CBD and Your Pet: An Introduction
Marijuana is legal in 29 states for medicinal use in humans, and legal for recreational use in 9 of those states plus the District of Columbia. With this wave of legalization has come intense interest in the medicinal properties of cannabis, particularly that of CBD. What you may not know is that your furry companion may enjoy some benefits from CBD as well!
What is CBD?
First things first – what exactly is CBD and how is it different from marijuana? Isn’t marijuana toxic to pets?
Great news — CBD is legal in all 50 states!
Cannabidiol, aka CBD, is an extract of the hemp plant with very low levels of THC – less than 0.3 percent. THC is the component in marijuana that causes humans to feel “high”. THC does have medicinal and therapeutic potential; however, the sensation of feeling high can be very uncomfortable for dogs and cats, and they cannot tell us when they have had too much or if the high is causing anxiety or other ill effects, so THC should be avoided for companion animals. CBD, on the other hand, does not cause a high in humans or companion animals, and has many potential health benefits!
Short story: don’t give your pets marijuana, stick to CBD oil from reputable sources with a THC level of less than 0.3 percent.
What are the benefits?
Research on the health benefits of CBD oil in companion animals is still being conducted, so right now most of the information we have is either inferred from the benefits known to be provided to humans, or from anecdotal evidence. CSU has recently concluded a trial studying the effects of CBD on dogs with osteoarthritis and is currently conducting a trial studying the effects of CBD on dogs with epilepsy. Hopefully these studies will be published soon! In the meantime, here is what we know.
In humans, CBD can help reduce inflammation, stimulate appetite, improve sleep, reduce anxiety, and even treat seizure disorders. For canine and feline patients, many anecdotal stories show very similar benefits. Pets with conditions like osteoarthritis in dogs or inflammatory bowel disease in cats, both conditions with limited and imperfect treatment options, may be good candidates for CBD. CBD in conjunction with massage can be a particularly potent combination for pain relief! CBD should be used in conjunction with a treatment plan created with the help of your veterinary team to maximize its potential.
Where can I find CBD products for my pets?
First things first, avoid giving your pets edibles intended for human consumption. Edibles made for people may contain foods or additives that could be harmful to your companion, such as chocolate or xylitol. It is best to stick to products intended for your pets. The two products that we sell are Colorado Sun Hemp Pet Care (previously known as Extracted Love) and Charlotte’s Web, both are organic CBD products made especially for dogs and cats from natural, Colorado-grown hemp. Reach out to us at [email protected], to purchase your own or with any questions.
If you would like to look into other products on your own, veterinarycannabis.org, a group focused on educating and researching pet-safe usage of cannabis products, has a helpful how-to for choosing the right CBD product for your pet.
What do you think? Do you have a CBD success story to share? Do you have a pet who might benefit from CBD?