CBD for Pets: All You Need to Know
Since CBD is considered to be so beneficial for humans, many people wonder whether it is possible to give it to their pets, too. Recently, the CBD for pets market has hit new highs, and it shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon. However, human CBD is not necessarily suitable for pets, so don’t go reaching for the CBD oil in your cabinet to give to your furry friend just yet. Generally, pets are a lot smaller than humans, and, therefore, regular CBD may be too strong for animals. Plus, CBD manufactured for people may contain added ingredients that aren’t healthy for dogs. That is why here at PureKana, we have launched a line of pet CBD products designed specifically for your furry companion. It’s worth mentioning that there is a bit of debate around the topic of whether you can give your pets “human” CBD oil. Some sources suggest that you can, and they are not entirely wrong. However, it’s a little risky, and we don’t recommend it here at PureKana. We will explain in more detail below.
Human CBD Oil vs. Pet CBD OilTypically, human CBD oil and pet CBD oil are manufactured in much the same way. Essentially, CBD is CBD, and the extraction process is the same - both types should be derived from clean, organic hemp. However, when designed specifically for pets, CBD brands will typically add some sort of appealing flavor to make it more enjoyable for your loving companion. At PureKana, we offer pet CBD oil and treats in several flavors, including Bacon, Steak & Sweet Potato, Peanut Butter & Pumpkin, and Blueberry & Chicken. Another difference is the CBD concentration. When shopping with reputable brands, there should be no difference in the quality of pet CBD products. However, many human CBD products are very concentrated, so dosing for small pets is an issue. Typically, pets require a lot less CBD than humans, and while you could very well just administer regular CBD oil at a lower dose - it can become a little tricky and complicated. It’s also important to consider THC concentration. Many regular CBD oils contain at least trace amounts of THC, and in some cases, it may be too much for pets. THC is poisonous for dogs, and it can make them very sick. It’s common for pets to end up at the vet after accidentally consuming their owner’s stash of marijuana. Therefore, if you do plan on giving your pet a dose of your own CBD oil, it’s important to make sure that it’s completely THC-free.
How Does CBD Work for Pets?Just like humans, pets also have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) which is responsible for establishing and maintaining overall health. Since the ECS is believed to play a key role in how CBD affects humans, it’s suggested that it affects animals in much the same way. The ECS has a network of CB1 and CB2 receptors throughout the body. These receptors can be activated by both naturally occurring endocannabinoids such as 2AG and anandamide, as well as external cannabinoids, like those found in the cannabis plant - one being CBD. CB1 receptors are found predominantly in the brain and central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are more abundant in the immune system. CBD is believed to exert its beneficial effects by interacting with these receptors. Although the cannabinoid has little binding affinity to both receptors, it has an indirect impact. Essentially, CBD helps regulate your pet’s ECS to naturally enhance their wellbeing. Since our pets have an endocannabinoid system just like we do, it makes sense that CBD would affect them in a similar manner. Thanks to the ECS, there are a number of potential benefits when it comes to administering your pet CBD oil.
The Benefits of CBD for Your PetsCBD often comes up as a useful therapy for a variety of conditions in pets, including pain management, anxiety, and seizures. Although there currently isn’t enough scientific evidence to back up the effectiveness of CBD in treating these conditions, research thus far has been promising.
1. CBD is a good painkiller – for animals too!CBD is often touted for its pain-relieving properties since it has been shown to have an impact on the inflammatory response. A famed study by Ethan Russo found that CBD can reverse the inflammation response and thereby reduce symptoms of pain, including chronic pain. Dogs and cats have bodies that work in an often surprisingly similar way to our own, which means that CBD may also be able to reduce the pain experienced by our furry friends.
2. CBD can reduce anxiety and stressJust like us, our pets can sometimes experience feelings of anxiety and stress. In most cases, it’s situational anxiety, which is caused by things like thunderstorms, traveling, or crowds of people (especially if your pet is not used to humans). Due to its potentially calming and soothing effects, CBD has a lot of promise when it comes to relieving stress and anxiety.
3. CBD may help reduce seizuresSeizures are one of the most studied applications of CBD in humans, but there is limited research for pets. In dogs, there are an array of underlying conditions that can cause seizures, which makes finding a treatment rather tricky. That said, a 2019 study suggests that CBD has the potential to reduce seizure frequency in dogs that suffer from idiopathic epilepsy specifically. However, these dogs were also administered traditional anti-seizure medications simultaneously, so it’s difficult to say what kind of effect the CBD had. Nevertheless, anecdotal reports suggest that CBD may be effective in reducing seizures in dogs.
The Risks of Giving CBD to Your PetGenerally, CBD is considered incredibly safe for both humans and pets. However, you still need to be aware of any potential risks. In most cases, any side effects experienced from CBD are minor and not considered severe, provided you are careful about how much you administer to your pet. Similarly to humans, here is what you need to look out for when giving CBD to your furry friend.
- Dry mouth: CBD can decrease the production of saliva; your dog may get very thirsty and need more to drink. Therefore, be sure to keep a bowl of fresh water nearby and easily accessible.
- Lowered blood pressure: Blood pressure has been known to drop temporarily after taking CBD. This may lead to your pet feeling dizzy and light-headed, so make sure they are in a safe environment. If your pet already suffers from low blood pressure, do not give them CBD.
- Drowsiness: The calming effects of CBD can lead to drowsiness and lethargy. Therefore, it’s important to monitor your pet and ensure you maintain a healthy dosage that doesn’t affect them too negatively.