Waltham Petcare Science Institute Finds CBD Reduces Stress in Dogs

Waltham Petcare Science Institute Finds CBD Reduces Stress in Dogs

The rapidly growing number of studies of CBD for pets reflects the rapidly increasing pet market. One of the most recent studies released was published in Frontiers in Veterinary Science.

Waltham Petcare Science Institute conducted a randomized, placebo-controlled, blinded study to determine if CBD could reduce stress in dogs. The results found that THC-free cannabidiol can significantly reduce the stress dogs experience under certain circumstances.

Some dogs experience stress when separated from their owners or when left alone. Symptoms of stress include trembling, nervousness, panting, excessive salivating, sadness, tenseness, fearfulness, rapid heartbeat, depression and more. The researchers at the Waltham Science Institute, a part of Mars Petcare, decided to test whether a single oral dose of CBD consisting of 4 mgs per kg of body weight could relieve stress symptoms. There were 20 healthy dogs participating who were given a daily dose of broad spectrum CBD. When left alone or traveling in a car, the dogs selected show signs of stress. The other 20 dogs were given a placebo.

The stress symptoms dogs typically experience include whining, panting, increased heart rate, increased blood cortisol levels and trembling. Since this was a controlled study, half of the dogs were given a CBD capsule, and half were given a placebo. A number of behavioral and psychological tests were conducted before, during and after separation and car travel experiences. The dogs were left alone in a familiar room or given a car ride two hours after being given CBD. The study was conducted over six months, during which they were given CBD or the placebo daily.

According to the researchers,

“The study determined that a single 4 mg/kg dose of CBD distillate influences some behavioral and physiological parameters in dogs following exposure to the two different stress-inducing events.”

The researchers recorded the best results in dogs taking CBD and car trips. They showed less sadness, lower serum cortisol levels, and a smaller decrease in “relaxed” ratings compared to the dogs receiving a placebo. Dogs given CBD and experiencing a separation event were less sad, stressed, uncomfortable, whiney and tense than those given placebos. The study suggests that a single oral THC-free CBD dose of 4 mgs per kg of body weight could relieve some stress symptoms, but the various symptoms do not have the same response to CBD. The results found the daily CBD dose is safe for healthy dogs and can improve canine emotional well-being.

Many dogs experience events causing extreme stress. Car travel and separation are just two such experiences. For example, some dogs are terrified of fireworks. One of the benefits of studies like this one is that the actual symptoms were scientifically measured, which can support future studies of the impact of CBD on stressful experiences that dogs endure.

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