Should Medical Marijuana be Legalized for Pets?

My readers know I think “out of the box” when it comes to pets. After all, I create music for dogs (and cats soon) that relieves anxiety issues. Canine sound therapy isn’t exactly seen as a mainstream behavior solution in the pet world. I have put my reputation as a concert pianist on the line because of my deep desire to help improve the lives of dogs and cats. So, you can imagine how intrigued I was when I read about  Dr. Doug Kramer, BVMS, MRCVS in Dogster. He is putting his professional veterinary career at risk to help relieve the pain and suffering of pets. He can’t legally write a prescription for cannabis, but he can give recommendations. He provides professional consultations that include instructions in how to administer cannabis to pets. I recently had the pleasure of speaking to Dr. Kramer. “My goal is to provide palliative care and prevent accidental overdoses resulting from owners’ well-meaning attempts to relieve their pets’ pain and suffering,” he said.

Dr. Kramer saw firsthand how cannabis can benefit dogs through watching his Husky dog, Niki, when she was in the late stages of cancer. “After the first dose, she was up and about. Her appetite was restored and she was able to enjoy her last months because of a homemade tincture of cannabis I created for her. The pain appeared to be controlled and her quality of life increased dramatically.”

Dr. Kramer takes his veterinary oath very seriously: “Being admitted to the profession of veterinary medicine, I solemnly swear to use my scientific knowledge and skills for the benefit of society through the protection of animal health and welfare, the prevention and relief of animal suffering, the conservation of animal resources, the promotion of public health, and the advancement of medical knowledge.”

Dr. Kramer's Patient Thanks Him

He believes he is living up to that oath when he includes cannabis consultations as part of his overall treatment plan for pet patients through his veterinary practice Enlightened Veterinary Therapeutics.


Next: How does marijuana affect pets?

Cannabis, sometimes referred to as MM (medical marijuana), can work as an appetite stimulant and has even been used effectively for cats with behavior issues and dogs with arthritis. Dr. Kramer shared, “At the end of life, it is so painful to see a pet whose mind is fully there, but their body isn’t. Cannabis can offer great relief and make their final days of life so much more comfortable.”

Dr. Kramer shared with me a common expression used widely in veterinary practices, “Never let the sun set without steroids.” He’d like to change that to, “Never let the sun set without cannabis.”

I shared with him my recent experience with my own dog, Sanchez. Thankfully Sanchez is now fully recovered with the help of rest and acupuncture, but before he got treatment for a slipped disc in his neck, he was in massive pain. Had I known about Dr. Kramer six months ago, I would have consulted with him.

What do you think? Should medical marijuana be legalized for pets? Thanks for taking our poll and sharing your thoughts in a comment below.

Have you seen the new Adoptable Pets page on Care2? Check it out here! Please also share with your friends. We’d love your help in finding homes for these adorable animals!

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Photos on this page courtesy of Dr. Doug Kramer

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lorry porter
lorry porter1 months ago

No thc is toxic to dogs, i wouldn't let my dog anywhere near it, cats on the other hand like it, i have seen cats eat it from the plant

William Moorman
William Moormanabout a year ago

Some animals will eat it raw ... all will mixed in their food, is not additive

Dale B.
Dale B.2 years ago

I have used as a great resource for pet health information. I know for at least the past 10 years that their site list marijuana as a food toxic to dogs. I have never known them to be incorrect with their information.

Ryan Yehling
Ryan Yehling2 years ago

Marijuana has tremendous health benefits for both humans and animals alike

Laura T.
Laura T.2 years ago

if you've ever had an elder pet who stopped eating, got cancer, got really sick its a no brainer

Agnes S.
Agnes Strang2 years ago

Excellent idea, and no doubt much better than conventional meds with all their horrible side effects.

Carrie-Anne Brown

thanks for sharing

John S.
Past Member 2 years ago

He probably shouldn't have fed his husky the Chinese biscuits, it would have saved so much anguish..

zoe j.
Zohar J.2 years ago

People feed their pets all sorts of garbage pet companies sell, humans use alcohol and smoke cigarettes.....those alter the mind, and maybe worse...this plant was used as a healing plant for centuries. Just because people abuse it...and what isn't eventually abused by humans....doesn't mean it isn't beneficial. There are very few vet medicines that help pain for animals, I know, I've had animals for years. These medicines also have very bad side effects...why not use's proven to work in humans...and for those who wonder if it will work in animals....why are human drugs all tested on animals if there is no correlation to their reactions and our to that drug?

JackieLynn D.
JackieLynn D.2 years ago

I believe in it, we have used it for ur aging dog in a lot of pain and after words he would get up and walk.