Dogs and humans have a lot in common. In fact, your dog can suffer from many of the same types of illnesses that humans do – illnesses such as:
- Chronic Pain
Prescription drugs can help, but they often come with negative side effects. Pain medications, in particular, can knock your dog out, reducing their level of activity.
And unfortunately, not all medications can help with the most severe symptoms. In those cases, your dog still suffers, and you and your veterinarian are left feeling helpless and without any viable treatment options.
But nowadays, more dog owners are combining holistic, alternative medicine with traditional Western medicine. The same goes for pet food; owners are as conscious about the foods they feed their pets (non-GMO, organic, grain-free) as they are about the foods THEY eat.
That’s why some dog owners are giving medical marijuana to their furry companions, specifically CBD.
And they’re seeing results.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a beneficial compound found in the marijuana plant. Unlike THC, the compound in marijuana that gets you “high,” CBD is non-psychoactive.
But even though CBD doesn’t pack the euphoric punch that THC does, it’s still very powerful and offers a host of health benefits such as:
- Pain relief
Marijuana manufacturers already make CBD-dominant products for people who want pain relief but don’t want to get high.
And now some companies offer CBD for dogs in the form of products like oils and treats.
Does CBD For Dogs Actually Work?
- In the March 2017 issue of Elevate Nevada, Julie Vigil reports the story of Karbon, a German Shepherd who suffered from severe seizures once a week, despite being on prescription medication. Once his owner started giving him CBD oil, he became, in her words, “a different dog” His seizures now only occur about every 10 days, they last less than five minutes (originally they lasted up to an hour), and their severity fell by about 75%. Best of all, Karbon has more energy and is more alert.
- The New York Times reported a story about Emmett, a 12-year-old dog who had his leg amputated because of bone cancer. He was on painkillers, but they made him so drowsy he wasn’t able to stand on his remaining legs. His owner gave him a cannabis tincture, and now Emmett has no problem standing on his own. The tincture also helps his anxiety during 4th of July fireworks celebrations.
- CBS News did a story featuring Hudson, a 12-year old dog in pain from arthritis and an amputated toe. Prescribed painkillers kept knocking her out. Her owner treated her with cannabis extract placed in yogurt, and..well…you guessed it. Hudson finally got her energy and spunk back.
Check out this short clip from CNBC about CBD for dogs:
Can Veterinarians Prescribe or Recommend CBD For Dogs?
No, they can’t.
Marijuana is still classified as a Schedule 1 drug, and that includes both THC and CBD-based products. Veterinarians who try to prescribe or recommend CBD for dogs risk losing their licenses.
It should be noted that the American Veterinary Medical Association doesn’t have an official stance on cannabis. However, they have stated that
- veterinarians have a responsibility to exercise their best judgment when deciding on treatment options for their patients
- more research is needed on cannabis’s effect on animals before we can say conclusively that it’s an effective treatment
Should I Tell My Veterinarian That I’m Using CBD to Treat My Dog?
Absolutely. It obviously helps if you have an open-minded veterinarian, and many of the anecdotal stories we’ve come across feature vets who are just that.
But either way, your veterinarian needs to know if you’re giving CBD to your dog so that he or she can track your dog’s progress. Your vet can also avoid prescribing medications that could negatively interact with marijuana.
Do Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Carry CBD Products For Dogs?
Some do! Call your local dispensary first, or look at their online menu so that you don’t trek all the way down there for nothing. They can also recommend certain products over others.
Hemp-Based Products For Dogs Work Too
If your dispensary doesn’t carry CBD for dogs, there are a number of hemp-based products on the market that are also specifically designed for canines.
Hemp products are legal in the U.S. because they have such a low amount of THC and CBD in them. Luckily, that doesn’t affect their medicinal impact.
Certain hemp products contain additional, non-psychoactive cannabinoids and terpenes that can be used to treat pain, inflammation, anxiety, cancer, and arthritis.
Can Animals Safely Consume Medical Marijuana Meant For Humans?
Absolutely not! Don’t ever give your pet the medical marijuana that YOU use.
THC is toxic to animals. In fact, it’s not uncommon for dogs to wind up in the emergency room because they got into a stash of weed or edibles, ate everything, and overdosed. They often wind up needing to be hospitalized as a result.
If you do decide to purchase CBD for your dog, be sure to purchase products specifically designed for animals. No blowing marijuana smoke into your pet’s face to “help her relax!”
Share Your Experiences!
Do you treat your dog with CBD products? Do you have results to report? Get in touch with us by commenting below!
Your dog can’t actually get a Florida medical marijuana card, but if you personally suffer from any of these qualifying illnesses…
- Muscle Spasms
- Severe nausea or chronic pain
…then you’re eligible for a card. Remember: medical marijuana products are cheaper and more potent than recreational products.
Schedule an appointment with our doctor today, and we’ll get you on the path to pain relief at a lower cost.