CBD has taken the world by storm since the Farm Bill was passed back in 2018. The compound derived from cannabis is now used by around 15% of Americans to help with a whole range of health issues, including depression, chronic pain, and epilepsy. Things were taken to a whole new level, however, when people started introducing CBD to their pets. Although there isn’t much definitive research on the effects of CBD on animals, here we’ll take a look at some of the differences you could start to see by giving it to your furry friends.
What is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is derived from the non-psychoactive part of the cannabis plant – the cannabis Sativa. This plant has two primary species, hemp, and cannabis. While both contain CBD, hemp holds a much higher percentage and less THC, the marijuana product which causes a chemical high. For CBD products to be legal in the USA, they have to contain less than 0.3% THC. Our brains have specific receptors designed to accept cannabinoids such as CBD, known as CB1 and CB2, which are responsible for coordinating everything we feel, think, and do.
How could CBD help my pets?
All domestic pets tend to experience joint pain such as arthritis as they get older. This can make it much more difficult for them to run, or even walk, without causing further damage or being constantly worse for wear. In turn, animals getting less exercise because of joint or muscle pain are likely to gain weight. CBD can relieve pets of various aches and pains thanks to its anti-inflammatory products.
By stopping swelling and pain, it’s likely that your pet will begin to move more, lose weight, and be generally perkier than they were previously.
Even if your pet isn’t particularly anxious, there are certain times of year that can trigger a nervous response from animals. Fireworks on New Year’s Eve or the 4th of July, for example, can cause your pet to feel restless and on edge. In the same way that it helps humans, CBD can help to relieve anxiety in your pets. By working through the endocannabinoid system, CBD can calm the nervous system and trigger the brain to release serotonin, the body’s way to calm itself down. We recommend microdosing (here’s a great guide here) – administering a fraction of the recommended dose regularly- to ensure your pet doesn’t experience mood swings or large peaks followed by huge dips.
If your pet is aging or unwell, you may start noticing changes in their eating habits. While an older pet may eat less because they aren’t getting as much exercise, they could also simply be getting finicky about their food. Of course, pets that aren’t eating enough will seem fatigued and be more susceptible to illness. CBD can help to boost your pet’s appetite by binding to receptors in their brain that trigger hunger. CBD Kyro points out that giving your pet CBD could also prevent food-related nausea, stopping them from vomiting up their food.
If you or your vet is feeling concerned about the health of your pet’s heart, then CBD could come to the rescue. The compound can reduce damaged blood vessels to help blood (and therefore oxygen) travel around the heart easier, reduce high heart rates and blood pressure levels caused by anxiety, and even help regulate an irregular heartbeat.
Finding out your pet is battling cancer can be absolutely heartbreaking, however, you shouldn’t give up. CBD can actually help your animal in their fight by preventing cancer cell growth,
slowing or completely inhibiting glioma cell growth, and even working with your animal’s cancer treatment to make it more efficient.
Up to 4% of all dogs worldwide suffer from epilepsy-related seizures, while some specific breeds will suffer up to 10% more than others. The FDA has approved the use of CBD for epilepsy in humans, and there’s no reason as to why it wouldn’t help pets, too. In fact, CBD first broke out because of a young girl called Charlotte Figi, who saw a huge reduction in the number of seizures she was having after taking the compound. Once processed by the endocannabinoid system, CBD can affect specific receptors and channels in the brain to reduce and calm the abnormal firing of neurons. In turn, this can help to control and reduce the number of seizures your pet is experiencing.
Sounds great- is it safe?
Dogs are reported to have a higher number of cannabinoid receptors than humans, so it is important to remember that you should administer a lower dose of CBD to your animals. You should avoid giving your pet products with high amounts of THC, as these can be highly toxic, so CBD is the best marijuana product for animals. While more research needs to be done, many pets are currently taking CBD without any issues. Clinical trials are also ongoing so you should keep an eye on updates.
You should also note that not all CBD products are made the same, so it is important to conduct some research and check the labels of any products that you buy to make sure they are pet-safe. The Assembly Bill 2215 signed into law by California Governor Jerry Brown back in September 2018 made it legal for California veterinarians to discuss cannabis for pets with their clients, so you should check the law in your area and try to consult with a vet.
Administering small amounts of CBD oil to your pet could work effectively. As described by Healthcare Weekly, CBD oil is extracted from the flower cluster of either marijuana or hemp plant, depending on the processor. It can also be produced from other parts of the plant.
The cannabidiol oil is often extracted by diluting crushed hemp/cannabis Sativa material in a carrier oil like hemp seed oil, jojoba oil, flaxseed oil or coconut oil.
As it is mostly flavorless, CBD oil is one of the best methods for quickly administering CBD to a fussy dog.
Author bio: This article comes from Andrew Peterson at VegasForAll