CBD and Pets

CBD and Pets

CBD and Pets

With the increased hype and recognition, CBD products are becoming more popular than ever. In the United States, more states are legalizing cannabis for medicinal and recreational purposes with each election cycle. In Canada, medical and recreational cannabis is legal nationwide. CBD products are now sold in various retail establishments, making them readily available to the public. This makes us wonder, what impact does CBD have on our pets? While there have been a number of documented studies showing the positive effects of CBD on humans, is it the same for animals? 

Clinical Research 

There have been a lot of questions and few answers on the subject of CBD and pets because the industry is so new. Up until recently, there were few studies that showed cannabis to be an effective medicine for pets. With legalization, that is slowly changing.

A new study by the Ontario Veterinary College at the University of Guelph will determine if CBD can help treat bladder cancer in dogs. Researchers will study the effects of CBD on cancer cells, and chemotherapy and radiation therapies.

Another study funded by the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation will look at the potential for CBD to treat dogs who have drug-resistant epilepsy. While we know cannabis can be effective in treating people with epilepsy, there is less research for pets.  

What Do the Vets Think? 

At this point, not all veterinarians are comfortable discussing the option of CBD products with their patients. Amanda Carrozza with American Veterinarian writes that while 82% of surveyed veterinary professionals believe that CBD should no longer be a Schedule I drug under US federal law, only about 45% were comfortable discussing the topic with patients. This isn’t completely unreasonable, considering that anything illegal under US federal law is a gray area.

Consulting a Professional

As with many new industries, especially one that stems from a once prohibited substance, there is a lot of misinformation. There are a number of products claiming to be hemp-based on the market for pets. However, at this point, these products are not regulated and there is no way to know for sure what they contain. 

If you are curious about how CBD products may be beneficial for your pet, consult your veterinarian. Keep in mind that just as with humans, some medications your pets may be taking could interact with other medications or supplements. Talking to the veterinarian and asking questions should be your first step.

The Future of CBD for Pets

More research continues to be done with medical cannabis, including its impact upon our furry friends. As this happens, veterinarians will begin to have more conversations and expand their knowledge about the potential benefits of CBD in animals. While there are a number of veterinarians that are already supportive of CBD, even recommending it to their patients, we can expect more of them to see the potential of cannabis once there is more clinical research completed.