Note: Consult a veterinarian regarding any medical choices for your pet. Cannabis is not a prescribed medicine for humans or pets. Always inform your vet of any supplements you give your pet, including CBD or other cannabinoids.
Marijuana is a plant. It is composed of various compounds; two of which are called Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). CBD is a compound that has medicinal properties while THC gives humans the “high” when smoking marijuana.
In recent years, marijuana enjoyed the status of being referred to as the “wonder drug” for its medicinal powers that reportedly could assist in seizures, spasms, arthritis, pain management, and even certain tumors that result in cancer. Because of these benefits, medical practitioners from many parts of the world have pushed for the legalization of CBD and THC.
And with strict guidelines, medical marijuana is now legal in more than 50% of the United States. It is also legal in other countries like the UK.
While medical marijuana enjoys its legal status for use by humans, it is a different story altogether for pets. So as a pet owner, how do you ingest medical marijuana to your pets? Do you smoke in front of them? I do not suggest this. The first thing you should do is consult your veterinarian. If they are not informed about cannabinoids and your pets’ endo-cannabinoid system, then they should spend some time reading some scholarly articles about medicinal benefits. (Don’t just focus on the harm!) Animals have more sensitive pair of lungs than humans and so second-hand smoke (cigarette or weed) may be harmful or even fatal to them.
If you are thinking of giving medical marijuana to your furry pal, here are the safe methods:
CBD topicals may come in the form of ointments, creams, balms or lotions. These should be applied externally to the affected area and are good for skin allergies and/or inflammations.
One of the advantages of CBD topicals is that the CBD is absorbed by the skin and does not go directly to the bloodstream. You can apply as much as you can for as many times as you want without any risk of overdose. Overdose does not cause fatality but can feel uncomfortable and dehydrate a pet.
The thing with topicals, however, is that the effect is localized in the area where it is applied. It may be an advantage or a disadvantage; your pick.
Tinctures are placed in a bottle with a dropper. It is CBD mixed with vegetable glycerin ethanol and oil (or any other nutritious oil). It is also sometimes infused with a pleasant-smelling ingredient (eucalyptus, for example) for a more enjoyable CBD experience.
The good thing about tinctures is that it is easier to administer. The dropper is beneficial in the sense that you would be able to control the amount of CBD that is given to your pet. It could be one or two or as much as 6 drops at a time. With Ezra’s CBD, 2 drops is 1mg so pets can take as little as .5mg and as much as 20-50mg or more depending on body weight. There’s no standard dosing so start with a couple milligrams and increase slowly over time. As long as it does not go beyond the recommended dosage, your pet is safe.
Among all the CBD options, this is also the go-to for those who have tight budgets as the tinctures are the more affordable kinds.
Ever been in a situation where your pet just won’t take medicines no matter the coaxing? If this happens, CBD edibles may be the answer to your problems.
CBD edibles come in a form of treats; in different shapes, colors, and flavors that pets find enticing. These “treats” has CBD as one of their ingredients and would work well with those who refuse the tinctures.
As for the case of the CBD edibles, you can purchase ready-made ones or you can also create your own. You would have to be careful though with the DIY as you would need to know the right amount of dosage to give your pet before giving it a try.
Because with the edibles, one cannot actually determine how concentrated the CBD is in the “treat” and pet owners usually run the risk of overdose and overconsumption for their pets. How it happens is that when pets ingest the CBD edible, some pet owners would at times expect an immediate effect – not taking into consideration the metabolism process.
Because of this, some pet owners have a tendency to give another edible to their pets thinking that the more they eat, the better.
Federal laws in the US still limit veterinarians from discussing, much more prescribing medical cannabis to their patients. And because of that, most pet owners decide to give their pets medical marijuana – with or without a vet’s prescription.
And if you ask these pet owners who have given their pets medical marijuana, you’d hear nothing but great results; an arthritic dog that can now run and play, a depressed cat that has recovered or some similar stories. What is not discussed, however, is that while some pets have experienced positive results, some have suffered from intoxication and overdose.
When giving your pet CBD, it is of utmost importance that you have a deep understanding of the plant, its effects, and the manners by which you can administer the compound. It is also significant that you are familiar with the laws that surround the usage of marijuana in your area.
At the end of the day, the most important factor to consider is your safety and that you keep out of trouble; for without you, who else would decide on your pet’s welfare? Consult your licensed vet and have them reach out to me if they have questions.