Cannabidiol (CBD) is a plant-based component derived from hemp and cannabis plants. It has been used for thousands of years in many countries and is thought to provide a wide range of benefits, though scientists are yet to unravel its true potential.
When you hear the word "cannabis," most people tend to associate it with marijuana. But the truth is there are 113 different cannabinoids found in this plant, and researchers are still unraveling its potential benefit on humans and animals.
Many studies have been conducted to assess the impact of CBD on dogs and other pets, and the results are encouraging.
Let's get a basic understanding of how CBD works on pets.
How Does CBD Work?
All mammals have an Endocannabinoid System (ECS) that handles biological processes such as memory, immunity, sleep, and more. This system consists of two cannabinoid receptors, namely, CB1 and CB2. Both the receptors interact with the endocannabinoids produced by the brain to provide specific responses in your body.
Besides interacting with the cannabinoids in your brain, these receptors can also interact with plant-based cannabinoids like CBD, and this is how CBD helps to alter the responses given by your body to certain conditions.
Now that we have a general understanding of why plant-based CBDs are accessible, here is a look at some of the benefits that are believed to impact your pet positively. Remember, cats and dogs are mammals and have a similar ECS like you!
Many individuals consume CBD for pain relief. Like humans, dogs also get old, and they suffer joint pain and stiffness as age catches with them. An excellent way to relieve these joint pains for your dog could be through CBD. Many studies have shown the positive correlation between CBD and arthritis in humans, and early results of some studies show that it can help alleviate the hip, back, and joint pains that dogs go through during their old age.
A well-known study that explores the connection between CBD and inflammation explains that there is a structural connection between analgesics and anti-inflammatory activity, and this can provide benefits on the organism in which CBD is administered.
Cancer Fighting Properties
Cancer can be a traumatic experience for you and your pets. Unfortunately, if your pet gets diagnosed with cancer, CBD may be able to help. First off, it's essential to understand that CBD doesn't cure cancer, but what it is touted to do is stop the growth of the harmful or cancerous cells. This can help your pet to live a better life until it reaches its end.
Initial research shows that CBD can play a significant role in relieving the discomfort or pain associated with cancer, such as seizures and joint pains. Though more research is needed in this area, it is sure a promising trend that can give hope to millions of pets and their owners.
CBD has many anti-inflammatory properties that may be able to reduce seizures and epilepsy in dogs. The AKC Canine Health Foundation is partnering with the Colorado State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Science to study the impact of CBD on seizures in dogs. The initial results look promising as we wait for the final ones.
When you leave your pet at home and head for work or school, your pets can go through the pangs of separation anxiety as they may miss you. Unfortunately, they won't be able to express it well, which can further exacerbate their stress.
Besides giving a lot of love and affection to your pets, you may be able to use CBD oil to relieve anxiety. CBD is known to contain components that calm your central nervous system, and this characteristic is sure to come in handy for your pets as well.
Promote Healthy Eating Habits
The National Cancer Institute has found that CBD increases appetite in humans and animals, which means giving CBD oil can promote healthy eating, especially in sick animals. It may also treat related symptoms such as nausea and vomiting.
How Should CBD Be Given?
Now here comes an important question. How much CBD oil should you give?
Experts ask you to take your dog's weight and convert it to kilograms by dividing the weight by 2.2. Multiply this weight by 0.3 to know the dosage amount. If you're using concentrated oil, convert the ml to mg to determine the exact dosage.
Many times, the product will contain the dosage based on your dog's weight. So, simply follow it. Consider talking to your veterinarian before you start the dosage.
It merits noting that more research is needed in this area, and the U.S Food and drug administration (FDA) has not approved the use of CBD for dogs or other pets. So, it is hard to know the exact dosage. You should start with small quantities and increase if your dog responds well to it. Also, check with your veterinarian if you have any doubts about CBD & your pets health.
What Are the Right CBD Products?
With so many CBD products available today, you may wonder which of these to buy. While that choice is up to you, here are some factors to consider.
- Look for organic products, and even if you can't get wholly natural, make sure pesticides were not used on the hemp used to make this oil.
- Use CBD oil or tincture as it will be easier to monitor the dosage. There are also CBD-based dog treats available in the market.
- Read the packaging carefully to understand the components and amount of CBD present in it. While reading, check if the THC levels are little to nothing.
- In general, more expensive options have purer extracts, so don't skimp on the quality to try to save a few dollars. More expensive items tend to be free of additives as well.
In short, CBD shows a lot of promise for dogs and other pets. Check with your veterinarian and start administering small drops to gauge its benefits.