A recent survey has discovered that the majority of veterinarians want the laws on marijuana relaxed for both pets and humans. Many of those who participated in the survey felt that they were fairly informed about the medicinal use of marijuana, but they lamented that state veterinary associations or boards aren’t providing guidance to keep their members informed about how to handle the subject of cannabis for pets with clients.
The study, whose findings were released in Frontiers in Veterinary Studies (a respected industry journal), had more than 2,100 certified veterinarians sharing their views.
The researchers observed that just under five in 10 of the practicing veterinarians who took part in the survey revealed that they didn’t feel at ease discussing marijuana with pet owners. This hesitation was more noticeable among the veterinarians who had recently graduated, and were therefore new to the field.
Only eight percent of the respondents said that they had never been asked by a pet owners about CBD products for pets.
A significant proportion of the respondents (66 percent) admitted that they would never recommend marijuana for dogs while approximately five percent revealed that they routinely recommend CBD to dog owners.
Two key reasons were given to explain why the veterinarians were uncomfortable recommending marijuana to pet owners. First, 65 percent of the veterinarians felt that more research on the subject was needed. Secondly, 53 percent were reluctant because of the legal issues surrounding marijuana.
CBD was either recommended or discussed for pain management, fireworks or storms phobias, seizures or anxiety.
A huge majority (82 percent) of the study participants said that CBD should be removed from Schedule 1 while 70 percent of the respondents want marijuana rescheduled from where it is currently classified (Schedule 1).
The authors of the study wrote that the existing laws, and the polarization between marijuana advocates and those opposed to it, have made it hard for veterinarians to feel at ease when discussing marijuana with pet owners.
The authors therefore called on state veterinary boards and state veterinary associations to be more forthcoming with actionable guidance to veterinarians so that these professionals aren’t on their own when responding to queries from their clients.
The voices from different groups (alcohol retailers, mayors, etc.) are getting louder in their demands for marijuana law reform at the federal level. This survey of certified and practicing veterinarians is yet another addition to those calls. How long will the federal government wait before it listens and acts accordingly? Participants in the industry, such as Supreme Cannabis Inc. (TSX.V: FIRE) (OTCQX: SPRWF) and Sunniva Inc. (CSE: SNN) (OTCQB: SNNVF) hope that federal action is seen sooner rather than later so that even players outside the U.S. don’t have a cloud hanging over their heads.
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