KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- At Midtown Kava, customers are showing up daily saying CBD oils are helping them with chronic pain, anxiety and even easing symptoms of cancer treatment.
Recently at the store located on 39th Street, people have even been asking for oils for their pets. The controversial alternative medicine has many customers asking if the oils are safe since they come from the cannabis family.
KCTV5 News spoke to the founder of one oil company and a veterinarian who said the oils show no signs of harmful side effects, yet are showing promise in treating symptoms.
Jax is a 2-year-old Great Dane who is now on his third set of owners. Lindsay and Harrison Collins say his separation anxiety and stress has led to him being sent from home to home.
"He was born without a voice box so the loudest he can do is a pretty decent whisp of a bark," they explained.
Destroyed furniture and his pain from his constant panting are two aspects of Jax's life that his owners were desperate to find a solution for.
Although skeptical, they tried CBD. In a matter of days, the panting eased and they noticed a change. Harrison Collins was even able to furnish the house and Jax hasn't touched the furniture since taking the oils.
Jax's owners bought him American Shamma CBD.
Vince Sanders founded the company.
"We're here in Kansasa City and we're one of the largest VBD manufacturers in the world. We're the only one in the Midwest," he explained.
Sanders said he found the oils useful and discovered how beneficial they could be thanks to his uncle.
"He came down with stage 4 lung cancer and my search to help him led me to CBD," he said.
Just last month, Sanders' products were featured was in Forbes Magazine.
He said the oils saved his uncle's life.
"It was truly like magic when you witness it that’s what it’s like it feels like magic – hair raising," he said.
But that magic is the part that has many questioning if it could really work for them and if it's safe.
Midtown Kava's owner, Sarah Fields, says it has helped countless customers, though each animal and person may respond differently.
Fields opened the store after she said CBD helped her cure her anxiety problem of 20 years and helped her dad's chronic pain. He used to walk with a cane.
Since taking the CBD oil, he's managed to get rid of it.
"I'd say the toughest part is the whole stigma, 'Oh no am I going to get high from this?'" Fields said.
"CBD has zero psychoactive effects you can take all the CBD in this store and you will not get high," Sanders said.
The THC is less than .3 percent. Veterinarians across Kansas City are split. Some we reached out to say they see benefits, while others said they don't believe in it and are skeptical that it's doing unknown harm to the pet.
"It's created more buzz than anything I've seen in the past 3 decades," said Dr. Jim Sparks at Eagle Animal Clinic in Riverside.
But, he adds all evidence is anecdotal at this point, and there is no scientific proof yet. He says research is being conducted. He said personally, he believes it's safe and there is no harm that he's seen yet.
But until there is scientific proof of no risk he cannot recommend or prescribe it to patients.
Sparks said CBD oil is a prime case of "buyer beware" due to the price differences among sellers and the disparities and differences between each brand of oil.
At Midtown Kava, the average 30-day supply will cost $60.
On Amazon, you can find oils as cheap as $15.
Sparks said that is where a danger could certainly exist.
"If it seem to good to be true, it probably is. In order to do this properly, it's an expensive and laborious method. So, if you’re producing cheap .. well cheap and good don’t go well together in medicine at all. Just because its on Amazon for $15 and then $45 at the pet store, don’t assume it’s the same thing," Sparks said.