Understanding your pet’s needs can be difficult without the typical means of communications humans have to express themselves. Simplifying your pet’s care plan can not only make your pet more comfortable, but it can also offer you peace of mind that you are fulfilling their needs without having to worry about expensive or complicated medication. A good way to do this is through the use of CBD. CBD, or Cannabidiol, is a chemical derivative of the Cannabis plant. This is a non-psychoactive chemical, meaning it cannot get your pet high, but it can have many side effects on your pet to help manage various symptoms. As a multi-faceted treatment, it can help to streamline common treatments for your pet and make it easier to ensure they are getting the care they need. That being said, you should still be aware of the potential cons of using CBD to decide if this is the right decision for your pet.
Benefits of Using CBD with your Pets
CBD can help with many common issues you and your pet may face. Specifically, CBD is especially useful and common with pets such as dogs and cats. Just like humans, these pets can face a variety of types of pains, especially as they age and their joints become weaker. CBD has been shown to help alleviate pains, or at the very least, soothe pets with pain and make them less agitated by it. Relieving tension or agitation caused by pain can increase quality of life if the pain itself is not treatable. As CBD can be incorporated into your daily care routine for your pets, you can feel confident they are getting daily assistance for this ailment.
Another one of the most common situations in which pet owners incorporate CBD into their care routines is for mood balancing. Pets, especially rescues, often become stressed in everyday situations and are difficult to console. Storms, being left alone, or noisy neighborhoods can trigger stress or fear. Without the same communication tools we may use to console a human child for these same issues, for example, it sometimes takes additional resources to soothe pets when facing any of these scenarios. As all three of these are unavoidable, it is something that pet owners have to work to manage throughout the lives of their pets regardless of age, breed, location, or training.
Studies are showing that CBD may help to stabilize your pets’ moods by altering the brain’s response to serotonin and helping them to relax, making typically stressful situations easier on them and their emotions. It also makes it easier on you as you can go about your day without worrying about the toll that stress is taking on your pet at that moment.
Risks/Warnings of Using CBD with your Pets
Although CBD has a variety of benefits, you need to also weigh these benefits against potential side effects to determine if this will be the best course of action for your pet. More research is needed on the overall side effects and long term effects on CBD usage in pets,, but some common effects that have been reported include dry mouth, lowered blood pressure, and drowsiness. Dry mouth may present itself as an increased thirst in your pet and is not overly dangerous to your pet as long as they remain adequately hydrated. If you notice your pet is not drinking water, whether they are using CBD or not, always be sure to contact your vet as this can be indicative of another more serious problem. Drowsiness is a debated symptom as drowsiness may be what helps with mood stabilizing. Low energy caused by the drowsiness could be what balances the high energy caused from stressful situations. More research is needed on how CBD affects stress and mood in order to fully understand what is happening during these situations.
How to Administer CBD to Your Pets
The easiest way to administer CBD to your pet will be a liquid oil or tincture such as Muddy Boot Botanicals’ Pet Drops. These are one of the most accessible forms of CBD, other than CBD treats. Although your pet may be more inclined to accept a treat over an oil, you have less control over the dosage of a treat than you do with that of an oil. Oils and tinctures can be adjusted drop by drop to meet the needs of your pet. Although there is a widely accepted dosage based on weight, which is most often 1-2mg for every 10lbs or up to 5mg for every 10lbs, the needs, tolerances, and intolerances for every pet will be different. It will be harder to administer a consistent dosage if you have to cut up treats in order to alter dosages. If you are concerned about how well your pet will accept a tincture or oil, there are easy ways to incorporate it into their lifestyle. Some pets will take it by mouth easily if their head is held and the drops are issued directly into the mouth. If not, it can easily be dropped into food and disguised into their meal.
When weighing the pros and cons against each other, there are many other things to consider. Of course, talking to your vet will always be your first instinct when considering the health and wellbeing of your pets and what care plan to take for them. Unfortunately, veterinarians in the United State are not allowed to suggest or prescribe CBD at this time. CBD as a treatment for pets is still being researched and further studied and will not be considered a prescribable treatment plan until this happens and has been approved. However, vets absolutely can discuss CBD with you and what the potential benefits and risks are for your pet if you ask them for more information on it when you are creating a treatment plan with them. Although they cannot make a prescription for you, they will know more about your pet’s health and whether or not the risks may outweigh the benefits in your case so you can make a better decision on how to proceed. More than likely your vet will be in the know for the most up to date research and information on the topic, especially as CBD expands in popularity for pets.
While more research is needed to truly establish the benefits and risks for pets, CBD offers a variety of possibilities that can make your life easier when trying to give your pets the best quality of life. When in doubt, do your research, consult your vet, and always listen to what your pet is trying to tell you through their actions and reactions to determine if CBD is right for you and them.