Dr. Katherine Kramer is daily navigating the sometimes frustrating and often absurd realities of the country’s cannabis regulations. As a veterinarian, medical director at the VCA-Canada Vancouver Animal Wellness Hospital and board member of the Canadian Association of Veterinary Cannabinoid Medicine, Kramer and others in her field have been left out of the legalization discussio.n, while more people than ever are turning to cannabis-based products to treat their pets
Canada’s medical and recreational cannabis laws could soon be met with important changes regarding how animals are medically treated. While experts agree that more research is needed before cannabis-based products like hemp and CBD are incorporated into therapy for pets and livestock animals, Canada’s leading veterinary advocate group is looking to move the dialogue forward.
Sunny California has long been a friend to cannabis. From the hippy movement of the 1960s, which was rooted on the southern Pacific, to the implementation of a medical cannabis program in 1996 – the first American state to allow such a framework – and ultimately to the introduction of recreational laws, the Golden State has always been a beacon of light for advocates, activists, patients and consumers.
One of the lead reasons veterinarians cite for not being able to discuss or prescribe cannabis to clients is the lack of research into its benefits. While anecdotal evidence abounds suggesting that cannabinoid and cannabis-based products like hemp treats can be effective in treating animals with a range of ailments and conditions, the science is still lacking.
With the use of cannabis for recreational purposes recently approved in Canada, a new frontier was forged. Cannabis products of all types and forms are quickly coming into the fold, all of which underscore the therapeutic validity and efficacy of cannabis treatment. More than ever, cannabinoids are being looked on as a potential panacea for a range of ailments facing a range of animals.
Corey Nutrition has been committed to caring for pets for the last 30+ years. Founded in 1982 by Lee Corey, the Fredericton-based company has been setting the bar for quality and research ever since. As the first company in the world with safety protocols rigorous enough for human grade food, Corey is part pet food maker and part innovator.
When it comes to treating pets and animals with cannabis-based medicine, Colorado State University (CSU) is truly taking the dog by the bone. Headed by neurologist Stephanie McGrath, the team at CSU has devoted significant resources to uncovering the potential merits of treating canines with CBD.
Cannabis is becoming a daily conversation for healthcare professionals, and veterinarians are beginning to wade into the discussion. As the founder of VetCBD, Dr. Tim Shu is combining his knowledge of medical cannabis with his expertise in veterinary medicine to help educate people about the benefits of treating animals with cannabis-based products. We recently caught up with the California-based doctor to discuss cannabinoid therapy in animals, the significance of the endocannabinoid system, and the parallels between cannabis treatment in people and pets.
Legalization hasn’t been a good thing for everyone. In Canada and American states where reform has become a reality, changes to the rules around recreational adult use of cannabis have meant early retirement for a unique part of the police force: sniffer dogs trained to detect weed.
With the legalization of cannabis for medical and, in some jurisdictions, adult recreational use, the plant and its derivatives are becoming common household items. As a result of those recent reforms, and the increase in cannabis-based products around the house, there has been a spike in toxicity of animals – an alarming trend that has veterinarians and pet owners on high alert.
Dr. Joseph Wakshlag is quickly becoming one of the foremost cannabis researchers in America. From his former posting at Cornell University, Wakshlag pushed the boundaries of what was permissible by studying the efficacy of CBD in treating dogs with osteoarthritis. As associate professor of integrative medicine and nutrition at the University of Florida, he’s now launching into unprecedented territory, studying cannabinoid-based solutions for seizures and cancer in animals. We spoke to Wakshlag recently to discuss his new areas of research, the vitality of cannabis therapy in pets, and his aspirations for the future of veterinary medicine.
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