Medical marijuana legalization is increasing. Current research proves the marijuana plant brings all animal species a myriad of benefits.
CBD (cannabidiol) products derived from the hemp plant are non-psychoactive and legal in most states.
This means CBD is great for patients who want marijuana’s healing benefits but don’t want the psychoactive high from tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This also means CBD products are great for your pet.
What does this human health trend have to do with Fluffy and Fido? If you want to heal your pet naturally, hemp oil is a great option. Here’s everything you need to know about hemp oil for pets.
What is Hemp Oil?
CBD is a common name for hemp oil. The marijuana plant consists of over 80 cannabinoids that interact with our endocannabinoid system (ECS).
CBD is one of these 80 cannabinoids and is one of the most popular and beneficial out of all of the cannabinoids.
The marijuana plant has two siblings: cannabis and hemp. Cannabis is the plant that contains psychoactive THC as well as other psychoactive cannabinoids. Cannabis also contains CBD.
But the hemp plant barely contains any psychoactive properties but it contains CBD.
When you give your pets CBD oil, they will be given CBD extracted from the hemp plant rather than the cannabis plant. This ensures your pet doesn’t experience any psychoactive effects.
Our Endocannabinoid System
The ECS exists is all living animals. It’s the most important physiologic system that maintains health.
The ECS is made of multiple cell receptors found throughout the body. This includes in the brain, organs, connective tissues, glands and immune cells.
The cannabinoid receptors work to do one main thing: keeps healthy cells alive. This stabilizes the healthy cells and strengthens them so they can easily kill off deadly and dangerous cells and other infections.
Another function of our ECS is communication. Cannabinoid receptors allow easier cell-to-cell communication and can also alter the communication between cells.
For example, if your pet is experiencing pain, cannabinoid nerve cell receptors don’t communicate pain to the brain.
Do Pets Have an ECS?
In short, yes — all living creatures have an ECS. You have an ECS, your boxer mix has an ECS, your Maine coon has an ECS, and even the tiny nematodes have an ECS.
The only difference between your ECS and the one found in Nibbles and Buddy is there’s more research on the human ECS. It’s likely your pet has a similar ECS as you, but not enough research confirmed it.
According to current research dogs and cats have CB1 and CB2 receptors.
These are specific cell receptors that the cannabinoids attach to. THC attaches to CB1 receptors; since your pets shouldn’t take psychoactive THC, this cell receptors won’t be discussed.
Instead, let’s focus on CB2 receptors. These are the cell receptors CBD attaches to. CB2 receptors are found throughout the body.
The messengers that transport the CBD to the receptors are the same found in the human body: anandamide and 2-AG.
There are two main areas where CB2 receptors thrive: the nervous system and the immune system. This is why CBD treats a myriad of conditions; CBD can stop the pain, inflammation, strengthens cells, and improve cellular function.
CBD Benefits for Pets
Now we know how our pets’ ECS works, we can uncover the benefits that CBD offers. Read this list and see if CBD is a good option for your pet:
- Reduces pain
- Reduces inflammation
- Decreases seizures
- Fights cancer
- Reduces depression
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Increases sleep
- Increases relaxation
CBD isn’t prescribed to cure ailments and isn’t a miracle medication.
But it can heal various symptoms of serious diseases. CBD and hemp oil are also great options when you first adopt a pet; they won’t struggle with intense anxiety and PTSD, helping them relax and sleep better.
Other Reasons to Give Your Pet Hemp Oil
Does your dog or cat not have a serious mental or physical condition? Any animal can benefit from CBD oil. CBD can be used as a preventative and can be used to strengthen cellular action and immune system performance.
Here are other reasons to give your pet hemp oil:
Added Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA) and Omega Fatty Acids
Did you know CBD oil is essential in some of the fatty acids our health requires? One of the most prominent ones is GLA, better known as omega-6. Even the healthiest pets can be deficient in GLA, especially dogs.
What is GLA? It supports various bodily functions and boosts immune system performance. If your dog is deficient in GLA, they’re at risk to develop allergies, arthritis, digestive issues, diabetes, skin problems and even cancer.
In addition, the other omega that CBD can offer your pets is Omega-3. Omega-3 is the main fatty acid that boosts your immune system. Omega-3 is the fat that prevents serious ailments, such as heart disease and liver disease.
Omega-3’s and GLA also works to benefit the brain, eyes, heart, joints, and bones.
Softer and Shiny Coat
The easiest way to give your pet a beautiful coat is giving them CBD oil. GLA, Omega-3s, vitamin E and other antioxidants in CBD help improve your pet’s coat. It also prevents skin irritation and other skin and coat problems.
CBD is great for human skin so it’s great for pet skin. Your pet’s coat will be moisturized, leaving a soft and smooth coat.
GLA and other CBD properties will help keep the extra weight off of your pet. CBD helps increase energy levels and activate their fat-burning mechanisms.
CBD is a great source of antioxidants. Vitamin E and vitamin A are found in CBD.
These antioxidants fight free radical damage from toxins, preventing cell oxidation that causes cancer. These toxins are found in pollution, vaccines, drugs, chemicals, pesticides, and processed foods.
