Randomized Blinded Controlled Clinical Trial To assess The Effect of Oral Cannabidiol Administration

Updated: Jul 22

Randomized blinded controlled clinical trial to assess the effect of oral cannabidiol administration in addition to conventional antiepileptic treatment on seizure frequency in dogs with intractable idiopathic epilepsy - 2019

Stephanie McGrath, Lisa R Bartner, Sangeeta Rao, Rebecca A Packer, Daniel L Gustafson


The Objective was to assess the effect of oral cannabidiol (CBD) administration in addition to conventional antiepileptic treatment on seizure frequency in dogs with idiopathic epilepsy.


Design: Randomized blinded controlled clinical trial that used 26 client-owned dogs with intractable idiopathic epilepsy.


Procedures: Dogs were randomly assigned to a CBD (n = 12) or placebo (14) group. The CBD group received CBD-infused oil (2.5 mg/kg [1.1 mg/lb], PO) twice daily for 12 weeks in addition to existing antiepileptic treatments, and the placebo group received non infused oil. Seizure activity, adverse effects, and plasma CBD concentrations were compared between groups.


Results: Nine dogs in the CBD group and 7 in the placebo group were included in the analysis. Dogs in the CBD group had a significant (median change, 33%) reduction in seizure frequency, compared with the placebo group. However, the proportion of dogs considered responders to treatment (≥ 50% decrease in seizure activity) was similar between groups. Plasma CBD concentrations were correlated with reduction in seizure frequency. Dogs in the CBD group had a significant increase in serum alkaline phosphatase activity. No adverse behavioral effects were reported by owners.


Conclusions and clinical relevance: Although no adverse behavior effects were reported, serum alkaline phosphatase did increase. Although a significant reduction in seizure frequency was achieved for dogs in the CBD group the proportion of responders was similar between groups.


Citation: J Am Vet Med Association 2019 Jun 1;254(11):1301-1308. doi:10.2460/javma.254.11.1301.

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