Did you know that cannabis supports not only our endocannabinoid system (ECS) to help keep us in balance, but all mammals' ECS?
This means that cannabis medicine can also help improve the quality life for your pets — dogs, cats, sheep, rabbits, horses, anything!!
But, before you go blowing smoke in your dog's ear, there are a few things you should be aware of.
- There is very, very little research on using cannabis for pets. Most of what we know comes from first-hand testimonials
- THC has shown to be toxic to dogs in large quantities. It affects our pets' brains differently than our own, causing neurological toxicity instead of the "high" many cannabis consumers enjoy. CBD, on the other hand, has shown little adverse side effects outside of mild lethargy. This doesn't mean that the product you give your pet should have no THC — the healing properties of cannabis actually are more effective when all the compounds can work together, even if it's just trace amounts. Depending on your pet's symptoms, you should talk with someone at the company you're interested in to find a THC:CBD ratio that works for them.
- When administering cannabis to pets, it's considered safer to give them treats, tinctures, or topicals than blowing your own residual smoke in their ear. While it's difficult to know exactly what is happening with such little research, it makes sense that this would be so since blowing smoke directly into their ear will cause the THC to go directly to their brain, and usually the smoke you're exhaling has a higher THC level than what is comfortable and/or healthy for dogs.
- CBD for pets can be helpful for cancer, digestion and nausea, anxiety and phobias, joints and mobility, inflammation, epilepsy and seizures, aging, and skin diseases. Check out Treatibles' info page to learn more about how cannabis directly interacts with your pet's endocannabinoid system.
When it comes to my two little yorkipoos, I wanted to get them some CBD to help manage their anxiety and Addison's.
Addisons in dogs can cause everything from vomiting to shaking to depression and more. In my dogs' case, it manifested as randomly stiffening up and refusing to move along with shaking. The vet seemed to think it could be triggered by anxiety, which, after spending a little time with these guys, there's no denying they have.
For instance, any time someone new enters the house, Gracie has to have a toy (or sock, or one of my niece's stuffed animals) in her mouth and will urinate on the floor if you look her directly in the eyes. No, I'm not kidding.
Nick, on the other hand, has big swings of happiness that are literally bursting from his body in an almost annoying way, then will get incredibly depressed and howl his heart out when my parents leave him.
The Addisons seemed to have cleared up in the past couple years, but Nick recently had a few days where he would yelp and stiffen up any time you touched him.
We were getting worried, so I ordered some Treatibles online. I settled on Treatibles because they were affordable, well designed (yes, I do often base my purchases off how beautiful they are), and I liked their mission. By the time they came, Nick wasn't doing the yelp thing he had been the past few days, but I started both dogs on the treats anyway.
I'll admit I wasn't the best dog mom and didn't give the treats to them on a set schedule, like I should have, so it's hard to know exactly how the treats affected them. What I can tell you is that even though my dogs will turn down regular treats since they're spoiled *literally* every day with human food, they were still going nuts over these blueberry treats. And Nick hasn't had any more of his issues.
On another note, this was one of the most challenging photoshoots I've done in a while. Trying to get two little dogs who are way too excited to get a treat in the frame at the same time, looking at the camera, with the packaging in a decent position and my 2.5 year-old niece running around the backyard...you can imagine. I included a few extra photos just for giggles.
There are lots of other cannabis brands out there for pets. If you're interested in learning more about the options available, I'd recommend reading this article by the New York Times which lists some great companies — and be sure to comment below if you have tried any cannabis for pets!!
Copyright © 2016 Kristen Williams, All Rights Reserved