CBD Research for Horses

How Trove CBD Case Study May Help Your Horse

Trove co-founders Deborah and Sam Carter were facing euthanasia as the only alternative for their lovely young palomino filly, Star.  You've probably read about "Star's Story" on Trove's website, in veterinary papers, or in the press.  If not, you can read more about it here.  Published case studies -- including a paper about how CBD saved Star -- and scientific research into the pharmacokinetics, efficacy, and dosage of CBD are now providing further support for the potential therapeutic applications of CBD for horses.

"After all but giving up and then seeing the remarkable improvement Star experienced with CBD, I have become a true believer in the promise of CBD to help many of our horses."

In 2017, a team of vets led by Trove Clinical Advisory Board member, Dr. Erin Contino of Colorado State University's Equine Orthopaedic Research Center, came to Deborah's Silvertip Farms for further evaluation and diagnosis of the cause of Star's puzzling allodynia/neuromuscular symptoms.  Star exhibited the same behavior Deborah had been observing, even when the veterinarian would merely point in the general direction of her withers or neck without contact.  A lameness and neurologic exam was performed, blood work, x-rays of Star's cervical spine and withers, all with unremarkable results.  The plan was to commence a course of the nerve pain medication and anticonvulsant, gabapentin, and then a trial of corticosteroids if the gabapentin did not work.  All treatments were completed to no success. 

CSU returned for further evaluation and to test Deborah's latest theory that perhaps pelvic pain was the culprit.  A reproductive exam was conducted with no significant findings other than Star was in heat.  The new plan:  administration of the hormone Regumate, to suppress Star's heat cycles as well as Reserpine, a long acting sedative to see if that might make a difference.

Leaving no stone unturned, Dr. Contino recommended the "complementary" medicine options of chiropractic evaluation and adjustment as well as aquapuncture, where a liquid, typically Vitamin B-12, is injected into acupuncture trigger points in order to gain a longer-term effect.  Through all of the different medications, supplements, hormone treatments, not to mention concoctions of herbal supplements, Star’s condition remained the same and even worsened. 

Star had become defensive and dangerous in her stall.  Deborah and her vets were thinking that her only option may be to euthanize this stunning young mare, but she continued to search for a way to help her.  "I learned of the experimental use of Botox in treating laminitis in horses, and thought maybe blocking signals from the nerves to the muscles might help, but ultimately agreed with Dr. Contino that Star's allodynia and fasciculations had become too dispersed to even know where to inject.  And then I discovered CBD."

How CBD for horses may help

Deborah came across credible stories of cannabidiol or CBD, the non-psychoactive extract of the hemp plant, and its effectiveness in treating anxiety, inflammation and pain.  Since the other alternative was euthanasia, the veterinary team was supportive but not familiar with the use of CBD in horses or the appropriate dosages or delivery.  Friends and colleagues had some experience with CBD dog treats for their pups' separation anxiety, but were of little help when it came to CBD for horses.  So Deborah set about to blaze her own trail.

Due to a history of federal regulations, there existed little scientific research in the use and efficacy of CBD for horses.  But reports of experiential results continued to abound, and following the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, additional research is thankfully underway.  With increased knowledge and a supply of pure CBD extract from a top Colorado extraction company, Deborah designed a treatment plan for Star.  After literally one day of a fairly high dose of CBD, Star was almost symptom free.  Next day, next dose -- the same.  Over the next year, she continued to improve on an ever-reducing dosage of CBD.  

After long months of discouraging and unsuccessful veterinary diagnostics and treatments, Star's response to CBD was shocking, and both Deborah and Dr. Contino became more than intrigued by the benefits of CBD.  Says Dr. Contino, "We exhausted all reasonable traditional veterinary diagnostics and treatment options for Star and then some, even trying some uniquely creative and unconventional ones.  After all but giving up and then seeing the remarkable improvement Star experienced with CBD, I have become a true believer in the promise of CBD to help many of our horses."

