CBD Oil For Dogs
With the legalization of medical and recreational marijuana, CBD (cannabidiol) oil has become a hot topic, including CBD oil for dogs.
Holistic veterinarians and some pet owners have advocated the use of CBD oil for the treatment of various diseases in dogs. But does it really work and is it safe to use on our beloved pets?
Table of Contents
What is Cannabis (CBD) Oil?
Easily said; CBD (cannabidiol) is a liquid that is usually extracted from the cannabis plant. The main ingredient that we are looking for is cannabidiol.
Now here’s an important distinction — there is CBD oil and there is hemp oil.
Let’s break down the difference between the two because it’s important to know that many products labeled as hemp oil for dogs are technically CBD oil for dogs, but have been misbranded/mislabeled.
Both hemp oil and CBD oil are derived from Cannabis plants.
Hemp seed oil (or hemp oil) is extracted from the seed of the Cannabis plant. Hemp oil contains a low concentration of cannabidiol (CBD) and no traces of THC.
What is THC? THC is also known as tetrahydrocannabinol and is the agent responsible for causing a “high”. Because hemp oil does not contain THC, there is no high associated with it.
CBD oil, on the other hand, is extracted from other parts of the Cannabis plant such as the leaves, stalk and flower. Different parts of the plant contain different levels of cannabidiol and contain varying levels (although relatively low) of THC.
You can extract cannabinoids through a number of means, such as CO2 extraction, butane extraction and ethanol extraction.
Aftеr ѕераrаtіng thе cannabinoids from other parts of the plant, thеу аrе formulated tо dеtеrmіnе thе perfect rаtіо of саnnаbіnоіdѕ (there are at least 113 different types of cannabinoids).
Cannabis contains at least 80 cannabinoids, with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), psychoactive plant and cannabidiol (CBD) being most common. CBD is the cannabinoid that is mainly used for medical purposes.
Now, let’s go back to talking about CBD oil for dogs.
CBD oil for dogs contains very small traces of TCH (less than 0.3%). It’s always important to talk to your vet before making a purchase.
When looking at hemp oil products for dogs, you might notice the product mentions “full-spectrum hemp”, “phytochemicals” and “hemp seed oil”.
These are things ingredients that can indicate to you that you have purchased quality CBD oil.
However, some manufacturers will try and sell hempseed oil that will not have the same benefits of CBD oil as the hempseed oil comes from a different part of the plant, and consumers usually aren’t aware of the difference.
So, what is the difference between CBD oil and hempseed oil?
Because both oils are extracted from different parts of the plants, they contain vastly different levels of cannabidiol (which is the ingredient we are after). True CBD oil can contain up to 6,000 times more of cannabidiol than hempseed oil.
For our dogs, we want to be giving them hemp oil (also known as CBD oil) which is different from hempseed oil.
Now that you know the difference between hemp oil and CBD oil, let’s continue on!
Can You Give Dogs CBD Oil for Humans?
In short, no, you must be giving your dog something that is specifically formulated for animals and approved by your vet.
The Best CBD Oil For Dogs
When deciding what CBD oil to purchase for your dogs, there are a few things you should make note of:
- Where the plant is grown
- The extraction method
- Third party testing
- What part of the plant the oil uses
Where the Plant is Grown
It’s best to get oil from plants that were grown local to your country. While there are many countries that can grow and produce CBD oil for cheap, these plants are often grown in dirty soil with conditions that are not up to high standards.
Look for plants that were grown in the USA or Canada.
Like mentioned above, there are many different extraction methods for CBD oil. When purchasing one for your pet, look for one that uses a CO2 extraction method.
This leads to a more natural extraction method and there will be no traces of extra chemicals left behind for your pet to ingest.
Third Party Testing
To avoid biased information, look for CBD oil that has been tested by third parties.
Part of Plant Used
If your CBD oil for your dog is only extracted through the seeds, then you are not buying true CBD oil. Instead, you are buying hempseed oil.
Make sure that your CBD oil is true CBD by being extracted from various parts of the plant.
How Does CBD Oil for Dogs Work?
When it is consumed, CBD interacts with the body via the endocannabinoid system. Humans and other mammals, such as dogs, have specific cannabinoid receptor sites.
These receptor sites are found in the brain, the central nervous system, peripheral organs and immune cells.
