- A research team in Texas is studying the possible benefits that CBD could have for horses.
- It is speculated that CBD could potentially help to reduce stress and inflammation in horses.
- The results are expected sometime in 2021.
Since the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill that federally legalized CBD and hemp production, there has been numerous products that have hit the market. CBD oils, tinctures, and topicals have all seemed to prove effective for helping people treat ailments such as inflammation, anxiety, and even acne.
But researchers may have just found another unique use for CBD: Helping horses.
A team based in Texas is currently observing how CBD affects equine physiology. Specifically, they aim to find out whether or not CBD can be effective in treating stress and inflammation in horses, while also studying its effects on obsessive compulsive disorder.
If proven to be effective, this could be a big breakthrough for horse owners, including jockeys who own horses that race in competitions. Not only could CBD be a treatment to calm their nerves prior to the race starting, but it could help the horse to recover afterward as well.
Kimberly Guay, a professor at Tarleton State University located in Stephenville, Texas, specializes in studies that show how stress affects animals. She is optimistic about these studies because they are based in a location with a high population of horse owners.
“A lot of the horse people I knew were already using CBD, illegally you would say, because it wasn’t legal in Texas at the time,” Guay stated.
Guay and her team are giving horses various amounts of CBD for experimentation. They then assess the horses’ response to it by monitoring their inflammation, heart rate, and cortisol levels, which is a hormone produced by stress.
She hopes to have her results published next year.
Hurdles to Jump
One obstacle that this study will face is the legality of adding CBD to food. Although many laws and regulations are lacking for the CBD industry, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for animal feed in the country and has forbid CBD to be infused with it.
If the results for these studies are positive, then there may be a chance that CBD could be used as a supplement to give to livestock that are used for food production. Of course, this would require the full approval of the FDA.
Last month, a proposed bipartisan bill created the potential for CBD to be marketed and sold as a dietary supplement or food item. If this bill becomes approved, then the likelihood that CBD could be used to help treat animals, including horses, would greatly increase.
If the bill is declined, however, then these studies will likely lose their spotlight until regulations are made that allow for CBD to be infused with food and animal feed.
While there is a lot of promise that CBD could benefit horses, the research is still young. As with anything else CBD-related, there is a lot of waiting and seeing to be done still. Hopefully, the FDA will soon come out with rules and regulations that would allow for people to move forward with CBD to unlock its full potential.