Pancreatitis is one of the most common exocrine pancreatic diseases in dogs and cats. CBD can work together with traditional pet meds to offer health benefits with no side effects. You may be wondering if CBD oil is safe for your dog with pancreatitis. This article will explain what pancreatitis is and is CBD oil safe for your dog who has pancreatitis. What Is CBD For Dogs and Cats? CBD – short for cannabidiol – is one of the active compounds found in the cannabis plant. Not to be confused with THC (the compound in cannabis that gives it its infamous psychoactive effects), CBD has become increasingly popular over the years due to advancements in research showing its
CBD Oil For Pancreatitis in Dogs
Pancreatitis is one of the most common exocrine pancreatic diseases in dogs and cats. Most often, there is no specific cause, yet feeding your dog’s unhealthy table leftovers, and allowing them to scavenge through trash may be a common risk factor in dogs. CBD can work together with traditional pet meds to offer health benefits with no side effects.
The AKC adds that “ Pancreatitis in dogs is one of those conditions that owners must be informed about before it strikes because the warning signs may not always be obvious at first, the symptoms might be mistaken for something less serious, and yet it’s potentially life-threatening. The medical definition of pancreatitis is simple: “inflammation of the pancreas.” But like all serious conditions, there is more to it than that.”
CBD Oil for Pancreatitis in Dogs
One of the most important factors to consider with canine pancreatitis is that your dog will be in a lot of pain. Research has demonstrated that CBD oil may be beneficial in alleviating pain and reducing inflammation with pancreatitis. CBD oil may have numerous other health benefits for your dog. Keep in mind that CBD oil works effectively with traditional pain meds and antibiotics with no side effects. That said, it’s necessary to work together with your veterinarian to get the best outcome.
New 2018 Research on CBD Oil Benefits for Canine Pancreatitis
“Mice with pancreatic cancer that were treated with a naturally occurring constituent of medicinal cannabis alongside chemotherapy, survived almost three times longer than those treated with chemotherapy alone,” via Science Daily. The researchers also added that “Cannabidiol is already approved for use in clinics, which means we can quickly go on to test this in human clinical trials. If we can reproduce these effects in humans, cannabidiol could be in use in cancer clinics almost immediately, compared to having to wait for authorities to approve a new drug. CBD is also known to improve the side effects of chemotherapy, including nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, meaning it could also improve the quality of life of patients undergoing chemotherapy.”
Another recent study at Cornell University found that CBD is effective in managing chronic pain in dogs, and demonstrated evidence that CBD did reduce inflammation and chronic pain in pets. It also found that pets on CBD did not build up a tolerance to CBD, so doses did not have to increase with time.
“Dogs received either CBD oil at 2 mg/kg every 12 hours or they received placebo oil, according to the abstract. Dogs were treated for four weeks with a two-week washout period. The dogs’ owners completed questionnaires and veterinarians conducted assessments—including physical exam, hematology and serum chemistry—before treatment and at weeks two and four. The Canine Brief Pain Inventory score and Hudson activity score (a visual analogue scale questionnaire used to assess pain and lameness in dogs),” via Dr. Sarah Wooten, DVM. Veterinary News.
CBD Oil Facts
CBD DOES NOT GIVE YOUR DOG A “HIGH”
CBD (cannabidiol ) is a component of the cannabis plant, but without the tetrahydrocannabinol, (THC), the component of the cannabis plant that gives you the “high”. NO THC, NO “HIGH!”
CBD comes from the hemp plant, but can also be extracted from the cannabis plant. CBD oil is the liquid that comes from the cannabis plant, with the best form of extraction being the CO2 method.
Cannabis oils for dogs may be beneficial for numerous canine health issues including pancreatitis, cancer, anxiety, seizures, glaucoma, to diminish tumor growth, as well and many other health conditions in your furry best friends.
Tetrahydrocannabinol, most often referred to as THC , is the psychoactive compound that is derived from the cannabis plant. It causes the “high effect”, and is federally regulated in the U.S, yet is legal in Canada for recreational and medicinal use, and also in some US states.
Hemp has higher levels of CBD, and low levels of THC. For hemp to be classified as such, it has to contain only 0.3% of THC. With this amount of THC, there is no “high” effect. Hemp was made federally legal in the US through the Farm Bill in 2018.
Natural Doggie Organic CBD Hemp Oil helps relieve pain and anxiety in pets. Utilizing only the best natural products, the difference in our oil is that is derived from the highest quality Non-GMO, organic Colorado hemp. All dogs can benefit as this product is a perfect supplement to your animal’s diet and will help keep them happy and healthy. If your animal suffers from anxiety or chronic pain, you will see a noticeable difference in your dog immediately.
