Our pets experience anxiety the same as we do. It’s tough as pet owners to know the best way to help when we can’t explain to them what’s going on. Did you know that you can use CBD oil for anxiety in your pets the same way you would for yourself? Here we are going to discuss how to use CBD for anxious dogs (and cats). But first, let’s talk about what anxiety looks like for them.
Anxiety in Animals
It’s common for our furry friends to experience situational anxiety as a reaction to environmental changes like thunderstorms, strangers, going to the vet, moving or other travel. They also experience behavioural anxiety; like separation anxiety.
Other pets may have increased levels of anxiety as a result of trauma or mistreatment prior to you adopting them. And our pets can even experience more generalized anxiety that has a negative overall impact on their lives.
As responsible pet owners, we want to find the best and healthiest solutions to our pets’ anxiety. CBD oil is a great solution for most pets’ anxiety.
What does anxiety look like in our pets?
Symptoms of dog anxiety include:
- Urinating or defecating on the floor despite being house trained
- Nervous licking of the lips
- Loss of appetite
PetMD identifies the following symptoms of general cat anxiety:
- Withdrawal and hiding
- Becoming less active
- Trying to escape
- Destructive or aggressive behaviour
- Failure to use the litter box
- Sores and lesions resulting from over-grooming
Other symptoms include a loss or reduction of appetite, weight loss, excessive vocalization, lethargy and restlessness,
Luckily, CBD oil can work on all of these symptoms and give your pet some much-needed relief.
What is CBD?
CBD is a naturally occurring compound found in cannabis and hemp. Although CBD does not produce the psychoactive ‘high’ associated with THC and therefore is non-toxic for your pet. For further clarification, hemp and marijuana contain different levels of THC. Marijuana can contain as much as 30% THC while the hemp plant has a max of only 0.3% THC.
So, ensure the CBD you’re buying for your furry pal is hemp-derived so they only get the benefits of CBD.
CBD for Anxious Dogs (and cats): How Does CBD Work?
Research shows CBD oil works by interacting with the body’s naturally occurring endocannabinoid system (ECS) to soothe and calm anxiety naturally. Our pets have an endocannabinoid system, just as we do, so many people are making the assumption that they react similarly to us as well. Though how CBD interacts with our pets ECS is still an emerging field and more research is needed to fully understand the health benefits of CBD for our pets.
More and more veterinarians are choosing to suggest CBD for many health benefits, not just anxiety. Particularly with pets that are resistant to traditional treatment methods.
How to use CBD for our pets
Add CBD oil directly to your pet’s food or drop it directly into their mouths the way we would (but don’t be surprised if your pet prefers not to take it this way).
What to expect
Although we expect to see similar results to how we react, our pets are as unique as we are, so it is normal to see different results with different animals. Some show almost immediate relief while others take a few days before they start to see effects.
We recommend taking detailed notes (or even short videos) of your pet’s behaviour prior to and after dosing to note the changes and find the best dose for them. Remember that our pets are a lot smaller than we are so they need a smaller dose. And of course, they can’t tell us how they feel so it is always better to err on the side of caution.
Always start with a small dose, taking into account the weight of your pet as well as other factors like any other medication they are on, and increase slowly (over several hours or even over a few days) until you find the desired dose.
CBD Dosing for Pets
Dr Cornelia Wagner, owner of Hawthorne Veterinary Clinic in Portland, OR, is one of the veterinarians opening her mind and her doctor’s office to the idea of cannabis as a safe, effective medicine when dosed properly.
All The Best Pet Care suggests a starting dose of 1 mg – 5 mg per 10 lbs. of body weight.
Cats: 1 – 5mg but consider their size also
|Dogs:||10 lbs||20 lbs||30 lbs||40 lbs||50 lbs||60 lbs||70 lbs||80 lbs|
|1 – 5mg||2 – 10mg||3 – 15mg||4 – 20mg||5 – 25mg||6 – 30mg||7 – 35mg||8 – 40mg|
Since there is not yet enough research to have a universally accepted dose it is important to always start small and read and follow the label.
Cannabis Success Stories
My cat was adopted from the SPCA after having major surgery on his foot. He is a very anxious boy, with food scarcity issues and separation anxiety. A few Kitty Bittys in the morning before I leave the house makes all the difference for his attitude when I get home. Read his story here.
Have you tried CBD with your anxious pet? Have a pet other than a cat or dog that you’ve tried it with? We would love to hear your stories! Tag us on social media @miss.enybotanicals or @bully_bits
OR contact us for a chance to have your pet’s story featured on our website.