You might have heard about cannabis for cancer patients, cannabis for elderly people with dementia and even cannabis for young children with epilepsy, but did you know that this natural treatment is now being praised as an option for pets, too?
Even veterinarians are hailing the cannabis plant as a breakthrough treatment for a wide range of ailments and best of all, you can administer it in oil form to your four-legged friend without bothering them one tiny bit.
What is cannabis oil?
Cannabidiol Oil, better known as CBD Oil is a type of cannabis extract derived from the cannabis plant. Many extraction methods can be carried out to withdraw the oil from the plant, but generally, solvents will be used to complete the process. Thick and sticky, cannabis oil can be baked into edibles, consumed with tinctures or even applied topically, depending on the ailment being treated.
Image Credit: Chris Yarzab
How can pets benefit from cannabis oil?
Just like humans, animals have an Endocannabinoid System (ES) inside their brains and bodies. A special network of receptors that connect with cannabinoids, such as CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), the ES is kind of like a natural messenger system. Therapeutic effects can be experienced when specific cannabinoids communicate with ES receptors.
5 Facts You Should Know About Using Cannabis Oil for Pets
By now, you should be feeling more enlightened on the topic of cannabis for pets, but there is still more to learn. Should you be considering administering cannabis oil to your fluffy companion (for whatever reason that might be,) first take the following five facts into account:
- Veterinarian professional cannot legally prescribe cannabis to pets – Well, not yet anyway. Further research is required to determine the effects that cannabinoids have on pets, as opposed to humans. However, the fact that animals also also have an Endocannabinoid System (ECS) means that they too can benefit from medicinal marijuana. Nonetheless, marijuana is still a Schedule I drug and until it is removed from the list of narcotics, vets can merely recommend, rather than prescribe cannabis oil.
- You shouldn’t calculate cannabis oil dosage the same for pets as you do humans – Just because you may be benefiting from a specific dosage of cannabis oil as a medical treatment, this doesn’t mean that your beloved pet will benefit in the same way. Their tolerance may be a lot lower than yours! What’s more, their biochemistry is a lot different to that of a human. With that being said, it is crucial that you start small and gradually increase the dose, depending on how your furry friend reacts. This is especially important if you plan on administering your pet with the psychoactive cannabis compound, THC. Signs of overconsumption include diarrhea and vomiting.
- Hemp-derived products are a good alternative to cannabis – Did you know that cannabis oil comes in many forms? Aside from being derived from the cannabis plant itself, medicinal cannabis oil can also be extracted from the hemp plant. Hemp is not psychoactive in any way, making hemp-derived products completely safe for animal consumption. The best thing about hemp-derived oil is that it contains high levels of the medically potent cannabis compound, CBD. This cannabinoid won’t get your pet high, but it will provide relief from arthritis, chronic pain and inflammation.
- Pets deal with human-like health conditions, too – The sooner you realize that your canine or feline friend may develop similar health problems to you, the sooner you can begin administering your pet with all-natural cannabis oil. A versatile drug (when used properly,) cannabis can relieve the symptoms of cancer, anxiety and seizures, to name a few things. Visiting a vet for a diagnosis prior to giving your pet cannabis oil is a good idea. A report published in the Journal of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association actually revealed how hemp-derived oils were best for pets with pain.
- Animals can’t smoke joints – It might sound ridiculous and hopefully, you already know that you shouldn’t allow your pet to join in on those puff, puff, pass sessions. Nonetheless, it has to be said that animals will require an alternative method of cannabis oil consumption, as opposed to smoking or vaping the extract. Drop it onto their tongue using a tincture, stir it into their food or apply it directly to the affected area (if the animal is dealing with localized pain, inflammation or skin irritation.)
Where to Buy Cannabis Oil for Pets
Rather than buying a product from an unknown source on the web, take the time to seek out reliable San Francisco dispensaries. It wouldn’t hurt to peruse the dispensary menu online before visiting the store, as this will give you an idea of what they stock. However, by taking the time out of your day to actually step foot inside a store, you can talk to the budtenders about which cannabis oil products are best for your pet’s needs.