Cannabis as Medicine, An Evolving History from People to Dogs

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    According the The American Cancer Society, marijuana and hemp extracts have been used as cancer treatment for centuries (American Cancer Society). Although there is evidence confirming the use of Cannabis predating this record, the earliest written record of Cannabis for medicinal use dates way back to 15th century China in the Chinese Pharmacopeia, the “Rh-Ya” (National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)). Since then, the interest regarding the powerful healing affects and clinical applications of Cannabis continues to inspire research on CBD in correlation to life threatening conditions. For example, the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health presents researched-backed support for CBD as a potential anti-cancer drug due to mechanisms that promote cancer cell death and inhibits cancer cell growth, and this is just the tip of the iceberg (Massi et al.) Exciting new evidence about the therapeutic effects of CBD continue to wow the scientific community.

    In 2013, a little girl named Charlotte Figi made headlines. Charlotte had been suffering from hundreds of epilepsy related seizures every week and was no longer able to talk, eat, or walk due to her life-threatening condition until CBD became part of her treatment. Her story spread like wild fire and soon, like Charlotte, many others experienced a significant reduction in the seizures, from hundreds down to just a few per month!

    The list of medical applications for cannabis, and CBD, continues to expand (Interlandi). Most recently, Alzheimer’s treatment has been added to the file. Exciting new studies reported on in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, present preliminary evidence supporting claims that CBD is successful in “preventing the development of social region deficits in subjects,” meaning that CBD could prevent deterioration of the brain areas responsible for “recognizing the faces of people they know,” adding to the growing and evolving laundry list of miraculous discoveries regarding CBD as an alternative medicine (Johnson).

    Novel studies are now showing that these positive results are possible for any animal with a spine. Which means, that CBD is a medical option for our canine companions.

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