Given the ongoing conversations around medical & recreational marijuana, it may seem like cannabis products have saturated the retail scene in the last few years. Suddenly, everyone is talking about the benefits for both people and pets. The Cannabis plant has been used to alleviate various conditions for thousands of years; today we’re taking a look at the history of using cannabis for pets.
What is Cannabis?
When it comes to cannabis, a lot of terms get thrown around (cannabis, marijuana & hemp) and get misused. Before delving into the world of cannabis products, it’s important to first understand the differences and overlaps between the terms. Here are the basics broken down, so you can be better prepared to choose a product that is safe and works for your pet.
Cannabis – Think of Cannabis as an umbrella term that ties marijuana and hemp together, because it’s the source of both. Cannabis is a group of flowering plants that includes the species Cannabis Sativa, Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Ruderalis. The plants contain hundreds of naturally occurring compounds, most of which are cannabinoids. You may already be familiar or at least heard of two of them: CBD and THC. CBD or cannabinoid is a non-psychotropic, meaning that it does not cause the feeling of euphoria or being “high”. THC or tetrahydrocannabinoid is a psychoactive that causes the “high” associated with marijuana use. Cannabis is sometimes used interchangeably with marijuana to refer to the medical and/or recreational drug, this substitution is incorrect.
Marijuana – Marijuana contains higher concentrations of the psychotropic compound THC, the substance that causes euphoria. It’s legality and usage, either medically or for recreation is restricted by state. Recreational marijuana products are largely unregulated, with unclear concentrations of cannabinoids. Not having proper knowledge of concentrations ratio of THC to CBD, you can’t be sure how much of the substance you’re ingesting or giving to your pet, who is far more sensitive to these compounds. Marijuana contains a much higher concentration of THC than hemp and the THC & CBD levels in marijuana can cause negative side effects in pets, such as; low blood pressure, lethargy and incontinence. In addition, the concentration of cannabinoids in marijuana makes it easy to accidently overdose. The main takeaway… Marijuana products should not be given to your pets.
Hemp – Hemp on the other hand, is not marijuana… Hemp is from a different member of the cannabis family. Largely made up of natural compounds called phytocannabinoids, hemp has lower concentrations of CBD, THC and other non-psychotropic cannabinoids than marijuana does. These lower levels allow pets to reap the benefits of cannabis while minimizing the potentially dangerous side effects of other forms of the plant. The smaller concentrations of the compounds found in hemp can allow pets to enjoy the supportive benefits of the cannabis plant such as; helps maintain a healthy digestive system, normal immune system, healthy neurological system, joint support, relief from anxieties, and assist in end of life comfort and care. While marijuana is illegal in many U.S. states, hemp is legal in every state.
Cannabis and its use in Pets over the Years
Before there were hemp based products created exclusively for pets, owners recognized the potential benefits of CBD oil and other supplements containing CBD for both people and animals. Dogs and cats experience similar issues as we do, short term anxieties, achy joints and more… If you go back far enough you’ll find multiple stories of pet parents securing a medical marijuana license for the sole purpose of purchasing cannabis products for their ailing pets. The issue was that those largely unregulated products contain varying ratios of CBD to THC, meaning that it was impossible to predict the effect they might have on a pet. A number of studies have confirmed the incredible supportive potential of the various compounds found in the cannabis plant on the physiological, immunological and neurological systems and it became clear that a formula made exclusively for pets was needed.
Ongoing uses of Cannabis for Pets
Although state and federal regulations on cannabis are continuing to shift, hemp based pet supplements are and will remain legal, provided the company producing the product adheres to all relevant regulations. With carefully controlled ratios of CBD & THC, cannabinoid products support the health and well-being of pets while minimizing the adverse reactions associated with marijuana use. Here are just a few of the benefits of introducing and regularly administrating a hemp supplement for pets:
- Provides neurological support
- Promotes a calm demeanor
- Maintains normal joint health
- Encourages a healthy GI tract
- Assists in end of life comfort and care
- Supports the functioning of the immune system
Each animal reacts to hemp based products differently and may require a different dosage than the standard recommendation, for this reason as with any change to your pets supplement routine, be sure to check with your Veterinarian before introducing any hemp based product.
Where to get Quality Hemp Based Supplements you can Trust?
Ruff ‘n Tumble Playcare is proud to be able to provide Canna Companion hemp based products for your pets health needs. Canna Companion was founded in 2014 with the goal of providing quality hemp supplements for pets and educating pet parents and their veterinarians on the supportive benefits of cannabis. As a result of nearly 20 years of research into the endocannabinoid system and by applying the scientific principles of veterinary medicine and pharmacology, combined with multidisciplinary research, testing and informal clinical trials, Canna Companion has developed and refined their formulas to support optimal health of pets by using the “whole plant” in their products; therefor the synergistic relationship between the chemical compounds can provide support to your pets endocannabinoid system for a comprehensive holistic approach in your pets wellness.