dog owner gives his dog a CBD hemp snack

CBD for Pets: An In-depth Guide

There is no doubt that every pet owner wants their little furry friend to live a happy, healthy life. Regardless, health issues are inevitable, and when they arise, you’ll always be faced with a difficult choice. You can choose to watch your little companion suffer or put them on expensive medication that may have potential side effects.

The good thing is that you have a third choice; consider natural CBD oil for pets. But how do you know whether the CBD product you choose is right for your pet? Learn more about cannabinoid for pets in this guide.

pug dog holds CBD bottle and a cannabis leaf

The food and drug administration (FDA) does not regulate CBD, which is why there is a lot of variability in products available on the market. It is also why some CBD products are more effective than others. As a responsible pet owner, it’s prudent to check whether the company you are buying from offers third-party testing and “certificate of analysis.”

You should still check if the products contain THC in addition to the CBD. There is less research on how THC affects dogs than it is on the effects of CBD. According to the society for the prevention of cruelty to animals (ASPCA), THC is listed as a toxic substance for cats and dogs.

Before purchasing any CBD product for your pet, make sure that you consult with a veterinarian on toxicities and potential side effects the product may cause to your pet. Here are some of the common forms of CBD for animals you can use on your pet.

Oil Tinctures

Oil tinctures come in a glass bottle with a dropper designed to ensure that you get the correct dosage. There are different ways you can give your pet oil tincture. You can either squirt directly into your dog’s mouth or place it under the tongue to be absorbed directly into the bloodstream.

If your furry friend can’t allow you to do all that, put a few CBD drops in his favorite treat. Take note that the dog/cat food should be soft to absorb the tincture. Some of the food you should consider are; plain yogurt, boiled chicken, mashed sardine, or canned salmon.

CBD for Pets: An In-depth Guide

Capsules

CBD capsules used for treating different conditions in pets contain flavonoids mixed with natural hemp, terpenes, and full-spectrum CBD. Manufactures advice many pet owners to consider capsules over tinctures because they are convenient to use. This is because the optimal dosage is already calculated, so you have to keep measuring each time.

Topical Creams

CBD topic cream may not always be the best solution for every situation. If you hope to calm your dog from excessive barking or noise phobia, you’ll probably need full-spectrum CBD oil tincture. However, if you are hoping to target a specific area such as a sore joint or itchy skin, CBD topic creams are the best option. This is because they go right to the source of the problem giving effective relief in a short time.

This is also a treatment option your vet may recommend if CBD oil presents negative side effects to the medication your pet is currently taking.

Administering CBD to Pets

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a biphasic compound that has different effects at low doses vs high doses. A high dose of CBD is usually not always effective unless in severe issues such as seizures. For conditions such as anxiety, low to medium dose will serve your pet more effectively. When giving your dog or cat CBD, there are certain guidelines you should follow.

First, make sure that you consult with your vet to ensure that the CBD doesn’t interfere with any current health conditions and medication. Once this is out of the way the next step is to determine your optimal dosage, and there are a few metrics to keep in mind;

  • The concentration of CBD active components in the product
  • The number of milligrams in the dosage
  • Your dog weight

Before administering the dosage, begin by measuring your pet’s weight in kilograms then multiply the weight (kg) by your product dosage amount. Take note of the concentration on the pack (CBD in each milliliter) and then divide the product dosage amount by the number of the concentration.

CBD for Pets: An In-depth Guide

CBD is non-toxic, which means that even “overdosing” won’t result in any fatalities. However, the common side-effects include over-active appetites and excessive sedation, disorientation or vomiting. If any of the above appear, stop the intake and consult a veterinarian. Note that CBD for pets comes in different forms, and each type has a different effect on their body.

recent study has delved deeper into how different delivery methods (cream, oil, and capsule) affected how CBD moves through the body of healthy dogs. The study measured pharmacokinetics (how high the blood gets concentrated, how CBD is absorbed, and how fast it is eliminated).

From the test result, it was established that CBD oil had the best pharmacokinetic profile. This means that it performed consistently across different dogs, stayed longer in the bloodstream, and reached the highest concentration in the blood.

Is CBD Safe for Pets?

According to a world health organization report, cannabidiol (CBD) is well tolerated by animals in its pure state. Many subsequent canine studies have indicated an increase in the liver enzyme alkaline phosphatase (ALP) during treatment. From the same study, liver function tests indicated that the liver wasn’t failing, and it’s therefore unclear whether the ALP levels may cause serious problems long term.

If your dog has any know liver condition, you should be concerned about giving it CBD because the metabolism of the compound takes place in the liver. When using CBD on your pets, there are bound to be benefits and shortcomings. Below is a detailed outlook on what to expect.

Benefits of CBD in Pets

CBD is a proven natural way to address different health problems affecting your pet. CBD doesn’t have any psychoactive properties because it has near-zero THC content. Therefore, it provides different health benefits without the intoxicating effects of cannabis. Here are a few health benefits you should know.

Helps to Relieve Pain

Most traditional pain management for chronic and acute pain management involves antihistamines, opioids, steroids and NSAIDs. The common side effects include intestinal bleeding, vomiting, respiratory problems and constipation. 

CBD oil can relieve pain that any of your fur babies may be suffering from without any debilitating side effects of the traditional pain management options.

CBD for Pets: An In-depth Guide

Helps Fight Infection

Pets (both cats and dogs) are exposed to pathogenic bacteria daily. While their immune system is designed to resist most of the infection, this is not always the case with some types of bacteria. Some common types of bacteria in pets include campylobacteria, salmonella, clostridia, toxoplasmosis, and bordetella. These bacteria are found in uncooked food, feces, and contaminated water.

Sick cats would usually have digestive upsets (vomiting or diarrhea), and would not have the energy to play. This can, however, be managed if you use CBD for cats. A study conducted at the University of Queensland in Australia on the effectiveness of CBD on bacteria common in pets proved that it was effective even on the strains that were resistant to antibiotics.

This research is an important finding because the world health organization is getting concerned about antibiotic resistance to certain types of bacteria. 

Helps to Reduced Anxiety

Anxiety is among the common benefits of CBD oil when used in both animals and humans alike. While CBD reduces anxiety for those with panic disorder, anxiety disorder, or post-traumatic stress disorder, users have reported that anxious animals are more relaxed and calmer with the use of oils.

Whether you are making a trip to the vet, or out on a night of fireworks, anxious dogs treated with CBD respond positively and generally have their stress levels reduced.

Promotes Wound Healing

CBD’s anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antiseptic properties promote the healing of wounds in cats and dogs. The endocannabinoid system is responsible for the healing process, and CBD oil accelerates it, encouraging your pet’s body to produce more cannabinoids. This may be abrasion injuries that result from friction applied to the skin external surface or incision wounds from a surgical operation.

Potential Shortcomings of CBD in Pets

Just like any other substance, there are potential side effects associated with the use of CBD in pets. While the side effects may be minimal, they have to be taken into account to ensure that they realize the intended benefits rather than discomfort.

CBD for Pets: An In-depth Guide

The Dry Mouth Effect

Dry mouth is a side effect that is both common in both pets and humans. While it may not be potentially dangerous, it can be very uncomfortable for pets. Since they can’t communicate, you should always watch out for the signs. Any significant reduction in the production of saliva or if your dog drinks more than usual, it is a dry mouth sign to watch out.

Drowsiness

Drowsiness is another potential side effect of using CBD on pets. The relaxing and soothing characteristics extend the sleepy feeling in some breeds of dogs. This is usually not something to worry about, but it’s best to consider lowering your doses.

Learn How CBD Can Help Protect Your Pet!

Preliminary studies and anecdotal evidence suggest that CBD is useful in treating different conditions in pets. Still, if you decide to try CBD on your dog or cat, make its best to start by speaking with your vet. Many vets advise that you should begin with small doses then carefully monitor for any positive or negative effects.

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