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Anxiety? Pain? Seizures?

Canvas Boutique & Dispensary has been in business since December of 2017. We have received a lot of great feedback from pet owners such as reports of reduced seizures, ease of movement in animals suffering with pain, and reduction of generalized anxiety, especially in those that are afraid of storms and fireworks. This article will discuss veterinarian advocacy, research, and dosing.

Veterinarian Cannabis Advocate

Dr. Casara Andre DVM spoke at the very first Missouri Medical Cannabis Conference held October of 2018 in St Charles.  It was wonderful to hear a holistic veterinarian speak about her experience using cannabis with animals.  Dr Andre was commissioned as an Army Veterinary Corps officer. She traveled around the world providing veterinary services to military working dogs and family pets. Dr Andre has found that the therapeutic effects of cannabis can be safely integrated into veterinary patient care. Her recent professional endeavors have been to encourage further research and is focused on bringing the medicinal effects of cannabis safety into the veterinary industry. She has a program that helps to teach other veterinarians about the use of cannabis with animals. 


All mammals have an endocannabinoid system, including cats. This includes CB1 receptors (which bind with THC) and CB2 receptors (which react to CBD). Not only do cats have cannabinoid receptors, but they have a larger amount of them than humans. One feline study found that these receptors are found in arteries and that cannabinoids promote relaxation of vessels. (1) A survey of 632 pet owners noted a positive impact with the use of CBD for relief of pain, anxiety, and help with sleep (2). A randomized placebo-controlled, veterinarian and owner blinded, cross-over study in osteoarthritic dogs was conducted. Results showed a significant decrease in pain and an increase in activity at weeks 2 and 4 during CBD treatment compared with pretreatment baselines. Owners reported no side effects, but serum chemistry did show an increase in alkaline phosphatase during CBD treatment. (3)  Keep in mind that this study basically gave 1 mg per pound, a much larger dose that what pet owners report to be effective and that Alkaline phosphatase (ALP), a liver enzyme, is also found elevated when animals are stressed and after administration of prescription medications such anti-inflammatory steroids and the anti-epileptic medication, phenobarbital.  Dr Susan Johnson DVM reported that increased ALP activity is a poor indicator for canine liver disease compared to the enzyme ALT. She states that “Isolated increases in ALP activity that remain unexplained after complete diagnostic evaluation, have the potential to be benign.” (4)

In reference to epilepsy, some pet owners report that rubbing CBD into their pet’s gums has helped to stop seizures. Many pet owners are also reporting less frequency and severity of epileptic seizures or even no longer having seizures after 3 months of use. Dr. Stephanie McGrath, an assistant professor and veterinarian at the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital researched CBD as a treatment for epileptic dogs.  In the first double blind, placebo-controlled safety study, she states: “We haven’t seen anything that’s been adversely affecting our dogs.” The main side effect has been diarrhea with high doses of 75-150 mg every 12 hours for 6 weeks via transdermal cream, microencapsulated oil beads, and oral CBD infused oil.  CBD infused oil was found to the best absorbed. (5)  Their most recent study found that 5 mg/kg helped to significantly reduce the frequency of seizures in epileptic dogs.  A larger animal study has recently been granted.

Dosage for Dogs & Cats

CBD is available in liquid, capsule, or infused treats. Unfortunately, there is no hard and fast rule about CBD dosage. This is because every physiology is different and CBD products vary in concentration.  Dosage recommendations for cats vary, but for a 10-pound pet, 1 mg a day is considered a small dose, 3 mg is an average dose, and 5 mg a strong dose. 

Each company’s dosing guidelines can vary widely because of the varying concentration of CBD products. The dosage can also differ depending on the condition. For example, higher doses are typically recommended for more serious health conditions and lower doses for occasional anxiety or general well-being. Take into consideration your dog’s weight and underlying health issues.

The general rule is 0.2 mg/lb. Experts advise to start with the smallest possible dose and increase as needed.

Happy Buddha uses an ancient form of alchemy called Spagyric for better absorption for your pets!

Spagyric hemp extracts are stronger and more bioavailable than other CBD products.

Some of the Pet CBD products that we stock also include other beneficial ingredients such as Cod Liver oil that has inflammation modulating & skin support properties.  

If your pet is on any medications or has significant health concerns, please discuss use with your veterinarian.


Canvas Boutique & Dispensary staff find that their pets benefit from CBD.

Here is my ‘Buddy’ dog.  He starts to shake when storms approach and I am proactive in dosing before 4th of July celebrations. 

I often just share my CBD oil with him. He licks it right off the spoon.

In the top picture Buddy is panting, restless, and trembling. He is about 80 lbs and 20 mg does the trick, 15 minutes later he appears to be feeling serene and no more trembling.  

Poppy (pictured with Buddy) sometimes deals with back pain after long hikes or playing with other dogs.  She loves CBD treats and appears to recover quickly.

Bridget from our Maplewood store took great care of Mick for his whole life. Towards the end of his life, she relief on CBD to provide better mobility and comfort.  She found that CBD improved his quality of life exponentially in his last days by helping to provide relaxation and pain relief.

In loving memory of Mick (Canvas Boutique’s original mascot)

Canvas Founder, Kelly Lea Christensen is pictured here with her dogs, Scout & Cassie.

About the author:

Dr Tiffanie Jones is a medically trained Naturopathic doctor, graduate of Bastyr University in Seattle, WA. Her mission is to educate about science-based, holistic approaches to improve quality of life. She trains practitioners and consumers about researched benefits of cannabinoids. 


1.     Gebremedhin D1, Lange AR, Campbell WB, Hillard CJ, Harder DR. Cannabinoid CB1 receptor of cat cerebral arterial muscle functions to inhibit L-type Ca2+ channel current. Am J Physiol. 1999 Jun; 276(6): H2085-93. 

2.     Kogan LR, Hellyer PW, Robinson NG. Consumers’ perceptions of hemp products for animals. J Am Holist Vet Med Assoc. 2016; 42:40–48.

3.     Gamble LJ, Boesch JM, Frye CW, Schwark WS, Mann S, Wolfe L, Brown H, Berthelsen ES, WakShlag JJ. “Pharmacokinetics, safety and clinical efficacy of Cannabidiol treatment in osteoarthritic dogs”. Front Vet Sci. (2018) 5:165. 

4.     Johnson, Susan DVM. Diagnostic approach in dogs with increased ALP activity (Proceedings).  Nov 1, 2010.

  1. Bartner, Lisa R.; McGrath, Stephanie; et al. Pharmacokinetics of cannabidiol administered by 3 delivery methods at 2 different dosages to healthy dog. Volume 82, Number 3, July 2018, pp. 178-183(6)