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'Be Careful' Vets Say Despite Success Stories, CBD Oil Is Not FDA Approved For Your Pets

Without enough data, the FDA has urged consumers to be cautious about companies marketing cannabis products as treatments for your pets' ailments.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Research on the growing cannabidiol market and its future projections suggest consumer products like CBD oil are here to stay. However, because of the speed of the industry's ascension, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says research on CBD products is lagging. The Administration has been hesitant to dole out approval to cannabidiol products for many of the ailments CBD marketers will claim their products cure in humans.

Additionally, as recently as June 2019, Epidiolex released a study determining CBD oil is metabolized by the liver, leading some to limit their usage of CBD products to improve liver function. These conclusions remain limited due to the limited nature of widespread evidence, and people with liver problems should be aware consult their doctors, the FLF said.

This lack of approval extends to CBD products produced for pets. Alongside CBD oil's burgeoning popularity, treatment options available for pets, like CBD treats and oil, have exploded in growth over the past half-decade. 

"I've seen [CBD oil] used with pets for anxiety and pain and for cancer and epilepsy, and I've actually seen improvements," said Dr. Emily Blair, associate veterinarian at Happy Tails in Greensboro, "but it's all anecdotal. We can't say if it's truly working or not. Typically that's because [the pets] are on other medications."

The FDA, similar to its stance on CBD products for humans, made this statement about CBD products for pets in 2019:

"The FDA has not approved cannabis for any use in animals and recommends pet owners talk with their veterinarians about appropriate treatment options for their pets." - FDA, 7/17/19

Potential warning signs, largely unproven benefits have not stopped people from embracing the product as a natural way to alleviate many pet ailments.

"We have clients that will go anywhere, but they may not know where those products are coming from," Dr. Blair said, "what I recommend is people looking into more reliable sources."