CBD and Pet Health
What pet health problems might CBD help manage?
CBD has shown benefit for animals in a range of conditions including, but not limited to, inflammatory problems, seizures, pain relief, and anxiety. Using CBD for pet health problems is based on the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The goal of the ECS is to achieve and maintain balance of all processes in the body. This is thought to be the reason CBD may have so many potential benefits.
Keep in mind that every pet’s ECS functions a little bit differently, so CBD may work better for some than others.
Once absorbed by an animal’s body, CBD may play a role in lowering inflammation and relieving pain. While experts are still learning exactly how CBD may relieve pain, it’s believed to affect the ECS and other nerves that are involved in creating pain sensations. More specifically, studies have shown that reducing joint inflammation relieves osteoarthritis aches and pains in pets.
Much like humans, many pets experience anxiety, leading to several troublesome behaviors like urinating inappropriately. CBD is thought to ease nervousness and provide feelings of calm. Experts believe this is because CBD may activate some of the same areas of the brain as serotonin — the hormone that helps us feel happy and relaxed.
CBD has been shown to help with epilepsy in dogs by lowering the frequency of seizures when used in combination with traditional antiseizure medications. Although experts don’t fully understand how CBD treats seizures, it is thought to prevent nerves in the brain from firing too much and lower the number of electrolytes believed to have a role in seizure conditions.
A prescription CBD medication called Epidiolex was FDA-approved for two severe seizure conditions called Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome in humans in 2018. It is also approved for the treatment of seizures associated with tuberculosis sclerosis complex. However, studies have not been conducted for its use in animals, so it is not recommended to use it in pets.