CBD Oil for Liver Disease in Dogs – How Cannabis Hemp Tincture Can Help
The liver is a very important organ in your body–and the same goes for canines. Second just to a dog’s skin, it’s one of the biggest organs in dogs and is essential because it has a role in 1,500 varying processes that the body goes through in order to function and have positive health. This includes involvement in metabolism, and the liver breaks down toxins as it absorbs a variety of nutrients. If a dog has liver disease, this means that their liver is not functioning as it should due to a variety of conditions and causes.
Because there are different reasons why a liver could malfunction, there are many different ways you can attempt treatment for your dog. The treatment will completely depend on which condition is underlying the disease, so determining what exactly is causing your dog’s liver to malfunction is key to helping them manage it. Your vet may make several recommendations, including prescription medication, however, CBD oil is a natural and safe remedy that can be used to treat symptoms of your dog’s liver disease.
CBD is a compound found within the cannabis plant, and unlike THC, it will not get your dog high and is non toxic. Many studies have been conducted involving CBD, and have found that the compound can produce a wide variety of medicinal benefits in the body for both humans and animals. CBD oil is an easy and effective way to administer CBD to your dog; you can sprinkle it in their food or on a treat, and within a few weeks, you should see the symptoms of your pet’s liver disease improve. This is how exactly to treat your dog using CBD oil, and how to manage their liver disease.
What Symptoms Will My Dog Exhibit if They Have Liver Disease?
Another term for liver disease is hepatic disease. It can be especially concerning if your dog contracts this disease, because the condition could possibly end up being fatal. If the disease is not identified and treated right away, your dog’s condition will probably worsen over time, so the management of it is essential.
Because there are many vital roles that the liver plays within your dog’s body, there are many kinds of symptoms that can occur when the liver does not function as it should. These symptoms include:
- Lethargy, and/or weakness
- A decrease in their appetite
- A bloated or swollen stomach
- Walking that’s unsteady, or a loss to their balance
The symptom that generally tends to occur the most commonly is jaundice. When your dog has jaundice, you’ll know, because their eyes or tongue will become yellow. The reason these areas turn a yellow color is because their body is unable to metabolize a compound known as bilirubin. This compound has a yellow color, which is why the tongue and eyes change, and it’s a byproduct as red blood cells are broken down by the body. Usually, bilirubin is excreted out of the body through bile or urine. If your dog is exhibiting any signs of jaundice, it’s completely essential that you get your pet to the vet as soon as possible, because it’s almost certain that your dog has liver failure. They might have an obstruction to their bile duct as well, however, it could also be possible it’s a sign they’re suffering from both.
What Kind of Liver Disease Could My Dog Be Affected By?
There are several different types of liver disease, and sometimes, the term “liver disease” is used generally to indicate a number of differing conditions. This is another reason why it’s important that you determine the cause if you believe your dog is suffering from liver disease, so your vet can help and you can give your dog specialized treatment. There are five basic kinds of liver disease:
- Liver disease caused by infection. This can include funguses, bacteria, viruses, and/or parasites that will create damage by infecting the liver. Urine transmits a bacterium called leptospirosis, which can impact your dog, and canine hepatitis is caused by a virus called adenovirus. Your dog’s liver may also receive a lot of damage from a certain kind of parasite called flukes.
- Liver disease due to toxic chemicals and toxic plants. There can be poisons you’ll find outdoors, or elements that are toxic and can lead to harm in your dog, if they are ever ingested. Your dog’s liver can be poisoned by a wide variety of plants, including daffodils, tulips, and groundsel. Xylitol is a chemical that’s used in a lot of human food for artificial sweetness; unfortunately, it’s very popular, but is also very toxic for dogs, as it causes a lot of harm to their liver. Harm can also be found in chocolate, due to a couple of compounds–theobromine and caffeine–which lead to toxicity of the liver if your dog consumes them. Whenever you’re with your pet both outdoors and indoors, you need to protect them and ensure they never ingest these plants and chemicals.
- Disease caused by drugs and medications. There are some kinds of drugs that may lead to liver disease in your dog, even if they were prescribed to you by a veterinarian. These drugs include tetracycline, phenobarbital, and prednisone.
- Congenital liver disease. Certain kinds of dogs actually have a predisposition to contracting the disease, due to their genetics. The two diseases that are most commonly caused by a genetic predisposition are copper storage disease and portal systemic shunt (PSS) disease. Both of these diseases cause an increase in toxin levels all over the body.
- Disease due to tumors and cancer. Sometimes, the liver is where cancer originates, then metastasizes/spreads to areas elsewhere in the body. Parasites, old age, and toxin exposure are among the most typical causes for cancer that originates in the liver.
