Trying to understand the ins and outs of CBD is like entering a black hole that grows a little more each day. This trending product has fueled a fury of research, which means reading an article even 30 days old may feel outdated.
For those new to the discussion, CBD is a derived from hemp or cannabis and may or may not contain limited traces of THC, which is the substance that produces a high for its users. CBD has been lauded by the masses as a cure-all for everything from epilepsy to dermatitis, which seems a little too good to be true.
Any resource will be quick to point out that the sudden boom onto the market left many products unregulated and studies are still catching up to confirm benefits in a real way.
In 2018 the FDA approved CBD for uses in some forms of epilepsy (1) and a month later, a Cornell study reported 80% of osteoarthritis dogs who used CBD showed “significant improvement in pain levels and quality of life”(2).
Anecdotal evidence has led pet parents to use CBD for its anti-inflammatory effects and to help with anxiety, aggression, pain, seizures, muscle spasms and neurological disorders (3).
CUDDLY published an article in June 2019 with a quick overview of CBD and how it supports our personal pets (4). Even in the few months since then, the industry has grown and made murky waters even more difficult to navigate.
As a member of our family, we want the best for our pets, which is why we partnered with MyJane, a company devoted to demystifying cannabis, to navigate the frontier of CBD and the best way to incorporate it into our lives.
Tried, Tested & True
Given the confusing mix of too much and not enough regulation, it's important to only use products that have been tested.
MediPrana is known not only for its premium ingredients, but they go out of their way to have their products tested by a third party. More than that, each batch is trackable so you see the exact breakdown of the product you are using. Which is more than can be said for some multivitamins or even the make-up you use.
Sprays, Tinctures, Treats- Oh My
After finding a brand you trust, you'll be making the choice on how you and your pet will be consuming CBD. Your experience will vary depending on the method you choose and the symptoms you are treating should be taken into account when selecting your CBD product.
Tincture (Drops and Sprays)
A little dropper can go a long way if it's filled with a CBD tincture. As one of the best ways to absorb CBD, this method is one of the most common for pets and people alike and is perfect for more comprehensive wellness.
When on the go, a spray is a great alternative to a dropper. A quick spritz on a treat, in a water bowl, or directly in your pet's mouth will leave them feeling calm and confident.
Applying a balm, cream, or using a soak can be a little more tricky. While our skin is our biggest organ, it doesn't absorb CBD as quickly as inhalation or an oral tincture, which means these products will need to be applied liberally.
Because these treatments target concentrated areas, you'll have more control over the effects. Products in this category are wonderful to upgrade bath time and have been shown to soothe skin and even support hair growth (5), which means your pets can feel more comfortable and look their best too.
Home is Where the Hound is
Sitting idly by while our pet suffers from anxiety and stress can be miserable and while they can't tell us in words what they are feeling, it can become clear relatively quickly. Dogs with stress have been shown to have symptoms including loss of appetite, weakened immune system, diarrhea, behavioral problems, exacerbated illness, and inappropriate urination (6).
Some people may think these behaviors translate to a ‘bad dog' and a new pet parent may be left feeling overwhelmed. Incorporating CBD into a consistent routine is one practice that can support this transition and pave the way for calm, happy families.
In a world where too many pets are homeless, abandoned, or returned, CBD seems to offer a ray of hope. The potential to steady a dog's nerves long enough to charm a family, to aid in separation anxiety, or help behave when meeting new people could make all the difference in a pet's life.
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