Here’s an article from the Tallahassee Democrat that may generate a little discussion!
Pet owners excited about pot research potential
Lisa Miller believes pot may be the cure for the tremors that regularly overtake her dog Dinah.
After years of legislative wrangling and bureaucratic delays, ailing Floridians might finally have access to medical marijuana by next summer. Now a paragraph in Sen. Jeff Brandes’ bill is giving pet owners like Miller hope their animals could also benefit from the drug’s medicinal effects.
SB 852 constructs the framework for human patient access to medical marijuana to treat people with seizures, cancer, HIV/AIDS or other chronic ailments, but it also opens the kennel to researching marijuana’s effect on animals with seizures.
The bill sponsored by the St. Peterburg Republican would authorize the University of Florida to work with a veterinary research organization to explore using the same low-THC extracts the Legislature approved for humans in 2013 in treating animals. However, the legislation prohibits the use of state funds to conduct the research.
If the bill makes its way through the Legislature, it would be the first in the country to open the door to research of pot for animals.
A bill sponsored by Sen. Jeff Brandes in the Florida Senate could open the door to research into using medical marijuana as a treatment for animals Karl Etters
THC is the main chemical in marijuana that produces the high associated with its use.
Lisa Miller brought the idea to Brandes last year after seeing her rescue dog, Dinah, a 3-year-old bulldog-Labrador mix, suffer through seizures.
Miller, who is a registered lobbyist, political consultant and CEO of Lisa Miller and Associates, said she’d never seen a dog go endure seizures until her pup had one in January 2014.
“She was slamming her body on the floor, writhing up and down,” Miller said. “You’re helpless and they’re helpless. It’s the ultimate helplessness.”
‘You do anything you can for your pet’
Dinah goes through cluster seizures about once a month. The only thing that has provided any relief has been veterinary prescribed medications given during the onset. A daily regimen of medical marijuana may keep the seizures at bay, Miller believes.
“Just like all of us who know that low-THC cannabis will be tremendous help to humans with seizures,” Miller said, “it makes sense that it will have the same effect on those precious friends that we call pets who suffer from these same symptoms.”
Miller said she approached lawmakers with the idea during last year’s legislative session, when they and the Department of Health were struggling with how best to implement a system for providing the low-THC medicine to people. But pet concerns were set aside in the Legislature.
For those whose pets suffer with epilepsy, however, it’s a pressing issue. Freddy, Cecilia Rush’s 11-year-old English springer spaniel, suffers from seizures that are less pronounced than Dinah’s.
Rush, of Tallahassee, said Freddy has had minor seizures since he was about 6. She can always tell when they’re coming on.
Freddy comes, curls up in Rush’s lap and growls quietly.
She gives him the anti-seizure drug Zonisamide twice a day.
Pets, like Freddy, often are prescribed the same medications as humans for the same ailments. They also suffer the same side effects, which is why Freddy has to get his liver checked regularly to ensure the drug is working properly.
Rush, a retired state employee, is curious about whether the medical marijuana approach would provide relief for her dog. But only if it’s legal.
“Maybe it would help and maybe he wouldn’t have to take these medications that can damage his liver,” Rush said. “I just want him comfortable and I don’t want him having seizures. I know how hard it is on his system and his brain. You do anything you can for your pet.”
There’s no harm in giving pets and their owners a chance at exploring the option of marijuana, Brandes said. It would be a shame to stifle potential research.
“We don’t want to prohibit the researching of this on animals,” the Republican lawmaker said. “So, if we’re going to allow research on humans, we should allow it on animals.”
And just as marijuana and its oils are being used by humans to ward off pain either through illness or in old age, pets could benefit too, Brandes said.
“For dogs suffering at the end of their lives … it may be a rational use,” he said.
The American Veterinary Medical Association hasn’t put its stamp of approval on marijuana for pets, but sees the value in conducting the research.
Just as in Brandes’ bill, the AVMA’s official position is that the idea needs to be researched more thoroughly.
The federal restrictions on the drug, even in places where marijuana has been OK’d, present another challenge for vets who are bound by national laws when distributing prescription medications.
Marijuana is still classified as a Schedule 1 narcotic by the federal government, which means vets may not legally prescribe it.
“There is a need for increased research into marijuana so that it can be evaluated and a more therapeutic dose and toxic doses can be identified,” said Assistant Director in the AVMA’s Division of Animal and Public Health Lynne White-Shim. “Certainly, vets are educated to evaluate the benefits and risks of plans they prepare for their patients. They must continue to use their sound clinical judgement when preparing those plans.”
Through its annual journal, the AVMA has published a series of articles regarding marijuana use by pets. It welcomes the research into its effects but remains cautious of federal law. One article profiles pet owners who aren’t waiting on the science and giving their pets pot with mixed results.
Miller acknowledged that the results may not be immediately available to Dinah or Freddy, but continuing research into using marijuana to treat ailing pets is important.
“It may take us five years, 10 years and my dog my may be dead and gone,” Miller said, “but I want to make sure the search is kept top of mind.”
