Evaluation of the Effect of Cannabidiol on Osteoarthritis-Associated Pain in Dogs—A Pilot Study
07 August 2019 (online)
Introduction: There is a lack of research evaluating the efficacy of cannabidiol (CBD) for treatment of osteoarthritis-associated pain using objective outcome measures. This pilot study was designed to evaluate the effect of CBD on pain associated with canine osteoarthritis.
Materials and Methods: Client-owned dogs with radiographically confirmed osteoarthritis were enrolled in this prospective, double-blinded, crossover, placebo-controlled study. Outcome measures included serum chemistry, weekly total activity counts (AC), clinical metrology instruments (CMI), and objective gait analysis (OGA). Baseline data were acquired for four weeks prior to initiation of the first treatment. Patients were randomly allocated to either placebo or oral CBD oil treatment for the first six weeks, then treated for the subsequent six weeks with the opposite treatment.
Results: Twenty-three dogs, medium-large breed dogs, were enrolled. Fourteen dogs displayed elevation in liver enzymes associated with CBD treatment. Significant differences between treatment groups were identified for several CMI and OGA time point comparisons. However, there was a lack of consistency amongst the different outcome measures.
Discussion/Conclusion: This pilot study identified differences in some outcome measures suggesting that CBD may benefit dogs with osteoarthritis-associated pain. However, adequately powered studies with a larger sample size are needed to confirm this suggestion. Further evaluation of the clinical implications of the observed liver enzyme elevation, particularly with long-term administration, is necessary.
Acknowledgment: This project was funded by Applied Basic Science Corporation. The senior author is part-owner of this company.