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Dogs licking poisonous toads to get high

Monday 16 Dec 2013 5:11 p.m.

Queensland dogs are getting high by licking the poison off cane toads.

Vets are warning some pooches may become addicted to the hallucinogenic and are risking their lives trying to get their next toad fix.

It's being reported the dogs have worked out how to lick the toad just enough to get high.

"This phenomenon of animals deliberately getting intoxicated by cane toads, it's fascinating," says veterinarian Megan Pickering. "It just seems unbelievable that an animal will go back for a second try.

"But nevertheless we do have many documented cases of patients who deliberately - on a regular basis - will seek out a toad and they seem to be able to lick the toad in such a way that they seem to get a very small dose."

Ms Pickering claims the dogs become addicts, putting their lives at serious risk.

One dog was recently found frothing and trembling.

The serial licking was first reported in the Northern Territory in 2005. But no one really listened. Now it has spread to Queensland and is back in the headlines.

Vets insist it's a true story and a real problem – they're warning dog owners to keep their loved ones inside, away from temptation.

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