One of Canada's largest licensed cannabis producers is teaming up with veterinarians to conduct clinical trials on treating anxious pets with the marijuana extract CBD.
Last Wednesday, Canopy Animal Health - an offshoot of Canopy Growth - announced that that had received approval from Health Canada to conduct clinical trials on cannabis-based treatments for pets with anxiety. This marks the first time a company has sought federal approval to conduct such research, according toDana M. Vaughn - Executive Vice-President and Chief Scientific Officer of Canopy Animal Health.
"There has been very little [research] done with CBD or other phytocannabinoids in pets up until now," Vaughn told StarMetro Vancouver. Phytocannabinoids are the naturally occurring compounds found in cannabis. While some of those compounds can be found in pet food, they have not yet received approval as medicine.
"[N]o drugs containing cannabis have been authorized for veterinary use in Canada," Health Canada said in a statement.
But the new research could help change that by providing a scientific basis to recommend medical marijuana to animals.
Vaughn says that CBD medication has been growing in popularity among pet owners, and she hopes Canopy can provide a real scientific basis for its effectiveness as well as some best practice and guidelines for pet owners to follow.