CBD’s antioxidant properties strengthen cells and boost immune system performance. They improve your pet’s health and prevent many harmful diseases.
Phospholipids form the outer membrane of the cells. This helps a process called homeostasis, which helps the cell maintain its internal structure.
Phospholipids reduce pain and inflammation, prevents arthritis, reduces gastric acid, inhibits tumor growth, lowers risk of cardiovascular disease, improves brain health, boosts immune function, and repairs liver damage.
Is Hemp Oil Safe?
In short, yes — CBD oil is completely safe for pets. It’s non-psychoactive but it’s also non-toxic. This means it’s incapable of causing an overdose. It’s even said that pets react better to CBD than most medications.
There are a few side effects; even though they’re minor, all pet owners should keep these side effects in mind:
Even though CBD is non-psychoactive, it can still cause your pet to feel a certain way. CBD has natural relaxing properties, but these effects can make your pet sleepy.
When you first give your pet CBD, make sure you give them CBD at night in case they’re sensitive to the drowsy side effects.
The only severe CBD side effect is diarrhea.
When ingested, the body will rid itself of excess CBD in the only way it knows. This side effect may seem alarming, but it’s completely natural — especially when your pet first starts using CBD.
But if you notice your pet constantly has diarrhea, talk to your vet. You could be giving your pet too much CBD or the brand isn’t a good one.
Appetite and Weight Change
It’s easy for your pet to lose weight when taking CBD; cannabinoids may give your pet more energy and increase its fat burning properties.
But any drastic or major weight loss is uncommon. If your pet isn’t eating as much, this is also alarming.
Talk to your vet if your pet is losing weight or is not eating as much.
How to Choose a Hemp Oil
Now that you’re convinced hemp oil is beneficial for your pet, it’s time to choose a CBD product. But which one do you choose? There are so many different hemp oil variations on the market, it’s difficult for a first-time buyer to know what to get.
Make sure your hemp oil is made specifically for pets. This product is tested and confirmed safe for pet use.
Even though CBD is non-psychoactive and safe, this doesn’t mean your pet can have an adverse reaction.
CBD is still a cannabinoid and is still very potent. If you give your pet a CBD product made for humans, it could be too strong for them.
There are plenty of CBD products made for pets. But you need to know what to look for. Some oils claim to be a cure-all and miracle products. Others have cheap and give you the “what do I have to lose” mindset.
But the best thing you can do is talk to your vet. CBD is becoming a common treatment for pets. Certain CBD brands work with vets to give animals the best healing. Your vet will know which CBD brand will work best for your pet.
As an alternative, you can also ask a behavioral therapist for advice. This is recommended if your pet shows distress; any pets who suffered an abusive and neglectful past and struggle with behavioral issues can benefit from CBD.
How to Give Hemp Oil to Pets
The only hemp oil administration method is ingestion; unlike humans, your pet shouldn’t inhale anything. This poses a risk to their lungs.
Topicals are also a popular CBD administrative method for humans. But it’s difficult for the cannabinoids to absorb through your pet’s fur.
You have two options when feeding your pet CBD:
With the oil, most pet owners prefer mixing the oil into wet food. This works for both dogs and cats. You can also mix CBD with red meat such as beef, bison, lamb, goat, and venison.
Treats are also easy; CBD is packed inside a delicious treat your pets will love.
Always read the instructions and the product’s dosage recommendations. But the dosage depends on their weight. Your pet should start at 0.5 – 1 MG per 10 pounds.
So if you have a 10-pound cat, only give your cat the smallest dosage. But if you own a larger dog breed who’s 40 pounds, your dog can have up to 4 mg per day.
Anything higher should be approved by your vet. If your dog or cat has a serious condition, then a higher dosage is probably recommended.
If you plan on giving your pet CBD, and you want to keep your pets intake of polyunsaturated fats at average levels, you may want to avoid giving them CBD with chicken. Both are high in polyunsaturated fats.
Other Facts to Consider
There are some uncommon facts you should always consider. These include:
The Plant Used
Not all two hemp plants are the same. In addition, not all two growing facilities are the same.
To ensure you’re giving your pet the best quality CBD oil, research the hemp plant the company uses. Make sure they use safe and effective growing and extraction methods.
Make sure their hemp is grown without pesticides or other dangerous substances.
Most of These Studies Are On Humans
The most important fact to remember is our knowledge of cannabis and CBD comes from our knowledge of how it affects humans. Side effects and health benefits could be different for your pet.
Interactions With Medications
If your pet is on other medications, definitely discuss CBD administration with your vet. CBD is safe and organic, but it could cause an adverse reaction when taken with other medications.
Now You Know About Hemp Oil for Pets
CBD oil benefits more patients other than human patients.
Hemp oil for pets is becoming widely used and pet owners are raving about the benefits. Marijuana was a plant associated with addiction and health problems; today, research confirms marijuana is a safe and effective plant.
Research shows animals have an endocannabinoid system and hemp oil helps heal and prevent multiple mental and physical ailments.
Are you looking for hemp oil products for your pet? Visit our store.