CBD Law in The U.S
“First of all, hemp plants contain less than 0.3 percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive chemical found in cannabis. In 2014, President Obama signed the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the Farm Bill), which allowed for the study and cultivation of industrial hemp for limited purposes. This led to the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2015, which allowed American farmers to produce and cultivate industrial hemp more widely. This legislation removed hemp from the controlled substances list as long as the hemp grown contained no more than 0.3 percent THC,” Dr. Sarah Wooten DVM, via Veterinary News.
Stay Away from Made in China CBD Oil
CBD oil consumers should purchase the best CBD oil for their pets! That said, with so many CBD pet products for sale today, combined with awesome marketing strategies, it may be confusing as to which CBD oils are best for your dog. More so, if your dog has pancreatitis or another serious health problem like cancer, suffers from seizures or is even depressed.
One needs to consider whether their CBD product of choice is a full spectrum oil or if it uses an isolate. That said, pet parents should find out if the hemp used in their CBD product of choice is from locally grown USA hemp?
European sourced hemp may have originated from China, and ended up being processed and sold in Europe or the US. Keep in mind that hemp from China is often times not a high quality hemp, and is not pure. China and European CBD oils may contain bio contaminants and heavy metals. Today, the best and purest hemp mainly originates from 4 states, Colorado, South Carolina, Oregon and Kentucky.
Studies Show No Side Effects from CBD Oil When Combined with Antibiotics and Other Pain Meds.
Side effects from CBD oil are rare. That said, it’s good to start with the lowest dosage of CBD oil and gradually increase the dosage over a few weeks. With pancreatic pain being severe, CBD oil may take up to 4 weeks to work. Although it’s been shown to decrease inflammation and pain, your veterinarian may use it in conjunction with more traditional medication. Due to minimal side effects, there have been no reports of CBD interactions with other medications
Trauma and surgery can also lead to pancreatitis in dogs. It may come and go, or it may end up affecting your dog for a longer period of time. It may become life threatening, and needs immediate veterinary intervention for a good long-term prognosis. Damage to the internal organs is irreversible with this condition, yet if treatment is sought early enough, even in serious cases, the outcome may be good.
Feeding your dogs a healthy diet, and maintaining a regular exercise schedule may help avoid it, yet some breeds like the Schnauzer or German Shepherd may be more prone to pancreatitis than others. A reaction to a medication may also trigger pancreatitis. During pancreatitis, the pancreatic lipase is released into the bloodstream. Your veterinarian will use this as a diagnostic marker for this disease.
Common Causes of Pancreatitis in Dogs
- Greasy or fatty foods
- Stomach trauma
- Toxins and some meds
- Genetically prone
- Hypothyroidism and other endocrine diseases in dogs
- Feeding table left-overs that are not healthy
The pancreas have two main functions with the endocrine pancreas producing both insulin and glucagon. These regulate the blood sugar level, whereas the exocrine pancreas produces enzymes that are necessary for digestion linked to complex foods like proteins, triglycerides, and complex carbohydrates.
The onset of pancreatitis starts off with a lack of nitrous oxide (NO) which plays an important role in the pathogenesis of pancreatitis. Additionally, the abundance of NO results in pancreatic inflammation. Veterinarians have to both prevent pancreatitis and treat it, which require two different treatment approaches.
Inducible Nitrous Oxide (NO)
Inducible nitrous oxide helps to regulate normal pancreatic function by promoting good microvascular blood flow, and regulating digestive enzyme secretion. A reduced endothelial NO results in endothelial dysfunction. Normally with pancreatitis, the NO level is high, and the pancreas are swollen with blood and enzymes disgorged. The pancreas then become less functional, and congested with lots of free radical activity, once again resulting in pancreatic inflammation.
When acute pancreatitis affects your dog, pancreatic microcirculation is affected with blood flow reduced, and platelet adhesion and blood clot formation increasing. The exocrine pancreas also secretes bicarbonate which helps to buffer stomach acid. That said, feeding your dog a low-quality commercial dog food that is high in carbs and rapidly absorbed, results in a spike of postprandial glucose in dogs. This in –turn results in an insulin spike. Insulin resistance together with pancreatic inflammation may result soon after.
When discussing chronic and acute pancreatitis in dogs, it’s important to note that during the initial stages of pancreatitis, there is a decrease in the amount of pancreatic juices. After that, pancreatic enzymes are activated in the pancreas instead of in the digestive tract. This results in the enzymes digesting the pancreas, which in turn results in inflammation and damage.
Signs of Pancreatitis in Dogs
There’s nothing worse than seeing your dog in pain. That said, it’s necessary for pet parents to pick up on all pancreatitis cues as soon as possible, and to consult with their veterinarian.
