If you are a pet owner, you might have heard about CBD for pets. On the internet, you can easily find many articles tackling this subject. There, the authors debate whether CBD is good for our four-legged friends or not. Nonetheless, as with almost every discussion on pet wellness trends, the results of these debates might be more confusing than helpful.
In this article, we take a closer look at CBD and its effects on pets. Moreover, we answer if taking CBD is safe for our animal companions and how it works. So, if you would like to educate yourself before you start looking for the best CBD oil for dogs, read on.
What Is CBD?
Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is one of the active compounds found in cannabis. The cannabis plant has several cannabinoids. Some of them are psychoactive, while others are not. CBD is a part of the latter group. These compounds are similar to endocannabinoids, which compose the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in our bodies.
The ECS is a network of receptors, neurotransmitters, and other compounds involved in regulating our health. For instance, the ECS is responsible for controlling the immune system, balancing stress reactions, and maintaining homeostasis.
When buying CBD oil for pets, you should know that you can get it in different forms: tinctures, capsules, edibles, or even sprays. Numerous CBD brands offer high-quality products at reasonable prices. When buying CBD oil for pets, look for hemp-derived products, as they are likely to contain high-quality ingredients.
How Does It Work?
Although it has little affinity for the cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) in the endocannabinoid system, CBD modulates several non-cannabinoid receptors and ion channels. For example, it binds to serotonin and vanilloid receptors and activates them. This interaction reduces the production of neurochemicals such as dopamine and serotonin, so CBD might help relieve anxiety and depression symptoms.
Additionally, CBD helps reduce chronic pain by reducing inflammation and pain signals in the body. This reduction of stress hormones and inflammation caused by chronic pain may significantly improve your pet’s overall health.
Does CBD Help Pets With Different Conditions?
Even though much research has been done on how CBD can affect humans, little is known about how it affects our pets. Nevertheless, studies on animals suggest that CBD might improve their quality of life and even enhance their life expectancy.
For example, this study shows that CBD might help with epilepsy. As epileptic seizures can be fatal for humans and animals, different anti-epileptic drugs have been developed to control this condition. However, one of the most effective that we know of today is using CBD.
Another study backs the claim that CBD might help dogs suffering from osteoarthritis. The dogs that took part in it received 2 mg/kg of CBD enriched oil daily for four weeks. Later on, the researchers reported that dogs given CBD had decreased pain levels than those given a placebo. Moreover, they also noted an increase in activity in dogs supplemented with CBD.
Is It Safe To Give Your Dog CBD?
As mentioned above, there is little scientific evidence on whether CBD is safe for animals. However, some studies suggest that it might be beneficial for pets with chronic pain or epilepsy. Nevertheless, more research needs to be done to understand whether it is safe and effective for animals. For this reason, it is best to consult your veterinarian before giving your dog CBD.
In addition to the safety issue, some pet owners may decide not to give their dogs CBD because they might want to avoid giving their pets something derived from the cannabis plant. This point can be especially vital for people who are against legalizing cannabis.
Possible Side Effects of CBD For Pets
The effects of CBD may vary depending on various factors. However, many of these effects usually depend on the dose given.
Most side effects affect the gastrointestinal tract and include vomiting, diarrhea, and gastrointestinal distress. But, there are also other less common side effects associated with CBD use in pets. These include low blood pressure, lethargy, and lack of appetite.
As you can see, there is little research on the effectiveness of CBD for pets. Nevertheless, most of the studies that have been conducted suggest that cannabidiol can be beneficial for them. Moreover, even though it is still unclear how effective CBD is, it seems safe at low doses. It also produces fewer adverse side effects than other treatments.
If your dog is suffering from osteoarthritis, anxiety, or epilepsy, you might want to try using CBD to relieve its pain. It is not guaranteed to take care of all of the problems you might have, but it can significantly help you manage them more successfully. Good luck!