How Do Phytocannabinoids Benefit Pets?
Pet owners are increasingly turning to daily CBD supplements to support the health and wellbeing of their four-legged family members. Although the American Veterinary Medical Association takes no official stance concerning CBD oil as a nutritional supplement, many vets and pets owners believe that CBD oil can be administered as a supplement to help the many conditions animals may experience. A scientific report in the Spring 2016 issue of the Journal of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA) reviewed how 631 pet owners used cannabinoids with their pets. Commonly reported benefits of cannabinoids were; provided pain relief, aided with sleep, helped relieve anxiety, offered nervous system support, reduced inflammation, reduced seizures or convulsions, reduced vomiting or nausea, helped suppress muscle spasms, aided digestion, helped with thunderstorm or fireworks phobia, inhibited cell growth in tumors and cancer cells, and helped with skin conditions.
The Nov 2017 World Health Organization (WHO) report supports these findings by indicating CBD is safe and well tolerated in both humans and animals, and is not associated with any negative public health effects.
The reason phytocannabinoids (whole-plant CBD) have numerous applications for pets is because all mammals have endocannabinoid systems (ECS), critical to regulating a wide range of body processes, including the nervous system, immune system, digestive system, endocrine glands, brain, heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, spleen, bones, muscles, blood vessels and cells, lymph cells, and fat cells. ECS is responsible for maintaining balance (homeostasis) within the mammalian body, regulating the body’s immune response and communication between cells, as well as appetite, sleep, metabolism, and mood.
Naturally occurring phytocannabinoids are important for the overall health of dogs, cats, rabbits and other mammals (including humans). Dogs are especially responsive to phytocannabinoids as they have the highest concentration of cannabinoid receptors in their brains and bodies compared to other mammals – even humans.
Are Hemp-Derived Phytocannabinoids safe for pets?
Yes, the November 2017 World Health Organization (WHO) report indicates CBD is safe and well tolerated in both humans and animals, and is not associated with any negative public health effects. Note that hemp derived phytocannabinoids (CBD) do not include psychoactive compounds and do not cause the high associated with cannabis. Hemp is classified as containing less than .3% of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Pet owners may add CBD to their pets’ meals as a daily supplement for chronic ailments as well as to promote general well-being. In addition to the dozens of cannabinoids in hemp, hemp oil is a great source of important nutrients, including vitamins A, B12, C, and E, minerals, omega fatty acids, flavonoids, chlorophyll, and terpenes. Always talk to your veterinarian before adding any supplement to your pet’s regimen.
Research shows CBD is safe and well tolerated for animals, and may be beneficial for numerous health conditions, including relief from seizures, anxiety, acute and chronic pain, arthritis, and skin issues. Anecdotal evidence also indicates phytocannabinoids may also be useful in increasing appetite, improving digestion, slowing tumor growth, and providing end of life comfort.
- Cannabinoid receptor type 1 and 2 expression in the skin of healthy dogs and dogs with atopic dermatitis
- Antidepressant-like and anxiolytic-like effects of cannabidiol: a chemical compound of Cannabis sativa
- The nonpsychoactive cannabis constituent cannabidiol is an oral anti-arthritic therapeutic in murine collagen-induced arthritis
- Involvement of the endocannabinoid system in osteoarthritis pain
- Cannabidiol exerts anti-convulsant effects in animal models of temporal lobe and partial seizures
- The cannabinoids as potential antiepileptics
- Cannabinoids, endocannabinoids, and related analogs in inflammation
- Cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive component of cannabis and its synthetic dimethylheptyl homolog suppress nausea in an experimental model with rats
- Cannabidiol, a non-psychotropic component of cannabis, attenuates vomiting and nausea-like behaviour via indirect agonism of 5-HT(1A) somatodendritic autoreceptors in the dorsal raphe nucleus
- Non‐psychoactive cannabinoids modulate the descending pathway of antinociception in anaesthetized rats through several mechanisms of action
- The Effective Pain Treatment Your Vet May Not Want to Talk About – In this post from June 9th, Dr. Karen Becker discusses studies on the use of CBD oil (Phytocannabinoids) for the treatment of osteoarthritis, epilepsy, and pain management.
- Scientific Report – Consumers Perceptions of Hemp Products for Animals. AHVMA Journal, Volume 42, Spring 2016
- Pet Poison Helpline – Marijuana
- Veterinarians see more cases of pets ingesting marijuana – News Center Maine
- World Health Organization Report on Cannabidiol (CBD)