Hemp Derived CBD Oil Versus Hemp Terpenes
Recently we had a customer come in asking several concerns about CBD oil and it inspired us to write a post answering some common questions we get (to the best of our ability of course because its easy to get caught down a rabbit hole!).
Let's start out with the most basic.
What is the endocannabinoid system?
The endocannabinoid system modulates functions in the central nervous system, endocrine and immune tissues. It is comprised of cannibinoid receptors, endogenous cannibinoids and enzymes responsible for the anabolism and catabolism (build up and break down) of these compounds(1). The two cannibinoid receptors we talk about in relation to dogs are CB1 and CB2; CB1 acting primarily in the central nervous system (brain, nerves, spinal column) and CB2 in the legs, digestive system and immune system.
Will CBD oil make my dog high?
NO! We carry hemp-derived CBD oil, which contains no THC (if it is present it would be in trace amounts). THC is the psychoactive component of marijuana that gives the high associated with marijuana use. THC can be toxic to dogs so it is very important that it is not administered to animals. With the legalization of marijuana and the emergence of things that are tempting for animals to get into, it is even more important that if you are a marijuana user (no judgement here by the way) to keep it away.
What is the difference between hemp terpenes, and CBD oil?
Let's begin with CBD oil.
CBD can be extracted from marijuana or hemp oil but in our case it is sold as a hemp-derived CBD isolate. It is often not sold completely on its own but mixed with other fat-soluble ingredients such as olive oil, flaxseed oil, MCT oil or coconut oil to emulsify the product. Generally speaking, these added oils are just to improve consistency of the product and offer little to no therapeutic benefit.
At this point, there really isn't a ton of science to say it is effective in pets; most of the reports are anecdotal. It does appear scientifically (and in our experience selling the product) to be effective for seizures, anxiety, and chronic pain, though there are more benefits listed below. Here is a very small study addressing the use of CBD oil for pets with idiopathic epilepsy: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31067185 and here is one supporting the use of CBD in dogs with osteoarthritis https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30083539
Many of the studies done so far are done on humans or rats, but we can likely extrapolate the information to extend to dogs or cats. Here is a study evaluating the efficacy of CBD in humans for anxiety and insomnia: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30624194
Due to the activity of binding to the CB1 and CB2 receptors and its anti-inflammatory benefits we can also suggest that it could be used for nerve pain, anxiety (including seperaton anxiety, fear of thunderstorms or fireworks etc), cancer pain, low appetite, chronic pain, allergies, skin conditions and digestive disturbances. Please be mindful that this is all combined with proper diet, adequate exercise and socialization of course. A couple of other interesting notes about CBD is it is effective as a natural antibiotic and can also be used topically for anxiety and skin conditions!
Now here is where things get confusing. There are also compounds called terpenes that are derived from hemp that have similar benefits to CBD oil. Terpenes are the aromatic compounds found in hemp (or marijuana) and many other plants that give it its unique smell. For those experienced with marijuana you may have noticed that different strains smell differently, and the high experienced might be quite different as well. That is a result of a variety of factors, but one of those factors can be the ratio of specific terpenes. However, these terpenes DO act on the endocannabinoid system as well, and by doing so, they exert similar effects as CBD oil. The terpenes offer other benefits as well, as they are antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. The terpenes may also enhance the effect of CBD oil (and vice versa) as they are typically found contained together within the plant.
So How Do I Choose Between Hemp Terpenes and CBD Oil?
Honestly, we wish we had a specific answer. If we had to guess, probably both. Right now the science isn't very strong (yet!), and we're going off of a lot of anecdotal reports. When something gains a ton of popularity such as CBD oil, it is often recommended as a one size fits all approach to all conditions and we're hesitant to jump on that bandwagon. The other justification to recommend both is they are found together in nature, and that is probably the way it is intended. For scientific purposes it is easier to obtain a definitive answer by studying one individual compound which is why we will see the attention on CBD. There is a price difference between the two so it may be wise to start with what fits in your budget.
Below are some considerations on when to use either based on what science we have seen so far, anecdotal reports, as well as what logical assumptions suggest. Always, always consult with your vet and make sure they are aware of what you are administering your pet. Stick with the dosages provided by each company, and ensure you are choosing a quality brand. Finally, remember that all supplements are given the best advantage to work when combined with a healthy diet, appropriate exercise and socialization.
If you have anything to add or any further questions please do not hesitate to give us a call. For your reference we have included the website of the brands we carry for you to research independently.
Creating Brighter Days (Fortify) CBD Oil:
Apawthecary Hemp Terpenes: