Loud noises can cause anxiety for pets; can CBD help treat stress? Photo Credit: Ray Hennessy
Fireworks are a symbol of patriotism. They are colorful and loud. But the loudness amplifies anxiety across the country, especially in animals. Stress in animals is easy to identify, however, managing it is another thing altogether.
Humans often use CBD oil and treats to aid in their anxiety symptoms, shouldn’t it be possible for pets to do the same?
Anxiety Symptoms in Pets
Symptoms of anxiety in pets are similar to those in humans. They vary, and not all pets show symptoms. However, it is important to recognize common signs of stress.
According to Northwest Animal Hospital “pets may display mild signs of storm anxiety like pacing, trembling, hiding, or panting. It may progress to more severe signs like vocalizing, drooling, loss of bladder or bowel control, chewing or other destructive behavior.”
While these are symptoms of storm anxiety, they typically get anxious over the thunder. Thunder sounds similar to fireworks as they are both loud and are accompanied by lightning or colors.
“The loud, sudden noise can scare them because they don’t understand where the noise is coming from and they often associate loud noises with danger,” Northwest Animal Hospital says.
Thunder and fireworks are equally loud, so it is safe to say that the anxiety symptoms of storms are similar to that of firework anxiety.
How to Handle Anxiety in Pets
There is no one way to handle anxiety in pets. Different pets respond to stimulants that may be unique to them.
Dr. Salvatore Pernice, a veterinarian at Brooklyn Vet Group told Emerald that, “there is no right or wrong way to handle a pet’s anxiety. I tell all of my patience that a good place to start handling an animal’s anxiety is to give them a safe space.”
A safe space is typically a quiet place that the animal finds comfortable. Comfortability provides an animal with familiarity when experiencing firework anxiety.
“Talking to your pet to calm them down can distract them from the anxiety factors. That’s the baseline. If that doesn’t work, talking to your vet would be the last resort. They can recommend treatments or medication that can work for your pet,” Dr. Pernice says.
CBD as an Alternative to Combat Firework Anxiety
CBD oils and treats are often used to treat medical conditions and anxious disorders. As a result, pet owners have been making the switch to CBD pet products to promote positive health benefits in their animals, while removing the potential for severe side effects.
In a study posted to the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, “hemp-based CBD appears to be relatively safe in healthy populations of dogs and cats, and dogs appear to absorb CBD better than cats.”
This study also referenced another study from the Journal of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association, that states that “[…] pet owners are using cannabis to treat behavior-based disorders such as separation anxiety and noise phobia.”
There have been an influx of peer-reviewed studies on the effects of CBD on animals. However, most testimonials are from other pet owners using CBD for noise and separation anxiety.
“CBD is a good medical alternative to handle anxiety for pets,” says Dr. Pernice. “The Fourth of July is coming up and most animals get stressed this season.”
Animal Shelters and CBD
The ASPCA estimates that “approximately 6.5 million companion animals enter U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year.”
Shelters are noisy places, and many animals suffer from anxiety. As a result, CBD companies are partnering with the shelters to provide alternatives to help calm animals down, and reduce stress.
In a press release, Rescue CBD announced that it is donating a portion of its profits to donate CBD oil to animal shelters.
“We are excited to introduce a product to the market that will not only provide animals with immediate relief from a variety of symptoms like stress, anxiety or pain, but will also have lasting effects on improving their temperament to ensure pets remain happy companions,” Brian Spreraza said, one of the co-founders of Rescue CBD, said in the release.
Honest Paws, a CBD treat company, also donated products to local shelters and rescues.
Post from @treatibles on Instagram.
Woods Humane Society in San Luis Obispo, California and Rescue City in Brooklyn, New York were amongst the top candidates for Honest Paws’s 2020 initiative to increase pet CBD awareness.
Honest Paw has different treats and tinctures that are suited to an animal’s needs. On the Honest Paws website, “Honest Paws Calm line is specifically formulated to promote relaxation in stressed out, frazzled dogs. Made with organic, full-spectrum hemp oil and other all-natural ingredients, Honest Paws Calm line is the perfect all-natural remedy for stress.”
In an interview with Pet Insight, Min Lee, owner of Honest Paws, gushed about his company’s products, and their ability to “promote relaxation, enhance joint and bone function, and support overall wellness,” Min Lee says.
Post from @Mils_sanctuary on Instagram.
Pet Parents’ on CBD
As a pet parent myself, my animals get stressed out from July 4th celebrations. But, people start to light fireworks on Memorial Day and it causes them immense anxiety. While my other pets get CBD treats; I give Penny, my dog, CBD oil to help relax her on those stressful days/nights. She also has separation anxiety and is afraid of beeping noises whenever the fire alarm is accidentally set off. The CBD oil is practically her best friend as it keeps her mellow and happy.
Paws and Claws Animal Hospital says that, “many of our pet parents are interested in using CBD/Hemp Oil for their pets. CBD/Hemp Oil has become the latest “in” supplement for people to give their dogs and cats.”
In a listicle posted to Proud Dog Mom, there are four reasons why pet parents caring for a senior dog use CBD. It may offer significant benefits to brain health. Additionally, it can help relieve chronic pain; it helps with anxiety; it is a remedy for nausea; and fights appetite loss.
CBD is more than just a trend. It has tremendous qualities that increase an animal’s quality of life and calms down the firework anxiety.
A stressful situation can turn into a calming one just by giving an animal CBD. It has no harmful impact and they will get through the fireworks better than ever. As awareness and research surrounding CBD for pets grows, the plant-based alternative is proving useful for companions of all sizes, and ailments — no matter what time of year.
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