More and more people are warming up to the idea of medical marijuana and even recreational cannabis use. But what about cannabis for pets? If medical marijuana can do wonders for pain relief and reducing inflammation in humans, wouldn’t it be just as beneficial for your dog or cat?
Before you go rolling up a doob for your pooch, it’s important to fully understand the potential risks involved in giving your pet cannabis.
Understanding THC, CBD and Your Pet
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, it’s the compound that gives users the sensation of being high / stoned. While THC can be utilized for a myriad of medical conditions, it can be very dangerous for your pet.
Dogs in particular are quite a bit more sensitive to THC than humans. It doesn’t offer them the same euphoric high, in fact they really don’t enjoy being high at all.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the most beneficial cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, yielding a vast number of medical benefits. The real kicker with CBD is the fact that it has no psychoactive effects, we can harness the healing powers of cannabis without the high. This has proven to be a fantastic treatment option for children and even pets!
Benefits of Cannabis for Pets
The stigma surrounding cannabis is starting to disappear, and people are finding all sorts of new ways to use this miracle plant. There is no question that cannabis is useful for a wide variety of conditions in humans, and many of those benefits translate to your pet as well.
Cannabidiol specifically has been in the medical spotlight as of late. It’s ability to provide profound health benefits without making users high is hugely beneficial. CBD is helping to make a name for cannabis in the medical world without giving marijuana-opponents any ammo to dispute its safety or efficacy.
The health benefits of cannabidiol are numerous, and quite a bit of it’s ‘power’ comes from the fact that it is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Inflammation is widely regarded as the number one cause of virtually every known disease, flooding the system with free-radicals and taxing immune function.
Cannabidiol can be used to help treat chronic pain, inflammation, cancer, multiple sclerosis, epileptic seizures, depression, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and much more! It has powerful neuroprotective benefits as well as potent anti-cancer and anti-tumor properties.
We have a far better understanding of the health benefits of cannabidiol for humans than we do for pets. And even still, we have quite a ways to go before we understand the true spectrum of benefits cannabidiol has to offer.
Real Life Examples of CBD Benefits for Dogs
Matthew J. Cote, brand manager at Auntie Dolores, a San Francisco Bay Area edibles manufacturer has its very own pet line of edibles called Treatibles. They decided to pursue CBD products for animals because aging dogs share quite a few of the same health problems as humans. If we could benefit so greatly from CBD, why couldn’t man’s best-friend?
Cote told ABC News “What we’ve seen is that some of these dogs respond very rapidly,” sharing an experience of one of their clients, “One woman from Fort Bragg was ready to put down her dog due to how sick and in pain he was, but the day before he was scheduled to go under, she administered our treats and just like that the dog was up, walking around, and acting normal again.”
Some people might find it hard to totally trust a story like this from a brand manager of a company that offers cannabidiol pet treats. But there are dozens of success stories circulating that are just like this.
Dr. Rob Silver, a veterinarian in Colorado quite literally wrote the book on cannabis for pets, ‘Medical Marijuana & Your Pet: The Definitive Guide.’ He recently shared a story with Dr. Becker on mercola.com about a client’s dog who has osteosarcoma (bone cancer), which caused the poor dog an enormous amount of pain each day. The client decided to try cannabinoids to help his pet, and after just 5-days the dog showed a huge improvement! He was able to put weight on the leg with the tumor once again; after just five days!
Dr. Silver mentions in the article that the clients dog is still going strong thanks to the cannabinoid treatment. But it’s important to fully grasp what CBD gave this dog, as well as its owner. It didn’t just give the dog a few more weeks, months or years to live, it made that time infinitely more enjoyable. It offered the dog a quality of life that would have otherwise been lost forever.
Cannabidiol does the very same thing for many humans, it offers powerful pain relief and healing qualities without sacrificing quality of life. There isn’t a laundry list of debilitating side effects like so many pharmaceuticals, which is why the pharmaceutical industry is spending so much trying to block marijuana legalization.
Dangers of Cannabis for Pets
CBD may be useful for your pet, but THC isn’t!
Blowing smoke in your pet’s face, or putting a whack of potent cannabis extract in their food-bowl is not only a terrible idea, it could do serious damage to your pet or even kill them. It’s not funny, it doesn’t affect them the same way it does you. Don’t be an idiot, save your buds for your human buds.
As we mentioned before, THC hits dogs quite a bit harder than it does humans. It’s a problem that has surfaced over the past few years since home-grows have become legal across a few states. The surge of edibles on the market is one of the biggest dangers for pet owners.
High potency edibles are as attractive to your pet as they are to you. The problem is your pet can actually die from eating them, you will just pass out, worst case Ontario.
Beyond the fact that marijuana edibles contain high levels of THC which is very dangerous for pets, they often contain foods that are toxic. These include chocolate, some nuts, raisins, etc…
Picking the Best Cannabis Products for Your Pet
The cannabis gold-rush is in full-force right now, so it’s no surprise that there are already companies offering cannabis products for your pet.
Thanks to the companies specializing in the advancement of CBD research and product development, there are plenty of strains and extracts available that are safe for your pet. Cultivators are breeding cannabis plants to maximize CBD levels and minimize THC. These are the purely ‘medical strains’, usually used to create high CBD cannabis oils.
CBD oil can be used to help treat your dog or cat, but be mindful to start with a very low dose and slowly work your way toward the desired dose. As with any medical condition, work with a qualified health professional, in the case of your pet, work with your veterinarian.
Again, don’t just toss Fido a joint or a weed brownie. Do your research, work with a professional and truly enhance your pet’s quality of life.