In the natural world, our senses are constantly stimulated by the sights, sounds, colors, and aromas of the plant and animal species surrounding us. All living things use their senses to interact and communicate with each other and the environment around them. In the plant kingdom, and for many sessile or slowly moving species, a vital method of communication is via pheromones or “aromatics.” This is accomplished by the natural use of terpenes. All living organisms manufacture terpenes for certain essential physiological functions.
In the past year, the veterinary profession has seen a huge spike in interest, and thus information, about the potential therapeutic use of cannabinoids. This increase in media and institutional attention mirrors the widespread legalization of cannabis as it spreads through the nation, and indeed, the world. A milestone event that propelled this uptick in interest was the passing of the 2018 Agricultural Improvement Act, aka the Farm Bill.1 This legislative victory was a game changer for this industry.
There is rapidly growing interest in the potential therapeutic use of cannabis among veterinarians around the world. Unfortunately, there is a profound lack of formal veterinary education on the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and its clinical manipulation, despite its discovery more than 30 years ago. This gap has left practitioners with a lack of knowledge, as well as comfort, in meeting the increasing demands placed on them by clients…
Every cat and dog, as well as virtually every other animal, has an endocannabinoid system (“ECS”). It was discovered by Dr. Raphael Mechoulam in the 1970s and has been described as a system of lipid-based retrograde neurotransmitters and receptors occurring throughout the CNS and PNS that promotes homeostasis or balance of the body.