Cannabinoids work by initiating compounds that are naturally produced in our body, called endocannabinoids, which, once activated, help maintain internal health and stability.
In simple terms, they facilitate communication between cells when there is a shortage or a problem.
Benefits of CBD Oil for Dogs
As mentioned earlier, cannabis oil is useful in the treatment of various medical conditions that affect dogs such as and can help:
- boost appetite
CBD Oil Dogs: Seizures
One of the worst health problems that a dog can suffer is an epileptic seizure. Attacks cause violent and involuntary tremors.
The last thing you want to do is to be a silent onlooker while your dog is going through such a torment. Fortunately, CBD oil is an excellent treatment for this. It helps not only to reduce the intensity of seizures but also to regulate the electrical disorders in dogs’ brains.
CBD Oil Dogs: Pain and Inflammation
Another area where CBD oil excels in treating dogs is to reduce pain and inflammation. Cаnnаbіdіоl works bу іntеrасtіng wіth thе nеurоnѕ іn your dоg’ѕ brаіn, blосkіng thе vаnіllоіd receptors thаt саuѕе pain.
CBD Oil for Dogs: Anxiety
Does your dog have signs of anxiety? The way cannabis oil helps your dog is by interacting with his endocannabinoid system – a series of receptors that flow through his entire body.
Cannabinoids in medical cannabis interact with receptors; help regulate and alleviate aspects such as pain, anxiety and nausea.
CBD oil for dogs can help anxiety due to:
- car rides
- vet visits
- grooming visits
- being left alone
or any other reasons your dog may begin to feel anxious.
Fighting Certain Cancer with CBD Oil for Dogs
CBD oil has been shown to stop cancer cells from growing in neoplastic cancers. While CBD isn’t proven to be a cure for all types of cancer, it’s a step forward in fighting neoplastic tumors.
Boosting Appetite with CBD Oil for Dogs
If your dog won’t eat, using CBD oil can increase appetite so your dog can have a healthy diet and keep up their health.
Forms of CBD Oil for Dogs
When looking to buy CBD oil for your dogs you will come across various forms of it including:
- CBD tincture
- Dog treats
CBD tinctures can be directly added to your dog’s food or directly in their mouths. You may find that your dog doesn’t enjoy having you put the tincture in their mouth and might not eat their food if they can detect something else is on it, so you might have more success with treats.
Risks of using CBD Oil for Dogs
As is the case with medicines for people, an overdose is a big risk for your pets. If your dog eventually takes too much THC, he may feel an inflammation.
Depending on the amount of overdose that your pet takes, side effects can take a long time from a few hours to several days.
If you suspect that your dog overdoses medical cannabis, take him to a veterinarian immediately.
Ingestion of large amounts of marijuana can have debilitating effects on your dog, such as lethargy and drowsiness. That is why you should always check and prevent an overdose. In addition, you must consult a pet specialist or veterinarian before using cannabis oil to treat your dog.
About the Author:
Dana is a Sheepadoodle owner who loves to highlight dog-friendly places you can travel to with your pooch, dog-friendly products, and provide info for dog owners.
CBD Extraction Methods
As pet owners, if we hear that a product may help our sweet fur babies, we’re likely to seek it out in its purest form. So when it comes to high quality pet CBD oil, it’s common for pet owners to focus on the reputation of the CBD company, how potent their products are, and whether their products are thoroughly tested. While these factors are undoubtedly important, there’s another, often overlooked part of the CBD production process that significantly affects the final product: Extraction!
Before we get into the specific extraction methods, let’s talk about why extraction is so important for CBD in the first place.
Why is CBD Extracted from Hemp?
The whole purpose of extracting CBD from hemp is to create a denser, more consumable concentrate that can be easily administered in effective ways. This is especially true for our four-legged friends. Imagine giving raw hemp to your pet; the taste alone leans more on the unpleasant, bitter side. Not to mention, hemp in its raw form doesn’t yield the same potential effects as CBD oil extract. (Now that’s not to say that raw hemp doesn’t offer an array of benefits for our companions – it definitely does – but the chance of them consuming it is highly unlikely.)
This is because the most popular cannabinoids found in raw hemp actually start out as acids:
From a scientific standpoint, these cannabinoid acids do hold value even in their acidic state, but they are the precursors to the more thoroughly studied CBG, CBD, and THC. However, the effects of these highly sought after cannabinoids are not activated until their cannabinoid acids are decarboxylated (where low heat is administered for extended amounts of time). Once hemp is decarboxylated, the “a” is dropped from CBGa, CBDa, and THCa; and the efficiency of CBG, CBD, and trace amounts of THC (0.3% or less) are then activated to help promote good health in our pets.