Pooch Approved Products is very excited to announce that our new Dexter’s Doggie Bag has just been launched on our website and on Amazon.com. This is a great product on its own. But is a must for those with GoGo Stiks. Save and Reuse your plastic bags. Just stik your bags in the top…then pull ’em out the bottom when needed. Now it’s simple to manage and organize those cluttering piles of loose bags around the house. Keep them in one place for quick access – in Dexter’s Doggie Bag!
- No More Piles of Loose Bags Around the House
- Keep Bags Organized in One Convenient Place
- Provides Easy Access to Bags for a GoGo Stik
- Elastic Bottom Opening Keeps Bags Secure
- 19 inch Height with 5 inch Cord for Easy Hanging
Dexter’s Doggie Bag MSRP is $14.99 but sells on the GoGo Stik website and Amazon.com for $9.95. It has a 60 day money back guarantee.
Review By Yvonne Y Vegaon December 2, 2015
Awesome product, I also like the fact I can recycle my grocery bags as they fit perfectly in this as well! Does amazing in dry/wet grass and on the road!! Extremely pleased! I have had this product for many months now and it hasn’t let me down yet!
A.H., BRADENTON, FL
Verified Amazon Purchase
Works exactly as promised. Perfect for use with my 2 dogs. Virtually every small/medium plastic bag with handles can be used. No need for special bags.
5.0 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on November 3, 2015
This is the best, wish I had purchased it years ago.
Subject: New use for the GoGo Stik!
Dear GoGo Stik,
Wanted to let you know about another application for the scooper. It has worked well in cleaning up after two dogs in the back yard for the past year, I appreciate the no-hassle cleanup. My Vet recently asked for a three day first AM urine sample from our older pet as he is diagnosing a possible kidney issue. I thought about the best way to get the sample from our short female dog and knew it would not be easy or clean.
The GoGo Stik immediately came to mind. With the addition of a zip-loc bag, I was able to get my sample by simply holding the open bag under her to catch the stream without disruption, mess, or upsetting her during her first morning tinkle. Great adaptation of a very useful tool. Kacey has been cleared of any kidney issues and we owe you a “thanks” for making our part of the diagnostic process a breeze.
Joe & Cathy
4.0 out of 5 stars Lifesaver for a REVOLTING task
By SKM Chicago on October 9, 2015
To preface, I have to say that am NOT a dog person, at all. I am only extremely reluctantly living with a big dog as of recent months because he was a package deal with a wonderful person. :::acquiescent sigh:::
He’s a good dog, but my goodness, the absolute revulsion at the thought of going anywhere near a warm, soft-ish, HORRID, stinky mess from an animal with only plastic between it and my hand, UGH (totally fine with human babies, side note!). But I wanted to be able to help with walks, and actually in my head thought “I wish they would make a stick with a poop bag so that the stuff would never actually touch the stick, just the bag.” I thought this for weeks until it finally struck me to check trusty Amazon – EUREKA!!
This product works pretty well and as it claims, it’s just getting the bag off can be a teensy bit tricky, but I’m sure I don’t do it 100% correctly. And you’re carrying a stick and look silly, and you’re still having to look at and deal with the excrement of an animal you’d rather have nothing to do with. So there’s that, but it’s not the stick’s fault. That being said, it’s a great tool for a disgusting task that you begrudgingly do for the comfort of the animal that your partner adores.
If you’re looking at this product and this review, you may be in the same boat, so I wanted to be candid. And honestly, venting has been a bit cathartic, so thanks Amazon! 😀
Susan H., Boca Raton, FL. Review:
Item exactly as described and the email I received with instructions on how to use the stik was extremely useful. I used it correctly on the first try and will never walk my dog without the GoGo Stik.
We know that your dog is a special member of your family, With that in mind, we want our blog to reflect the special place the hold in your home. This means sharing news, recipes, tips and tricks to help you care for your all of your family.
This week, that includes a recipe we found for homemade Pumpkin Spice Dog Biscuits. We know this time of year, pumpkin spice everything comes on the market. Because not all of the pet treats you find in the store are the healthiest option for your pet, we will share with you a way to treat your pet and feel good about it.
Pumpkin Spice Dog Biscuts:
Recipe type: Doggie Treats
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 40 mins
Total time: 1 hour
We hope your dog loves it as much as ours did.
A healthy, yummy treat for your best friend!
- 2½ cups whole wheat flour
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- In a stand mixer, mix together the flour, eggs, pumpkin, peanut butter, salt, and cinnamon
- Add water as needed to help make the dough workable, but the dough should be dry and stiff.
- Roll the dough into a ½-inch-thick roll. Cut into ½-inch pieces.
- Bake in preheated oven until hard, about 40 minutes.
The author of this recipe states on her blog, that she developed it after finding that the dog treats in her cupboards, did not pass muster. She shared this and it looked so dare we say yummy, we wanted to share it with you.
We hope your dog loves it as Max did.
CECELIA A. , from Moore, OK… Wrote: Very happy about this Pooper Scooper. I bought this over the rake pooper scooper to avoid any type of “touching” of poop or cleaning of the cleaner. With the Gogo Stik I was able to clean up my dogs remains in the apartment complex & other dogs who use the same area in a few minutes. I probably picked up about 15 remains (not all my dogs btw) in a few minutes in the grassy area. Very happy!