Chances are, in the last few years you’ve become aware of a seemingly-new thing called CBD. This awe-inducing, ‘wonder-treatment’ is being increasingly investigated for its therapeutic properties, which have been proposed as treatments for everything from anxiety to cancer.
But it’s not exactly ‘new.’ CBD, or cannabidiol, is rumored to have been used for centuries, even by people like Queen Victoria and Chinese emperors way back in BC times. But it wasn’t really recognized in the scientific community until the mid-1800s.
Even if you consider that a long time ago, CBD’s controversial nature slowed its progress, and as such, thorough scientific research on CBD has only become a serious field within the last century.
CBD is a chemical extracted from hemp. Because of this, many people associate it with marijuana, often misunderstanding its use in health treatments. But unlike marijuana, CBD isn’t psychoactive.
The psychoactive component in marijuana is TCH, which is not prominently featured in CBD products. While some CBD products may have trace amounts of TCH, the legal maximum is 0.3%. So, CBD isn’t going to induce a high.
CBD is currently being used in all sorts of forms – from oils and tinctures to gummies and topical creams. While inhalation is one of the most effective forms of CBD uptake, many other forms are just as popular.
Besides the many ways of ingesting CBD, it can also be taken by a wide variety of users. Not only has CBD become popular among people, but it’s also being used on animals.
Many pet owners have begun administering CBD to their pets.
Now, while many people might be hesitant, especially given the existing skepticism in CBD’s effects on humans, dogs have a similar endocannabinoid system as people. This physiological system digests cannabinoids, a chemical family containing CBD, to maintain bodily homeostasis.
The endocannabinoid system regulates hormones, which in turn affect pain, appetite, mood, and other vital aspects.
But if you’re not convinced that CBD should be used for pets (whether or not you also have an opinion on its use for people), here are 6 reasons why you should consider giving your pet CBD oil:
- Healthy hearts
Many pet owners can attest to having worried about their pet’s heart health. It’s a common ailment faced by pets, especially dogs. Most dogs develop some kind of heart disease as they grow older.
According to CBD Kyro, CBD oil can help maintain cardiovascular health. Some studies they cite have found that CBD helps protect blood vessels from damage and arteries from dilation. It also helps animals maintain steady heart rates and blood pressure when feeling anxious.
- Pain relief
As for humans, CBD can help regulate pain sensation in your pets.
Animals often feel neuropathic pain and inflammation, which can occur in their pancreas, intestines, and many other parts of their bodies. CBD is especially effective at addressing these kinds of pain.
- Anxiety and depression
Once again, some of the most common disorders that humans treat with CBD can also be treated in animals. While many people like to argue over whether or not animals can feel pain and emotion to the same degree as humans, studies have shown that animals can feel emotional pain.
Many animals have shown signs of depression after they’ve been abandoned or another animal (i.e. a second pet) dies. Also, animals demonstrate signs of mental illness after mistreatment. An example of this is how some adopted dogs show post-traumatic-like behavior when being integrated into a new home.
Birds and other animals have been found to self-harm, through behavior such as pulling out its own feathers or fur.
With this in mind, it’s important to make sure your pet is in a healthy mental shape. After all, regardless of the joy pets bring humans, many pet owners likewise prioritize their animal’s health and happiness as well.
- Nervous system protection
Generally, the nervous system is one of the most vital in our and our pets’ bodies. The nervous system is composed of two primary systems: the central nervous system (CNS) and the peripheral nervous system (PNS). The former deals with the brain and spine, while the latter concerns basically the rest of the body’s neural network.
The endocannabinoid system expresses proteins throughout both the CNS and PNS, meaning that it has a large and important influence over our bodies.
Because CBD is taken-up by the endocannabinoid system, it can also influence the health of nervous-system related processes. Some studies have also indicated that CBD addresses issues directly related to the spine and nerves, themselves.
- Overall health benefits
If you’re aware of the current state of CBD research, you might be familiar with its use in treating other disorders like epilepsy, Huntington’s, and even some cancers. As such, CBD may provide additional, unexpected health benefits and disorder prevention to your pet.
Although not enough studies have been completed to make such broad statements, anecdotal evidence and the studies that have been published point to CBD being highly beneficial.
- Low-risk side effects
According to Daily CBD Mag, the primary potential side effects of CBD use are effects in appetite, fatigue, irritability, dry mouth, and diarrhea. As with any substance, CBD should be taken responsibly.
In humans, many of its side effects have also been found to be in conjunction with what the person is treating. For example, when used to treat insomnia, a user might feel drowsier.
CBD side effects can also be linked to the amount and method of consumption. The effects of CBD can vary drastically since it is influenced by personal factors such as weight.
So, if you feel that your pet could use some kind of pick-me-up, CBD could provide a helping hand. Even if you’re still skeptical, testing it out is relatively safe.
Although CBD’s legality is still somewhat vague, the 2018 Farm Bill legalized CBD products that have less than 0.3% THC.
However, because the legislation regarding CBD is relatively recent, there is little regulation on CBD production and distribution. As such, it may be useful to do some research or consult a veterinarian before administering CBD products to your pet. It might also be safer to look into pet-specific CBD products rather than giving them products intended for humans.