Dope for dogs: NY lawmaker wants medical marijuana for pets – Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing a study to look at the pros and cons of legalizing recreational marijuana in New York. Cuomo’s proposal was part of his state budget address on Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. Jon Campbell / Albany Bureau

Should New York provide medical marijuana to animals? One lawmaker says the state should.(Photo: Seth Perlman)

ALBANY — Will you soon be able to provide pot for your pooch?

Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, D-Scarsdale, Westchester County, introduced legislation Thursday that would change New York law to allow veterinarians to prescribe medical marijuana to animals.

“Medical marijuana has helped countless people in the management and treatment of chronic and debilitating illnesses,” Paulin’s bill states.

“Research suggests that animals can also benefit from cannabis use to similarly treat their ailments.”

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Nevada and California are also considering legislation to legalize medical marijuana for animals, saying it could help pets with chronic illnesses.

“Animal owners and caregivers would therefore be given an alternative option to alleviate their pets’ pain,” Paulin’s bill said.

“This could be helpful to many animals in need of relief, especially those that have chronic illnesses and for whom more tradional medical treatment has not proven to be effective.”

The bill may face an uphill battle with in the Legislature and Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The measure has yet to gain a Senate sponsor, and Cuomo has moved cautiously with expanding the state’s medical marijuana program.

New York first started to allow doctors to prescribe medical marijuana in non-smokeable forms in January 2016, but the program has struggled.

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