Researchers believe that the two most active chemicals in marijuana that have medical applications are cannabidiol (CBD), which seems to impart its benefits without causing a “high;” and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which does cause a “high” along with any medical benefits it may produce.
Unfortunately, medical studies have been hindered by marijuana’s designation as a Schedule 1 drug by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), along with the costs and difficulties in procuring marijuana for study. Nonetheless, many people believe that cannabis helps treat various ailments and pains in themselves. Similarly, many people believe that cannabis — specifically the CBD component—offers many benefits for dogs. The following list outlines a few conditions that people feel are alleviated by the use of CBD products in their dogs:
– General pain, including pain from cancer
– Lack of appetite
– Cognitive dysfunction
– Epilepsy and seizures
– Stress and anxiety — including travel anxiety and separation anxiety
– IBD and other inflammatory diseases
– Lupus and other autoimmune disorders
Do note that, again, such claims are not currently backed up by clinical evidence for humans or canines. Anecdotal evidence suggests that CBD and
THC may help alleviate a variety of conditions, but a great deal of scientific and medical work is still needed.
Veterinarians can’t currently prescribe or recommend marijuana or CBD products for dogs for a variety of reasons:
– As Schedule I drugs, marijuana and CBD are classified as having a high potential for abuse and no proven medicinal benefits.
– State laws concerning the prescribing of marijuana and its extracts currently apply only to humans, not dogs.
– A lack of manufacturing regulations and oversight of CBD products for pet use leaves the door open to products that could be deceptively labelled at best, and potentially dangerous at worst.
– Veterinarian licenses could be put on the line for recommending CBD products for their patients, regardless of any anecdotal evidence of their potential benefits.
Ultimately, it all comes down to legality. The lack of a law-changing body of evidence, and the absence of political will to change the DEA classification determines the ability of the greater veterinary community to prescribe and recommend these products for their patients. However, the proliferation of CBD-containing products for dogs (and cats), and the number of pet owners who are trying them and reporting positive results is making it increasingly difficult for vets (and other pet owners) to ignore the topic and potential benefits any longer.
While CBD-based medicines must only be administered under medical guidance, veterinarians in Australia are still unable to prescribe or discuss these products for pets.
Differentiated according to their degree of psychoactivity, these are, in essence, chemical compounds that are able to produce a physiological response when they interact with the endocannabinoid systems in mammals.
When it comes to medical marijuana, we’re primarily focused on the cannabinoids, CBD and THC, which are the compounds usually cited for therapeutic use.
It is this system that makes us amenable to the effects of medical marijuana.
Cannabinoid receptors, which form a large part of this system, are broadly categorised as CB1 and CB2. The former is located in the central nervous system, the lungs, liver, and kidney. CB2, on the other hand, directly relates to the immune system and is present in the red bone marrow and in the bones. They are also found in other areas including the pelvis, femur, and even the umbilical cord of newborn babies.
In the event that you administer cannabidiol oil and your pet suffers an overdose, seek veterinary attention immediately. If you notice signs of lethargy, vomiting, urinary incontinence, ataxia (loss of control of bodily movements), and hyperesthesia (extreme physical sensitivity), these could be signs of an overdose.
While pet fatality as a result of marijuana overdose is relatively rare, it can still pose serious health risks if left untreated.
You can learn more about cannabis safety here
Once we complete all research, testing, and secure regulatory approval to legally sell our products, we hope to make our treatment available for eligible canines who demonstrate a variety of pain-inducing conditions.
We are aware of a number of products currently on the market for animals using cannabis compounds, however none of these have been tested to be safe, standardized, effective and compliant with animal health regulators and as such, veterinarians aren’t able to prescribe them. We hope to provide veterinarians with approved and compliant products that have been shown to be safe and effective.
We’re also heavily researching other phytonutrients in the cannabis and hemp plant that have already been extensively researched to be safe and effective for promoting health and well being, and constantly looking at opportunities to bring products to market. Keep following our products page to be updated regularly or sign up to our mailing list here.
Stay update on the Research and Development page to keep informed about our progress.
However there are specific parameters in which cannabis is considered legal and the market still remains tightly controlled. Access is restricted only to patients who have received approval for medical marijuana by an approved physician.
In animal health, these pathways do not exist. It’s illegal to sell any product that’s marketed for cats, dogs, horses and livestock without being approved as a veterinary medicine of nutritional supplement. We are working hard to have our products approved so that veterinarians can legally sell them.
For more information on the regulatory status of medical cannabis for each jurisdiction, click here