The Endocannabinoid System in Pets – How Dogs and Cats Benefit from CBD

The Endocannabinoid System in Pets – How Dogs and Cats Benefit from CBD | CannaCubans

In this post, we will cover the endocannabinoid system in pets. CBD's benefits extend beyond humans, offering incredible natural relief for all animals. Cats, dogs, birds, horses, and even reptiles can utilize the cannabinoid to treat various conditions without the adverse side effects of many prescription drugs. 



Your Pet's Endocannabinoid System


While all animals (including vertebrates and invertebrates) possess an endocannabinoid system or ECS, each is slightly different. Every pet owner thinking about giving their favorite critter CBD needs to understand the ECS and how it differs for their pet's species.  


According to the WHO, CBD is safe for animals, but other compounds derived from hemp can cause pet issues. For example, THC is toxic to dogs and cats have an intolerance to certain terpenes. 


Slight differences in the ECS of specific animals make it crucial to know what is in your CBD products and only buy from reputable companies. 


How Pets Benefit from CBD


While treating pets with cannabis products is a new phenomenon, it's completely understandable once you learn that the ECS is responsible for regulating many common canine ailments. According to a survey done by CSnews, 50% of pet owners give their animals CBD.


The ECS helps pets the same way it does for humans. When a dog or cat is faced with an adverse situation, like separation anxiety, trouble sleeping, or inflammation, a healthy ECS will provide chemical balance making the event more manageable. 


Pets with an endocannabinoid deficiency don't have a healthy flow of cannabis-like chemical compounds to keep their minds and bodies in homeostasis. When CBD is regularly introduced to the ECS, pets will become more prepared to deal with adverse, external events. 


CBD and Dogs


Dogs are the most common pet CBD consumers taking 77% of the market. Many dogs suffer from separation anxiety, chronic pain, epilepsy, and experience arthritis when they grow older. There's no surprise that pet owners want to help their dogs overcome these conditions, making their lives more enjoyable.


THC Toxicity


Before you give your dog a cannabis product, it is crucial to understand that dogs are sensitive to THC, the intoxicating compound found in marijuana. While the amount of THC in hemp-derived CBD products is minimal (0.3% or less), most vets don't recommend giving a dog THC. 


Even small amounts of the cannabinoid can lead to an unpleasant experience or land your furry friend in the hospital. We recommend finding a CBD product made specifically for pets, free from THC, to ensure your dog isn't poisoned. 


Separation Anxiety


Dogs are arguably the perfect companion. They are loyal, protective, and attentive to their owners earning the 'man's best friend' moniker (sorry, cat owners). However, the dog's most attractive qualities can often lead to overdependence, needy behavior, and separation anxiety. 


If you are leaving your dog home alone for hours at a time, they are likely experiencing some anxiety. The side effects result in destructive behavior like barking, emptying trash cans, or chewing through furniture. 


Anecdotal examples suggest that CBD can help dogs suffering from separation anxiety calm down and reduce destructive behavior when left alone. 




Both dogs and cats commonly experience arthritis. However, dogs are more susceptible, with 20% reporting the condition (regardless of age), and it is the most common chronic disease affecting canines. 


One of the best studies we have regarding the endocannabinoid system in pets was done by Baylor University. The researchers performed a randomized placebo-controlled, double-blind study on 20 dogs diagnosed with the condition. After four weeks of trials, the researchers concluded that "CBD significantly decreased pain and increased mobility in a dose-dependent fashion among animals with an affirmative diagnosis of osteoarthritis.


CBD and Cats


Felines are the second most common pet treated with CBD. While cats aren't as dependent as dogs, they still can benefit from a wide array of natural benefits from cannabidiol. 


Terpene Sensitivity


Hemp-derived CBD products can contain aromatic oils called terpenes. These compounds are essential for the plant's development and have unique medical applications; however, pets (especially cats) are sensitive to these plant compounds. 


Nepetalactone is the terpene in catnip responsible for the intoxicating effects and sporadic behavior. Animals have enhanced senses and can be affected negatively by terpenes' aromatic or chemical properties. While most full-spectrum products don't contain enough compounds to harm pets, it may be wise to avoid them. 


CBD oils with enhanced or added terpene profiles can be dangerous to pets. Avoid these products and shop for organic CBD oil to ensure your pet doesn't have an adverse reaction. 


Using CBD for Epilepsy


Epilepsy is the only current FDA-approved treatment using CBD as the active ingredient. The FDA hasn't approved any pet CBD products, but many pet owners have reported dramatic changes when treating their dog or cat with CBD. 


How to Properly Dose Your Pet


CBD use in humans and animals requires finding the ideal dose. We recommend starting your pet off with 1-2mg per 10 pounds. For example, if you have a 30-pound dog, give them between 3 and 6mg. 


Use the CBD every day for at least one week and observe the results. If necessary, increase the dosage. Most pet owners find an ideal dose between 5 and 10mg for every 10 pounds.


Choosing CBD for Your Dog or Cat


You don't want to give your pet low-quality CBD containing cannabis compounds that could be harmful. We highly recommend avoiding THC and synthetic terpenes when purchasing CBD for your pet.


Canna Cubans CBD is for Everyone


The endocannabinoid system and pets is a complex topic that we are still in the process of fully understanding. At Canna Cubans, our goal is to provide our customers with reliable, unbiased information to help them make informed purchasing decisions. We know how important your pet's health is and strive to help you find natural, safe solutions that will improve their lives. 


Check out our USDA-certified CBD pet products, and feel free to reach out if you have any questions. 



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