In recent years, the world has seen an explosion of support for the legalization of cannabis. The accompanying legitimization of cannabis as medicine is enabling health experts to more closely examine the cannabis plant and its compounds for its health benefits and side effects. This not only extends to humans, but research is being done to determine if cannabis has any medicinal benefits for animals as well.
CBD vs. THC
Cannabis contains many compounds or cannabinoids. Of these compounds, the two we are most concerned with are cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). While most of the cannabinoids in the cannabis plant work together, it’s CBD and THC that are the most active.
Before we can discuss the benefits of cannabis for pets, we should first talk a little about the cannabis plant itself. Most specifically, the two varieties of the same plant. Cannabis can be grown as either hemp or marijuana. While hemp and marijuana are both derived from the same plant, they have a very distinct difference in how they affect humans and animals.
Many medicines derived from cannabis are made from the hemp plant. This is because the hemp plant contains almost no THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana that is responsible for the “high” people experience. To officially be considered hemp, a cannabis plant must contain less than 0.3% THC.
When we are dealing with our pets, we need to consider that their tolerance to cannabis is much lower than ours. Because of this, most pet meds are not made with full strength cannabis. Instead, they use extracts to make a wide variety of treats, drops, and topical creams.
How Can CBD oil for Dogs help cure issues?
Much like humans, CBD oil for dogs can help alleviate a number of issues and illness. As with most herbal medications, however, you are not likely to see instant results.
For some issues, such as pain relief, you may notice a slight improvement within a couple of hours, but more serious issues, like inflammation, may take days to start seeing any sort of improvement. Be patient and never overdose your pets in the hopes of speeding up results, as that could be dangerous and possibly even cause death.
There are a number of conditions that CBD oil, creams, and chews can help your pooch with. As with any medication, there are some side effects you should keep an eye out for. The most common of these is drowsiness, but it’s nothing more intense than, say, an allergy medication.
More serious side effects can occur, but they’re far from the norm; nevertheless, they include itchiness and vomiting. Should either of these conditions occur, stop giving your pet CBD medication and contact your veterinarian.
Anxiety is an issue that affects countless animals and humans. One of the most prevalent benefits of therapeutic CBD is to help relieve anxiety. For pets, veterinarians prescribe smaller doses of human anti-anxiety medications, but these meds can come with a number of potential side effects, ranging in severity from relatively minor to serious.
Thankfully, CBD oil for dogs is now readily available in many parts of the country. Over time, the proper dosage of CBD oil can help relieve stress and allow your dog the ability to relax and enjoy time with you.
While cannabis cannot cure cancer or kill cancer cells, there has been some very promising research into the effects of CBD on patients with cancer. One study showed that CBD slowed cancer cell growth. Another recent CBD cancer-related study showed that CBD could increase tumor death in some patients.
The sad fact is that most family dogs will undergo at least one surgery in their lifetime. Luckily, most dogs are pretty good about handling pain and discomfort. By giving your dog CBD treats or oil, you can help alleviate some of the issues caused by surgery. Simply use the dropper that comes with your tincture or oil and mix a small amount of it into your dog’s food or treats once or twice a day.
Prior to administering any CBD before or after surgery, it’s crucial to consult your vet as unknown medication can cause unforeseen complications with anesthesia and your dog’s cardiovascular system.
A surprisingly large number of dogs suffer from seizures, yet another issue that usually requires prescription medication. Studies show that within five months of beginning a CBD regimen, the majority of patients will see their seizure issues improve.
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