It’s never easy watching our furry friends suffer.
When your normally happy pooch begins acting unsteady, then falls to the floor, tenses and straightens his legs, and twists his head back in a fit, it can be alarming and unsettling.
In most of these cases, your dog is having a seizure.
While you might not associate this medical condition with your canine companions, it’s more common than you might think. In fact, around 3% of all dogs have idiopathic epilepsy. This condition, which accounts for 80% of all cases, is characterized by seizures that occur at random without an underlying medical cause.
The good news? There are resources out there that can help. One is cannabis oil for dog seizures.
That’s right: The oil you already turn to for relief from everything from anxiety to acne can help control your dog’s epileptic episodes.
Today, we’re breaking down a few reasons why this do-all potion is an ideal treatment for man’s best friend, as well as a few natural options that are sure to become your favorite go-to’s.
Ready to learn more? Let’s get started!
What is Dog Epilepsy?
Epilepsy is a particular kind of seizure disorder. It occurs when the brain receives an unexpected and abnormal burst of electric energy. This sends the body into an almost state of shock, wherein myriad physical and psychological components go momentarily awry.
Though epilepsy can sometimes cause the sufferer to become unconscious, many are awake through the terrifying episodes.
Depending on the severity of the condition, the seizures can strike only once every few months or multiple times per day without any kind of warning sign.
Sometimes, their symptoms are more subtle and lead to intense staring, rapid eye activity or quick breathing. In other cases, they can escalate into dramatic and frightening breakdowns featuring intense shaking and erratic tremors.
The above details are true for both humans and dogs who suffer from epileptic seizures. The first time you notice one occurring in your pet, you should visit the veterinarian immediately, especially if the episode lasts longer than five minutes.
Which Breeds are Most Susceptible?
Though there are no dog breeds that are immune to sudden epileptic seizures, the condition is an inherited trait in many breeds.
For instance, they are common in beagles, dachshunds, cocker spaniels, and German Shepherds. The first seizures will typically strike when the dog is between six months and five years old.
Though these breeds carry a higher genetic risk of developing epilepsy, it can also be brought on when a dog experiences any sort of head-related trauma or is exposed to poisonous chemicals. Falling ill due to distemper or suffering from internal damage such as liver failure or a degenerative brain disease can also increase the odds that a dog will fall ill from seizures down the road.
The Correlation Between CBD Oil and Seizures
The more that is revealed about the healing benefits of Cannabidiol, or CBD oil, the more researchers agree that it can make an excellent addition to an epileptic treatment program.
Above all, it is a preferred resource for the anticonvulsant properties it features. Five years ago, CNN featured a news story about a young girl named Charlotte whose parents used marijuana to help control her Dravet Syndrome, a rare form of intractable epilepsy that starts in infancy and reduces the quality of life of those affected.
The catch? The particular strain of cannabis that had proven useful in this case was one that was low in tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. This is the cannabinoid associated with the euphoric “high” that marijuana is often associated with.
Conversely, though the THC levels were low, the CBD levels were high. Why is this important? Unlike THC, the CBD compound has no psychoactive properties but is more medicinal in nature.
Remember that excessive and uncontrollable electric energy to the brain associated with epilepsy? Turns out, CBD oil is proven to quiet and calm that aggressive action.
Now marketed as “Charlotte’s Web,” that particular cannabis extract was able to drastically reduce Charlotte’s seizures, which occurred as often as 400 times per day, often lasting up to half an hour.
Scientific Research on the Matter
While that news story helped spur the conversation around using CBD oil as a treatment for epilepsy, the buzz is now taking off. In May of 2018, the American Epilepsy Society urged for researchers to partner with private funders, government leaders and manufacturers to dig deeper into the feasibility of the treatment, explaining that robust data could help solidify the correlation.
Another recent study found that in a sample of 210 patients suffering from epilepsy, 36% showed improvement after 12 weeks after being treated with a solution of 99% CBD. From that group, 2% remained seizure-free following the treatment period.
As more scientists and researchers come together in an effort to learn more about why and how CBD oil is effective for seizure sufferers, its effects are becoming better understood. In fact, the American Kennel Club (AKC) is now performing a major clinical study into how CBD oil can help dogs that are resistant to other traditional seizure medications.
Why Use Cannabis Oil for Dog Seizures?
Though most of the research into using CBD as a treatment for seizure disorders has centered on humans, there is a growing case for its application within the canine community as well. Let’s explore five reasons why.
1. It Regulates the ECS
When used, CBD directly affects our Endocannabinoid System, or ECS. Relatively new to the medical world, this particular major organ system was only fully discovered and researched in the late 1990s.
