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CBD and Dogs CBD Benefits for Pets

Do Vets Recommend Using CBD Oils on Pets?

With the Christmas holiday season just around the corner, the firework usage in most countries outside the U.S. has an incredible uptick. Blasting off fireworks is an activity that we humans seem to enjoy a great deal but one that our friendly four legged friends give the impression of having to endure rather than enjoy. 

We recently started to think about the way we handle this situation. We often look for answers that can get us through the hurdle, like ear muffs or placing our dog in a quiet place until the firework show stops. However, there are veterinarian recommended solutions to get our furry pals through this tough time. 

Slowly, over the past few decades, pets have become more than just a companion. They have become family, and pet owners are always on the lookout for products that can give their families a more pleasant lifestyle. 

Enter CBD for animals.

CBD is a natural way to treat your dog. The effects of CBD on dogs and other mammal pets are supposed to mimic those of CBD on humans. If we go by what the anecdotal evidence says, we’re looking at effects like stress and anxiety relief. But like with any other medicine for dogs, we have to ask ourselves: is CBD safe for dogs? We answer that question and more up ahead.

Is CBD Safe for Dogs?

CBD is one of the currently 113 identified cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. Cannabinoids are the main components of cannabis. Unlike popular belief, not all cannabinoids carry psychoactive properties. What this means is that not all of them can get you high. In fact, up until now, we've only identified a single cannabinoid to have psychoactive properties; Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

This discovery has spun other non-psychoactive cannabinoids into a popularity spiral, hence all the fuss surrounding Cannabidiol (CBD). A non-psychoactive ingredient recorded provides many of THC's positive effects without the feeling of 'getting high.'

These discoveries have prompted numerous research studies. This research has led us to discover that CBD has the potential to help reduce anxiety and stress. Massive amounts of frequent consumers swear by it.

But what does this have to do with CBD and pets? That same research has also found that the way dog and cat's bodies react to cannabinoids is very similar to how human bodies interpret it, making CBD's benefits very similar between both species.

CBD for Pets vs. CBD for Humans

The main difference between both categories is the amount of CBD in each serving. Even though humans and animals process CBD in the same way, they still have different sizes and other biological differences. This difference has driven CBD companies to dose CBD for animals uniquely.

Other key differences include flavors and application methods. While application methods can be the same, some do not comply with animals like vaping and smoking. Flavors is another significant difference because while a cat may enjoy a salmon flavored CBD oil, this might be a flavor that most humans do not want. 

Popularity Is Booming but Vets Urge Caution

Like with CBD for humans, CBD medicine for dogs and cats still has a long way to go in research and development. Although CBD shows incredible promise in both animals and humans, there isn't enough information and evidence to guarantee the substance's safety and effectiveness.

The WHO has deemed hemp-derived CBD mainly safe, leading us to believe that this behavior is the same in pets. However, vets still urge caution when it comes to CBD for cats and dogs.

This warning is not founded on the evidence of CBD's pros and cons for animals. On the other hand, it's based on the lack of evidence of both pros and cons. When FDA approval hits on CBD for animals for certain CBD products for humans, then and only then will veterinarians feel confident to give their seal of approval, at least officially.

CBD Pros and Cons

Because of the lack of conclusive evidence and research, no one can guarantee benefits or hindrances for CBD, whether you’re talking about CBD as medicine for animals or as a treatment for a human ailment. But what we can do is list out several potential benefits recorded by pet owners. This information remains based on anecdotal evidence, but anecdotal evidence is more than enough to be noteworthy, at the very least.

Pros:

  • May act as an anticonvulsant
  • Potential analgesic effects
  • Reduction of seizures in pets diagnosed with epilepsy
  • Antiemetic properties that can help pets cope with disorientation
  • May reduce inflammation in injured animals
  • Helps manage appetite

Many sources claim that CBD may help with more severe ailments like tumors and other forms of cancer. This claim is something that we recommend looking at with caution. There isn’t any real evidence to confirm or deny this, but having false expectations is something that we do not condone. The best way to go about it when it comes to severe ailments like cancer or even less serious ones like nausea is to consult a licensed veterinarian. This is the only way you can guarantee that you’re doing the right thing for your pet as a pet owner.

Cons:

  • May cause diarrhea if not dosed appropriately
  • Risk of developmental toxicity
  • Has been linked to embryo-fetal mortality
  • Inhibition of the central nervous system
  • Male reproductive system alterations
  • Has been associated hypotension

All of the potential cons listed above are cons associated with CBD animal consumption and extracted from the research from Huestis et al. [1].

Even though we need to be clear about the potential negative consequences of dosing your pet with CBD, it’s also a part of our duty to clarify that, like the benefits associated with CBD for animals, the cons are also not based on conclusive findings.

Conclusion

CBD has potential benefits for pets. The only problem is that these are only potential, and even though most of them have anecdotal evidence to back them up, there is no conclusive clinical evidence for them. Only time will tell the true potential and risk involved in CBD for pets.

References

[1] Huestis, M. A., Solimini, R., Pichini, S., Pacifici, R., Carlier, J., & Busardò, F. P. (2019b). Cannabidiol Adverse Effects and Toxicity. Current Neuropharmacology, 17(10), 974–989. https://doi.org/10.2174/1570159x17666190603171901

Hemmfy articles and blogs are meant to entertain and educate. However, we are not medical professionals and do not intend to give medical advice through them.

The knowledge around CBD and other cannabis-derived products is growing and constantly changing, as does their legal status. Hence, we recommend checking with your local authorities and a licensed physician prior to consumption.

Simon Cartagena

Simon Cartagena is a full-time cannabis copywriter. This has led him to write for companies like Hemmfy.com where he acts as Senior Content Writer and other world-renowned cannabis publications. Simon has created Content Marketing strategies and articles that have helped company revenues increase by up to 1,000%. Simon’s goal is to help people understand cannabis in an industry where misinformation seems to be predominant.