CBD for pets: Consumption methods for dogs and cats

CBD is growing in popularity in Australia, and for a good reason. Pet parents are searching for natural solutions to support their furry friends’ health, and CBD could be the answer for some. Let’s dig into what CBD for pets is and how, in consultation with your vet, it can be given to pets. 

What is CBD for pets? 

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is known for its psychoactive effects and is not recommended for pets, CBD does not produce a high. Over the years, research has shown that CBD may have potential therapeutic benefits for both humans and animals. For pets, CBD is primarily used for its potential to alleviate chronic pain, inflammatory conditions and anxious behaviours. 

How can dogs and cats take medicinal cannabis? 

Just like humans, pets can take CBD in multiple ways. The choice often depends on the pet’s preference, the desired effect, and the specific condition your vet is targeting. Here are the commons ways that pets can take CBD: 

CBD oils 

Using a measured oral dosing syringe, you can place the CBD oil with their favourite food. Compounded CBD oils come in many flavours including beef, chicken, tuna for dogs and cats or fruit flavours for birds, rabbits and guinea pigs. CBD oil can come in an unflavoured option if you are concerned about potential food/ingredient allergies.  

CBD chews 

A hit with many pets, these are specially formulated chews infused with CBD. Dogs are often more treat-motivated than cats, making this one of the most hassle-free methods for administering CBD. 

CBD topicals 

Topicals are primarily used to address skin irritations, and to provide localised relief. They can assist with skin healing and reduce itch and redness. A small amount of CBD cream or balm can be applied to the affected area. Cats are frequent groomers and if you apply a topical CBD product, there’s a good chance they’ll lick it off. So, it’s vital to make sure that any topical application is safe for ingestion. 

While both dogs and cats can take CBD through oils, chews and topicals, the way they receive and metabolise it can vary due to their species differences. Remember, the only legal and safest way to source CBD for your much-loved pet is through a veterinary prescription. They will be able to guide you with dosing and potential drug interactions/adjustments to other medications. 

If your pet struggles with a condition that conventional medicines haven’t been able to treat, it’s worth checking in with your vet to see if CBD could be right for your pet’s condition. Book a FREE phone discussion with a vet to understand how plant-based therapies may be able to help. 

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