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News Release: Canadian Veterinary Medical Association Explores the Use of Medical Cannabis in Pets

July 5, 2018

VANCOUVER, B.C. - The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) explored the issues and challenges pertaining to the therapeutic use of cannabinoids in veterinary medicine at its annual National Issues Forum that took place on July 5 during the CVMA Convention in Vancouver, B.C.
"The increased attention on medicinal cannabis is producing greater interest from pet owners, who in turn, are looking for guidance and answers to whether these products may help their pets,” says Dr. Troye McPherson, 2017-18 CVMA President. “Currently, veterinarians have no legal pathway to dispense or prescribe cannabis for animals. However, the CVMA recognizes the veterinary community is in the midst of rapid change in this area with some anecdotal evidence of benefits, but a lack of peer-reviewed, controlled clinical studies on cannabis. We are in an interesting position on how to create an open dialogue with our clients."
The CVMA National Issues Forum: Therapeutic Use of Cannabinoids in Veterinary Medicine heard from three veterinarians in the afternoon session who gave different perspectives on the topic. Dr. Sarah Silcox, President and Director of the Canadian Association of Veterinary Cannabinoid Medicine (CAVCM) discussed a practitioner perspective, Dr. Louis-Philippe de Lorimier took a veterinary medical oncologist perspective, and Dr. Sharon Gwaltney-Brant discussed the toxicology perspective.
“Veterinarians should always be the primary source of health-related information for animals,” says CAVCM President Dr. Sarah Silcox. “The CAVCM is working closely with the CVMA to encourage Health Canada to amend the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR) to include veterinarians and our patients, and to permit the future classification of CBD as a Veterinary Health Product.”
The annual Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) Convention gathered over 900 veterinary professionals from across Canada and the United States in Vancouver, BC from July 5 to 8, 2018 to attend Canada’s only national multi-species Convention.
Additional events included the CVMA Summit that looked into the changing dynamics of private practice, the announcement of the new CVMA President, and the CVMA awards ceremony recognizing individuals and groups for their outstanding contribution to veterinary medicine.
The CVMA Convention featured over 30 highly-rated speakers from Canada, the United States, and overseas to address topics ranging from companion animal, ruminant, equine, honey bees, bovine, animal welfare, and more. 
The CVMA is the national and international voice for over 14,000 veterinarians in Canada. The convention was held in partnership with the CVMA-Society of British Columbia Veterinarians Chapter and in collaboration with the Registered Veterinary Technologists and Technicians of Canada.

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The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) is the national and international voice for Canada’s veterinarians, providing leadership and advocacy for veterinary medicine. Visit to learn more about CVMA.
Tanya Frye, Canadian Veterinary Medical Association
613-236-1162 ext. 128 (office)