CBD Oil for CATS and DOGS in Veterinary Medicine

CBD for animals: Cats and dogs have lived alongside humans for tens of thousands of years. About 15000 years for the dog and 9000 for the cat. Our fellow travelers also experience illness and suffering. Pathologies, fatigue, stress, pain, sadness, boredom are part of a whole representative of a physical and psychological balance close to ours. They age, feel pain, fear or stress…

Happy cat huile de CBD 3
Happy dog huile de CBD 6

Why do we give CBD oil to dogs and cats ?

The veterinarian treats them, soothes them, distresses them and even comforts them. As such, they possess an endocannabinoid system like humans, that is, a physiological process capable of responding to cannabidiol (CBD) but also to other cannabinoids. In addition to treatment in a medical centre prescribed by a health professional, CBD oil is increasingly being used in the animal health world, particularly in Switzerland.

CBD oil for dogs and cats is used regularly, with veterinary practices using it for therapeutic purposes. We will see, therefore, over the course of this article, what is CBD oil, in what cases it is used in our animal friends, what are the effects? And what results are emerging from scientific studies in veterinary medicine on the administration of CBD to pets. We will also define the endocannabinoid system to understand why humans and animals respond to CBD.

What is CBD oil for dogs and cats ?

cbd for cats and dogs

We will first talk about cannabis, a mythical plant with multiple properties.

Scientists and medical centres, following numerous studies, largely recognise its medical virtues and use it in care protocols for both humans and animals. It is inside this one that we can discover a hundred cannabinoids of which the CBD. Molecule which, unlike THC, does not cause any psychoactive effect. The latter can be extracted in different ways, it is up to the manufacturer.


There are mainly three methods of extraction:

First one:

It is based on edible oil, it is the most traditional and especially reserved for individuals for personal use. It consists in decarboxylating the plant or more exactly in activating the substances by heating it around 100-120 degrees for about 30 minutes then mixing it with oil to heat it again at 100 degrees for 1 to 2 hours in order to extract the desired molecules.

The second one:

More commercial it is based on solvent like ethanol, butane or propane in which we soak the plant to extract the substance. We then proceed to the evaporation step of the said solvent to recover the extracts. This process is dangerous due to the use of highly flammable agents. In addition, there is a risk of residues from the extraction process. These are potentially toxic.

The third one:

It is based on CO2, carbon dioxide. It is necessary to have an adapted equipment able to bring CO2 in a supercritical state, i.e. a liquid and gaseous mixture. It is necessary to increase the temperature and the pressure. We can, from there, extract the cannabidiol and then separate the CO2 from the desired molecules. We then dilute it with olive, hemp, grape, avocado, or coconut oil for human consumption or salmon oil for animals. This last one contains multiple virtues, it allows the reduction of the stress, the slowing down of the arthritis, protects the skin, improves the hair, etc…

So the difference between CBD oil for dogs and cats and CBD oil for humans is the dilution product. It should be noted that hemp oil is also used for animals. The extraction process is exactly the same as the one used for men.

Why not give human CBD oil to dogs and cats ?

It should be noted that CBD oil for humans should not be given to animals. It may contain substances that can be toxic to dogs and cats, such as artificial flavors, dyes or preservatives. But cannabis contains terpenes and flavonoids. They represent a family of natural chemical compounds. The former are present in all plants, including fruits and vegetables. They have odoriferous properties. The latter are responsible for the pigmentation of many flowers.

Many of these molecules are used by plants as a defense against herbivores and omnivores. Over time, these animals have developed a mechanism to counteract the toxicity of these plants. Unlike dogs and especially cats, which do not have the means to metabolize or assimilate these various molecules. The odors but also the taste can also strongly disturb these animals.

What is the endocannabinoid system ?

cbd for dogs and cats: What is the endocannabinoid system

All vertebrates and invertebrates, except insects, have an endocannabinoid system.

It consists of different receptors (CB1, CB2) located in different parts of the human or animal body.

CB1s are found in the central and peripheral nervous system, lungs, heart, intestines, liver, pancreas, stomach, urinary tract such as kidneys and bladder. But also in the reproductive organs, bones and skin.

As for CB2, they are distributed in the immune system, liver, bone marrow, spleen, etc…

These have the particularity of reacting to cannabinoids and thus allow homeostasis, in other words the internal balance of the body or more exactly the regulation of several factors responsible for the proper functioning of the body. Cannabinoids come in three forms. The plants that come from the plant, the endogenous ones naturally secreted by the body and the synthetic ones manufactured in the laboratory. This system affects appetite, digestion, blood pressure, body temperature, sleep, energy, psychological balance, heart rate, blood circulation, breathing, memory, learning and motor coordination. It also acts as an analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiemetic (against nausea and vomiting) and treats kinetosis or travel sickness.

So much so that CBD oil for dogs and cats contributes significantly to the well-being of the animal. It brings real virtues and participates not only in the relief of pain but also in the improvement of other health problems that animals may encounter.

When is CBD oil for dogs and cats used ?

