How Terpenes Affect Your Dog’s Behavior

June 10, 2024

Written By: Earth Buddy Team

Organic hemp at Earth Buddy’s farm in Colorado produces an abundance of cannabis terpenes promoting the entourage effect

What are terpenes? When you walk past that lilac tree, that fragrant scent that moves your way comes from the terpenes present in the plant. These natural substances aren’t only responsible for pleasant odors; they can significantly affect our dogs’ behavior. When terpenes interact with the endocannabinoid system, they can produce certain affects, similar to how different cannabinoids do.

Terpene oil, particularly when combined with CBD oil, can create a potent mixture that influences dog behavior. Different types of terpene oils have unique properties, such as calming effects or promoting relaxation. Hemp, a source of terpenes, contains various cannabinoids, including CBD, which also interact with the endocannabinoid system in dogs.

What Are Terpenes?

Graphic of different terpenes found in Earth Buddy’s full spectrum cbd oil for dogs. Terpenes allow for lower cbd dosing

Terpenes, fragrant molecules present in various plants, have a crucial role in determining the smell and taste of flowers, fruits, and even products made for our pets. But the key question here is– what are terpenes doing in all of this plant life? Why are terpenes so important to plant survival?

In the wilderness of nature, terpenes are used to attract pollinators and deter insects that could cause harm to the plants that contain them. They’re also used to help plants heal naturally. In other words, these primary metabolites play a part in what is basically a plant’s immune system.

You may also hear them referred to as terpenoids. Terpenes turn into terpenoids when the plant has been dried and the terpenes oxidize.

CBD oil terpenes contain a variety of these compounds, each with its own effects on our dogs’ behavioral responses. Dominant terpenes in cannabis can have calming or stimulating effects, depending on the strain. Full-spectrum extract, which contains a wide range of terpenes and cannabinoids, provides pet owners with a holistic option to promote and support mental and physical well-being.

Not All Types of Terpenes Are Beneficial

Many pet professionals often don’t think of which types of terpenes are present when choosing a particular brand of CBD. They commonly search for purity found within the lab results, but new animal studies are finding that CBD oil terpenes also contribute to how a mammal’s endocannabinoid system works with certain oils alone and may determine the health benefits of certain strains.

Beneficial terpenes may promote and support long-term health by:

  • Supporting healthy digestion: Certain terpenes have been linked to supporting digestive tract health by assisting in the digestion and absorption of essential nutrients and supporting the overall function of the digestive system.
  • Promoting healthy inflammatory pathways: Terpenes can help support a healthy inflammatory response in the body which helps maintain the general health of all ages and breeds.
  • Enhancing the immune response: Some terpenes support immune system function, promoting the body’s innate resistance to pathogens and supporting normal detoxification processes.
  • Helping maintain healthy skin: Terpenes can contribute to supporting skin health by helping maintain normal moisture content of skin, helping support hydration levels, and reducing oxidative stress.
  • Supporting normal respiratory function and health: Certain terpenes help support normal stamina and endurance, help maintain normal pulmonary health, and support oxygen utilization by the body.

These physical benefits alone could be beneficial to our dogs’ mental health. But aside from these benefits, many terpene profiles have their own unique set of beneficial effects that could contribute to supporting and promoting mental wellness.

Myrcene Promotes Relaxation When Found in Natural Amounts

Graphic of different plants containing myrcene terpenes. Cannabis terpenes in cbd can help dogs relax without sedatives.

Among the various terpenes found in cannabis strains, one that frequently takes the spotlight is Myrcene, often regarded as the most abundant terpene. Cannabis strains with high levels of Myrcene are notable for their distinct aroma and flavor profile, characterized by earthy and musky notes.

Terpenes like Myrcene tend to be less than desirable for our pets when provided in synthetically high concentrations. They’re quite uplifting and, as you may know already, too much lift can be overwhelming. However, in the appropriate amounts, Myrcene may provide help for restless animals by promoting relaxation.

Alpha-Bisabolol Supports Normal Emotional Balance

Alpha-bisabolol is naturally found in a variety of plants including chamomile and hemp. It has a floral scent and plays a role in helping manage normal stress. That’s why you may have heard holistic doctors, or even your primary care doctor, recommend you drink chamomile tea before bedtime. It can do the same for our pets. You can try out Earth Buddy’s calming chews to help reduce the effects of normal environmental stress for your pet.

Beta-Caryophyllene From Black Pepper and the Cannabis Plant

Beta-Caryophyllene is a terpene that’s commonly found in black pepper. Fortunately, it’s also found in the organic hemp cultivated at Earth Buddy’s farm. It’s most abundant in the trichomes which is where the oil is extracted from.

Research has found that beta-caryophyllene can interact with the same receptors that pharmaceuticals use to alter mood. When incorporated into a hemp extract, this terpene may promote a sense of relaxation and mental alertness without drowsiness.

