CBD-infused Treats for Pets?
CBD (cannabidiol) might just a better alternative in treatment of certain ailments in pets. Writer and editor from Northeast Baltimore, Polly Webb said that his dog, Drogo is terrified of thunderstorms, and that anytime it occurs, he is afraid, shaking and won’t eat anything for a while.
So, to relieve the dog’s anxieties, she gave him a CBD-infused brownie from Mount Vernon’s The Dog Chef pet store and food shop. This treatment has worked for his dog so well that Webb has come to consider CBD a better alternative in relieving his pet’s pains, aches and stresses.
However, there has been growing concerns from animal experts, who say that there is not enough verifiable research to support the safety of using CBD on pets.
Hemp-derived CBD, unlike marijuana does not contain THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is the active ingredient that accounts for the ‘highness’ experienced with marijuana. As a result of CBD not having these psychoactive properties, it can be purchased at any brick and mortar shop or online without any medical certifications by Maryland residents. Even though pet prescriptions must adhere to FDA regulations, CBD related products is yet to be approved on the federal level.
Nevertheless, in certain States like Maryland, CBD has gained popularity as an easier alternative for stress management, pain relieve and general wellness supplement. This of course, is as a result of the growing campaign for medical marijuana. There have even been predictions of the CBD market hitting $20 billion in sales by the year 2022.
CBD is not the only compound that has entered the market, as FDA already approved Epidiolex, which researchers found to be very effective in treatment of seizures in patients with epilepsy.
Dog and cat owners spend more money on their pets every year since the entrant of CBD-infused pet products into the market. According to American Pet Products Association, total amount spent on pet products reached $72.5 billion in 2018 and is anticipated to surpass that in 2019.
Managing partner at bioRemedies MD (CBD provider in Baltimore), Patrick Kelly, said the company now sells four variations of CBD-infused pet products with price ranging from $30 to $75 according to the pet’s needs. He added that bioRemedies tests the CBD in its pet products for quality control and safety.
According to Kim Hammond, a veterinarian and founder of the Falls of the Road Animal Hospital, “At this point in time, we don’t have the evidence-based research that says it works or doesn’t work. Hemp-based CBD doesn’t hurt to try, but the most important thing is that you may not even know what you’re buying. You have to be smart.”
Hammond also said that since there is no defined standard or definite dosage instructions for CBD products, some could be lacking adequate quality control. This means that some products may contain higher or lower CBD concentrations as against what’s described on the product label which could pose other risks.
However, in addition, he said that researchers discovered that CBD can complement treatment for certain ailments and conditions in a controlled environment.
According to Tina Wismer, a medical director at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, CBD could be bad for animals’ livers, specially when it’s mixed with other substances or medications without an approval from a vet.
She said, “There’s just lots and lots of questions. It could have good and bad effects; the problem is we don’t know the correct dose in dogs. We don’t want to make things worse.”
That notwithstanding, some pet owners contend that they are at best to tell whether any product is good or bad for their pets as they are the ones taking care of them.
A dog walker near Patterson Park, Liz Ryan, says she spends around $100 on CBD treats and oil each month on her pets. And that she’s been giving her dogs Avett, Jethro and Ruth Bader CBD to manage their anxiety levels for almost a year now.
Polly Webb from Baltimore says she’s ready to spend any amount on her two dogs Drogo and Matilda. And that she read on Facebook that The Dog Chef sold CBD products, so she bought some to store in her freezer for whenever she needs it.
According to her; “these brownies really work,” as Drogo responded well to the CBD. “I’m delighted he actually wanted to eat them,” she added.
Kevvn Mathews, the owner of The Dog Chef said his CBD-infused treats, which is also available in carob bars has become one of his bestselling products for the past two years. The bars sell for $35 each and the brownies $10.
“You don’t want to overdo it,” Mathews said, adding that the CBD he makes use of is properly tested and with the right dosage as well.
Arbutus resident, Tanya Grim said the CBD products from The Dog Chef provided Jake, her dog, a better quality of life in his final months before he passed away. “We noticed he powered up the stairs on his own, which he hadn’t done for months, and we were blown away by it,” she said. “It doesn’t cure old age, but his personality traits started coming out again.”
Crady Seymour, a resident of Reisterstown and owner of two dogs (Hendrix and Bodie), said giving her pets CBD-infused products as against the prescription medicine is a better alternative, as it treats their symptoms better and doesn’t require much effort to administer.
“The only way I could get Bodie to take his (prescription) medicine was to grind it up and stick it in Chef Boyardee,” she said. “Why go through all that when you can just squirt a drop of CBD under the tongue?”
According to Robin McDonald, the owner of Howl, a pet store in Hampden, her customers’ interest in CBD-infused products has increased since she introduced them to it. She said she answers questions from customers about CBD products every day and makes sure to have her stocks up to date.She never imagined a day would come when she will be selling CBD for animals when she opened her shop 17 years ago. But it’s what patrons want and what their pet needs, so she had to make it available.