Animals can experience many health problems. Some are related to neuropathy, namely pathologies or pain related to nerves, others concern osteoarthritis, arthritis, cancer pain, inflammation, seizures, allergies, anxiety, stress, fears, The CBD oil for dogs and cats does not pretend to replace a medical treatment in order to heal the animal but can boast of bringing a real plus during its illness and its recovery.

It reduces symptoms, relieves pain and calms the animal. Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints that causes pain. Osteoarthritis is most often caused by wear and tear on the cartilage of the joints. Unlike arthritis, most pain occurs when dogs or cats are in motion. The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD are of considerable benefit to animals, not only providing significant pain relief but also reducing inflammation. The frequency of seizures decreases over time, a stressed dog becomes calmer and calmer, his fears diminish and his mood improves. CBD based balms or oil contribute greatly to the improvement of skin problems. It can also regulate appetite and improve sleep.


What dosage should I choose for CBD oil for dogs and cats ?

It is difficult to assess the appropriate dosage in general. It all depends on the weight of the animal and its health problems. The owner should also consider the percentage of CBD. There are a number of them, generally ranging from 3 to 30%. It is strongly recommended to start with the lowest dosage and to readjust until the desired effect is obtained. Often, you will find CBD oil for dogs and cats in a 10 ml bottle with a pipette to administer the product in drop form.

What do scientific studies and veterinary medical centres say about CBD oil for dogs and cats ?

An article entitled Hemp in veterinary medicine: From food to drugsThe paper, written by Giorga Della Rocca and Alessandra Di Salvo of the Department of Veterinary Medicine, Centre for Research on Animal Pain (CERIDA) at the University of Perugia in Italy, was published in the journal Frontiers in Veterinary Science. The authors mention two scientific studies regarding the effects of CBD. One is on dogs with osteoarthritis, the other on dogs with epilepsy.

CBD for animals: Study No1 on 16 dogs pain, activity, degree of lameness divided into two groups

A study of the pharmacokinetics, safety and clinical efficacy of cannabidiol treatment in dogs with arthritis

The first one concerns 16 dogs divided into two groups. The first received a dose of 2 mg of CBD per kg and the second a placebo treatment. Pain, activity, degree of lameness, and limb wear were assessed at baseline, during, and after treatment. Dogs treated with CBD showed a decrease in pain and an increase in activity compared to those treated with placebo.

Study conducted by Drs Lauri-Jo Gamble, Jordyn M Boesch, Christopher W Frye, Wayne S Schwark, Sabine Mann, Lisa Wolfe, Holly Brown, Erin S Berthelsen, Joseph J Wakshlag from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University (Ithaca, New York), University of Colorado (CO, Fort Collins), and VCA Metzger Veterinary Hospital (State College, Pennsylvania) and published by Front Vet Sci in July 2018.

CBD for animals: Study No2 on 26 epileptic dogs divided into two groups

Randomised controlled trial to assess the effect of oral cannabidiol administration in addition to conventional antiepileptic therapy on seizure frequency in dogs with refractory idiopathic epilepsy

The second study was based on 26 dogs with epilepsy, also divided into two groups. It should be noted that all dogs are on conventional medical treatment for epilepsy. One group was treated with 2.5 mg of CBD per kg and another with placebo. Both were treated every 12 hours for 4 weeks. Scientists have found CBD to be effective on the frequency of epileptic seizures compared to those treated with placebo.

Study conducted by scientists Stephanie McGrath , Lisa R Bartner , Sangeeta Rao , Rebecca A Packer , Daniel L. Gustafson and published by the Journal of the American veterinary Medical Association in June 2019

CBD for animals: A latest study on 21 dogs with arthritis divided into two groups

Transmucosal oral formulation of cannabidiol oil as part of a multimodal analgesic regimen: effects on pain relief and improved quality of life in dogs affected by spontaneous OA

Another study involved a trial of 21 dogs with OA divided into two groups. All of them are taking medication for the effects of osteoarthritis. The first is given a dose of 2 mg of CBD per kg every 12 hours for 12 weeks. The second one benefits only from the pharmacological treatment initially planned. Scientists have once again concluded the effectiveness of cannabidiol in relieving pain in pets.

Study conducted by Federica Alessandra Brioschi, Federica Di Cesare, Daniela Gioeni, Vanessa Rabbogliatti, Francesco Ferrari, Elisa Silvia D’Urso, Martina Amari and Giuliano Ravasio from the University of Milan in Italy and the Veterinary Hospital of Rome and published by the journal mdpi in August 2020.

In conclusion

Cannabinoids are increasingly being used in the animal health world. Scientists proceed to the extraction of different molecules including CBD in order to use it as a complement to medical treatment. According to the three studies, we see the effectiveness of CBD oil for dogs and cats. It reduces arthritis problems and plays an important role in anti-epileptic treatment. Studies on the effects of CBD on animals are still in their infancy, the results remain very promising. It also alleviates the symptoms of many health problems encountered by the pet. It allows a clear improvement in the quality of life of the animals. It is important to note that there is no danger in giving CBD to our friends. It is a food supplement with proven virtues and recommended by the world of veterinary medicine.

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