SURREY — A dog owner is warning others after a trip to Tynehead Park last Friday turned into a nightmare.
Hours after a trip to the popular Fleetwood park, his 15-year-old shepherd cross Bran suffered a drug overdose.
Will Cooper is sharing his story in the hopes another furry friend doesn’t have to suffer like his has.
“Last night, I went on a walk with my wife and my two dogs in the Tynehead Park area of Surrey, B.C. This was a great place to take them, as it was a nice shady area with access to the river and streams.…. We did not notice the effects until later that evening,” he wrote in a Facebook post telling of his “fury” over what has transpired.
Bran soon suffered what they thought was a seizure, “going from practically comatose to alert and wide awake almost at the flick of a switch.”
Samples were taken and we find out that he has a large amount of marijuana and cocaine in his system.”
Cooper said it “knocked the wind” out of him when the vet said he had ingested cocaine.
“The vet came back and said somebody’s been partying pretty hard.”
The overdose left Bran unable to walk and he has been in and out of the vet since. He was put on a drip to flush his system.
Cooper said since the visit to Tynehead Park, he’s heard from friends that drug users frequent the area of the park they were in, near 168th Street and 96th Avenue.
“I won’t be going there again,” he said firmly.
To make matters more heartbreaking, Bran has an underlying condition – a slipped disc – and has been unable to take his pain medication since the incident.
“Because of drugs in his system, the vet has advised to stop the other drugs. He’s in pain. We feel so frustrated,” said Cooper. “We’re just trying to keep him comfortable. At the emergency vet (Monday night) they gave him some meds to effectively numb the pain a bit.”
If this had been his family’s much smaller dog, Pippin, he may have died, he added.
“I cannot begin to explain how violated that makes me feel,” said Cooper.
The family got the results of the blood tests Monday and it appears that Bran is not going to suffer permanent damage.
But he’s not out of the woods yet, Cooper stressed.
“It was touch and go for a minute,” he told the Now-Leader. “We were initially taking it hour by hour, and finally we’re getting to day to day. When we picked him up he could at least walk again, but he was wobbly and could barely control his back legs.
“What if it was a child? He was literally on the riverbank and it looked like he was picking up a stick,” Cooper continued. “If that was what he found it would be so easy for a child to pick up as well.”
Cooper urged other dog owners to keep a vigilant eye out, because you never know where drugs might be hidden.
“When walking your dog, please be wary of what they might get into.”