Sometimes, the development of hepatic disease is also aided by specific dysfunctioning of your dog’s endocrine glands. These glands are included in a system that’s within all mammals, and which controls varying functions throughout the body by the secretion of certain hormones. Diseases that involve the endocrine system and can have a negative impact on the liver include diabetes, Cushing’s disease/hyperadrenocorticism, and hyperthyroidism. If there is a case of this, it’ll be necessary to target treatment toward the disease of the endocrine system, in order to get the liver functioning properly again.
No matter what type of liver disease your dog has, however, it leads to the damage of the cells that make up the liver, hepatocytes. If the disease goes on long enough and progresses, this can lead to the hepatocytes’ death, and eventually failure of the liver.
How is it Possible For Me to Help My Dog With Their Liver Disease?
If your dog is exhibiting any symptoms of liver failure, the most important thing you can do is seek medical help as soon as you can. First, your vet will conduct tests of your dog’s blood to check whether certain toxins are located within the blood in large proportions. If there are high levels of enzymes of the liver, such as ALT (alanine transaminase), AST (aspartate transaminase), or ALP (alkaline phosphatase), it’s very likely your dog is having dysfunction in their liver. Your vet may also run tests to detect high levels of bilirubin or albumin within in the blood, which could be another sign.
If these blood tests come back with any results out of the ordinary, your vet may order further tests, which include a biopsy of the liver, x rays, tests of the level of serum bile, and tests surrounding blood clots. If specific conditions are determined, surgery might be necessary. Otherwise, your vet may prescribe or administer supplements and medications, such as Denamarin.
Another essential aspect to helping your dog with their liver disease is making sure they have the correct nutrition. In general, the best diet will be low in protein, because proteins need a liver that’s functioning in order to be metabolized properly. If you limit your dog’s intake of protein, it spares the liver from having to work hard to break down proteins. You can also give your dog lots of electrolytes and fluids to help their liver, and limit their physical activity.
What is Cannabidiol and How Can it Help My Dog?
Cannabidiol is CBD, and it’s derived from the cannabis plant. It can be extracted as a component of hemp, and the oil of CBD is produced through the application of pressure to hemp leaves, flowers, and stalks. CBD is a member of compounds that are cannabinoids, which attach themselves to cannabinoid receptors that are located throughout your dog’s body. As they attach, they create many effects which are very positive. Because CBD is derived from a plant, it’s a phytocannabinoid.
It’s easy for both humans and animals to metabolize CBD, and the compound will not cause any side effects to your dog. Unlike THC, which is a very well known phytocannabinoid, CBD is not psychoactive and will not confuse or intoxicate your dog. It’s also impossible to overdose on dog food that includes CBD oil, including treats, so you can give your dog as much as they need without any worries.
How Will CBD Benefit My Dog and Help with Their Liver Disease?
CBD is very beneficial if your dog has liver disease, because it can help alleviate different underlying symptoms. These symptoms include:
- Loss of balance
Not only can CBD oil help with these, studies have proven that CBD slows tumor growth. This is possible through a variety of mechanisms, such as aiding the immune system of the dog to focus specifically on cells that have cancer, and block the way they’re able to conduct energy through metabolism. CBD can also increase the efficiency and effectiveness of more traditional treatments for cancer, as it also decreases side effects that often occur alongside these treatments, such as nausea.
CBD also contains many other benefits for your dog which may come in handy as you treat their liver disease, including:
- A reduction of pain
- Reducing inflammation within tissues
- Alleviating agitation, restlessness, and anxiety
- Making sleep easier
- Treating tremors and spasms within the muscles
- Aiding with appetite
- Promoting positive heart health
What’s the Best Way to Administer CBD To My Dog?
If you decide to give your dog CBD, it’s very important that you do this with the guidance and advice of your veterinarian. Your vet will be the best person when it comes to monitoring how your dog is doing as you’re treating their liver disease, and can determine whether CBD is having an effect. CBD inhibits the cytochrome P450 liver enzymes and the way they function. These enzymes play a large role when it comes to how many medications are metabolized, and if CBD is administered correctly, it won’t inhibit these enzymes and can provide relief for your dog that is very therapeutic and lasts for a long time.
Usually, your vet will give you instructions to begin with very low doses, and increase these doses only very slowly as you begin your dog on CBD. It’s recommended that you begin very low and slowly, and increase dosage only until you see a beneficial effect on the symptoms your dog is experiencing. For dogs that weigh 40 to 60 pounds, you can begin with 2 to 4 milligrams, then go from there.
It’s very worrying when your dog develops liver disease, and it’s essential that you begin treatment once you notice symptoms, because liver disease can easily become fatal. Luckily, you can find an innovative, natural medicine in CBD which can decrease your dog’s symptoms, and improve their quality of life in general. You can sprinkle CBD oil into their food or put it on a treat daily to alleviate their symptoms and promote general health. Some companies have even produced dog treats that come with CBD oil in them, which makes it very easy to administer this medicine to your dog.