You might have been hearing a lot about cannabidiol (“CBD”) to treat human issues ranging from pain relief, to anxiety treatment, cancer-related symptoms, and even reducing acne.
But can CBD help your cat?
First, let’s clear up some common misconceptions about CBD. CBD is one of 104 chemical compounds classified as cannabinoids that are found in the cannabis or marijuana plant. However, CBD is different from THC, which is the main psychoactive cannabinoid. That’s the compound that makes people feel “high” from using marijuana. CBD is not psychoactive and doesn’t have mind-altering effects.
CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant in the form of oil, and it’s usually then diluted by being mixed with a “carrier” oil like hemp. Today, some manufacturers of pet products are infusing items like edibles with CBD oil because it might offer relief to your cat, much like it does for humans.
Although CBD is considered by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to be a controlled substance, it can be legally sold in New York State as long as it’s not used as a human food additive.
It’s important to note that while research is continuing on the benefits of CBD for pets, less research has been done on CBD for pets than for humans. Still, people are using CBD for pain, arthritis, seizures, and other health issues their pets experience. For pets, CBD is sold in the form of capsules, chew treats, and tinctures.
In general, there’s not considered to be a risk of addiction in pets using CBD. However, it can interact with other medicines prescribed for your cat. There are also reports of animals who’ve been harmed by CBD products that were contaminated with other substances or spoiled, so it’s important to know that your source of CBD items is reputable and high-quality.
Here’s one other thing: As veterinarians, we’re only allowed to discuss CBD for your cat if you ask us—we’re not permitted to start the conversation with you. We can’t legally recommend it as a treatment, but we are always happy to discuss and offer guidance if it’s something you’re considering.
The veterinarians at Just Cats are knowledgeable about cutting-edge therapies and treatments for your cats; we want to provide the best care possible, and we keep up to date on the newest research and developments in veterinary medicine. We’re learning more every day about CBD for your cat—how to use it, when it helps, and when it might not be the best choice. We’re always happy to talk with you about how to keep your cat comfortable and healthy, so ask the questions. We’ll give you the best answers we can.