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Some of America’s biggest consumers of CBD aren’t human, they’re pets.
An increasing number of American pet owners are giving their dogs and cats CBD to provide relief for conditions including arthritis, anxiety and pain.
Dr. Gary Richter, an Oakland, California-based veterinarian, has stated that CBD “…can help with everything from pain and soreness to stress and anxiety, upset stomach…and seizures.”
Dr. Richter has also been quoted as saying, “Almost anything that cannabis would be used for in a human, from a medical standpoint, has the potential to be equally as valuable in dogs or cats. Pain, inflammation, arthritis, gastro-intestinal related things, stress, anxiety, seizures, cancer, you name it. We’ve seen the benefits in all of these areas.”
The Science on the Benefits of CBD for Pets
While the science supporting health and medical benefits of CBD for pets is minimal, it hasn’t stopped pet owners from giving CBD to their dogs and cats.
The number of studies that have been published regarding the benefits of cannabinoids on pets is minimal. In July, 2018, the first clinical study focused on the effects of CBD on arthritic dogs was published in the journal, “Frontiers in Veterinary Science.” That study, led by Cornell University’s Dr. Joseph Wakshlag, was titled, “Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Clinical Efficacy of Cannabidiol Treatment in Osteoarthritic Dogs.”
The study measured the effect of CBD on pain and arthritis in a small sample of dogs. The results of the study were very encouraging. More than 80% of the dogs in the Cornell study obtained a significant decrease in pain and improved mobility.
CBD Products in the Marketplace
Despite the CBD pet product industry being a very early-stage market, there are already dozens of companies manufacturing and selling a variety of CBD products for pets.
These include tinctures or oils, treats, capsules to be added to food, and treats including chews. It’s likely that we’ll see many other products, including CBD as an additive in pet food, as soon as the legal and regulatory issues are resolved.
Determining the CBD Dosage for Pets is a Challenge
As is the case with humans, determining the correct dosage of CBD for pets is also a challenge. In addition to the lack of science, pet weights vary, which add to the difficulty in determining a dosage. If an insufficient amount is given, it’s likely that there won’t be any perceivable benefit.
Many pet owners are giving their pets somewhere between one and five milligrams of CBD per kilogram of body weight daily. At the mid-range, this translates to between 20 and 200 milligrams daily for a 44 pound dog.
The Market Opportunity for CBD Pet Product Manufacturers
Despite being a relatively new industry, the market for CBD pet products is growing quickly. Many small companies are selling a variety of products, from oils to salves to capsules to treats. Large pet food companies are definitely looking at the industry, with most waiting until there is a clear legal pathway to manufacturing and selling CBD products for pets.
Nielsen data indicates that last year Americans spent $33 billion on pet foods and treats. The Brightfield Group estimates that sales of CBD pet products increased 400% last year to $32 million, from $8 million in 2017. Brightfield also projects that the CBD pet market will reach $1.16 billion in annual sales by 2022.
About Phyto Intel
Phyto Intel provides strategic assistance to enable businesses and entrepreneurs to enter and succeed in the fast-growing and fast-evolving legal cannabis, hemp and CBD markets, in the United States and globally.
Phyto Intel also provides market intelligence, formulation and “go to market” strategies for Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) companies interested in developing, formulating, manufacturing and marketing products containing hemp seed oil and/or CBD.