Summer can be a stressful time for our animals, there’s fireworks going on down the street, thunderstorms are rolling in more often, we’re packin' up and going on family trips, and the poor pets are very anxious about it all!
CBD is a great supplement to help ease the stress of our animals. Will it make your dog high? Not at all! In fact CBD, as stated by the CDC, “can be derived from hemp or non-hemp plants”, hemp plants having 0.3% or less THC compared to marijuana plants, but CBD does not give any psychoactive effects either way. It is important to buy from a reputable source though! CBD targets receptors in the brain to enhance and optimize certain functions. It can be used to relieve pain or to help with cognitive function, whether that be lessening the burden of anxiety or just helping to relax your brain overall.
How much do you give? A quick Google search will give you about a million different answers, but the good news is there is little to no evidence that you can overdose on CBD. If you do give more than you should, they may just go down for a big nap (which is maybe what you're looking for anyway!) One of our managers tells people to start their 50lb dog with a 5mg CBD biscuit. However, my 75lb dog needed 2 10mg CBD biscuits, so it all depends on your dog. CBD biscuits and other CBD treats are a great option because the body will digest the food before digesting the CBD so it will be more of an immediate reaction. CBD oil is a good long term solution because straight CBD will build up in the body over time.
For more immediate relief, like a stressful event that you know might be coming (vet visits, grooming appointments, roadtrips, etc.) a treat containing CBD is the best option. Generally you want to give the treats 2 hours before the stressful event for it to go into full effect.
For anxiety ridden pets who need a little help full time, giving a CBD oil right into their mouth consistently, every day, should help over time, give or take a few weeks.
If you still want something to give them that you think may be a little more effective without having to go get a prescription from your vet, plenty of treats out there now have calming ingredients like melatonin, chamomile, & valerian root. Mount Ara has a line of melatonin treats including a melatonin peanut butter that I found to be the most helpful thing for my own dog so far! Some sources also say that catnip is effective in helping dogs calm down!
But there are ways to help ease stress besides just edible supplements! Dogs use their mouths like we use our hands, so while we might fidget with our hair or our nails when we're feeling stressed, all my dog needs is a safe chew to keep him occupied, or a lick mat! The act of chewing or licking is effective to help calm them down. For a double whammy, spread some of that melatonin peanut butter on a lick mat or in a Kong!
As always, we're here to help, so don't hesitate to reach out with any questions!