Studies show cannabis beneficial for treating ailments in animals

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Pet owners and studies support the use of cannabis by animals for pain and anxiety

Cannabis is great for providing relief for a number of ailments in humans, but studies also show that it can help our four-legged friends, as well. While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) still caution about the lack of a wide range of studies, the proof is found by those that have turned to cannabis to help their furry friends, and by a growing number of veterinarians that are prescribing cannabis and CBD for animals.

Ralph Zimmerman, New Mexico’s State Veterinarian and former head veterinarian at Albuquerque Biopark Zoo, has been administering CBD oil to one of his dogs that suffers from a hip problem. The canine had never responded to other treatments. Asserts Zimmerman, “For certain types of seizures, it’s helpful. Empirically, some dogs are experiencing anxiety and pain relief. It might be helpful during thunderstorms as an alternative to sedatives.”

Zimmerman cautions, however, that any treatment needs to be discussed with a veterinarian beforehand, pointing out that cats don’t respond the same way as dogs. “Cats are a whole different world than dogs. Enzymatically they don’t tolerate a lot of products or drugs that dogs can easily handle. People should deal with their veterinarian before they start their cat on anything extra-label,” he explained.

New Mexico resident Cassandra Muertas has an eight-year-old chihuahua mix that suffers from pain in the legs. She states, “We go hiking a lot, and I just found out he has a torn Achilles [tendon].” If the dog shows any signs of pain, Muertas gives him a syringe of peanut butter with a small dose of CBD and “he’s running again, not limping, and he has more energy.”

Another chihuahua, Poppy, suffers from anxiety. Muertas said, “He’s scared of everything. Every little noise — he shakes, he jumps. When some neighbors were lighting fireworks near the house, I gave him a treat with CBD and he was able to relax and sleep.”

Not just dogs and cats can benefit. CBD is now being given to horses and other animals to help them cope with a range of issues, as well. Oils, edibles and even rubs are making their way into the lives of almost everyone and everything as they are increasingly shown to be a miracle drug of sorts for a growing number of health problems.