I previously introduced you to the benefits of Canna Companion, a cannabis (hemp) supplement for pets developed by two Seattle veterinarians, Drs. Sarah Brandon and Greg Copas, who pioneered the use of medical marijuana for pets two years ago. I was so intrigued with the many benefits of this product, I asked Dr. Brandon to share some of her many success stories of using CannaVet as part of an integrative approach to treatment.

Today’s story features Little Bitsy. She is a lovely almost 19-year-old tabby who is dealing with a multitude of health issues, ranging from seizures to chronic kidney disease, hypertension and arthritis. Many of these are common problems for a cat her age. Bitsy has been with her guardian, Laura, since Laura’s former husband found the three or four week old kitten at their Florida home. For many years, Bitsy traveled back  and forth between Florida and her Manhattan home.

“It feels to me like it’s time for her to release and go,” Bitsy’s guardian Laura told me when we spoke on the phone. “I just want her to go peacefully when it’s her time.”

Laura, who has always had a strong interest in holistic modalities, contacted Dr. Brandon when Bitsy’s seizures kept getting worse. After starting CannaVet, Bitsy had one small seizure the first week, but has had none since. “Sometimes I feel her trembling a little,” said Laura, “but that’s it!”

“Cannabis works on seizure control by several methods,” says Dr. Brandon. “Some depend on what triggered the seizures, others are simply due to the nature of how cannabinoids affect neurotransmitters.”


Bitsy was started on hemp supplementation in November of 2014. By February of this year, Laura said “she seemed to be even more alive than she had been for ages.”

Cannabis is only one part of Bitsy’s regimen. This lucky little girl has an entire entourage of people tending to her needs. In addition to Laura, Bitsy’s cat sitter and Laura’s housekeeper also take an active role in her care. Bitsy gets subcutaneous fluids every day. She also takes Chinese herbs and gets acupuncture. Since starting CannaVet, Bitsy’s appetite has improved. Prior to supplementation, she often needed to be syringe fed. “She’s walking to her food now,” says Laura. Bitsy’s supplement is administered in a syringe with some liquified food twice a day, but thanks to her increased appetite, regular syringe feeding is no longer necessary.

Bitsy needs to get the cannabis supplement twice a day. “Her thickened GI tract and multiple conditions means she loses some of the active compounds as they cross her GI walls,” said Dr. Brandon. The twice daily dose ensures that Bitsy properly absorbs an effective dose of the supplement.


Bitsy has her up and down days, as any cat her age with multiple health issues will, but Laura firmly believes that hemp is improving her quality of life.

For more information, and to purchase, please visit

All photos ©Laura Utley, used with permission.

32 Comments on How Cannabis Is Helping a Senior Cat with Multiple Health Issues

  1. My cat 13 year old tom has kidney disease I came across this site when trying to find out if I could give him cannabis oil for pain

  2. Hi some advice please.
    My beautiful cat is now 20 and after my gf took her to the vet for some vomiting (high protein foods causing it) they gave her a shot of something which has basically made her health drop drastically, now her kidneys are failing.
    As we do not live in a country which has cannapet products but we have access to cannabis… could someone please advise me how a dose I can give my cat how many milligrams of cannabis to give her. I am willing to try anything at this point.

    • Please let me know what you find out, my cats kidneys are failing too and I also live in a country which cannabis products are not available

      • Try Pet Wellbeing (web site) Kidney Gold its helped my 21 yr old kitty. Its a US product but i do believe they ship worldwide.
        Plenty of good reviews available to read.

        • I just ordered me some based off this comment. It looks like the exact thing my baby needs, should be here within 2 days… fingers crossed this saves her life!

          • Pet well being kidney support gold is what I use. Get the larger bottle with the dog on it. Better price for what you get & the same as the cat. O also use epakitin it’s a phosphate binder. I DON’T do a RX diet low phosphate diet means extremely less protein. A high quality raw food is best. I use I do Sub Q fluids also. My cat just turned 18 and has been going for 2 years since her diagnosis

  3. Where can I buy CannaPet in Canada? I have a 21yr old cat wit the usual age related illness.
    Also,if its not available in Canada can I use Hemp protein powder (human) as an alternative?

  4. I have a 17 year old cat with hyperthyroid disease. I started her on Methimazole in liquid form. Within a week it was obvious that the methimazole was making her ill. I understand about 20% of cats cannot tolerate it. She vomited, stopped eating and looked bedraggled. I stopped the Methimazole and she was better within 2 days. Then I started her on the Canna. After 2 weeks I put her back on the Methimazole along with the Canna. She is doing well now and tolerating the Methimazole just fine. Her appetite is good, coat looks great, she is more friendly and moving around more as she did 7-8 years ago. Other than radioactive iodine there isn’t much else for hyperthyroid disease so this could be a very useful piece of information in treatment for this disease.

