CBD: Beneficial to Animal Health

Often animals suffer from medical conditions whose treatment only works to cause more problems. Watching one’s furry friend experience pain everyday of their life brings the idea of putting them out to pasture in mind. It is not the preferred solution to the problem but it is better than letting them suffer through their last days. 

CBD has become the go to natural element for managing medical conditions for humans among other uses. It has proved quite potent and useful where conventional medicine has been struggling to arrest situations. The animal physiological structure has plenty of similarities to the human one. The one that matters in this case though, is the presence of endocannabinoid receptors in animals. These work to modulate pain, anxiety among other inconvenient situations. CBD interacts with the receptors just as it does in humans to provide relief. 

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This use of CBD is still novel. There are still some reservations about it with many people only believing in the possibilities upon seeing it. Studies are scanty but ones that have been done indicate CBD being a wonder element for animals in the treatment of chronic pain, arthritis, anxiety, appetite loss and seizures 

  • Seizures

Some may find seizures hard to diagnose because they are unable to tell whether the animal is only sleeping or actually seizing. If the animal is biting the tongue, foaming at the mouth and drooling, he is probably seizing and a vet should be contacted immediately. These only last a few minutes.

Between 1-5% of dogs suffer from seizures. These can be caused by a variety of underlying conditions including idiopathic epilepsy. Other causes could be genetics, kidney and liver disease, vaccines, head injury and brain cancer. If left untreated, seizures can lead to severe brain damage for the animal. 

There are drugs that can be prescribed to combat these seizures. A good percentage of these animals experience resistance to these drugs and only continues to suffer. Most case studies have shown that there is no complete relief, only reduction in symptoms. It is scary to watch the furry friend go through an episode. A reduction in the number of seizures while not a small fete is still not enough. The drugs used for this purpose adversely affect the kidneys and liver. If the animal does not die from the effect of the seizures, he or she will probably die from the side effects. CBD on the other hand has been found to gradually reduce the number of seizures to nil. In addition to this, it does not have any life threatening side effects. 

The interaction with the endocannabinoid receptors prevents neurotoxicity caused by seizures. The activation by CBD of CB1R reduces the severity of the seizure significantly, according to studies. 

  • Pain

Animals, especially as age advances, suffer joint pain. They are unable to communicate so the result is a more subdued pet. They move less and maybe even lose appetite. There are pain relief drugs for these cases but these end up causing dependency and other adverse effects. 

The idea of using cannabis to treat pain in animals has been around since the 1980s. Back then, it was ridiculed and mocked. However, recent studies have shown that there is good news in the horizon. The Colorado State University recently threw their hat in the ring. They are conducting their own study on CBD efficacy for treatment of osteoarthritis. It is still underway. 

Preliminary information indicates the interaction of CBD with the CB1 receptor is instrumental in treatment of chronic pain in animals from arthritis, injury and other forms of pain. This helps reduce sensations of pain. It tells neurotransmitters to fight the pain. 

  • Anxiety

Some domestic animals may display behavior that makes them unmanageable. They have trouble getting integrated into human families. The result is being surrendered to the kennels in most cases. This is painful for both parties. The animal will lose his family while the owner will lose a friend. In many cases, the problem is easily solved by a little more investigation. The first thing to note is whether the issues arise in some specific situation or all the time. This is important to note whether the anxiety is situational or behavioral.

If it is situational anxiety, the dog can get doses of CBD before the trigger events and they will just mellow out. In this case, dosing is done a little differently. The startup dose is pretty large. Once the animal is used to having a calm relationship with human beings, it can be gradually decreased. Eventually, the animal can be weaned off the CBD completely. If it is behavioral, there will be need for training in addition to the CBD. 

  • Nausea and Skin

The animal may suffer nausea from the effect of drugs or some other type of sickness. In 2011, an animal study was conducted on the effectiveness of CBD on nausea. It was found that the interaction of CBD on the endocannabinoid receptors granted anti-nausea capabilities. This goes a long way in increasing appetite in animals.

Skin conditions that cause excessive shedding and thinning of the fur among others can also be easily treated using CBD. Dermatitis and eczema symptoms can be suppressed as measures are taken to prevent recurrence of the condition.