Signs of severe pancreatitis include the following:
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Swollen stomach
- Arching of back to throw up
Treatment of Pancreatitis
According to research from College of Veterinary Medicine, Texas “Acute or chronic pancreatitis are now recognized to be common in both dogs and cats, but their diagnosis can be challenging. Various diagnostic tests have been used to confirm a diagnosis of acute and chronic pancreatitis, including the measurement of serum lipase activity, measurement of serum pancreatic lipase immunoreactivity (PLI), abdominal ultrasound, and histopathology.”
If your veterinarian suspects that your dog may be suffering from pancreatitis, he or she may order blood tests, x-rays, ultrasound, and even surgery. Treatment may include hospitalization, and supportive veterinary care. Taking your dog to the veterinarian for an early diagnosis may allow for a better long-term outcome, and prevent complications.
Your veterinarian may also recommend a special diet that your dog will have to follow. This may include a low-fat diet and low- fat treats for mild cases of pancreatitis. A pancreatic enzyme supplement is usually recommended when abdominal pain is still present. Pet parents need to watch their dogs and monitor a lack of appetite, since this is usually tied to abdominal pain in cases of pancreatitis.
If dogs are prone to vomiting with pancreatitis, veterinarians will usually advise limiting food and water for a few days. In this case your dog will be given intravenous fluids. Pain meds are prescribed for abdominal pain in pancreatitis. Dogs that have mild, yet long-term pancreatitis, need to be monitored frequently for diabetes mellitus and exocrine pancreatic insufficiency.
Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency
A lack of pancreatic digestive enzymes results in digestive issues and malabsorption. This in turn causes your dog to lose weight, and have vitamin deficiencies. Dogs that have long-term pancreatitis may get diabetes mellitus. Minimal production and secretion of digestive enzymes by the pancreas are usually caused by the gradual decline of cells that produce digestive enzymes in dogs.
German Shepherds are most prone to exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, and tend to get affected during their young adult years. Tumors that obstruct the pancreatic duct can also lead to exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. Your veterinarian will order a blood test to check for a decrease of pancreatic function.
Signs of Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency
Your furry best friend may exhibit many symptoms, but the most common ones are:
- Excessive eating
- Weight loss
- Vomiting (not as common)
- Loss of appetite (not as common)
- Pale, foul smelling feces
Supplementing with Digestive Enzymes
Although digestive enzymes for exocrine pancreatic insufficiency is necessary as an important part of treatment, there are adverse effects if the wrong dosage is given. That said, it’s necessary to follow your veterinarian’s dosage instructions carefully, and to report any bleeding from your dog’s mouth. In cases that result with bleeding, a lower enzyme dosage is recommended. As usual, it’s necessary to consult with your veterinarian for advice.
The digestive enzyme dosage will be reduced when your dog is feeling better. On the other hand, if your dog does not improve Vitamin B12 may be prescribed for a cobalamin deficiency. 50% of all dogs with this deficiency have exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. Some dogs will have other vitamin deficiencies, which will need to be monitored by their veterinarians.
It’s recommended that dogs with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency change their diets to a low-fiber, easily-digestible diet that has a moderate-fat content. Diet changes need to be gradual.
Since exocrine pancreatic insufficiency most times results in an irreversible loss of pancreatic tissue with cure rates at a low, it’s important to supplement with the appropriate digestive enzymes and vitamins. It’s also worth noting that dogs will usually recover with the right veterinary care and will gain weight, and live a normal life.
CBD Oil May Be Beneficial for Dogs with Serious Health Conditions
CBD oils have numerous health benefits for dogs that have chronic pain, inflammation, and suffer from medical conditions. Many of these conditions when treated with traditional meds prescribed by your veterinarian, will also benefit from CBD oil use. Understanding what CBD oil can do, and which conditions may be beneficial, is important today. As usual, consult with a CBD savvy veterinarian for the best advice. A certificate of approval (COA) ensures that your CBD oil is of a high-quality, and safe for your pets.
Here are some conditions that CBD oils are good for:
- Anxiety and stress
- Appetite stimulant
- May help with numerous cancer treatments by destroying specific cancer cells, as well as stopping the growth of blood vessels to tumors.
- Hemp is rich in natural compounds like terpenes and flavonoids. (anti-cancer properties)
- Luteolin and kaempferol found in hemp promote disruptions to cancer cells.
- Helps allergies in dogs.
- May be effective for calming dogs that suffer from thunderstorm phobia.
- May be effective in reducing the side effects of chemo and radiation in dogs.
- CBD may be beneficial in promoting rapid wound healing and decreasing pain.
- May help fight inflammation.
