CBN for Dogs & Cats
What is CBN?
Cannabinol (CBN) is typically derived from THCa which is oxidized and has a mild psychotropic effect. It has been shown to cause less paranoia and stress than some cannabis strains that contain high THC. Degraded flowers or buds containing THC will eventually convert to CBN over time, but CBN can be converted through low-heat activation of THC as well. People have often reported old or aged cannabis as causing a more sleepy or tired effect, but no studies have pinpointed whether or not this is from CBN solely.
What is the Endocannabinoid System?
Before we dive further into what CBN effects, it is important to outline the basics of what the Endocannabinoid System is and how it influences our pet’s health. The ECS comprises of three main components: endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes.
Endocannabinoids are naturally produced by the body, hence the prefix “endo” meaning endogenously. Compounds such as anandamide named from the Sanskrit word “ananda”, which means joy, bliss, or delight. Anandamide is an endogenous cannabinoid naturally produced that produces similar benefits and effects to that of THC. 2-AG (2-Arachidonoylglycerol) is another lipid molecule naturally produced in mammals and helps to signal cannabinoid receptors. Endogenous cannabinoids are not simply limited to associating with cannabinoid receptors and have been shown to signal many other chemical pathways in the body.
The most well-researched cannabinoid receptors are CB1 and CB2 are found throughout the body. More research is needed, but there has been recent interest in additional cannabinoid receptors beyond CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are primarily found in the brain and central nervous system in pets, while CB2 receptors are more prevalent in peripheral systems like the organs, gut, and immune cells. These cannabinoid receptors spread and communicate vital information and chemical functions in the body in order to create balance or “homeostasis”. Whether it is neurotransmitters, like serotonin, or even in skin irritation, cannabinoid receptors are being expressed to help modulate these insults.
Enzymes, such as fatty acids, primary function is to break down endocannabinoids in the body.
How does CBN interact with the Endocannabinoid System?
When mammals consume CBN it interacts with endocannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2, although it has a much lower binding affinity than other cannabinoids like CBD or THC. CBN benefits on the CB1 receptor in the brain can promote systemic inflammatory responses and manage mood or sleep regulation. Additionally, CBN interacts with CB2 receptors that may show potential in how CBN for dogs and cat’s immune system.
CBN also engages the endocannabinoid system by inhibiting enzymes like fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), which is responsible for breaking down anandamide. By its ability to breakdown anandamide and increasing the levels of anandamide in the body, showing potential CBN effects on sleep quality and mood elevation.
Lastly, we cannot forget about the potential CBN effects on neurotransmitter chemicals in the body like serotonin. By engaging serotonin receptors, CBN for dogs and cats may show therapeutic potential for more sedative benefits associated with travel or sundowners syndrome many older pets experience.
CBN for Dogs & Cats
CBN for pets can be used as a sleep aid or calming agent. It has also been shown to help maintain healthy bone and joint function. CBN primarily binds to CB2 receptors in the body with low or weak binding affinity to CB1 receptors, which may allude to why so many tout it as a sleep aid. Much more research is needed, particularly in the realm of CBN for dogs and cats, to assess whether or not this cannabinoid has therapeutic potential. Here are some potential benefits for our furry friends:
CBN has been shown to have sedative effects and may help improve sleep quality and duration. In a study conducted on sleep, CBN combined with other cannabinoids and terpenes were found to increase sleep time and improve sleep quality, while also reducing wakefulness during the night. Another study conducted on humans found that CBN, when combined with THC, helped improve sleep quality in individuals with insomnia.
Calming supplements for dogs and cats are wide ranging and many have very small amounts of the actual calming ingredients. CBN effects can provide a natural calming aid for dogs and cats that are consistently being triggered by stress from fireworks, thunderstorms, and hyperactivity. Many pet owners are often looking for ways on how to calm a restless dog at night or how to calm a cat at bedtime without the use of pharmaceutical sedatives. CBN for dogs and cats may be one of the most natural supplements to help dogs sleep or calm cats.
CBN may have analgesic properties, making it a potential option for managing discomfort. In a study conducted on rats, CBN combined with other cannabinoids were found to reduce sensitivity in response to heat, suggesting that it may have analgesic effects. However, more research is needed to determine how effective CBN may be for managing discomfort in dogs and cats.
Healthy Inflammatory Response Signaling
CBN may have healthy inflammatory response properties, which could make it useful for managing conditions like joint discomfort. In a study conducted on mice, CBN in combination with other phytocannabinoids were found to promote healthy inflammatory response signals associated with joint discomfort. However, more research is needed to determine how effective CBN may be for managing healthy inflammatory pathways in pets.
CBN has been shown to stimulate appetite, which could be beneficial for animals who struggle with poor appetite or weight loss. In a study conducted on rats, CBN combined with other cannabinoids like CBD were found to increase food intake, suggesting that it may have appetite-stimulating effects.
One potential use of CBN for dogs & cats is stress or travel. While more research is needed, some studies have suggested that CBN may have mood-balancing effects. A study in 2021 found that CBN in conjunction with other cannabinoid extracts reduced stress in rats in a maze test, while another study in 2012 found that CBN reduced stress-like behavior in mice. These findings suggest that CBN for dogs and cats may be a useful supplement who suffer from travel stress or separation energy, although more research is needed to determine its effectiveness.
When combined with a full-spectrum CBD extract (containing a wide array of minor cannabinoids and terpenes), CBN for dogs and cats can provide a unique blend of bioactive compounds to support overall wellness. Many pet owners report a stronger calming effect along with pets gaining more restful sleep. Specifically in the case of elderly pets with sundowners syndrome that tend to lack recognition of day and nighttime cycles.
Supporting dogs and cats’ parasympathetic state is extremely important when trying to ease stress. Consistent and high amounts of stress can lead to increases in inflammatory response signals in the body, which can express as digestive upset, skin irritation, and even weakened immune function. By supporting the serotonin pathways and balancing this neurotransmitter, pet owners are calming cat or dog stress in a natural way.
Although more research is needed on the use of CBN for pets, the potential to be a safer therapeutic option for elderly or stressed dogs and cats is of interest. The good news is that CBN for dogs and cats combined with other full spectrum hemp extracts has shown to be growing in popularity for a number of pet health concerns. Pet dementia is something many pet owners experience with aging pets and CBN can be a safer alternative to provide comfort in their golden years.
CBN is showing promising benefits for the following ailments:
- Restful Sleep
- Reduces oxidative stress
- Promotes a calmer state of being
- Great for travel, nail trims, and vet visits
- Supports cognitive function