Kitchener-Waterloo

Pot for horses? CannaHorse looks to market an alternative to pain relief medication

Medicinal cannabis has made its way to the horse industry as CannaHorse looks to be one of the first to market an alternative to traditional pain relief medication for horses.

Former University of Guelph professor to oversee clinical trails expected to take place in the fall

Traditional pain relief medications for horses have "detrimental" side effects, according to former U of G professor Michael Lindinger. CannaHorse in Toronto aims to market an cannabis alternative. (Maggie MacPherson/CBC)

Medicinal cannabis has made its way to the horse industry as CannaHorse looks to be one of the first to market an alternative to traditional pain relief pharmaceuticals for horses.

CannaHorse aims to launch different cannabis products for pain relief and inflammation, anxiety, exercise and surgical recovery.

"We recognize the opportunity to bring the transformative power of cannabis and cannabinoids we see working in humans and other animals to life for horses," Warren Byrne, president of CannaHorse, said in a release.

Michael Lindinger, president of the Nutraceutical Alliance – an institution that helps companies put science behind their products – and a former professor at the University of Guelph, said there is a high demand from horse owners to have a product with no negative side effects.

"Traditional pain medications that is used in horses have a number of detrimental side effects," Lindinger said.

Traditional pain relief and anti-inflammatory medication are prone to cause ulcers in a horse's stomach and intestines, as well as damage to their joints, he said.

Clinical trails for the products are expected to take place in the fall under Lindinger's watch.

He and his team will look at how well the CBD medication works in horses, as well as monitor their behaviour while on the medication.

"It's so important to do it for horses because there is no research that has been done in horses using any of the cannabinoids," he said.

"It is an important first step."

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