    • My 15 year old cat was put on Methimazole a month ago. He started vomiting and scratching his face very badly. I took him back to the vet and he had more blood work done which showed that the medication worked very well in reducing his thyroid levels, but the side effects included self facial mutilation. Did you cat do that too? As of now, I am not medicating him at all. I had decided to let him have as long as possible without meds and them when I have to I will put him down.

      • I have an older kitty on methemizol for hypothyroidism. She was impossible to pull her so our vet new a free pharmacy who can compound it into h cream you just rub in on the inside of their eat every day. It worked great for 3 years but not as well now. Her bloodwork says the meds aren’t working at all.
        I am going to put her on this if the next round of bloodwork comes back the same and take her off methamazol.

      • Comment for Carolyn. My cat also did not tolerate Methimazole. I stopped the Methimazole, put her on Canna from Canna Companion for 2 weeks, then continued the Canna along with her appropriate dose of liquid Methimazole. She seemed to feel fine. She gained weight, good coat etc. She died recently at age 20 four years later.

  5. I have been using cannabis to treat my 18 yo cat Flash. He was diagnosed with a possible thyroid tumor as he was always hungry and could not stop eating, but he did not gain any weight, he was losing weight. He has always had a habit of eating fresh leaves, but we did not have a supply, so we started giving him the leaves again, and the full extract oil, and he got better in days. He is still old, and has issues, I would like to try some cannapet on him too, just to see how he does on that, as the oil seems to be a bit too strong for him. But his tumor seems to be gone, his appetite is back to normal, and he is doing much better. Cannabis cures pets and people!

    • Hi Terry,
      thank you for sharing. My kitty has a thyroid tumor and hyowrthyroidism. How much oil should I give him, hould it cointain only cbd? How long did it take for your kitty tumour to be gone? I would like to go the natural way if we can. Thank you!

    • We’ve been using CBD/terpines nutritional therapy (canna) for several years now. We’ve added the liquid CBD drops because our cat’s multiple diseases require daily pain control. We’ve seen super results when other options failed. We’ve been using Canna-Pet and highly recommend it.

  6. I’ve been using CannaPet practically since they started business. Since I tend to adopt the most busted-up senior cats, and those with health issues, it’s been very helpful as an adjunct to conventional vet care. In pain management for arthritis, for example, I’ve been able to give lower doses of buprenex, and the cats still seem more comfortable and mobile than on buprenex alone.

    I’ve lost two cats to cancer in the past year (one had advanced lymphoma when I adopted her; the other had an aggressive abdominal sarcoma, with mets to the side of his head). In both cases, I opted for palliative care, and hemp was an invaluable part of that. Both remained active, maintained excellent appetites, and lived much longer and with less discomfort, thanks to hemp. The lymphoma cat suddenly developed the runaway cachexia common in cancer patients, and the sarcoma cat stopped eating one day when his abdominal mass got too large and painful, at which point I knew it was time for each of them to go. But both had good quality of life right up to the end.

    And then there’s the old guy who used to have the most vile poop of any cat, ever. It was downright terrifying. FortiFlora improved the situation, but after I added hemp the issue finally resolved, and his poop has been perfectly normal for over a year now. It also helped his best buddy, who suffered badly from stomatitis and still had a massive ulcer on the outside of his mouth even after having all his teeth extracted and several courses of prednisone. Hemp finally helped heal that ulcer, and he’s had no recurrences in eight months–blus, his overall condition has improved drastically.

    I was a little skeptical when I first tried it, but I’m sold on it now. It’s not a cure-all, or a replacement for good vet care, but it’s been immensely helpful to us here on the Island of Misfit Cats.

    • I am so grateful to hear about Melissa’s experience with hemp. We need more people to speak up and out about the many, many blessings of hemp. Yea Melissa!!

  7. I’ve been using CannaPet for about 6 months now for my Wilford who has CHF, cancer, arthritis, narrowing of the spine, & now HyperT. We’ve tried a lot of things from glucosamine, chondroitin, Adequan- with no real help. At times, he doesn’t want to eat and just wants to lay on his warming bed. Since consuming CannaPet, he feels a lot better, runs around on good days and his appetite has come back. He genuinely seems to feel better! We still have bad days, but after taking his hemp supplement, he sleeps for 30 minutes, wakes refreshed and hungry. He doesn’t take it every day, but will take it on his down days- seems like he knows it helps him. With all of Wilford’s health issues, he isn’t a candidate for conventional therapies offered by the vet; holistic vets are difficult to find in our area, and it is a GOD-send that we found CannaPet. We’ve also gotten an AssisiLoop and he seems to appreciate that as well. Scoffers: don’t knock it until you are faced with ZERO options and then watch your pet come back to “life” after taking it.

    • Thank you for sharing your experience, Lizie. I’m intrigued that you’re also using the Assisi Loop. I love hearing how these simple modalities can result in such a significant increase in quality of life for cats.

  8. That sure sounds like a great new thing. How terrific to find some good help for the older cats. It is so hard when they get older. Great post.

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