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How is THC harmful to dogs?

It is likely that you have heard of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and may be wary of it. This is understandable, but we are here to give you the information you need. It is like they say, knowledge is power!  

It is also likely that you have heard of cannabidiol (CBD) and that is probably the reason you have chosen to read this article. CBD? For dogs? That’s right. CBD and THC are often mistaken for one another. This is common and understandable, but the fact is that they are very different indeed. There is information regarding THC and dogs that could help your choosing natural products for your furry friend. This article will guide you through the ins and outs of THC, CBD, and your dog. 

What is THC? What is CBD?  

What are these three letter acronyms and what do they mean? THC and CBD are both cannabinoids that are found in the Cannabis sativa plant. These two cannabinoids are often found together but can be separated as well. They also have different effects in the body and mind. THC has the ability to get one ‘high’ or give a feeling of euphoria as some would say. This inebriating effect is the reason that the growth and ability to sell the marijuana plant is not legal in all 50 states.   

The Cannabis sativa plant is a plant that has several different strains. The marijuana plant is one of the varieties of the Cannabis sativa plant. This variation has a higher percentage of THC over CBD. Because of this, the marijuana plant is only legal in a handful of states for medicinal or recreational uses but is not legal at the federal levelCBD, however, has been legal in all states as of 2018. The Farm Bill legalized selling and growing the hemp plant in all 50 states. The hemp plant is another variation of the Cannabis sativa plant. This is because the hemp plant has a very low percentage. To be a CBD hemp plant product the THC level must be at or lower than 0.3%. This percentage of THC cannot get a user ‘high’ unlike marijuana products. It is important to understand the legality of CBD and THC in your state.  

THC and your dog: the unknown  

There is much we don’t understand about THC and how it reacts with dogs. We here at Panacea Life Sciences have decided to keep THC out of our pet products so that if there are any negative reactions with your dog and THC, we are in the clear. However, it is good to understand why THC and your dog may not be a good match. The likelihood of you watching a video showing a pet that got into their owner’s edibles is high. Although these are a bit humorous to watch, it may be likely that their pets feel uncomfortable. When humans use THC products, they generally understand what they are getting themselves into. The feeling is known and understood. However, we cannot communicate to our furry friends about what they are feeling. So, it may be understandable that they would feel nervous or scared after ingesting something containing marijuana. There is still much, much research that needs to be done surrounding THC and what it may or may not cause. Because of this, we advise you to steer clear of THC products for dogs. If your pet has ingested any type of marijuana product contact your veterinarian for more information.  

What about CBD? Why is it better? CBD uses for dogs 

Now that we understand that we don’t quite understand what THC does to animals. What about CBD? There is no inebriating effect that happens when you use CBD, right? So, can you use it for dogs? Yes, you can! Like the Cannabis sativa plant in general, there is still much research that needs to be done, but there is more information and hope surrounding CBD and your animals. Why use CBD for animals?  

Anti-inflammatory properties have been a hot topic of research. Even here at Panacea Life Sciences! We conducted our own research regarding this specific potential property. We looked at dogs who had poor joint health. They were given CBD twice daily for four weeks and owners were given a questionnaire at the end of each week. In the end, we found out that CBD helped improve the joint health and increased the mobility of the subjects.  

In another study we looked at horses who were in need of feelings of calm and overall wellbeing. This was a shorter research that only lasted 2 weeks. They were also given CBD twice daily and owners took a questionnaire as well. At the end of the study most horses showed signs of an increased overall wellbeing.  

Again, there is still much research that needs to be done when it comes to CBD and dogs. But this is a good starting point.  

Pet products 

Now that you have a little understanding of CBD and what it can do for you pet. What products are out there? Panacea Life Sciences has several different CBD products that your pet could benefit from.  

  • Canine soft gel: These canine soft gels are full of our pure hemp oil. All of our pet CBD products are THC free. The soft gels are formed into a fish shaped soft gel so that the end of the gel is easily removed to administer the CBD into the jowls of the dog’s mouth (the recommended application). Our soft gels are formulated with fish oil and MCT from coconut oil to enhance the absorption rates. Monthly subscriptions are available. 
  • Canine tincture: Our canine tinctures are also formulated to be THC free products. These come in small breed, medium breed, and large breed droppers for the perfect fit for your best friend. This product contains omega 3 from fish oil as well as coconut oil. These can be easily administered directly into the jowls, added to water, or poured over food. Monthly subscriptions are available. 
  • Feline CBD relief cream: This is our first feline focused CBD product. Like all topicals, the CBD never reaches the bloodstream of your feline, but may have certain positive effects when applied to the skin. We suggest using this twice daily.   
  • Equine CBD tablets: These tablets are full of 50mg of CBD. These are easier to administer and come in a nice peppermint flavor. Some horses may respond to the CBD sooner than others but it is not likely that it will take more than five days to see a result. 

