15 Jun How CBD Can Help Your Pets
By: Mary Galeski, MBA; Co-owner Blue Lotus Wellness
Yes! CBD Helps Pets just like it does people
People are often surprised to find CBD for pets in our store. Most people consider cannabis a “people product.” Notably, THC is a “people product.” Pets should not have access to large amounts of THC. It bears mentioning early in this article that THC is toxic for pets at very large doses – more on that later. However, CBD can benefit pets just like it does people. When customers ask Does CBD really Help Pets – I tell them this…
Interestingly, my dog was actually one of the first things that brought me to CBD. Our elderly Labrador suffered chronic pain from a pre-rescue injury. Age and arthritis also made her pretty uncomfortable. Watching her move, you could just see how hard it was for her.
Our poor Jillian was really suffering. She didn’t want to play fetch, or run to the door when someone came home, like she used to. We thought about sending her over the rainbow bridge, but the vet suggested CBD. Since my sister had just gotten into the CBD business, we had some on hand that we used. What a HUGE difference it made for her. She could get up more easily, wanted to play with other dogs, and just didn’t seem so sad. We credit CBD with giving our precious Jillian 2 happy years she otherwise would not have had.
How Can CBD Help Pets?
|Separation Anxiety||Airplane Travel|
|Epilepsy||Loss of a Friend|
CBD can do the same basic things for pets that it does for people. That is, it helps with chronic discomfort, stress, and sleeplessness. According to VCA Animal Hospitals, dogs have even more cannabinoid receptors in their brains than people do. This means that they may in fact be a little more responsive than people to the benefits! All vertebrate animals (those with a backbone) have an Endocannabinoid system that includes CB1 and CB2 receptors. See our full article about the Endocannabinoid System here.
I have personally experienced great results for a pet and have many very satisfied clients who consistently purchase pet products. Based on their feedback, I sometimes feel like CBD works even better for pets than it does for people. And I think I know the reason… pet parents are almost always consistent with dosing their furbabies. People are not always so consistent when it comes to dosing themselves. As with any medication for chronic conditions, regular dosing is key to getting the best results. This applies to your pet and to you!
Please note that the FDA has not approved CBD for the treatment or cure of any disease. Please consult your veterinarian, especially if your pet is on prescription medication.
Which Pets Can Use CBD?
Every vertebrate (with a spine) animal may benefit from CBD. Our pet clients include :
and one little piggy
Well, OK, the piggy is not so little, but he benefits just the same.
The bottom line is that unless your pet is a jellyfish, a snail, or similar, he or she can potentially benefit.
Do Pets Need Consistent Dosing?
If you talk to me in the store, I always emphasize the helpfulness of consistent, regular dosing. CBD builds up in the body, so the benefits can become more regular, and bigger, after you take it regularly for a period of time.
BUT, that doesn’t mean it can’t be helpful for situational problems. Maybe your pet does very well, except on the Fourth of July, or New Year’s Eve because of the fireworks. Or, she gets anxious at the groomer or the vet. If that’s the case, it may make sense for you do give your pet a moderate to large dose of CBD, jus for those occasions. This would be something like 3-5 milligrams of CBD per 10 pounds of body weight. In our pet oil, this would be 3-5 drops per 10 lbs. So, you might give a 50 pound dog 15-25 drops, or 3-5 of our Suzie’s Hearts. This can work for car rides, vet visits, house guests, or any other infrequent stressor that may bother your fluffy friends.
This can also help for pets that take CBD regularly anyway. Taking 2-3 times their usually dose for a particularly stressful or painful day can be beneficial.
Pet CBD Dosing Guidelines
|Pet Weight||Chronic Condition (mild/moderate)||Situational (severe)|
|Large Animal||1-3mg per 10 pounds||3-5mg per 10 pounds|
A good starting dose is about 1mg of CBD per 10 lbs. of body weight. This follows the “start low, go slow” process with yout pet. Provide this dose twice a day to your pet chronic conditions, or once one hour before bedtime for sleep. If this dose works, great! You can stop there. If not, gradually increase the dose, going up to a maximum of 5mg per 10 lbs., as needed, to see results. You can also add in a third dose in the middle of the day if you find that your pet’s symptoms seem to be coming back between doses.