- Helps reduce seizure activity
- Helps with hot spots and other skin irritations in dogs
- . May promote well-being and cardiac health.
- Relieves chronic pain.
- May help with autoimmune issues
- May help with urinary tract disease
How to Purchase CBD Oil for Your Dog With Pancreatitis?
- Opt for organic, USDA certified hemp. There are specific strains grown for pets like the PR-33.
- Entire plant use of both seeds and stalk results in the CBD oil providing a multitude of additional benefits for unwell dogs with serious medical conditions. Opt for terpenoids and flavonoids.
- CBD bottles with droppers are easiest to use for serious conditions, yet CBD treats work well for anxiety, general pain, and depression.
- Discuss CBD oil differing potencies with your veterinarian prior to purchasing, (There are several potencies to meet the needs of dogs of all sizes.) Be safe, and follow dosage instructions!
- Inquire as to how the CBD oil in your product was extracted?
- CBD tends to have fewer side effects than pharmaceuticals, yet you will need to discuss drug interactions with your vet prior to administering any CBD oil to your dog.
- Purchase only THC- free CBD products for your dog. Even a small amount will make him “high”
- CBD oil is extracted, and then added to a carrier oil. Read the product’s website for more product information and get your COA!
- Look at the product’s website, and ask plenty of questions about the product’s specific benefits.
- Find out about their customer service, call them, and be curious!
- Certificate of Analysis is most important to ensure a high-quality product that is safe for your pet. Make sure your CBD oil product has this.
What Makes a Good CBD Oil for Dogs with Pancreatitis?
As pet parents, we’ll do anything for our furry best friends, yet no CBD oil product should be chosen randomly, or in a rush, and administered to pets. Here are some tips for purchasing the best CBD oil for your dog:
- Best if veterinarian approved
- Opt for a high-quality CBD product that has lots of positive reviews from other pet parents
- Choose a CBD oil for pets only. Do not use human CBD oil on your dog!
- The CBD oil for dogs should be third party certified for purity and safety!
- It should say “Improved absorption and bioavailability”
- With all CBD products for dogs that have higher levels of CBD you must check dosage before use with your veterinarian.
- Some CBD oils for dogs have a rapid effect that needs to be discussed with a veterinarian first before use.
- Full Spectrum CBD oil is best.
- Organic is very good!
- No contaminants, no carrier oils, no alcohol is what you should be purchasing!
Preventing Pancreatitis in Dogs
When a dog is affected by pancreatitis, it’s no laughing matter. That said, there are some things that you can do to try and prevent pancreatitis from affecting your furry best friend. The American Veterinary Health Association (AVMA) also recommends that pet parents take out pet health insurance to help defray veterinary costs. “ Pet health insurance can help defray pet owners’ cost of veterinary care, empowering them to provide a higher level of medical care for their companions. This is why the AVMA has long endorsed the concept of pet insurance as a viable strategy to pay for high-quality veterinary services.”
Additionally, by feeding your dog a high-quality dog food that is easily digested, you’re making it easier for your dog to take in small amounts of food while suffering from pancreatitis, and to benefit from healthy nutrition. A diet that is low -in fiber and low- in fat is preferable. Consult with your veterinarian as to the best dog food diets for dogs that are in recovery. A home cooked diet of steamed chicken breast with white rice and veggies may also be beneficial to a speedier recovery. Holistic practices will often offer nutritional and supplementation advice.
Choosing the best CBD oil for your dog may sometimes be difficult. That said, when opting for a combination of both holistic with more conventional veterinary care, you’ll be ensuring peace of mind, and your dog’s well-being. By offering safe and natural options, you’ll be able to work together with your veterinarian in managing canine pancreatitis.
Usually with mild cases of pancreatitis there is a good diagnosis, yet with severe cases, one faces a more guarded prognosis. You’ll need to watch your dog carefully, and also understand what to look for, and what you can do to reduce chances of your furry best friend getting pancreatitis.
Is CBD Oil Safe for Dogs with Pancreatitis?
Has your dog been diagnosed with pancreatitis? While this can be a very painful condition for your dog, there are many things that you can do to help them fully recover. Your dog may have spent a day or two at the vet clinic being treated, or they may now have a lot of medication that they need to take.
You may be wondering if CBD oil is safe for your dog with pancreatitis. This article will explain what pancreatitis is and is CBD oil safe for your dog who has pancreatitis.
What is Pancreatitis in Dogs?
The pancreas is an organ that lives in your dog’s abdomen very close to the stomach and start of the small intestines. This organ has two main functions
- An exocrine function and is responsible for creating enzymes that allow the body to absorb fats and nutrients from food. The enzymes are an important part of digestion.
- An endocrine function and is responsible for regulating blood sugar.
Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas. It occurs when these digestive enzymes are released prematurely. These enzymes can also escape into your dog’s abdominal cavity. This leakage can cause damage to the pancreas as well as the intestines and stomach. Without treatment, the damage that these enzymes have done can be permanent.
There are two types of pancreatitis
- Acute : In Acute pancreatitis, symptoms will present very quickly with no warning or build-up.
- Chronic : In chronic pancreatitis, the conditions build and worsen over a long period of time. These dogs usually have had pancreatitis a few times before. They may keep getting pancreatitis and never fully recovering from their first time with pancreatitis.
No matter what type of pancreatitis your dog has, the symptoms of both types can also be either mild or severe. The worse the signs are in your dog, the quicker you need to see your vet. A dog who suffers from chronic pancreatitis may end up being hospitalized for a few days until they recover from their symptoms.
Causes of Pancreatitis:
There are many things that can cause your dog to develop pancreatitis. The most common cause of pancreatitis is a high fatty meal. This is why most vets recommended that dogs not eat human food. Most of our foods are higher in fats than most dogs can tolerate. These are some other common causes of pancreatitis.
- High fatty meal
- Bacterial or viral infections
- Gastric tract diseases
- Abdominal trauma
- Genetic disposition: certain breeds such as spaniels, boxers, collies, and schnauzers, are more prone to developing pancreatitis
- Certain prescribed medications
A specific cause sometimes cannot be found, but many of these factors can play a role in your dog developing pancreatitis.
Symptoms of pancreatitis
There are many different symptoms of pancreatitis that your dog can display. Your dog may only show a few of these symptoms, but many shows all of these problems if they have severe pancreatitis. These are the most common symptoms that are associated with a dog with pancreatitis:
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Fatigue and sluggishness
- Abdominal pain
- Depression and lethargy
- Difficulty breathing
- Increased heart rate
Vomiting and abdominal pain are the first signs of pancreatitis. Even symptoms such as lethargy and decreased appetite should be a clear indication that you need to see your veterinarian. The earlier the signs are detected and treated, the better your dog’s prognosis. The more of these symptoms that your dog has, the more severe their disease is.
Dogs with severe pancreatitis will have to stay at the vet office for a few days receiving care. Once they are healthy enough to go home, you will have to continue their medication and care until they fully recover.
Can CBD Oil help with Dog Pancreatitis?
CBD oil can help aids in inflammation and can help manage pain in both dogs and people. It will help increase appetite and activity levels in dogs that are otherwise lethargic or in pain. As your dog is recovering from pancreatitis, you can give them CBD oil to help stimulate their appetite and ease their pain.
CBD will help eases the stress that pancreatitis has on your dog. CBD is very safe for dogs with pancreatitis and is actually recommended
The Natural Doggie CBD-Infused Bacon Flavor Soft Chews use only the best ingredients nature has to offer. The perfect treat to promote calmness, reduce inflammation and pain and stimulate appetite in your pet. This is a perfect supplement to add to your dog’s diet. This Colorado-grown, hemp-derived oil is legal in all 50 states and contains no THC. The non-GMO oil in every treat is derived from the finest non-GMO hemp the world has to offer. Your dog will love these bacon-flavored dog chews and you will see a major difference in your animal and if you don’t, your satisfaction is guaranteed.
Where to get CBD Oil for dogs
There are many places that you can purchase CBD products. You can buy CBD online or most health food stores. Make sure that the products that you buy are tested by third parties that precisely states what is in the product. This helps to make sure you are purchasing products that contain CBD.
SitStay brand of CBD is CO2 extracted and contains a high purity level. The old saying holds true for CBD Oil price points get what you pay for. This means that higher purity extracts will be slightly higher in price.
Dogs who have pancreatitis can be very painful, vomiting, and/or diarrhea. These signs in your dog should warrant a visit to your vet. They will be able to diagnose pancreatitis with an exam and a blood test. Depending on the severity of your dog’s signs, they may get to go home with you, but they may have to stay at the vet’s office for a few days.
Once they are home, consider giving them CBD oils to help them recover. CBD has been shown to help dogs with pain and inflammation. With CBD oil, your dog can quickly get on the road to a full recovery.
The Potential Side Effects Of CBD For Dogs & Cats
The Potential Side Effects Of CBD For Dogs & Cats
What Is CBD For Dogs and Cats?
CBD – short for cannabidiol – is one of the active compounds found in the cannabis plant. Not to be confused with THC (the compound in cannabis that gives it its infamous psychoactive effects), CBD has become increasingly popular over the years due to advancements in research showing its numerous benefits.
