As natural wellness becomes an ever more important (albeit commercialised) part of our lives, it’s only natural to assume that the trends we see for humans will inevitably work their way down to our pets. After all, if man’s best friend can’t enjoy the same quality of life as man himself, who can?
You’ll have seen the recent rise in popularity of cannabis-derived products and probably done some research yourself. You will probably know by now that most of these products (or at least the ones being sold legally) contain a compound called cannabidiol (CBD), which is critically extracted from hemp plants and made in to full spectrum CBD oil.
It’s completely non-psychoactive (in the EU and UK, CBD tinctures can’t contain more than 0.2% THC) and seems to be able to help alleviate symptoms of everything from migraines to arthritis. So, how can CBD help our furry friends?
First of all, what is CBD?
Cannabidiol, as you will know, is extracted from hemp plants and cold pressed into an oil or tincture that’s safe to ingest. On a chemical level, though, CBD is not so dissimilar to other compounds found in cannabis – there are around 113 different cannabinoids that have been identified so far.
The main difference is that out of all of the compounds in cannabis, THC and CBD are markedly more powerful and effective within the human body.
Our bodies (and those of most animals) house many different systems that, if they are functioning properly, are the key to maintaining a state of homeostasis. Most of us know about the reproductive system, the digestive system, the respiratory system and the central nervous system.
A recently discovered network of receptors, synapses, and neurotransmitters has come to be known as the endocannabinoid system. CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system to keep it functioning properly, just like how taking the right vitamins can help the immune system to perform at optimal functionality.
How does CBD affect dogs?
Dogs have an endocannabinoid system, just as we do. In a dog’s body, endocannabinoid receptors are located primarily in and around the central and peripheral nervous systems. Although there is no definitive data on whether CBD is useful for treating dogs, there is a wealth of anecdotal evidence out there that seems to point towards it having a positive effect.
It is said that treating dogs with CBD can help:
- Treat pain (especially neuropathic pain)
- Control seizures
- Reduce anxiety
- Stimulate appetite
- Promote healthy cardiac function
- Offer anti-inflammatory properties
Can dogs experience side effects from CBD?
Dogs, just like humans, can experience side effects from any substance they ingest, and this is no different in the case of CBD. Based on how CBD affects humans, dogs may experience the following side effects:
- Dry mouth
- Low blood pressure (temporary)
Remember that if you choose to treat your dog with CBD, you should not be substituting out genuine veterinarian prescribed medicines or treatments. Know that as the FDA has not yet released a dosing chart, it is up to you to determine the right amount for your dog.
If you are worried, speak to your local veterinarian for advice, and buy CBD oil in a tincture instead of within treats – this way, you can control the dosage going forward.
CBD from SmartCBD
Find our CBD-rich range of oils, balms, and pastes here.