Aggressive behaviour, excessive barking, fear of noise and separation anxiety can be issues that plague dogs, big or small.
Despite our most loving efforts sometimes our pets behaviour does not reflect their true nature. For rescue animals or those with a traumatic history, adverse behaviours can be common.
CBD for stress related behaviour
CBD is widely reputed to reduce anxiety and stress behaviours in human and experimental models, though research in the uses of CBD oil for pets with anxiety or behavioural issues is still emerging.
Our pets have very similar brain regions that react to stress in the same way we do. Where increased mental or physical stress causes the activation of areas of the brain involved in the flight or fight response and the release of stress hormones.
Can CBD oil help dogs with aggressive behaviours?
A recently released study of rescue dogs with aggressive or disruptive behaviour sheds light on the potential benefits of CBD oil for dogs, pets and shelter animals with adverse behaviours.
When compared to dogs given a placebo, CBD oil reduced aggressive behaviours towards humans such as growling, sideways glance, baring teeth and lip curling.
CBD did not reduce other stressed behaviours in a clinically significant way – probably due to the nature of their history and shelter environment. However, dogs did not exhibit any signs of impaired perception or attention. This is significant as it indicates that the reduction in aggression wasn’t due to a sedating action.
Can CBD oil help dogs with anxiety?
As yet there is little gold standard research supporting the use of CBD oil for pets or dogs with anxiety. However, from experimental studies and research showing the mechanisms of CBD in the stressed or anxious brain, we can assess the potential for medical cannabis to treat pets with anxiety.
Pets and humans share a similar Endocannabinoid System (ECS) which regulates everything from mood to immune and gastrointestinal. When CBD interacts with the ECS and other chemical signals in the brain, it can produce anxiety-relieving effects.
The tail end of CBD for behavioural concerns in dogs
Temperament and behaviours can stem from environmental factors and genetic disposition associated with certain breeds of dogs. Yet when aggressive or stressful behaviours are out of character investigations into potential causes is warranted. If medical conditions have been ruled out, behaviour training is the next port of call.
While research is still early in this field, if your dog exhibits distressing or anxious behaviours and all other efforts have failed, CBD oil might be of help to your pet.
Contact one of our experienced team at CBD Vets Australia or talk to your Vet about how CBD oil could help reduce anxiety and be a helpful adjunct therapy for unwanted behaviours in your furry friend.
By Jessica Kindynis