As the popularity of marijuana begins to rise nationally and locally, new uses the drug for pets have also come into light. For many people, medical marijuana is used to help control their pain. However, the benefits of marijuana are not only applicable to people, but dogs as well.
According to an article written by chief veterinary officer, Dr. Jerry Klein, on the American Kennel Club (AKC) website, “There’s anecdotal evidence from dog owners suggesting it can treat pain, especially neuropathic pain, as well as helping to control seizures.”
The article also mentions many owners are beginning to experiment with CBD oil, also known as cannabidiol, to help manage their dog’s pain.
“[CBD oil] does not contain delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound that gives marijuana its psychoactive properties,” Klein stated on the website.
Additionally, most CBD oil comes from cannabis hemp, not actual marijuana.
Although the website stated there is no formal study on how CBD impacts dogs, scientists infer that it can help maintain balance in a dog’s body and keep it healthy. According to the websiteDogs will not actually get high and instead will just feel relaxed. CBD oil for dogs is completely legal and safe for animal consumption.
On the website, Klein also stated that there is evidence from dog owners that CBD oil may also be able to treat a wide range of illnesses in dogs, such as pain, seizures and anxiety. Many dogs experience separation anxiety when their owners leave them for any amount of time.
Josh Weiss, the owner of a 6-year-old Jack Russell terrior, said his pet has struggled with anxiety for as long as he has owned him.
“His anxiety got so bad that he would sit and cry in the house whenever I left,” Weiss said. “I couldn’t take him to class and I couldn’t leave him home alone, I really did not know what to do.”
Weiss said to help his dog, someone recommended he use CBD oil treats. As a result, he saw instant change.
“I can leave the house and not worry that he is going to freak out,” Weiss said. “He likes the treats and they help him stay calm.
Weiss said that his Jack Russell has become like a new dog and that he sleeps better when he has to leave the house.
Another student and dog owner who uses CBD oil treats is junior Rylee Halla. She uses these treats for her elderly dog, Sushi.
“When my veterinarian recommended CBD oil treats I thought he was crazy,” Halla said. “However, the change in my dog’s attitude has been insane.”
Halla’s dog is a 12-year-old Pembroke Welsh corgi and his hips have begun to bother him. At first, Halla said she was skeptical, but the change in Sushi’s attitude has been remarkable.
“We tried several different options to help manage his pain, but nothing has worked as well as CBD treats,” Halla said. “It works for Sushi because he thinks he is just getting a yummy treat rather than medicine.”
CBD treats and oils can be found at a variety of places. Stores like Pet Club carry these CBD oil treats — they are also available online.
Also stated on the AKC website, when it comes to risks, specifically for dogs who consume CBD oil may experience dry mouth due to a decrease in saliva production, lowered blood pressure and drowsiness.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to approve CBD oil for dogs. This means that there has not been much research on CBD oil for dogs and that a dosage limit has yet to be produced. As a result, the AKC recommends keeping a close eye on dogs who have been introduced to CBD oil and to start out with small dosages.
In order to get more information on CBD for animals, the AKC’s Canine Health Foundation is currently sponsoring a study at Colorado State University to see the effects of CBD oil on epileptic dogs. The study hopes to present useful data for dog owners and veterinarians.
As marijuana continues to become legal in more states, there may be more studies about the many ways marijuana can help humans and animals. CBD oil, depending on the animal, situation and condition, may aid in making their lives easier.