CBD Oil for Dogs With Pain – How Cannabis Hemp Tincture Can Help Pain Management
No one likes to think of a dog in pain. Even when the dog is in a movie or on TV and in pain many of us will cringe and even cry. When it is our own dog, we would do anything to take that pain away as quickly as possible. For me and my pup, that solution is Hemp Tincture for Dogs.
For some dogs, it is super easy to tell when they are in pain. For others, you might not even have a clue that something is wrong at all. Not every dog will have obvious signs of pain and distress. Obviously, a dog that is crying, whining or yelping may need to be evaluated but there are other signs you should be aware of. Some signs of pain might include:
- Limping, dragging the legs or unsteady gait.
- Trying to isolate from people especially children.
- Doesn’t want to walk.
- Change of sleeping habits especially location. A dog that usually sleeps on the couch may stop doing so because it hurts to jump up or down.
- Excessive drooling. Some dogs drool more than others on a normal day. It is important to know what is normal for your dog.
- Increased sleeping
- Aggression. Remember, a dog who is injured is far more likely to bite.
- Glassy eyes.
Most people will have a general sense that there is something just not right with their dog. Always go with your gut extinct. If you feel that there might be something going on with your dog it’s better to take him to the vet for a check than to wait until something becomes very serious.
Acute vs. Chronic Pain for Dogs
There are different types of pain from mild to severe and acute to chronic. Acute pain is pain that is happening right now. It can recur from time to time and eventually become chronic pain. Chronic pain is pain that is frequent or constant. Arthritis is the most common type of chronic pain in both dogs and humans. Older dogs are most likely to develop chronic pain but there are a number of painful conditions that can cause this long lasting pain in younger dogs, even puppies.
Some of these diseases include:
- Legg-Perthes Disease: a genetic disease that causes pain and difficulty walking because of a deformity of the leg joint at the top of the femur bone.
- Osteochondritiis Dessicans: found mostly in larger breed dogs it is a condition that causes the bones to grow too fast or to grow abnormally leading to broken bones, improper alignment and immobility. Can be very painful.
- Beagle Pain Syndrome: although most commonly found in young beagles, this syndrome destroys parts of the immune system and causes pain.
- Invertebral Disc Disease: the discs in the back are attacked and may bulge out, pressing on the nerves. This causes severe pain and may increase the risk of paralysis.
As you can see, there are many conditions that can cause pain whether it is acute or chronic. Another cause of pain is injuries from bee stings to minor cuts and sprains to more serious injuries such as a broken leg.
We all know about the dog that gets injured and then drags himself, bleeding and delirious for many miles until he finds his home. In most cases, the dog already drained of his energy and badly dehydrated will die as soon as he finds his master. However, there are some dogs that have made it through serious, life threatening events because of quick thinking, good veterinary care and people who refused to give up on him.
Discussing Pain Management with Your Dog’s Vet
One of the most important steps in pain management is finding out what the pain is and then working to create a plan to stop or at least lessen that pain. Even when the injury is obvious, it needs to be evaluated to make sure there isn’t more internal damage that cannot be seen.
Once the vet sees the injury and figures out the most likely cause of it, the plan can be figured out. For instance, in a very old dog a serious injury may not be treatable without risking his health. It may be time for a very difficult discussion and a decision that will be heartbreaking. Chronic pain can be managed though, even in an older dog and there are a number of methods that the vet might suggest from traditional medications to alternative treatments. In most cases, a combination of traditional and alternative medicine might be the best plan to keep the dog as pain-free and still relatively healthy and happy for as long as possible.
As with everything there are pros and cons to most medications that are used for dog pain.
Pain Meds for Dogs with Pain
All pain medications for dogs fall in one of five categories: nutraceuticals, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), opiods, steroids and holistic alternatives. Nutraceuticals are foods that have specific and recognized health benefits or have had health giving additives included in their formula. A prime example of this is Omega 3 fatty acids which are added to dog foods of many varieties.
It is highly important that you never give a human medication to your dog without the direct advice of the vet. Many of the common pain relievers that we take for ourselves can be toxic to dogs even in very small amounts. Even medications that the vet gives can have serious health risks and side effects. Some of the side effects are as bad as or worse than the pain they are treating.
Side effects of some of the common pain medications for dogs include:
- A change in bowel habits including diarrhea or constipation. The dog may also have black or very dark looking stools.
- Abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite and weight loss
- Liver, kidney and other organ damage.
Many of these pain meds will also react with others and can worsen some side effects.
Alternative Measures for Chronic and Acute Pain in Dogs
With acute pain, the main goal is to treat the cause, prevent infection and possible complications and to keep the dog comfortable. Mild pain medications may be enough in some cases and will probably be given with antibiotics to guard against infection. For chronic pain, the alternative measures might be a little more complex. In both cases, physiotherapy may be in order to keep or regain full range of motion to the injured area and to prevent re-injury if possible. Physiotherapy is also used for dogs with arthritis and other chronic pain conditions so that they can keep their mobility.
Another common alternative measure used especially for chronic pain is diet modification. A dog who is already overweight or at risk of being overweight may be placed on a highly nutritious but lower calorie diet so that he doesn’t gain more weight. Steps to help him lose weight may be taken. Other diet modifications like adding certain nutrients to the diet may also be used. Anything that will boost the immune system, help grow and repair cartilage and other tissues and boost energy is considered a worthwhile additive. Before adding supplements or changing your dog’s diet, consult with the vet especially if he is being treated for a serious condition.
There are other alternative treatments that have been shown to have good results. Hydrotherapy where a dog gets to walk in a pool of warm water helps relieve the pain and pressure on his joints while still maintaining his mobility. Most dogs are okay with water and it can help with their appetite while also helping them to sleep better as well.
The alternative that is getting a lot of media attention lately though is CBD oil. It can be used to treat everything from pain to anxiety and depression, seizures and epilepsy and may be just the thing you are looking for for your own dog.
CBD Oil Helps With All Kinds of Pain in Dogs
Because CBD oil is both a pain reliever and an anti-inflammatory it can be used for both chronic and acute pain, no matter how severe it is. It can be used in conjunction with some types of meds but may cause a drug interaction with others. It is important that you discuss CBD oil with your vet before you start using it. The veterinarian cannot legally prescribe CBD in any form but can make suggestions. Some vets will not bring up the topic on their own so you may have to start the conversation.
All pain in the body is caused by messages sent to the brain along special pathways. Nerves sense the pain and send the message to the brain. From there, the brain sends out other messages which help deal with the pain, get help or start the process of healing. All of these messages can be sent at the same time and sometimes there can be a glitch that keeps the brain’s messages from getting to the right place.
Medicines interfere with one part or another of the messaging system. It may prompt the brain to send the message for certain feel good hormones to be released. Adrenaline, another hormone that is associated with the fight or flight response may also be released in great amounts so that the dog can get to safety or seek help from his owner.
Cannibidiol or CBD is a compound from the cannabis plant. It tells the brain to release serotonin and also stimulates the immune system so that it will fight harder. Because of its anti-inflammatory components, it also can prevent long-term damage from chronic conditions such as arthritis and others.
Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive and will not give your dog a buzz. He may feel calmer especially as some of his pain subsides.
Things to Consider Before You Try CBD Oil for Your Dog’s Pain
Not all dogs will react well to CBD in any form. Although most dogs do have positive outcomes, some may have no effect or even a negative reaction. If your dog is already on medications it is important that you are sure the CBD will not interfere or react to those meds before you start it.
Dosing can be confusing. Most dogs should start with a low dose of 1-5 mg per 10 pounds of body weight. A 10-pound dog then would get a maximum dose of 5 mg. Most brands have charts that help you choose the strength you need as well as tips on how often to give it. Regardless, you should start with the lowest possible dose and then slowly move up as you assess how well it is helping your dog and how he is tolerating it.
Make sure that the CBD product that you are buying is formulated for dogs and not humans.
Things to Look for in a Good CBD Brand for Your Dog
One of the most important things you should look for is quality. Organic CBD is a must because a dog with illness or injuries does not need to have pesticides and other additives in his system. If you are choosing to start with the oil it is important that the oil be of high quality as well. It should be all-natural, organic and should have nutritional benefits as well. Trusted brands can be found by asking your vet and doing some careful research. Look for complaints rather than reviews since reviews can sometimes be faked especially by someone who is trying to make their brand new business look more legitimate.
Dosing information should be clear and easy to follow no matter what brand you choose. While you cannot cause an overdose with CBD from hemp some companies use a blend which might increase the amount of THC. There is no safe level of THC for dogs so do not use these brands.