CBD can be harvested from hemp plants and concentrated into an organic oil form. Once it’s in this form, it can be taken directly as an oil or mixed into other forms, like treats, snacks, and salves. This makes it a completely non-toxic and organic way to improve the health of your dog or cat.
CBD works by stimulating your pet’s ECS system. This system – also known as the endocannabinoid system – was named after CBD since it was CBD that leads to its discovery. CB1 receptors are predominantly found in the brain and nervous system, peripheral organs, and tissues, that are responsible for regulating several of your body’s core functions: sleep , mood, appetite, immunity, and more! This is why you’ve no doubt heard of some of the benefits that cannabis users experience from the herb. When you take a CBD supplement, it stimulates the receptors in your ECS system, promoting harmony and homeostasis throughout the body.
Humans aren’t the only ones that have an ECS system, either! Most mammals are believed to have this system, which is why dogs, cats, and other mammalian pets can benefit from CBD use the same as us.
How Is CBD Oil Manufactured?
Those new to the concept of CBD tend to have a lot of concerns about what it actually is. “Will it give my pet a high?”; “Is it safe?”; “How is it made?”
All of these are perfectly normal questions to have when considering giving your pet CBD for the first time! In fact, giving your pet any kind of supplement without all of the facts would err on the side of being irresponsible.
CBD is harvested from cannabis plants via a solvent, most commonly and safest by CO2. The solvent is introduced to the plant and subsequently makes its way through the plant’s system, naturally absorbing CBD along the way. Then, after it’s gathered enough CBD to meet its concentration quota, it is extracted from the plant and purified as CBD oil.
CBD is one of the active compounds in the cannabis plant. Unfortunately, cannabis tends to get confused with marijuana, causing many to be immediately be turned off from using CBD due to the stigma around marijuana. However, despite being used interchangeably, cannabis, marijuana, and hemp are three completely different – though still related – things.
Cannabis vs. Marijuana vs. Hemp
Cannabis is what you would call the parent plant. Hemp and marijuana are each strain of cannabis, and therefore each can be called cannabis . Cannabis, though, is not hemp or marijuana. Sort of a classic squares-are-rectangles-rectangles-are-not-squares situation.
Marijuana is the strain of cannabis that typically comes to mind when thinking of the three plants. It contains CBD as well as THC, the compound responsible for its psychoactive properties. This is why those who use the plant recreationally also experience the benefits of CBD by proxy.
Hemp, on the other hand, is a strain of cannabis that contains less than 0.3% THC – not enough to have any noticeable effects on the user. Therefore, you cannot get high from using hemp or hemp products.
The Benefits Of CBD For Dogs and Cats
There has been a lot of hype for CBD in recent years, with people making broad claims about its capabilities and benefits. While it’s easy to dismiss these benefits as nothing more than hype, the truth is that CBD carries a whole host of benefits for humans and animals alike.
Here are a few of the most exciting benefits of CBD for dogs and cats.
1. Improve mood and appetite
One of the simplest – but most broadly applicable – benefits of CBD is its ability to improve your pet’s mood. The ECS system plays a vital role in your animal’s mood and appetite. This is why one of the most talked-about benefits of CBD is its potential t o help manage anxiety/depression . While we might think of these conditions as being exclusive to us, our pets are just as likely to experience emotional lows as we are. Anxiety is also prevalent in dogs and in cats. It can be as simple as something like travel anxiety , where your pet becomes nervous and agitated on road trips and flights, to something more serious like separation anxiety, where your pet becomes anxious every time you leave the house.
Anxiety and depression in pets can come from a lot of sources, though the past experience is one of the most common causes. Animals from shelters have a high chance of developing some form of anxiety due to changing owners and potentially experiencing a rough past. Fortunately, CBD is able to help soothe these feelings in pets, allowing them to enjoy life to the fullest with as little stress as possible.
Alongside improving your pet’s mood, CBD can also help improve the appetite of under-eating animals. CBD can reduce nausea as well, which tends to be a problem with dogs especially due to their inclination to eat before thinking. Just bear in mind that a lack of appetite and nausea are usually symptoms of an underlying issue that CBD likely isn’t fixing. If your pet’s appetite and nausea don’t completely resolve themselves after using CBD, take them to a professional vet as soon as possible to get to the root of the issue.
2. Manage inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
One of the most noteworthy applications of CBD is its ability to naturally reduce inflammation. While we mostly only hear about inflammation in a negative context, it’s actually a healthy and natural function of your body’s immune system.
Inflammation is triggered by foreign bodies in your system. When your immune system detects this problem, it sends white blood cells to attack the invasive bodies.
The problem with inflammation is that it can also be triggered incorrectly by a variety of other factors, like exercise, injury, and so on. None of these issues actually has a foreign body for the inflammatory response to fight, so instead, it fights whatever is in front of it – your body.
