Osteoarthritis, also known as OA and degenerative joint disease, is a slow damage and breaking down, or deterioration, of the cartilage around the bones that connect at the joints. This affects both humans and pets and can affect any joint in the body.
Inflammation of the joints can be called by the general term of “arthritis”, but the more medically specific osteoarthritis refers to the chronic, progressive condition of the cartilage in the joints being broken down permanently. This causes steadily increasing pain as the bones no longer move on a cushion of cartilage, but bang together at every movement. When it comes to pets, like humans, older dogs have a higher incidence of osteoarthritis. Larger dogs, like labs, mastiffs and retrievers, are more susceptible to skeletal disease than small breeds like terriers and toy breeds. However, dogs with shortened limbs or elongated spines, like bulldogs and Dachshunds, are often victims of skeletal problems such as spinal arthritis.
Both cats and dogs can develop arthritis. Symptoms of arthritis can include the following behaviors:
Cats tend to hide their pain more than dogs, and are less likely to cry out or attempt to move, but will simply lie still for longer periods. This is not always simply attributed to lack of energy due to old age, but can signal a cat who is feeling constant joint pain.
With the increasing popularity of medicinal marijuana for human medical treatment, some pet owners are turning to their veterinarians and dispensaries for help in treating their beloved pets’ chronic pain as well.
Dogs are more sensitive to the active ingredients in cannibus and hemp plants, CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), than humans and require a very LOW dose. They should not be given highly psychotropic THC (marijuana) or “edibles” which can easily cause an overdose of undesired effects. Most remedies for pets, utilize only hemp-sourced CBD for pets designed specifically for them
The results of using CBD for pets’ arthritis, particularly in dogs, is looking positive. In a 2017 survey of customers, Innovet PurCBD found that a majority of their customers, 61%, were utilizing their product to treat their pets’ joint or bone pain or arthritis. 61% of all respondents said their pet was a senior animal, or over 8 years old, which is the common age range for onset of arthritis and mobility problems. And over 90% of respondents said they would recommend others to use CBD treatments with their pets as well.
This high level of satisfaction with Phytocannabidiol therapy for pets is certainly a hopeful trend in veterinary medicine. With the right tools and patience, even elderly pets can regain their quality of life and experience a comfortable journey into old age.
For more information on CBD for pets click here.