As CBD rapidly evolves as an industry, more additional studies are being conducted by scientists to learn more about what makes each compound in hemp so unique. Now, we know that pets can consume CBD just like us and that their bodies process it in practically an identical manner. Therefore, unsurprisingly, the CBD pet market is booming.
But what exactly is CBD for pets? What makes CBD-infused pet products so different from the ones that are marketed toward humans? How does one even begin their pet on a CBD regimen? In this article, we answer each of these questions.
What Exactly is CBD for Pets?
Is it the same variety of compounds that we take as CBD consumers ourselves? The answer, quite simply, is yes. CBD-infused pet products contain the same hemp-derived compounds consumed by humans. However, CBD pet products have unique formulations designed specifically for pets.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
Science has taught us that every mammal has what’s called an endocannabinoid system (ECS). This unique internal system utilizes self-produced cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) to help the body maintain a constant state of homeostasis. It achieves this via specialized cannabinoid receptors located throughout the body.
Endocannabinoid receptors help regulate crucial bodily processes, such as mood, temperature, inflammation levels, pain, and so much more. If the body struggles to produce a sufficient number of cannabinoids, any number of these bodily processes could potentially be negatively effective.
Consuming phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids originating in plants), could potentially give the endocannabinoid system an additional boost. CBD is just one of the many phytocannabinoids naturally produced by the hemp plant. Hemp is additionally saturated with terpenes, which may have other applications.
Types of CBD Pet Products
Now, you’re probably wondering what types of CBD products are out there for cats and dogs. Below are some of the most popular options available on the market today.
- Treats: CBD-infused treats are edibles explicitly formulated for cats and dogs.
- Oils: CBD-infused pet oils are highly versatile, as they can be applied topically, as a tincture, or ingested. Oils can easily be mixed in with your pet’s food or administered sublingually (under the tongue).
- Topicals: CBD-infused topicals for pets are most often available in spray form, as this helps the formula absorb beneath the fur. Topical sprays are great for localized issues as the compounds in hemp absorb through the skin quickly, and can even reach the muscle and joint tissue beneath.
How Can You Choose the Right CBD Product for Your Pet?
So, now that you know what’s out there, it’s time to walk you through the process of getting them started on a routine. First, you need to know how to select the right product for your specific pet.
Tip #1: Ask Your Vet
The first thing to do is to consult with your veterinarian. Your vet will want to know if you’re administering CBD to your pet, and may even be able to make suggestions explicitly catered to your pet.
Tip #2: Stick to Pet-Specific Products
Obviously, when choosing a CBD product for your pet, make sure that the product was specially formulated for them. Do not give your pet a CBD product intended for human consumption only.
Tip #3: Keep Your Pet’s Size and Breed in Mind
Choosing the right milligram strength is vital, as this determines how much of the compound your pet is receiving per dose. CBD pet companies typically state on the label which milligram strength is right based upon the size of your pet.
Tip #4: Determine Why You’re Giving Your Pet CBD
Also, it’s important to have a clear goal in mind when giving your pet CBD. Is there something specific that you’re trying to achieve, or are you just interested in potentially maintaining their health?
Tip #5: Keep Your Pet’s Preferences in Mind
Inside knowledge of your pet before choosing a product is key. For instance, if you know that they are a picky eater, you may want to choose a product that has a robust meaty flavor to mask the natural flavor of hemp.
How Can You Go About Starting Your Pet on a CBD Regimen?
Now, let’s talk about beginning a regular CBD regimen.
Step #1: Start with the Suggested Dose and Increase as Needed
We suggest starting with the recommended dose for a couple of weeks. Afterward, you can decide if you wish to increase (or even decrease) dose strength.
Step #2: Monitor Your Pet
Always closely monitor your pet whenever you add anything new to their daily regimen.
Step #3: Be Consistent
Consistency is vital, as CBD seems to function best with long-term use.
Step #4: Keep Your Vet Informed
Let your veterinarian know of any possible changes as your pet adjusts to their new CBD routine.
Knowledge is CBD Pet Power
Today, it’s easier than ever to find a variety of CBD products specially formulated for your pet. So, if you wish to begin your pet on a CBD regimen, we urge you to speak with your veterinarian to determine a routine that best suits them.
Joshua Willard (Freelance CBD Content Writer/Editor
*These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration (FDA). These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.