Friday, May 31, 2019

Cannabis use (hemp products) in horses and pets - Full Article

May 30, 2019

Heather Smith Thomas

Cannabis is a genus of flowering plants that includes multiple species and several different “strains” within those species. These plants originated in Asia, but are grown in many regions around the world. Hemp is the term that refers to varieties of Cannabis cultivated for non-psychotropic drug use — to produce hemp fiber, seeds (food) and their oils. Other varieties — often called marijuana — are often used for medicinal purposes and as a recreational drug.

The cannabis plant contains more than 100 different chemicals but the two main ones are cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Industrial hemp products are made from plants selected to produce abundant fiber. Some of these strains are bred to produce minimal levels of THC, which is the main psychotropic (mind altering) constituent of cannabis. Other strains of cannabis have been selectively bred to produce a maximum of THC, the strength of which is enhanced by curing the flower. Marijuana’s THC content is usually 10% or more but hemp must have a THC content of 0.3% or less, according to federal and state laws. At this low level, cannabis has no intoxicating effect, for people or animals. The CBD in hemp has many beneficial effects on the body without the dangers that come with THC.


Today there are a growing number of CBD products available for pets and horses. People who have used cannabis for medicinal purposes (helpful for certain diseases and pain issues), often use it on their animals; the natural next step was veterinary use, to help relieve various ailments in pets. Dr. Robin Downing, hospital director at the Windsor Veterinary Clinic, Downing Center for Animal Pain Management in Windsor, Colo., said that for several decades, pet owners have been trying to help their animals by giving them products containing CBD...

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