Scientific research has shown that cannabidiol does not operate, or at least operates very weakly, on the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the brain. Those two receptors are the ones most powerfully influenced by THC, which creates the cognitive changes associated with feeling “high” or “stoned.” In fact, the CBD found in dog treats counteracts and suppresses the effects of THC. Cannabidiol binds to different receptors that suppress pain, moderate body temperature, alleviate pain, and lessen anxiety, among other effects.
We commonly hear about dogs being more receptive to Hemp CBD than traditional medications, especially with anticonvulsant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-anxiety medications.We recommend that you always check with your veterinarian before starting, stopping, or adjusting the dosage of any prescription medication. Many drugs, especially anti-seizure medications, must be weaned off slowly or else deadly withdrawal symptoms can occur.
However, there are veterinarians that support THC-free hemp supplements for animals. Miami-based veterinarian Dr. Patricia Khuly, VMD, has recommended hemp supplements to her patients, and has even made homemade versions using hemp oil for her pets. “I find they can be somewhat effective as part of a well rounded chronic pain protocol,” she tells Leafly—though she has never used them for pet anxiety or improving fur and skin. “Hemp oil sounds interesting for use in the same way fish oil would be implemented for these other indications,” she adds, “especially for my vegan clients who prefer to source non-animal based products for their pets.” She would like to see more research first, though.