This can cause a whole host of health issues, including IBD. IBD occurs when the inflammatory cells attack the lining of your pet’s intestine, affecting your animal’s ability to digest and absorb nutrition. This can cause symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea , an increase or decrease in diet, and more.
Thanks to its ability to reduce inflammation altogether, CBD can help reduce the symptoms and advancement of IBD with regular use. It’s certainly not a cure, but giving it to your IBD suffering pet can help them manage and live with the syndrome.
3. Manage Pancreatitis
Pancreatitis is when your pet’s pancreas isn’t working as it should. Under normal conditions, your dog or cat’s pancreas performs endocrine and exocrine functions, which help with digestion in the small intestine. Endocrine functions, on the other hand, are responsible for releasing hormones that help with other standard bodily functions. Your pet’s mood, for example, is related to their endocrine functions.
Pancreatitis is when the pancreas becomes inflamed, causing pain throughout your pet’s body as well as nausea, vomiting, and other digestive issues. Pancreatitis can be caused by a number of factors, though typically it is the result of infection, gallstones, or cystic fibrosis. Pancreatitis can be either acute or chronic. Acute cases may last for a few days, while chronic cases could last for several years.
The severity of pancreatitis can vary greatly depending on the incident. Some will only experience mild symptoms for a week, after which the pancreas will resume normal behavior. Other times, it can be a life-threatening situation that needs serious medical attention.
Fortunately, pancreatitis is very curable, and usually can be resolved with ongoing treatment, no surgery required. While CBD shouldn’t be considered a cure to pancreatitis, its ability to relieve pain and inflammation makes it a great way to manage pancreatitis symptoms. If your pet is struggling with the pain of pancreatitis or has been having severe nausea, giving them CBD on a daily basis could help alleviate their symptoms.
4. Reduce Chronic Pain and Arthritis
Another benefit of CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties is its ability to alleviate chronic pain, especially pain caused by arthritis.
Arthritis is an extremely common condition in animals and people alike that occurs when damaged joints begin to cause a being pain and discomfort. While there are a number of causes behind arthritis, one of the leading causes is inflammation.
What happens is that the inflammatory response is triggered by something it shouldn’t be – like exercise – and sends cells to attack the non-existent foreign bodies. And when it thinks these foreign pathogens are in your animal’s joints, it ends up attacking the joints. What differentiates this from other issues with inflammation, though, is that the joints of your pet can’t bounce back and recover like the rest of their body.
Your pet’s joints are made up of two bones adjacent bones meeting at a joint, with cartilage and synovial fluid in between them to facilitate smooth and painless motion. When attacked by inflammation, however, the cartilage begins to break down and the synovial fluid can break down. Over time, this means that the once smooth and painless movement of the joint instead becomes, well, rough and painful.
Arthritis is a degenerative condition, meaning that it continues to worsen as time goes on. So while it may start as just minor aches and pains for your pet, it can become completely debilitating. And most of the medications for arthritis – NSAIDs especially – have enough side effects to make their use questionable.
Fortunately, CBD has natural anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties, which allow you to both manage the pain of arthritis and slow down its progress.
5. Reduce the frequency of seizures
One of the most exciting benefits of CBD is its ability to reduce the frequency of seizures in epileptic users. Seizures occur due to sporadic spikes in neuron activity in the victim’s brain. When this happens, the individual will start to lose control over their body for a short period of time.
Generally, the seizure itself isn’t dangerous, but rather the fact that the sufferer could injure themselves due to their lack of movement control. That said, seizures can become severe when they happen back to back. This is what’s known as a Grand Mal seizure , and it usually calls for immediate medical attention.
In animals, seizures typically manifest in one of three ways. First, your pet could simply lose consciousness. This will appear to you as though they suddenly just fall over asleep, like fainting. These seizures can be hard to detect, as they’re generally more discreet.
Then there is the more familiar kind of seizure, where your pet starts to twitch and spasm uncontrollably. And lastly, your pet could have a psychomotor seizure , which causes them to start behaving strangely. They might do things like chase imaginary things, behave oddly, or run in circles without cause.
CBD has been shown to reduce the frequency of seizures in people and animals when given at higher than usual doses, and can even interrupt seizures as they’re happening. This is particularly helpful because traditional seizure medications are known for having serious side effects that can impact your animal’s quality of life.
6. Helps Manage Glaucoma
And lastly, CBD is gaining traction as a new way to manage glaucoma. Glaucoma is a condition of your pet’s eye(s) that can impair their vision over time. What happens is that sustained pressure – for various reasons – ends up blocking fluid from leaving your pet’s eyes. This causes it to build up and over time become cloudy.
