CBD for pets

The Science Behind Medical Use of CBD For Pets

In cats, Dogs, Pet Healthby Emotional Pet Support TeamLeave a Comment

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Cannabidiol (CBD) has been much talked about lately as a potential treatment for several bodily issues. While studies concerning the effects of CBD on humans have been able to pace up, they are still at a very nascent stage when it comes to pets. Although a lot of claims are made on its effectiveness on animals, there is very little substantive evidence or research available to support such claims.   

How does CBD work?   

You must be wondering how does CBD works, exactly? Well, CBD imitates the naturally occurring cannabinoids binding with the receptors present in the endocannabinoid system of the body. The system is present in all vertebrates.   

These receptors help to regulate neurotransmitters associated with physiology, pain, sleep, anxiety, and stress. Initial reports show that CBD might be able to induce a calming effect and soothe irritation in animals just as it promises to do in humans.    

CBD, derived from the hemp plant, is non-psychotic, non-toxic, and non-addictive, unlike another popular cannabinoid THC, which gives a high sensation. This eliminates the risk of overdosing and toxic side effects on animals to a great extent and makes CBD popular and desirable.   

How to feed?   

Unlike humans, who can smoke a joint and consume CBD in sundry ways, pets need specific dosage fed in specific ways. CBD infused pet food is available in a variety of forms–soft chews, biscuits–which makes it more likable to them. A more common way of feeding CBD to pets is an oil-based tincture, which comes in a bottle with a dropper and has a specific amount of cannabinoids in it. Pet owners can buy them at any trusted online weed dispensary.    

One should always go through reviews of particular brands and products to get an idea of their effectiveness. Pet owners mostly prefer products with no or very little THC content in them as it is a psychoactive compound and might negatively affect the health of pets. 

Regular usage can help determine the best suitable method and dose. While a dosage less than the required amount might bring about no significant changes, a higher dosage might even prove to be harmful. If the pets show any signs of discomfort or intolerance, the owners must discontinue the usage immediately. It is always advisable to consult a vet before administering CBD to a pet for possible infections and side effects. Even online veterinarians provide consultations on these unconventional medicines.    

How effective is CBD?   

A survey conducted in 2015, piloted by faculty at Colorado State University, interviewed people having pets. Out of the 492 participants using CBD products for their pets (dogs or cats), 88.8% rated them as very safe, and 62.48% felt that they worked better than some, most, or any other treatments. The two most frequently reported side effects among both dogs and cats were sedation and overactive appetite.   

Dogs have significantly higher chances of suffering from arthritis as they grow. One of the most common uses of CBD is to treat arthritis in dogs. A study titled ‘Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Clinical Efficacy of Cannabidiol Treatment in Osteoarthritic Dogs’, conducted in 2018, observed a significant increase in activity of the dogs who were under study after regular and controlled CBD treatment, and decrease in pain. The study suggests that a dose of 2 mg/kg of CBD twice a day to dogs with osteoarthritis can help increase their activity and comfort.    

Given the anticonvulsant properties of CBD, a few studies also suggest its effectiveness in treating drug-resistant epilepsy in pets, just as it is in humans.   

Claims from many pet owners state online that CBD induces positive changes in mood and behavior of their pets, reduces aggression, and helps with digestion problems. However, there is no conclusive evidence to testify such claims.   After overcoming years of taboo and restrictions, it is only recently that CBD has emerged as a possible treatment for a variety of health issues. Although initial research holds immense promise, it is far from being a concrete confirmation. While using CBD products for pets, it should be kept in mind that animals have very different bodily requirements of and reactions to chemicals than humans. Owners need to take special care after introducing these new products to pets.

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