by Christine Athens
CBD is the new health and wellness supplement on the scene. It’s had such positive effects on the human world that people are beginning to look into CBD for their pets. While little is known about how CBD interacts with our furry friends, the market for pet health CBD is snowballing—as is the anecdotal evidence.
But is CBD safe for pets? Keep reading to find out.
Is CBD Safe For Pets?
Can you give Spot or Mr. Jingles cannabis? Well, if we’re talking about marijuana, the THC latent variety of cannabis, then the answer is NO. (We’ll get to that later!) However, pet-made CBD oils and products are perfectly safe.
Just like humans, animals have an Endocannabinoid System. That means their cells are equipped with cannabinoid receptors. It also means CBD’s therapeutic effects can treat or provide relief for a variety of common cat and dog conditions, including the following:
- Chronic pain and inflammation
- Epilepsy and seizures
- Anxiety and stress
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Tumor growth
- Nausea and vomiting due to specific conditions or medications
- Arthritis and joint pain
- Respiratory infections
- Skin conditions
- Parasitic and bacterial infections
- Cancer and side effects of chemotherapy
The research behind how animals process Cannabidiol is still in its infancy; however, there have been a few pharmacokinetic studies worth mentioning. For example, a 2018 clinical study concerning the effects of CBD on arthritic dogs showed a significant decrease in pain. It also showed an increase in physical activity.
Interestingly enough, there was a time when it was illegal for veterinarians to even discuss CBD’s use with pet owners, let alone recommend or prescribe it. Today in 2020, the laws regarding veterinarians and CBD are still murky with no official policy on hemp-based products for pets. This is mainly due to the ambiguity that shadows CBD and the lack of clinical research.
CBD-infused pet products are still widely available and legal to purchase. However, your vet may or may not be open to discussing or recommending it. (But that doesn’t mean you should avoid the discussion before giving it to your pet!)
Can I Share My CBD With My Pet?
CBD oil is the most popular CBD product used among humans and pets. While technically you can share your CBD oil with Fido or Mittens, it’s not the best idea.
The most important caveat is the THC content. CBD products in the US can legally have a concentration of up to 0.03% THC. While this is an ineffectual trace amount, the THC levels in a full spectrum CBD oil made for human consumption may be higher than the company claims. If this is the case, it has the potential to do some harm.
Additionally, CBD products made with poorly extracted CBD, additives, and flavoring agents may also be harmful to your pets. Your best bet is to only give your fur-children pet-safe CBD products from a reputable company.
Why THC and Pets Don’t Mix
THC is widely regarded as toxic to animals. This is because both dogs and cats have a lot more cannabinoid receptors in their brains than humans do, making them especially sensitive to THC. While THC intoxication is rarely fatal, each dog or cat will react differently to the exposure.
Intoxication usually happens by accident. Pets either breathe in large amounts of second-hand marijuana smoke or ingest unsupervised edibles or flowers. Sadly, some pet owners think it’s a good idea to get their pets high on purpose.
Signs of THC intoxication in pets range from loss of coordination or hyperactivity to vomiting and incontinence. In severe cases, they may develop tremors, seizures, or even slip into a coma. The bottom line: THC is NOT pet friendly!
Should You Give Your Pet CBD?
So, is CBD safe for pets? Yes—as long as it’s made specifically for pets!
If you’re thinking about adding CBD to your pet’s daily regimen, see what your vet says first. If they’re reluctant to discuss it or know little about it, it’s a good idea to bring them CBD-related literature or seek out a veterinarian that’s current on CBD news and research.
Dr. Strains CBD only sells human-safe hemp products. We do not recommend sharing your CBD hemp products purchased from our shop with your furry friends. Feel free to reach out to us with any CBD-related questions you may have!