Finally, more science and research about CBD in horses

Dr. Contino's experience and involvement with Star led her, along with her CSU colleague, Dr. Katherine Ellis, DVM, to publish a case study report in EVE (Equine Veterinary Education (BEVA/AAEP) that has already provided practitioners with information to help successfully treat similarly presenting cases.  See this case study report here.  It is our hope that continued case studies, research, and information sharing may lead to future successful outcomes for horses like Star with severe, even life-threatening issues, as well as those who may benefit from simply increased calm, focus, and well being.

A research study at Murray State University is also examining the pharmacokinetics and potential benefits of CBD in horses, and makes reference to Dr. Contino's case study on Trove's Star.  You can see the report on this study here.

So. . .What's the best CBD dosage for my horse?

Does it work?  Can I give my competition horse CBD at or before a USEF or FEI show?  What about my horse who's in training, spooks at the same mailbox daily, or is rehabbing after a layup?  What product should I choose?

The simple answers:  YES.  NO.  ABSOLUTELY.  TROVE.

Trove CBD products contain organically-grown USA hemp and are crafted with the same premium ingredients and with the same quality standards as our people products. All Trove products are THC free and triple tested for quality, consistency and concentration. With a range of options and CBD strengths specifically formulated for people, horses, dogs and cats, Trove can help owners and their healthcare/veterinary professionals tailor a regimen that works.

Burgeoning research and experiential evidence suggests that CBD may benefit horses in the following ways:

  • promoting calm addressing inflammation, pain, soreness
  • aiding in exercise/injury/surgery recovery
  • surviving stall rest/rehabbing from layup
  • supporting the neurological, digestive, circulatory, immune, and musculoskeletal systems

For topical application to address targeted areas of pain, swelling, or inflammation, apply Trove CBD Balm 750 to area(s) of concern, gently massaging into skin in order to penetrate beyond the surface hair coat. Your horse will likely enjoy the touch, and the time spent massaging will discourage rubbing or licking, allowing the CBD to start to absorb into affected areas of inflammation. Avoid eyes, and do not apply directly on open wounds or incisions. Apply 2-4 times daily. Trove Equine Balm 750 contains a powerful concentration of 750 mg CBD per 1.7 oz jar and a unique formulation of coconut oil, arnica butter, shea butter, and vitamin E to nurture the skin, as well as organic tea tree essential oil for its added anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial therapeutic properties.

Trove Equine CBD Oil 750 contains 25 mg CBD per 1 mL, and Trove Equine CBD Oil 1500 is a stronger formulation, containing 50 mg CBD per 1 mL. Much like people or dogs, individual horses will respond differently to varying doses of CBD. Therefore, suggested dosages will depend on a variety of factors, including severity of symptoms, whether treating for an acute or chronic condition, and effectiveness of other supportive therapies. Most often, you will be able to assess your horse's response in a very short amount of time, and can choose which Trove Equine product is most advantageous for your horse.

Trove Equine CBD Capsules 150 offer the highest dose of CBD (150 mg CBD per capsule) in a convenient capsule form, and therefore may prove to be helpful especially in acute or complex situations, intermittent/occasional use such as trips to the vet or away from the comfort of your home barn, or where you prefer to start with a high impact approach and then adjust to maintenance on a lower dose of Trove Equine CBD Oil 750 or 1500.  Capsules may be added directly to feed, or quickly dissolved in a mash.

You may continue CBD therapy for your horse, adjusting dosage or frequency of administration as long as necessary to achieve desired results based upon your assessment (along with your vet) that your horse is benefitting from Trove.  Every horse and every situation is unique.  Some will continue to benefit from a therapeutic daily dosage or occasional use, while others will return to normal work without continued Trove CBD maintenance.

SHOP NOW for Trove Equine CBD products.  Visit www.trovecbd.com for more information or call us at 1-833-GO-TROVE.

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