Have you heard of the human endocannabinoid system? It’s a system of cannabinoid receptors in the body that processes, metabolizes, and utilizes cannabis.
This system is not unique to humans. All creatures – except insects – possess an endocannabinoid system. And mounting evidence shows that the cannabinoid CBD is effective in treating a number of symptoms and conditions in humans.
As such, it stands to figure that CBD also has the potential to help many different body systems and organs in a multitude of different species.
That’s why CBD oil for horses is becoming an increasingly popular option for treating multiple conditions experienced by our equine friends.
Using CBD Oil for Horses
In case you’re unfamiliar, CBD is short for cannabidiol – one of the over 100 cannabinoids found in the medicinal hemp plant. All cannabinoids appear to have health properties. And unlike the cannabidiol THC, CBD has no psychoactive effects. That means that it doesn’t have any mind-altering properties.
Along with cannabinoids, the hemp plant also has compounds called terpenes which play a huge role in how the plant and its oils taste and smell. Terpenes are also considered medicinal. And working in tandem with cannabinoids, they can boost their health benefits.
These compounds are found mostly in the leaves and flowers of the hemp plant. Thus, medicinal hemp is grown in such a way to foster larger buds in order to maximize the levels of CBD.
Now that you understand the finer points of CBD and what it is, let’s address the bigger question – how does CBD help horses?
1. Reduces Inflammation
One of the biggest benefits of CBD is its anti-inflammatory qualities.
All mammals deal with inflammation. But just because it’s a fairly common problem, doesn’t mean it’s not a serious one. Especially in the case of horses.
Horses are emotional creatures. So when a horse experiences aging joints or an injury that causes inflammation, it can cause chronic stress. Chronic stress can then lead to a myriad of other health issues that could greatly compromise the health of your horse.
Owners and trainers have found that CBD is effective in treating horses with inflammation and joint problems. And there are no side effects whatsoever.
How does CBD reduce inflammation? By lessening inflammatory cytokines; the proteins which are known to cause autoimmunity, allergies, and hypersensitivity. And these are all issues
2. Manages Pain
Inflammation isn’t the only source of pain for horses. Because horses are very active and have to handle their massive weight, they are susceptible to fractures and wounded hooves.
And it’s important to remember that horses also carry the extra weight of a saddle and a human on their backs. This creates additional challenges when it comes to maneuvering that can increase their risk of injury.
When humans experience an injury, it often shows up as redness and swelling at the site. In horses, it takes a keener eye to recognize pain. The horse will typically tense up when a specific movement is made that causes pain.
As mentioned above, CBD is an anti-inflammatory. This alone helps to alleviate pain. But CBD further manages pain by inhibiting pain signals that come from the injured cells that go to the brain.
3. Aids Digestive Health
CBD has been shown to improve appetite and reduce nausea in people who are going through cancer treatment and chemotherapy. Meanwhile, it’s not unusual for horses to experience digestive health issues such as indigestion, bloating, nausea, heartburn, lack of appetite, and even ulcers.
This is usually the result of their diet. Horses thrive on a diet that’s rich in grains. Unfortunately, this kind of diet often causes inflammation of the digestive tract.
Horse owners are increasingly adding full extract CBD hemp oil as a supplement to their horses’ diets. CBD oil lacks the oligosaccharides and trypsin inhibitors found in legumes and soy that can produce gas in the stomach.
Furthermore, it’s rich in nutrients such as omega-3, omega-6, and omega-9 fatty acids as well as vitamins A, C, D, E, and K. It also contains most of the necessary amino acids and is a powerful source of chlorophyll and gluten-free protein.
4. Relieves Anxiety and Stress
Horses are highly sensitive animals who are prone to anxiety and stress. Not only do they experience anxiety in competitive events, but they can pick up on any anxiety or stress that the rider is experiencing as well.
In addition, since horses are herd animals, they can get stressed each time they’re put in a trailer for traveling purposes. And horses that are required to be on stall rest for healing injuries can experience anxiety from having to stay still in a small space.
Equestrians report that their horses become calmer and friendlier after ingesting CBD oil. And unlike with pharmaceuticals, CBD does not affect the horse’s personality. Which brings us to an important caveat.
Steer Clear of THC
Horses are naturally wired to react and respond to many things in their external environment. So when working with horses, it’s crucial to avoid any products that contain THC.
Although THC has many health benefits, its psychoactive properties are counterintuitive for horses. It can cause increased anxiety, hallucinations, or even changes in brain chemistry. Plus, adverse symptoms or side effects that go unnoticed by a horse’s owner could cause chronic long-term stress. And as we mentioned above, this can lead to other health problems.
Luckily, industry standards require that THC content in all CBD oil products must be less than .3% THC. This is such a small amount of THC that it is processed before it can be absorbed. This ensures that the CBD is safe for horses.
And for all animals.
There Are So Many Benefits of Using CBD Oil for Horses
Although the use of CBD oil for horses is still in its genesis, it continues to come out of the gate strong for treating common symptoms and conditions that can plague equines.
And that’s offering peace of mind for horse riders and owners who want to keep their horses happy and healthy in the most natural way.
For more informative articles to pique your interest on a variety of topics, keep checking back with our blog.