If you get to that 5mg/10lbs threshold and are still not seeing results, unfortunately CBD just may not be the best solution for your pet. But, most animals, just like most people, will see some improvement with CBD. Make sure you are consistent with giving CBD to your pet for at least two weeks and are hitting the dosing guidelines before you give up.
Caution! THC in Large doses is toxic for some pets
THC will make your pet feel “high” at doses like what humans take (by weight). So, if a 10mg gummy makes a 200 pound person high, think what it will do to a 20 pound dog. While some people might find this amusing, we do not. Imagine being unable to understand what is happening to you and being given a substance that alters your mental state. Even more concerning, though, is the fact that at high dose, THC is toxic, per VCA animal hospitals. Thankfully, lethal doses are incredibly rare and would require you pet to consume approximately 1500mg of pure THC per pound of body weight. But, it can happen, and unpleasant side effects can happen at moderate doses. Please be sure to give your pets only CBD products, NOT delta 8, delta 9, or any other forms of recreational or medical THC.
According to VCA, signs of THC intoxication in pets include wobbliness and lack of coordination. Lethargy or intense hyperactivity can also occur. A pet’s pupils may dilate, and they may drool a lot or even vomit. If severe intoxication occurs, the pet may have tremors, seizures, or even coma or death. If you see any of these signs in your animal, and you think they have been exposed to THC in some way, you should take them to an emergency vet so the severity of the overdose can be assessed, and your pet can be treated if necessary.
Note: our CBD oil is “full spectrum.” This means that there is a trace amount of THC inside it, but it is not enough to affect yours or your pets mental state. Very small doses in a full spectrum CBD product may add to the therapuetic value. This is why our oil is safe, but you should still be aware that THC CAN be harmful to pets in certain circumstances. You should take care to keep any THC products in your home that you have for medicinal or recreation purposes away from your pets, to avoid accidental exposures.
What is the best way to give Your pet CBD?
If you think CBD might be right for your pet, there are lots of ways to give it to them. As I said above, one of our most common recommendations is our own pet oil. This is just high quality, certified organic hemp extract in MCT (coconut) oil. Although we have blends with other plant additives for people, this simple oil is best for pets to avoid any problems with other ingredients. This is an especially great choice for pets with sensitive stomachs, who might react to other additives in treats. And, it can be more convenient for very big animals, who need a high dose due to their weight. Oil is also the most cost-effective option.
Think your pet will like a treat better? No problem, we have lots of options!
We have a wide variety of treats, primarily from our friends at Suzie’s CBD. They have hearts at 4mg each, which are hard treats great for dogs 20-50lbs. They also have small bites and soft chews at 2mg each, meant for dogs 20lbs and under. And, they even have special cat treats, at 1/2mg a piece. Each of these comes in a few flavors, such as pumpkin and apple, so you can pick a taste that you know your pet likes. Suzie’s also sells CBD peanut butter, which can be another great option for picky eating pets, and to customize your dose easily.
If you have a big dog, but still think a treat sounds good, don’t worry! We also have treats by cannabidiol life, which are 10 mg each, and are great for bigger dogs.
Can Pets and People Use the Same CBD?
The answer is that yes, pets can use the exact same oil people use, so long as the additives are not harmful for pets. High quality CBD is the same no matter what it is in. However, you need to look at is what else is in the bottle. For example, I would not give a pet our Relax blend as it contains Lavender and Chamomile. Obviously, you would not give your dog CBD chocolates and the chocolate is toxic for pups. Just like how I personally would not want to use a bacon flavored oil or one that contains catnip. Nor would I wish to eat a CBD pet treat (bleh!). However, our “Natural” CBD oil is perfectly safe for pets and people.
But remember to keep the dropper clean! If you are dropping the oil into your pet’s food rather than placing it in their mouth, you could choose to use the same oil. But if you want to give the oil right into your dog’s mouth, you should get your own bottle.
We are always happy to have a chat, either on the phone or in person, if you want some advice on this process, because we know it is A LOT to learn.