Osteoarthritis is a progressive and degenerative condition that affects dog populations, causing pain. The pain associated with osteoarthritis is considered to be chronic, owing to both active inflammation and to a maladaptive component caused by central sensitization. Chronic pain in dogs is being increasingly recognised as a significant problem, and finding successful treatments against canine osteoarthritis-related pain is challenging. The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy in pain management over a twelve-week period of oral transmucosal cannabidiol, in combination with a multimodal pharmacological protocol, in dogs affected by spontaneous osteoarthritis. Dogs receiving oral transmucosal cannabidiol in addition to an anti-inflammatory drug, gabapentin and amitriptyline showed a meaningful improvement in Canine Brief Pain Inventory scores, in comparison with dogs that did not receive cannabidiol. The present study suggests that the addition of oral transmucosal cannabidiol to a multimodal pharmacological treatment for canine osteoarthritis improves owner reported pain scores and quality of life of dogs, without severe adverse effects.
Overall, according to the CBPI scores assigned by the owner, a satisfactory pain and quality of life management was achieved in dogs receiving OTM CBD oil (2 mg kg−1 every 12 h), in addition to a multimodal pharmacological approach for the treatment of OA-related pain. Combined with an anti-inflammatory drug, gabapentin and amitriptyline, CBD appears to enhance osteoarthritic pain relief and quality of life improvement. Furthermore, its co-administration results in being useful in reducing the other administered drugs’ dosage, minimizing the severity and incidence of associated side effects. The high CBD patient tolerability, the easy practicability and the paucity of adverse effects of OTM route of administration may represent potential benefits for long-term therapy.