CBD is becoming a popular treatment for people experiencing a host of issues, including anxiety and chronic pain. Turns out, CBD can be just as effective at treating similar conditions in dogs and other pets.
What is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. CBD is not the same as THC (or tetrahydracannabidiol) – which is the psychoactive compound in cannabis which produces the ‘high’ feeling. Unlike THC, CBD is a neutral compound that once isolated into its purest form, is anti-psychotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-convulsant, as well as being an effective antioxidant. Cannabidiol does not get you high, and CBD oil contains less than 0.3% THC. CBD may be used in treating stress and anxiety, as well as physical issues such as nausea, vomiting, chronic pain, as well as muscle and joint inflammation.
Just like humans, dogs have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) in our brains.
This is found in the central nervous system, as well as the peripheral nervous system. When you use CBD oil or other cannabis products, you introduce cannabinoids into the body, which interact with the central nervous system to produce a variety of reactions. Animals are also much more sensitive to THC than humans, due to the larger number of receptors in their brain. However, because pure CBD is not psychoactive, it is perfectly safe for animals to ingest.
You should always be careful when administering any type of treatments to your pet, as there is a whole host of things that while perfectly safe for humans to ingest can be poisonous for dogs – including chocolate, garlic, and onions. You should always ensure that any CBD treatments or products used for your animals contain high-grade, pure CBD oil. Also, the dosage appropriate for animals differs greatly to the recommended dosage for humans, so always consult a veterinary professional for advice before administering any CBD treatments to your pet.
CBD and Stress
More research needs to be done but CBD oil may help with anxiety in humans, and it may be just as effective at treating stress and anxiety in dogs. Pets can experience a great deal of stress from a variety of sources, whether it be physical/external stimuli or emotional stress. Dog owners know that holidays like Halloween and New Year’s Eve can be especially stressful for dogs, due to loud noises caused by fireworks and large crowds. Travelling and/or a change in environment can also contribute to stress in dogs.
Dogs are also highly sensitive to emotional stressors such as separation anxiety when separated from their owners. Anyone who has adopted a dog from a shelter also knows that animals that may have come from an abusive or less than loving background can be more vulnerable to stress and anxiety than other dogs, and it can take much longer for the dog to develop a sense of trust with its new owner.
Using CBD to Treat Physical Issues
In much the same way CBD oil can be used to treat physical problems like seizures, arthritis, and even cancer it can also be safe and effective for animals in the correct dosage. Arthritis can be a huge issue for dogs, especially larger pure-bred species who are more likely to suffer from hip and knee problems than mixed species. CBD is a natural anti-inflammatory and has be proven to be incredibly effective in treating muscle and joint pain.
Many people undergoing cancer treatment are now turning to CBD oil as a possible natural aid in recovery from chronic pain. CBD oil might also be used to help animals suffering from cancer. Canine cancer is one of the leading causes of death in older dogs, and although it would not be recommended on its own to fight cancer, there is considerable evidence to show that CBD has the potential to compliment and help the effectiveness chemotherapy.
Dogs can also be more susceptible to bowel and gastro-intestinal issues, and the naturally occurring nutrients and Omega fatty acids in CBD can help to fight off these problems. These nutrients also help to maintain a healthy, glossy coat for your pet. CBD can also fight nausea and promote appetite in dogs experiencing gastro-intestinal upset such as vomiting and diarrhea.
You can treat your dog with CBD products such as hemp rope and toys, as well as treats infused with CBD oil.