As you unquestionably know by now, CBD has become one of the hottest supplements on the market today. Since it’s legalization thanks to the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD’s popularity has shot through the roof, and 1 in 7 Americans have now tried the compound. CBD’s popularity can be attributed to countless individuals’ stories, and some scientific evidence, that shows CBD can help address a variety of physical and emotional issues that people experience.
However, interestingly enough, it’s potential benefits may not be limited to humans. There is some initial evidence that shows that CBD may be helpful to our pets as well, and this is an area that is being increasingly explored by veterinary researchers.
Is CBD safe for your pets? And, if so, how can it help? Read on for more.
Again, the research is just starting to become available, but like in humans, early signs are positive.
First, keep in mind that naturally produced CBD does not contain any ingredients that will, under most circumstances, hurt your pets. CBD oil is not a “drug” in the sense that it is not marijuana and will not get your pet high. Pets, like humans, have an Endocannabinoid System. It is believed that our pet’s Endocannabinoid System works just like humans: They have cannabinoid receptors and cannabinoids that are produced inside of their own bodies. Those cannabinoids then interact with the cannabinoid receptors. This, in turn, can have a variety of impacts on your pet’s body, including potentially reducing anxiety and pain. Upon completion of the reaction, enzymes will break up the cannabinoid, and the cycle will start anew.
CBD oil does not bind with cannabinoid receptors. Instead, it alters the impact of this naturally occurring bond, making cannabinoids bind for longer periods of time and strengthening this already existing bond. This, in turn, is thought to have a variety of impacts on your pet.
However, there are at least two safety concerns to keep in mind when it comes to your pet and CBD. First, like in humans, there are some concerns that CBD may not be appropriate for pets with reduced liver functions. Some veterinarians have specifically noted that giving a pet CBD if they had liver issues may be a danger, so this is a very important consideration to keep in mind when deciding whether or not to give your pet CBD.
The best thing you can do to protect your pet’s safety before giving them CBD is speak with your veterinarian about the subject. They will likely be more aware of the various issues related to CBD and pets and be better updated about the latest research. Furthermore, they will know if there are any concerns about drug interactions, liver function, and your pet.
Additionally, just like in humans, CBD products that are marketed to pets have zero requirements when it comes to labeling and testing. This means that it is all too easy for bad vendors to sell CBD products that are inaccurately labeled and don’t actually contain CBD or any of the other ingredients that they claim to contain. Unfortunately, this is exactly what has happened, and numerous national media reports have noted this negative trend.
Fortunately, there are ways that you can protect your pet from inaccurately labeled products: Only purchase CBD that comes with a Certificate of Analysis. This is a test, performed by a third-party vendor, that can determine what ingredients are actually in the CBD you are about to give to your animal.
Again, as noted above, much of the news when it comes to CBD is positive, and it appears to be very helpful in addressing certain issues that other medications cannot. Here are three such examples.
Seizure reduction is one of the most well-known benefits of CBD in humans. Indeed, thus far, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration has approved only one CBD-based drug for prescription: Epidiolex, which has been approved for two types of rare seizure disorders.
Some research has been conducted in this area in terms of pets, and the initial results have been positive. For example, the American Kennel Club’s Canine Health Foundation sponsored a small study with the University of Colorado to determine whether or not CBD can help reduce seizures in dogs. The results were positive: Of the 16 dogs tested, 89% showed a reduction of seizures, and the group given CBD performed better than those given a placebo.
To be sure, more research is needed. However, these results suggest that CBD could be more beneficial than other anti-convulsants available on the market today.
One of the most common alleged benefits of CBD in humans is the reduction of pain and inflammation, and it appears that this may work in our pets as well. While this area is well studied in humans, it is less studied in pets, but again, there are ample anecdotal stories of pets appearing to demonstrate reduced pain symptoms and less inflammation when given CBD.
The little research available in this area has been positive. For example, one study conducted found that dogs who suffered from osteoarthritis showed a reduction of pain behaviors and an increase of activity after being given CBD. This makes sense and would be in line with many of the studies conducted in humans.
Of all of the potential to help pets here, this is the one with the least amount of research. Yes, the internet is replete with anecdotal stories of it helping to calm pets down, and there is at least one active study that is reviewing the role that CBD may have when it comes to reducing pet anxiety. However, there is currently no actual research that shows what CBD may be able to do in terms of reducing pet anxiety.
If you are interested in giving your pet CBD, make sure to talk with your veterinarian first and always check out the CBD’s Certificate of Analysis. From there, make informed decisions. Start with low dosages and make sure that your pet is tolerating the substance well. Gauge for any side effects, like sleepiness or nausea. We also recommend that you check out our CBD for pets. It is designed with your pet in mind. Furthermore, as noted above, all products contain a Certificate of Analysis, so you can confirm that the CBD you are giving your pet is fairly manufactured.
Again, more research is needed, but it does appear that CBD has the potential to help our pets.