But in order to create consumable CBD oil for our pets, it’s not enough to just activate CBD and the other cannabinoids found in hemp. They actually need to be extracted from the plant as well. This is where various methods of CBD extraction come into play.
What Are the Different CBD Extraction Methods?
While it may seem unimportant to learn how different companies extract CBD oil from the hemp plant, these extraction methods greatly impact the final product of our pets’ CBD oil, which ultimately has an impact on them. So let’s talk about the different types of CBD extraction methods and how each of them affects the final product.
Vapor Distilled Extraction
Let’s start with the patent pending “Vapor Distilled” extraction method. Vapor distillation is a fairly new CBD extraction method that drives heated air through the hemp plant, creating a more effective, less bitter tasting CBD oil extract.
When it comes to other CBD extraction methods, it takes a significant amount of time to extract the cannabinoids and phytochemicals from the hemp plant. But the process doesn’t stop there. They then have to activate the extracted cannabinoids using high levels of heat. Unfortunately, high levels of heat over a long period of time can actually breakdown the beneficial compounds of the hemp extract, causing the final product to lose some of its efficacy.
Vapor distillation, on the other hand, is very unique in that it uses flash extraction. This activates the cannabinoids from the hemp plant while they’re being extracted. This process is done in a matter of seconds, thereby protecting the cannabinoids and other phytochemicals the hemp plant has to offer.
Many CBD brands are turning to the highly advanced vapor distilled extraction method because it maintains the purity of the hemp plant’s profile. Not to mention, it’s solvent free and offers a less bitter tasting hemp extract. Vapor distilled extraction is still fairly new, so if you come across a CBD company that offers vapor distilled CBD oil, you’ll be purchasing one of the cleanest CBD oil extracts on the market today. (By the way, our full spectrum hemp oils with CBD use vapor distilled extraction.)
Supercritical C02 Extraction for CBD
This extraction method uses extremely low temperatures and high pressures of the gas-like and liquid-like properties of carbon dioxide to extract high volumes of CBD in each batch of oil. As the supercritical CO2 breaks down and separates the materials of the hemp plant, the gas of CO2 then evaporates, leaving behind a safe, consumable hemp extract.
This particular CBD extraction method requires a lot of time, expensive equipment, and thorough training to achieve a potent, yet safe CBD oil extract that’s free of chlorophyll. While many CBD brands prefer this extraction method, others argue that supercritical CO2 extraction isn’t necessarily organic, as it’s still a solvent. However, studies have shown that CO2 is a highly pure and safe supercritical solvent that offers appealing characteristics.
These characteristics include:
- Cost effective
- And it’s considered a recyclable gas
Supercritical CO2 extraction also allows CBD brands to adjust the concentration of their CBD oil extracts, by simply modifying the ratios of the pressure and the solvent. Supercritical CO2 extraction is considered one of the most common ways to yield highly concentrated pure CBD oil that is safe for pets to consume.
Ethanol Extraction for CBD and CBG
Ethanol extraction is considered the least expensive method in obtaining CBD and CBG oil. Although ethanol is a solvent, it’s considered a safe substance by the FDA. Third party testing should confirm that there is no residual solvent in the finished product.
According to Capna System, a company that specializes in cutting edge ethanol extraction methods, the old way of extracting with ethanol had some issues. Namely, at room temperature, it would pull out almost everything useful from the plant. But with newer, supercooled extraction machines, it pulls out only the desired parts of the plant using negative pressure. This means it doesn’t need a motor to operate, which is another benefit. These newer machines are easy to automate and can be operated by entry-level technicians — which is a plus for companies trying to compete on profit margin. Ethanol extraction is also another popular way to extract high concentrations of CBG.
Final Thoughts on CBD Oil Extract
Extraction and decarboxylation is essential in creating full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD oils for our pets.
That said, as pet parents, it’s our duty to seek out reputable CBD oil companies that value the wellbeing of your pet. Seek out companies that thoroughly and accurately test and label their CBD products. When we learn the pros and cons of the various CBD extraction methods, we gain a deeper understanding of which brand of CBD oil is best for our beloved pets.