Hemp Oil For Cats
If you’re a cat owner, chances are you care about the health of your fluffy friend (sometimes more than your own health). You buy them the best food, take them to regular vet checkups, and do everything you can to ensure they live a long, healthy life. But what happens when you notice something just isn’t right with your feline companion?
You quickly drop everything and schedule the first available opening at your local veterinarian. After one quick trip to the vet, you find yourself leaving with a bag full of medications, and you think, ‘Will these even help my sweet fur baby? What about the side effects?’ Suddenly you’re overwhelmed with stress and anxiety, fearing the worst case scenario of Mr. Whiskers.
Enter hemp oil for cats.
By now, you’ve likely heard of Cannabidiol (hemp), the non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in the hemp plant. People everywhere sing its therapeutic praises, but what most cat owners don’t know is that hemp is also beneficial for cats.
Industrial hemp and marijuana belong to the cannabis sativa family. While they both hold a few similarities, they are undoubtedly different. Industrial hemp is dominant in the non-intoxicating cannabinoid hemp, whereas the psychoactive cannabinoid terahydrocannabidol (THC) is more prominent in marijuana. Hemp-derived hemp oil contains less than 0.3% THC. This amount of THC is non-toxic and allows hemp-derived hemp oil to be legal across the US. Additionally, according to scientific reviews, the overall safety profile of hemp is reassuring for animals and humans alike.
While there are no known studies or concrete evidence regarding the validity of hemp oil for cats, anecdotal evidence suggests otherwise. In fact, many individual cat owners suggest that using hemp has improved their feline friend’s appetite, social skills, anxiety, energy, activity, etc. This is mainly due to the endocannabinoid system (ECS) found in both humans and animals.
Consuming hemp oil increases the natural production of our cats’ endocannabinoids –– inner cannabinoids found in the ECS. This increased production ultimately helps regulate the bodily functions in our cats.
These functions include:
- Perception of pain
- Immune health
When something seems off and health problems appear, it’s important to explore every treatment option available for your cat. That’s why we encourage you to consider hemp oil for cats, a more holistic approach that may help your fluffy friend live their best feline life.
How Much hemp Oil Should I Give My Cat?
Determining how much hemp oil you should give your cat depends on a couple of components:
- Weight: the size of your cat.
- Health: does your cat have any health issues or diseases?
Gary Richter, DVM, an integrative veterinarian in Oakland, California, recommends that cat owners should keep hemp oil dosage on the lower end. The lack of research regarding hemp oil for cats must be considered when determining how much hemp oil you should give your cat. That said, talking with your veterinarian about hemp oil is perhaps the best place to start.
Additionally, not all hemp oil for cats are created equal — meaning, the formulation of hemp oils varies from one hemp company to another. However, reputable hemp companies will always provide their dosing recommendation on their product labels.
At Holistic Hound, our suggested hemp serving for cats is determined by weight. If your cat weighs anywhere from 5-10 pounds, we suggest a dosage of 3-6 drops of hemp oil. If your cat weighs 10-25 pounds, you should give them 6-12 drops. Each of our hemp oil tinctures comes equipped with an easy to use 1 mL graduated dropper.
hemp Oil Dosage For Cats
Finding the right hemp oil dosage for cats takes time and a lot of patience, especially for cats in poor health. A good rule of thumb regarding hemp oil dosage for cats is “less is more”.
If your cat has a history of health issues or diseases, it’s important to consult with your veterinarian before administering hemp oil. They may suggest a lower or higher dose depending on their health, and they may want to monitor them especially if they are taking other medications. Nevertheless, when considering the appropriate hemp oil dosage for cats, it’s important to dose gradually. Start hemp oil slowly, administering a small amount at a time for your cat. Then incrementally increase the dose until you see improvements.
How Often Should I Use hemp?
At Holistic Hound, we encourage our customers to actively monitor their feline friends anytime they use hemp oil, especially if they’ve never used hemp before. That said, our products can be administered once or twice daily according to your cat’s weight.
Currently, there are no studies involving hemp oil for cats. However, in one study, hemp oil was administered to dogs with epilepsy and owners reported absolutely no negative side effects. While this information shows promise for cats, according to the FDA, cats are more sensitive to medications than dogs. Nevertheless, holistic veterinarian Dr. Gary Richter suggests that in most cases, hemp oil is safe for cats.
Casara Andre, D.V.M., founder of Veterinary Cannabis Education and Consulting, also supports hemp oil for pets but suggests it as an “individualized medicine”. Because our feline friends can’t voice how they feel, it’s crucial to pay attention to your cat’s behaviors and reactions when trying a new supplement or medicine. That said, at Holistic Hound we’re proud of our non-intoxicating, veterinarian-formulated hemp products for cats, and we encourage caution when determining how often you should use hemp for your cat.
What Are The Benefits Of hemp For Cat Anxiety?
Like humans, our curious felines can suffer from anxiety. While signs of cat anxiety are often mistaken for the stereotypical independent, volatile, and at times apathetic feline spirit, many healthy conditions contribute to fearful and anxious behaviors.
Anxiety in cats is often displayed through:
- Destructive behavior
- Defecating and urinating throughout the house
One of the most common forms of stress-induced anxiety found in cats is separation anxiety. While medications are often prescribed for this common disorder, preclinical evidence confirms hemps’ ability to reduce unwanted symptoms from a number of anxiety disorders. In fact, according to one study, scientists noted that hemp reduced anxiety in stress-induced mice in addition to improving their overall emotional mood. Moreover, it’s important to note that serotonin receptors are also found in cats’ brains. And according to some studies, hemp not only modulates serotonergic transmission but it reverses anxious behaviors.
Cats are notorious for their quirky, neurotic behaviors, which makes it hard to determine if your cat is battling from anxiety or not. If you’re unsure that your cat may be battling anxiety, consult with your veterinarian. It’s important to note that hemp is definitely not a cure-all, but it may offer a host of therapeutic benefits to you and your cat.