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Pot for Spot? Bill would allow vets to discuss CBD, marijuana side effects and benefits for pets

dog cbd oil
There are a lot of CBD products for pets, but Michigan veterinarians aren't allowed to discuss them with pet owners.

CBD, the non-psychoactive compound of marijuana, is becoming popular for people and pets alike. You can find CBD oil in cookies, gummies, teas, lotions, and, yes, pet treats. These products claim to treat stress, anxiety, pain, and more — although research on the subject is still undecided.

But if you were to go to a veterinarian in Michigan and ask about the possible benefits or side effects of marijuana for your pet, they legally could not discuss it with you.

A new bill would change that. Rep. Greg Markkanen (R-Hancock) is the sponsor of HB 5085. He says, "When the state of Michigan [legalized] medical marijuana, unfortunately, veterinarians were left out."

Several veterinarians testified in support of the legislation before the State Fiscal Agency Tuesday, reports Gongwer News. Dr. Kellie Holmstrom and Dr. Jeff Powers both said it is very common for pet owners to ask about CBD oil or marijuana for their pets, but veterinarians are unable to give advice or warnings.

"We're just asking to join the table and the discussion and right now, we feel legally, we are not able to do that," Holmstrom said. "I think we all have the same goal: We want to have healthy, happy pets. That's why I asked Rep. Markkanen to bring this bill forward to clarify the legal situation for veterinarians in regard to these products."

Markkanen said that he would work closely with the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs to help enact the Public Health Code revision in partnership with the Michigan Board of Veterinary Medicine.

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Emma is a producer for the digital content team at Michigan Radio. Her duties span all things web-related, from news reporting and photography to digital fundraising and graphic design. She also produces the station's daily newsletter, The Michigan Radio Beat.
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