPCA Vancouver Branch is asking for donations to help finance the 11-week-old puppy's recovery, which involved emergency veterinary care, vaccinations and neuter surgery. So far, the puppy's recovery has reached a total of $2,730.
"We rushed Bear to the vet and by the time we arrived he was unconscious. A toxicity test revealed that Bear had high levels of THC in his little body," says SPCA Vancouver branch manager Jodi Dunlop. "With recreational marijuana now legal in Canada, I think pet guardians need to be extremely careful."
The SPCA notes that it took Bear several days to recover and start acting like a normal curious, energetic and playful puppy. Marijuana, if ingested, can adversely affect a dog's nervous system and heart rate. Further, products made with concentrated THC, such as cannabis butter, are even more dangerous. While they may be attractive to dogs, ingestion can cause seizures, coma, and even death.
The Ontario SPCA and Humane Society adds that even blowing smoke in your pet's face can cause cause some irritation to the airway, similar to asthma, or the eyes.
"If you suspect your pet has ingested drugs take them to see a vet immediately and be honest about what happened to them," says Dunlop. "Some people may be reluctant to be upfront about what happened, but vets need to act quickly – it could be a matter of life and death for their pet."
If you can help Bear and other animals in need at the Vancouver SPCA, please visit spca.bc.ca/medicalemergency or visit the branch at 1205 East 7th Avenue, Vancouver, 604.879.7721.
This article originally appeared here.