Watching your beloved pet go through a health problem can be one of the most devastating feelings. You want to be there for them in every way, just as they have done for you.
Having said that, just as diverse health issues exist for humans, they exist for animals as well; and knowing how to confront these issues requires research.
If your pet is struggling with a condition or health obstacle that causes seizures, you may find that there are numerous medicines that can be utilized for treatment. One medicine in particular that many veterinarians are finding useful is Phytocannabinoid Rich (PCR) Hemp Oil.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. The Hemp Act of 2018
2. Colorado State Starts First Major Clinical Trials Researching Epilepsy in Dogs and Implementing CBD Oil For Treatment
3. Can I give My Dog CBD Oil if They’re on Anticonvulsants?
4. CBD and The Cannabis Plant Infographic
For pets suffering from seizures, the use of PCR Hemp Oil has been shown to be an effective, non-toxic form of treatment. Statistically speaking, a survey conducted by AHVMA that relied on pet-owner testimonials reported that between 61.8% and 95% of pet owners endorsed the benefits of treat products laced with PCR Hemp.
According to another study titled, “Pharmacokinetics of Hemp in dogs,” researchers concluded that PCR Hemp Oil has properties that can prevent convulsant and epileptic symptoms.
Despite the studies and testimonials that are surrounding this drug, it perhaps comes as no surprise that the use of Hemp Oil to treat pet health issues is being met with skepticism and concern.
However, some of these concerns can perhaps be refuted when taking a closer look at the drug and where it comes from. Though coming from the cannabis plant, PCR Hemp is the non-psychotropic hemp cultivar that is high in fiber and Hemp, and low in THC.
The latter (THC) actually has the potential to be harmful for pets. According to an article posted by Hawthorne Vet, the use of THC can bind to highly responsive receptors in a pet’s brain, leading to “static ataxia,” or behaviors that include the animal drooling, urinating excessively, and/or disorientation.
Furthermore, if your pet is administered a product or drug that contains too much THC, there exists a risk for toxicity. Therefore, when considering the use of this drug on pets for health issues, it is important to avoid the use of THC and rather look for a product that contains only phytocannabinoids, derived from hemp.
When opting to utilize Hemp Oil to treat your pet’s seizures, it is important to start with the lowest dose possible and only then gradually increase the dosage, if necessary.
Calculating the starting dose for your pet involves taking your pet’s weight in kilograms, determining the concentration of the Hemp-product being used, and dividing the dosage across multiple administrations throughout the day. Ideally, the dose to start of with would be 0.05 mg/kg/day and go from there.
The Hemp Act of 2018
You’ve most likely heard lately that hemp is soon getting legalized under federal law after House Majority Leader and Senator Mitch McConnell introduced a bill legalizing hemp cultivation federally.
Don’t worry this doesn’t mean your CBD product derived from hemp is illegal. Hemp cultivation is allowed in the United States under certain guidelines set forth in the 2014 US Farm bill which limits cultivation to pilot programs and universities.
As well, hemp is legal to import and sell. But with legalization has come restrictions that opened up a legal grey area for farmers, and banks have been reluctant to give out loans to them.
The Hemp Act — now a provision in the current version of the 2018 US Farm Bill — will officially separate all parts of the hemp plant from marijuana plants including the flowers, which the DEA has contested without success that non-psychoactive CBD and other cannabinoids taken from the flowers of hemp plants is marijuana.
This is an incorrect statement as THC is the difference between hemp and marijuana — both CBD and THC can come from the stalks and flowers.
This is why you only see CBD products derived from the stalks, not the flowers at the moment. Mature stalks and seeds are not defined under the label “marihuana” in the Controlled Substances Act.
While fantastic to see, this act/provision is much more important to farmers who are restricted from access to banking, but crop insurance, and water rights. It’s extremely likely to see this provision/bill become law.
Colorado State Starts First Major Clinical Trials Researching Epilepsy in Dogs and Implementing CBD Oil For Treatment
Several major doctors and veterinarians led by the neurologist, Dr. Stephanie Mcgrath, are leading the charge in CBD animal research. They are doing several major studies on CBD and its efficacy to help manage epilepsy and osteoarthritis in dogs. While the first trials were small, McGrath saw promising results and immediately pushed for further studies at Colorado State University.
Mcgrath is wrapping up her second major trial this time looking at 60 dogs, and while not officially released, Mcgrath has hinted her results are very promising. One of the results from the study showed a successful reduction in the number of seizures with the administration of CBD oil — one lucky and lovable pooch, Ferguson, saw his 2-3 seizures a day reduce to only 2-3 a week.
Can I Give My Dog CBD Oil if They’re on Anticonvulsants?
CBD products have been successfully used in tandem with pharmaceutical anticonvulsants to both reduce seizures and the overall dosage of the prescribed medication.
However, special care should be taken as CBD can inhibit CYP enzymes that metabolize many pharmaceuticals. This means there is a chance CBD can raise or lower the drug's potency by delaying when it’s metabolized.
Wile this interaction is a concern and has been seen, as long as some extra measures are taken, many studies and people have reported using CBD alongside an anticonvulsant is safe and effective.
As well, CBD oil rose to and banks much of its fame on its use among people with epilepsy many of whom are on anticonvulsants. If there was a big issue with CBD negatively interacting with anticonvulsants, we should have seen it by now, but caution is still advised.
First, you’ll want to talk to your veterinarian and work closely with them — many are taking an interest in CBD as you can see from our Colorado studies. As well, you can find vets that specialize in CBD, which may be needed depending on where you live.
There are only a few additional steps to ensure successful use of an anticonvulsant and CBD in tandem:
- The first step to avoid interaction is to administer them at different times. Drugs metabolized at different rates and even anticonvulsant metabolize at various rates. Your vet will know how much time needs to pass before CBD can be administered at the anticonvulsant — two hours is often a recommended minimum.
- As well, it’s recommended to keep CBD dosage below .07mg/lb.
- Last, blood tests should be administered to monitor the anticonvulsant level in the body.
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