While scientists and medical experts are still discovering its exact functions, one thing is clear: The ECS directly affects our physiological capabilities. It works by helping to regulate the process of homeostasis within our other body systems. In this way, it plays a role in how easily we get to sleep, how hungry we are, what we’re able to remember, what mood we’re in and more.
While it’s complex, the ECS isn’t unique to humans. In fact, dogs have it, too. This means that when cannabinoids enter their system, they affect it the same way they do ours. They help to promote the regulation of our ECS so that the bodily functions it affects can work more smoothly.
2. It Does Not Have Adverse Side Effects
Of course, if you’re dealing with dog seizures, your veterinarian will be able to point you in the direction of many traditional medications designed to help control the condition. These might include Phenobarbital or Potassium Bromide, among others.
While these can be effective in the fight against dog epilepsy, they are often accompanied by unsavory side effects that can directly affect your pet’s quality of life. For instance, Phenobarbital alone can lead to dizziness, irritability, aggression, loss of coordination and more. Potassium Bromide can lead to ataxia, or weakness and loss of motion in your dog’s hind end, as well as increased thirst and skin disorders.
On the other hand, CBD is far less likely to cause any adverse effects on your pet, apart from temporary drowsiness that quickly subsides.
This makes it an ideal supplement to any medication your dog is currently on, as it’s not intended to replace any veterinarian-recommended path of treatment. To this end, it’s also important to note that while CBD oil can prove to be a valuable solution to your dog’s seizures, it should not take the place of a medical visit. Keeping your vet in the loop concerning your dog’s condition, including any improvements you see from CBD oil, is essential in his path to total healing.
3. It Will Not Get Your Dog High
Keep in mind that unlike THC, CBD is non-psychoactive. This means that while it can help relieve inflammation, reduce anxiety and help control internal body systems, it will never give your dog that sense of “high” so often associated with more recreational forms of marijuana.
In fact, most supplements created with CBD oil are made with hemp. This is a kind of cannabis that is created to be high in CBD and as low as possible in THC.
Still, before you give your dog CBD oil to treat his seizures, there are a few tips to keep in mind.
4. It is Designed for Pet Use
Though it’s safe to use CBD for dog seizures, don’t give your four-legged pal the same amount that you would normally take.
The reason is that dogs are more sensitive to the effects of CBD than we are. This is why, though it may be convenient, it’s not recommended to use your own CBD oil on your dog.
Instead, it’s important to look for CBD products that are concentrated, formulated and pre-measured to be ideal for pet use. These will include instructions around application and dosage to ensure you never give your dog too much of the solution.
5. It’s Simple to Administer
Giving your dog his dose of CBD oil is easy. Just apply a few drops of the tincture under his tongue! This way, it can enter his system quicker and give him the immediate relief he needs. You can also opt for soft gel capsules that are easy to swallow and digest.
Keep in mind that the exact dose that’s right for you will depend on the breed of your dog, as well as the specific type of CBD oil you’re using on him. On average, most dogs will take around three drops per day, three times per day for effective symptom control and relief.
Why Does the Kind of Hemp Matter?
With so many versions and brands of CBD oil out there, it can be difficult to determine which one is the best fit for your dog. Though you’ll have your pick, it’s safest and wisest to go with an all-natural line.
The reason? Not all hemp is the same, nor is it all created equal. Industrial hemp is grown for its strong and durable fibers as well as its seeds. While these components are rich in amino acids, they are low in natural phytocannabinoids, which are where the rich medicinal qualities are found.
On the other hand, a high-quality natural hemp brand will be more medicinal in structure and free of heavy metals, solvents, and pesticides. Not only does this make them more effective and safer, but the improved bioavailability means the formulas are more easily absorbed.
That’s where we come in. Our CBD oil for pets is available in three forms, each designed to be accessible and safe for concerned pet owners. These include:
- CBD Oil Tinctures
- Adult Dog/Small Dog Pet Chews
- CBD Soft Gels
These three options ensure that no matter the size of your dog or his preferred method of taking medication, there’s an option out there to fit your needs.
Finding Your Dog The Relief He Needs, Naturally
At the end of the day, our pets are like family. As such, we’d go to the ends of the Earth to keep them from suffering, if we needed to.
If your dog suffers from epilepsy, you don’t have to go quite that far. With cannabis oil for dog seizures, you can help calm his symptoms, reduce the episodic frequency and strengthen his internal systems all at the same time.
Simple to administer and scientifically effective, there’s no reason not to give CBD oil a try. Whether you’re looking for relief and healing for yourself, your household pets or even your horses, check out our store. We’re certain you’ll find a product designed just for you and yours.