Is CBD safe for dogs and cats?
Did you know that in 2021, 3 in 10 Americans have used CBD at least once? Proposed health benefits include reducing inflammation to calming anxiety. And thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp-derived CBD products are legal in most states. It's no surprise that many of us with pets have wondered: is CBD safe for dogs and cats?
First of all, what is CBD?
Cannabidiol, abbreviated to CBD, is a chemical compound (cannabinoid) naturally found in the Cannabis sativa plant. Unlike its fellow cannabinoid tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC), CBD is non-intoxicating—it won't make you feel "high."
CBD is available in a variety of products for both humans and animals, including ingestibles (treats) and drops that can be taken orally or on food.
How does CBD work?
Did you know that all animals have a endocannabinoid system? That's right—you, Fido, and Mr. Mittens all have a built-in system of cannabinoid receptors. We create our own endocannabinoids to help our bodies maintain balance (homeostasis) throughout our lives. Although more research needs to be done on exactly how it works, it seems like taking CBD gives this system a boost.
What research has been done on CBD and pets?
- According to a 2017 report from the World Health Organization, pure CBD appears to be safe and well-tolerated by animals.
- A 2020 study published in the journal Pain, found CBD "significantly decreased pain and increased mobility in a dose-dependent fashion" among dogs with osteoarthritis.
- Another study published in Frontiers in Veterinary Science in 2018 found "2mg/kg of CBD twice daily can help increase comfort and activity in dogs with osteoarthritis."
- A clinical trial assessing the effect of oral cannabidiol on dogs with epilepsy found a "significant reduction in seizure frequency."
So... is CBD safe for pets?
CBD shows a lot of potential for giving our four-legged friends more comfortable, enjoyable lives. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence among pet owners: their stressed dog is calmed with a few drops of CBD, or a CBD treat is a go-to choice for calming an anxious cat.
However, there is still research that needs to be done on CBD and pets. It's best to talk to a veterinarian to determine if CBD is the best choice for your pet's health.
Reach out to the vets at Papaya to learn more.
The information in this blog is reviewed and approved by the Fear Free Certified veterinarians at Papaya Pet Care.