These are the handful of pet products we offer here at Panacea Life Sciences. With research there will come more products to choose from. It is important to speak with a veterinarian about your CBD choice to make sure it is safe for your animal. Now, what about CBD for you?  

Human CBD products 

Enough about your pet, what about you? What CBD products are there for you? Here is a list of the products we provide and how they work.  

  • Tinctures: This type of CBD gets into the bloodstream quite fast. When the drops of CBD are placed in the mouth they are absorbed into the bloodstream from there. A tincture is an oil like substance that is added to carrier oil. Some tinctures come flavored to mask the earthy hemp taste. Although tinctures give the CBD effects quite quickly, they have been described to last not as long as other products.  
  • Soft gels: A soft gel is a capsule that is full of CBD (just like the canine version). Once the capsule is swallowed it goes through the digestive tract and then lands in the stomach. Once there the CBD is absorbed as the capsule is broken down.  
  • Topicals: CBD topicals different from the others, as they never reach the bloodstream. They, however, can give benefits from the pores on the surface of the skin. These are best used frequently and in the same area. They come in lotions, salves, creams, and even hand sanitizer for antibacterial purposes.  
  • Edibles: Edibles are similar to soft gels in the way that they are absorbed into the bloodstream. Once you have chewed and swallowed the edible will travel to the stomach where it is broken down. Once broken down the CBD is absorbed into the bloodstream by the stomach lining.  
  • Tablets: Tablets are more similar to tinctures than soft capsules. A tablet is placed in the mouth and dissolves there. It enters the bloodstream from the mouth as the tincture does. You can add amounts of CBD with a dropper, but tablets are made with the same mg every time making it easier to know how much you are getting.  
  • Vapes: Panacea Life Sciences does not advocate for the use of a CBD vape, but it is an option that you may want to be aware of. Once the CBD vape is inhaled the CBD is absorbed into the bloodstream. This is a fast way to get CBD but may have negative health effects on the lungs.   

Human CBD use 

We know why CBD is used for dogs, but why should humans use CBD? Some are similar to the reasons that we have used above for dogs! But, for humans. Here is a list of “other” reasons humans use CBD and reasons similar to why dogs could benefit from CBD.  

  • FDA approved medications: There are several FDA approved medications that contain CBD. There are a handful of medications that assist those going through anti-cancer treatments and the nausea it may cause. These are called Marinol (dronabinol), Syndros (dronabinol), and Cesamet (nabilone). These medications can only be prescribed by a healthcare professional. Epidiolex is the most well-known. This medication helps those with two severe types of epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.  
  • Topicals: CBD topicals, unless specifically formulated, do notreach the bloodstream. However, this does not mean that they cannot assist in skin health. In this study they explain that those with and without skin conditions had improved skin health after the use of CBD topicals. They used several tests to test before and after the use of a CBD topical. Their evidence was enhanced by photographic evidence.  
  • Antibacterial properties: There have been recent reports of the antibacterial properties of CBD. And these whisperings may be true. In this study they concluded that CBD had the capability to kill certain types of bacteria.  
  • Promote a sense of calm: Promoting a sense of calm in those who have feelings of anxiousness is just the beginning of the potential CBD has. In this study, they used brain imaging to test subjects who have SAD (social anxiety disorder). Those who were given the CBD showed a decrease in their SAD-related brain activity as shown through brain scans. Those who did not receive the CBD did not have any decrease.  

Be aware: CBD/THC and your animal 

There is much that needs to be looked at regarding CBD in general. The amount of research that needs to be done about dogs and CBD/THC? Even higher! As a rule of thumb, always talk to your veterinarian about using a CBD product before giving anything to an animal. Also choosing products that contain no THC would be in your and your furry friend’s best interest. CBD may be a more natural alternative to different wellness options to improve the overall wellbeing of your pet. Do your research and keep safe! Overall, CBD may be helpful to some animals. Start with a small amount and slowly increase until you see the effects that you would like, and your animals acts comfortable. As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns at [email protected] or give us a call at +1 (800) 985-0515.