Everything You Need to Know About CBD for Animals

Over the past few years, cannabidiol (CBD) has exploded onto the health and wellness scene and is disrupting several other industries out there including the pet care industry.

 Many people swear by the substance for a range of conditions, including anxiety, chronic pain, and even sleep issues. While we’ve only scratched the surface of what CBD can do for humans, there are plenty of studies highlighting the therapeutic and pharmacokinetic benefits of the phytocannabinoid.

 For some time now, everyone has been wondering whether CBD can offer the same benefits to their beloved four-legged friends.

 Much of the information out there regarding CBD and animals is a bit unclear, which is why we’re going to dive in and talk about it.

Where CBD and Animals Intersect

Much like humans, animals have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) that regulates all the other systems within their bodies. It produces endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) that bind with cell receptors through the animal’s body to establish a balance.

The primary difference between animals and humans when it comes to the ECS is that animals have far more cell receptors than we do, which is why CBD is beneficial and THC is not.

CBD is a phytocannabinoid that works exactly like the body’s natural endocannabinoids to mitigate the issues it’s having.

 Moreover, CBD is extracted from the hemp variety of the cannabis plant. It’s also the non-psychoactive counterpart to THC, which means it won’t get your pet high and can be used to provide relief from the following:

  • Chronic pain and inflammation
  • Epilepsy and seizures
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Arthritis and joint pain
  • Skin conditions
  • Parasitic and bacterial infections
  • Glaucoma
  • Cancer side effects
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  • Tremors
  • Tumor growth

 Of course, research on how animals metabolize CBD is still in its early stages. However, recent studies involving arthritic dogs have proven that CBD can be effective for pain relief.

 There are also several ways you can administer CBD to your pet, with the most popular methods being CBD oil, CBD pet treats, and salves (for joint or paw pad pain).

CBD For Big Animals Vs Small Animals

One of the most important things to think about when it comes to giving CBD to animals is that size matters.

 Put simply, the larger the animal, the slower the metabolism. Therefore, the dosage by weight will differ significantly from a cat to a dog to a horse. The condition also matters as the amount of CBD for pain needed will also differ for the amount of CBD needed for anxiety.

 Here’s an example for some perspective: The standard dose of CBD oil for dogs with anxiety is about 0.1 mg per kg of body weight. For a horse with anxiety, the standard dose would be around 0.5 mg/kg.

Why Your Vet May Not Recommend CBD

Interestingly enough, the one place you won’t find CBD for pets is your veterinarian’s office. This is because for some time it was actually illegal for veterinarians to openly discuss, recommend, or even prescribe CBD for pets.

 But that doesn’t mean they’re against it. Nor does it mean you shouldn’t discuss it with your vet—because you absolutely should if you’re thinking about giving it to your pet.

Today in 2021, the laws regarding CBD and veterinarian practices are still a bit unclear as there’s no official policy on CBD products for pets, which is largely due to a lack of clinical research. Although, more and more studies in favor of CBD as a holistic approach to pet health and chronic conditions are cropping up.

The bottom line is that CBD is perfectly safe to give to your furry friends and can also benefit their health and wellness greatly.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that CBD is still a largely under-regulated substance. Therefore, it’s essential that you only purchase pet CBD from a reputable brand that sources its hemp from the US and offers full transparency.

Written by Andres Romero

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