You’ve likely seen this in older animals, with their eyes having a bluish, whitish cloud in them. This cloud obscures their vision, and can eventually cause them to become completely blind. Certain breeds are at a higher risk for developing glaucoma, though any dogs can develop it over time.
For this reason, taking preventative measures earlier in your pet’s life can reduce the likelihood of them developing the condition. CBD is a great way to reduce the swelling that causes glaucoma in most cases, preventing your pet from ever developing the condition. By relieving the pressure, the ocular fluid that builds up in glaucoma is instead allowed to drain the way that its meant to.
If your pet already has glaucoma, you can start giving them CBD to prevent the condition from worsening. It can also reduce some of the symptoms that go along with glaucoma, improving the quality of their life even at a later age.
Is CBD Oil For Dogs and Cats Legal?
Those new to CBD will understandably have some concerns when considering giving it to their pet. One of those concerns tends to be about the legality of using CBD. This fear comes from the confusion surrounding cannabis, hemp, and marijuana, and the different laws affecting each. In some states, all three are legal, while in others having one on your person can result in jail time.
The simple answer is that, yes, CBD is completely legal to use for your pet or even for yourself. As we mentioned earlier, hemp – unlike marijuana – doesn’t have any of the psychoactive properties that make marijuana legally questionable. This is because its THC levels (the compound that gives users a high) are extremely low, too low to have any effect on the user.
For this reason, hemp is legal in all 50 states, even though marijuana is not. So, because CBD for dogs and cats is sourced from hemp, it is completely legal to administer it to them.
Keep in mind, though, that this doesn’t mean that there aren’t CBD manufacturers who source their CBD from marijuana. While these manufacturers usually don’t sell their products for pets, it could happen, and it’s vitally important that your animal never comes into contact with marijuana or marijuana-sourced products. While CBD is safe for animals to take, THC is toxic to dogs and cats and can lead to serious health issues.
What Are The Side Effects Of CBD For Dogs And Cats?
Like any medication or supplement, CBD is not without its side effects. And before giving your pet any new form of medication, understanding the side effects is absolutely crucial. Knowing the side effects not only helps you decide whether or not to give your pet CBD in the first place but also helps you monitor their reaction to the supplement when introducing it to them.
The most common side effects of CBD include:
- Dry mouth
- Lowered blood pressure
Drowsiness is the most common side effect, though in rare cases your pet may experience one or some of the other side effects. If your pet is experiencing drowsiness while taking CBD, lowering their dosage is usually the solution.
As you can see, most of these side effects are extremely mild. This is because dogs and cats both have a very high tolerance for CBD and CBD products. This means that you can give it to your pet without much worry about how it will negatively impact them. Instead, you can focus on whether or not it is producing the desired results.
Is CBD Right For Your Pet?
That said, there are instances when pets are better off not taking CBD. For example, some dogs and cats are just plain allergic to CBD. Obviously, if you notice any allergic reactions within your pet after taking CBD, stop administering it immediately and take them to a vet to assess the severity of their reaction.
You also shouldn’t give CBD to a pregnant or nursing animal, nor should you give it to an infant pet . It’s also worth mentioning that if your dog or cat is already taking other medication on a routine basis, you should consult with your vet before giving them CBD. This is because medications have a tendency to interact with one another, and you need to make sure that the interaction will be negligible before introducing CBD to your pet.
Keep in mind that CBD is not a cure-all and should never be used as such. While the side effects are mild and the benefits are aplenty, it is (based on current research) only reliable for managing symptoms and reducing the severity of certain conditions. It is not proven to cure anything, nor can it solve any health condition that your pet is suffering from. You should never use CBD in place of traditional medication without a vet’s supervision and guidance.
Not all CBD products are created equal, and not all are intended to be used for the same thing. Since it’s a relatively new and technical market, finding the right CBD product for your pet can seem tricky at times. So here are a few pointers. First, when it comes to pets, CBD typically comes in one of three forms. The most basic is CBD oil , which is just an organic oil that contains concentrated CBD. This is also the most potent, so if you’re looking to manage a specific condition and not just giving your pet CBD for preventative reasons, CBD oil is the way to go.
It also comes as a treat or a chew, which is a much milder form of CBD. This is a great way to give your pet CBD if you’re just introducing it into their routine and don’t have any specific conditions that you’re trying to help provide relief for.
The third form that CBD can come as is a salve or topical treatment, which is specifically made to help with skin conditions and joint pains. This kind of CBD product usually doesn’t spread throughout your pet’s body, so it’s really only useful for these two kinds of issues.
Author: AdKitan AdKitan; Approved by Dr. Ivana Vukasinovic
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