A new Rhode Island bill is seeking to allow pets to be treated with medical marijuana, reported NBC 10 News.
House Bill 5504 from Reps. Patricia Serpa and Charlene Lima, introduced for the second time earlier this month, would enable pets to use cannabis if certified by a licensed veterinarian.
The measure was initially introduced in 2021. However, the Rhode Island Veterinary Medical Association (RIVMA) didn’t support the legislation, with experts seeking more research, raising some safety issues.
Serpa and Lima, and Reps Julie Casimiro and Deborah Fellela, who also sponsored the bill, said that the issue needs to be tackled.
“We need to get this dialogue going to see if it will be beneficial,” Lima said. “It might not be, studies have shown THC can be very deadly for animals.”
The lawmakers also said that more research is imperative.
“You know how quickly science changes,” she added. “There’s a lot more studies out there now than there was last year when it was first introduced.”
New Findings: THC-Free CBD Reduced Stress In Healthy Dogs
A new randomized, placebo-controlled, blinded study conducted by the Waltham Petcare Science Institute, part of Mars Petcare, showed that a single oral dose of 4 mgs per kg of body weight of THC-free cannabidiol (CBD) can significantly relieve multiple measures of dogs’ stress caused by car travel or being left alone.
The research was published in Frontiers in Veterinary Science on Wednesday. It sought to understand the impact of a separation event and car travel on canine stress as well as establish if a single dose of a THC-free, broad-spectrum CBD could positively influence measures of canine stress during these two events.
The study included 20 dogs that received either a placebo or CBD capsule and, two hours after administration, were exposed to either the separation event or car travel. Interestingly dogs that were given CBD were described as significantly less “sad,” having substantially lower cortisol levels and being more relaced overall compared to dogs that received a placebo.
Dr. Jennifer Welser, chief medical officer of Mars Veterinary Health, said they wanted to address the fact that pet owners are open to trying various approaches to help their pets.
“We’re focused on scientific inquiry that generates knowledge that can inform pet professionals’ and pet owners’ decisions,” Welser explained. “So, this study is important because it gives us new evidence that CBD at the dose studied can be beneficial for dogs in specific circumstances.”
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Photo: Benzinga edit of images by Chewy and CBD Infos on Unsplash