  • Palliative Care

This is end of life care. It is done for chronically ill animals. Illness brings with it pain and lethargy. Interaction of CBD with all the different receptors and enzymes that promote joy reduces instances of the blues. CBD is great in ensuring the quality of life is maintained until the end.

  • Cancer

This would not be complete without mentioning cancer. There have been much medical advancement where CBD is used for cancer treatment in humans. Studies have indicated that CBD has the potential to stop growth of cancer cells. It also helps increase efficacy of conventional cancer treatments in addition to solving some of the side effects of these treatments. Testimonials from pet parents who have tried this avenue affirm this fact. More studies are necessary but if this can be proven beyond doubt, palliative care due to cancer will be a thing of the past. 

CBD Products

Many animal products come with CBD infused in them. Apart from the anxiety case, dosage of CBD in animals should be done according to directions on the packaging. One may increase dosage gradually until they achieve a level whereby positive change is seen but there are no negative effects to note. 

It is important to ensure that the product is organic. The method of extraction will affect bioavailability and purity. One should check to see that there are no pesticides, fungicides, or solvents. For this reason, the cheap brands often compromise on quality and purity. The product should be free of additives.

The product packaging should contain a certificate of laboratory analysis. This will show the elements contained therein and percentages. This includes the percentage of THC. One should endeavor to get the lowest THC percentage possible. It is advisable that one get the product as a tincture. This is easy to adjust dosage. 

One should choose the product that appeals to them and their pet most. Whatever product is more convenient to administer is best. Most choose to infuse the CBD in food while others choose different products. Some of the products are outlined below.

  • Oil Extract

This is extracted in a number of ways. The best is liposomal extraction. CBD is generally hard for the body to absorb. Once it is made into oil, it makes it even harder. To solve this problem, liposomes come in and break down so that it is soluble enough for the body to absorb. 

This extract is much more potent than other CBD agents. It is used as the basis for most of the other products. The oil can be used orally or infused into food and beverages. 

  • Tincture

This comes in bottles with calibrated droppers. They are very easy to administer and one can adjust the dosage as required at a steady pace. One can buy a store bought tincture or they can make their own at home. It only takes a CBD element mixed into vegetable glycerin, oil or alcohol. 

It is best to deliver the tincture sublingually. One should try as much as possible to get a few drops of this under the tongue of the animal. The benefit of this is direct absorption into the blood circulation system and hence a fast acting effect.

However, caution should be taken with this method of consumption. One should ensure their pet is completely comfortable being touched like that lest he or she gets aggressive.

  • Topicals

These are transdermally absorbed into the body and therefore do not reach the blood. Under this are salves, creams and other topical products with a CBD presence. They are best applied to ease body aches and joint pains as they provide an almost instantaneous localized relief.

When used in conjunction with cooling menthol or warming agents, they will work toward providing that soothing sensation needed. Topicals are especially great for racehorses. They are not allowed to ingest drugs. The topical will provide relief on the muscles after a long day of physical activity. By morning, the animal will be good and ready to race again.

  • Capsules

These mostly come filled with CBD infused gel. They are served up as little chews for the animals. They are said to be a little more expensive than most of the products but will work very well. Testimonials have great things to say about this mode.

  • Edibles

This can be anything from dog biscuits to CBD incorporation into the pet food recipe. There are ready-made pet treats in the market, which offer up varying amounts of CBD. One should ensure they confirm the exact amount there is to avoid serving up a large amount as a start up dose.

The treats should be kept out of reach of the animal. Otherwise, they will reach up and serve themselves a generous amount of CBD, which could end up affecting them. One should also let everyone know that the treats are not to be handed out like regular treats. They should prescribe a specific frequency. This information should be made available to everyone who comes into contact with the animal. Edibles pose a huge risk of over consumption. This is because the CBD takes a bit more time to affect change. The delay may cause one to feel the need of administering more. One should make sure to follow instructions and give time for the digestive process to conclude. If due care and precation is observdd, all will be well. The furry friend will be all good. 

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