Now that 23 states have given medical marijuana the green light (with even recreational use now allowed in another four states and Washington D.C.), growing weed has become a growing business. The newest frontier: getting Fido and Fluffy on board with the cannabis revolution.
Relax. We’re not talking about rolling doobies with your dog, or seeing “pretty colors” with your cat. Nope, these are cannabis-containing edible treats and capsules that are meant for sick or aging pets.
Pot products for pets
Auntie Dolores launched its pet line Treatibles last year. As Cote, a brand manager at Auntie Delores explains, the theory is that since aging canines share a lot of the same health problems as humans, there must be a market for pot-laced dog “medicine.” Sold online ($22 per bag of 40 treats), Treatibles contain 40 milligrams of CBD per treat and makers advise giving one per 20 pounds of your pet’s weight.
“Most people grow cannabis for the euphoric experience of THC. But they’ve been overlooking cannabidiol – commonly known as CBD – which is non-psychoactive.” – Cote
“What we’ve seen is that some of these dogs respond very rapidly. One woman from Fort Bragg was ready to put her dog down 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 normally again.” – Cote
Canna Companion, another pot-for-pets proprietor based in Sultan, Washington, also boasts of amazing results for customers. One such testimonial posted on their website reads: “It seems as though Canna Companion is the best-kept secret in the animal world for pain management and anxiety issues. I originally ordered it for my cat Robbie for anxiety/inflamed bladder issues and it works! Robbie has had issues for the past year or so, and now they are all but gone.”
Producers of these treats and capsules also have to be careful about any claims they make about their products. According to ABC News, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent Canna Companion’s co-owner (and a veterinarian) Sarah Brandon a notice, stating that the capsules were an “unapproved new animal drug and your marketing of it violates the (Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic) Act.”
That kind of cautionary approach makes sense, say some experts, who point out that since these products aren’t regulated by the FDA, there’s no real way of knowing what you’re getting- or what the potential side effects might be. Tina Wismer, medical director of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, said in an interview:
“These products show potential, but there’s not a lot of research at this point. No one is even sure what the correct therapeutic dosage is. For example, in the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ section on one of the websites, a customer asks, ‘How much should I give my pet?’ And they answer—I’m paraphrasing here: ‘Whatever you think would help.’ Well, that’s extremely vague.” Wismer
While I can agree on the fact that it is vague, animals have a very similar endocannabinoid system as humans. And it is a statistical fact that in every single trial, there has never been an overdose and never shown any signs of toxicity in the system even at 1500mg of CBD per day. Sounds like the government and/or pharma companies want to seize control of the industry for their own money making purposes.
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