Humulene’s Effect on Dog Behavior

Humulene graphic showing the benefits for dogs suffering from motion sickness. For car rides, full spectrum cbd for dogs

Humulene, also known as alpha-caryophyllene, is a terpene known for the scent and flavor found in hops and cannabis. It’s responsible for the spicy flavor in craft beer and cannabis.

As far as behavior, humulene has been found to help manage normal stress which may help curb destructive behavior in our dogs. Since it provides uplifting effects, it may also Helps maintain contentment during separation, travel, motion sickness and tension caused

by changes in your pet’s daily routine.

Taking a Look at Strains High in Pinene

Giving dogs full spectrum cbd provides them with terpenes too, like pinene, which can help calm dogs during fireworks

Pinene, named after its prevalence in pine trees and other conifers, is often associated with the aroma of the great outdoors. You may have even had candles or other products that contain essential oils, including pinene, to make your home smell more like you’re wandering through the forest. In addition to its powerful scent, research has found strains high in pinene help support cognitive function.

By supporting cognitive function and promoting normal, healthy brain activity, Pinene may help maintain normal disposition and alertness and support normal, balanced behavior in our dogs. These benefits could extend to supporting behavior modification and training programs when our dogs are in need of help getting on the right track.

Linalool Helps Curb Destructive Behavior in Dogs

Linalool, a terpene abundant in certain cannabis strains, brings with it more than just a pleasant aroma reminiscent of lavender fields. There’s a reason that its fragrant floral scents are associated with relaxing bath time, used as essential oils for welcoming homes, and found in diffusers in focused work spaces.

The calming properties of linalool have been well-documented, with research outlining its potential to promote relaxation. By interacting with neurotransmitter receptors in the brain, linalool helps maintain normal nervous system function, resulting not only in helping manage normal stress, but also helping support normal behavior patterns in both us and our dogs. This makes it particularly beneficial for behavioral problem management.

Be Cautious of Over Processing Terpenes Hemp Provides

It’s important to be aware that overprocessing the products from the cannabis plant can damage or even fully remove the terpenes within the product. Watch for companies that utilize additional processes after extraction. Without the terpenes, it’s unlikely that the product will be fully functional.

The entourage effect, a phenomenon that is believed to be responsible for cannabis’ beneficial effects, depends heavily on the intricate relationships among cannabis constituents. This process may fail to occur completely if there aren’t a sufficient number of terpenes present in the product. Terpenes are thought to play a large role in the benefits associated with this herb and, as you can see, have even been shown to have individual effects of their own.

CBD Oil with Terpenes: Check the Lab Results

Earth Buddy tests their pet cbd to ensure safety & efficacy with the full spectrum of active compounds like terpenes.

The products at Earth Buddy are tested regularly for terpenes. Earth Buddy strives to maintain as many compounds as possible in every extract, including checking CBD oil with terpenes for quality and purity. There are varying terpene levels in each extract since Earth Buddy emphasizes natural cannabis cultivation without the use of chemicals or artificial conditions.

Even though there’s no “magic tincture” for all of our pet’s problems, there are ways to maximize the effectiveness of the extract, including incorporating as many cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes as possible.

Combining the Compounds to Produce Desired Effects

Beyond the terpenes, hemp extract contains an array of compounds, including CBD, CBG, Cbda, and CBN, which are known for their potential to support emotional balance in our pets. Taking a deeper look, the major cannabinoids, and most abundant cannabinoids have the following benefits:

  • CBD for dogs: CBD for dogs is becoming increasingly popular as time goes on as an option to support and promote long-term health. CBD for dogs is most commonly known for promoting relaxation, but it also promotes homeostasis, or balance, within the body. This helps maintain optimal health, enhancing our dogs’ physical and mental well-being.

Earth Buddy makes a variety of different hemp extracts containing CBD, CBDa, CBN, and CBG with terpenes for dogs & cats.

  • CBG: CBG for dogs is one of the less commonly known cannabinoid compounds, but nevertheless, it’s still important and has proven to be beneficial to our pups. Due to CBG being found to promote cognitive function and enhance the immune response, Earth Buddy offers an extract containing a 4:1 ratio of CBG: CBD in the Cellular Support extract.
  • CBDa: CBDa for dogs is found in Earth Buddy’s Mobility due to its ability to help maintain healthy joint function, support normal recovery from stress, and help maintain a healthy inflammatory response.
  • CBN: CBN for dogs provides help for restless animals and can be found in Earth Buddy’s Sleep Support extract. CBN supports normal recovery from stress and may reduce hyperactivity & promote relaxation in our dogs.

Don’t forget to consult your holistic veterinarian, especially if you’re considering the use of full-spectrum extract for medicinal purposes. These professionals are well-versed in the complexities of herbal extracts and can provide valuable insights into the appropriate dosage and administration of hemp extract for dog owners’ specific concerns.

Consulting with a holistic veterinarian also ensures that the approach you’re taking aligns with your pet’s individual needs, maximizing the potential benefits associated with the use of hemp-derived pet products.

For further reading, we recommend: 

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