Cannabis for dogs – is it safe? With people using medical cannabis to help them with different ailments and pain, they are using it to treat their dogs. Medical cannabis for dogs is becoming a booming industry. But there is little research on the effects of medical cannabis on our beloved pets. While there is anecdotal evidence it helps dogs with seizures, anxiety and cancer, there are less than 60 studies about its effects on dogs. And most of these studies are about the toxicity of cannabis for pets.
Cannabis for dogsDogs have more cannabinoid receptors in their brains than us. This means they are more susceptible to any toxic effects from the THC. While CBD may be beneficial for our furry friends, we need more research to understand how it works on our pets.
Making cannabis oilCannabis oil comes from the glands of the flowers of the cannabis plant. Pet cannabis company VETCBD founder and CEO Dr Tim Shu said there are many ways to extract the oil. Extracting the oil allows him to find the right balance of cannabinoids for the pet products he makes. Cannabis plants have more than 80 different types of cannabinoids including CDB. CBD is the part of the plant used for its medical benefits. Shu said that using the cannabinoids in tandem together made them more effective and contained little THC. THC is the psychoactive ingredient that makes you high. Montclair Veterinary Hospital owner Dr Gary Richter said when dogs get the proper dose of cannabis oil there is no psychoactive effect if there is little or no THC contained in the product.
Cannabis oil benefits for dogsCannabis oil can treat medical conditions such as cancer symptoms, stress and anxiety, seizures, pain, gastrointestinal problems, nausea and other health issues. Dogs have an endocannabinoid system and the CBD relieves things like anxiety and pain when it interacts with the dog’s system. Shu said CBD medications did not have serious side effects unlike some pharmaceutical medications. He said dogs do not get high, it does not sedate them, nor does it have an adverse effect on the liver or kidneys.
Cannabis oil risks for dogsThere are always potential risks no matter what medication you give your dog. Richter said the highest risk was from THC toxicity from pet products high in THC. The effects can last for several days, making the dog high, depending on how much THC the dog ingested. This manifests in the dog not eating and having difficulty standing. Take your dog to a vet immediately if you suspect a THC overdose. Richter said the risks from medical cannabis being life threatening are rare. It is more common when the cannabis product contains other substances such as raisins, chocolate or coffee. But, there have been cases where dogs have died after eating large amounts of cannabis so it is important to prevent your dog from overdosing. Holistic Animal Clinic owner Graham Quigley said the popularity of alternative medicines could cause problems. People who use CBD oil as an alternative medicine for themselves could believe it will have the same effect on their dogs. He said buying cannabis oil from unreliable sources could put people’s pets at risk. Always talk to your vet before giving your dog cannabis oil.
Treating dogs with cannabis oilCannabis oil is given to a dog orally but there are some topical treatments. Richter said there were benefits from using traditional and medical cannabis medications together. But, using the correct dose was important as was ensuring dogs did not get high from THC. Products high in THC are not good for dogs. The issue is, there has been no research or tests done to determine what the correct dose is for dogs. It is important to talk to a vet who has experience in medical cannabis for dogs. And, always buy products from reputable companies. Over the last few years, the US Food and Drug Administration has tested products that claimed to contain CBD. It has issued warning letters to some companies when their products have not contained the levels of CBD in them that they claim.
How to get medical cannabis for your dogWhere you get medical cannabis for your dog depends on where you live and the laws for the area. In California, for example, you need a medical cannabis card to buy legal cannabis. It is not legal for vets cannot to provide cannabis or a medical cannabis card to treat pets. If you think your dog could benefit from medical cannabis talk to your vet. Once you get veterinary advice you can use your card to buy the best medical cannabis possible from a dispensary. When you live in a state that does not allow medical cannabis, try hemp products as hemp has almost no THC content. Beware of dosing your dog on cannabis without the advice of a vet, or you could cause it to overdose.
Mr. BC Seeds
Mr. BC Seeds is an over educated old school hippy who has been involved in the cannabis industry since the 1970's. He is one of the most experienced marijuana breeders in Canada if not the entire world. He was the first to use the most advanced breeding techniques in 2008 to create 42 of the world's strongest cannabis strains. He has been writing in-depth articles about cannabis in Canada for decades and looks forward to continue bringing you cutting edge cannabis strains for the decades to come. Mr. BC Seeds uses a "pen name" because he still travels the world collecting cannabis strains and continues researching cannabis in laboratories of non-legalized countries.