The Benefits of CBD For Horses

CBD For Horses - Does it work?

The benefits of CBD for humans, and even dogs and other pets have been an increasingly popular topic, but what about CBD for horses? The benefits of CBD for horses have not been heavily addressed. But like all animals, horses also possess an endocannabinoid system, which CBD interacts with to restore homeostasis in the body. Making CBD for horses a natural alternative option for many ailments.

How Does CBD Help Horses?

Horse with HEAL CBD oil for horses

The endocannabinoid system is responsible for homeostasis (balance) within the body. Just as with us and our dogs, a horse’s body reacts with the cannabinoids (like CBD) to resolve bodily imbalance at the cellular level. When researching the effects of CBD on animals, you may notice the research on horses is limited.

Luckily, every animal possesses an endocannabinoid system. This means the research and results documented in mammals like mice, cats, dogs, and other animals in regard to CBD can also be applied to horses.

Preliminary research suggests CBD may be beneficial to your horse’s digestion, metabolism, immune function, mobility, pain, stress, anxiety, and more.

CBD for Horses Research

Since the Farm Bill passed in 2018, removing industrial hemp from the Controlled Substances Act, researchers at Tarleton State University’s Equine Center in Texas have been beginning, and now conducting, a study to learn more about CBD and horses (Tarleston is part of Texas A&M- a leading agricultural university).

According to Dr. Kimberly Guay, an Assistant Professor at the University, “horse owners have all heard the hype about the potential benefits of CBD for animals. Here at Tarleton, we are working to give them reliable data.” She continued to state the level of interest associated with this study is intense as horse lovers await the data to be released. The study, led by Dr. Kimberly Guay, is measuring the effects of CBD on inflammation, stress, lameness, pain, and negative behaviors in horses.

In this study, Dr. Guay and her student researchers are administering different types of CBD for horses and measuring their heart rate and cortisol levels. They are also observing horses to determine if CBD may help horses with cribbing behaviors, and other types of obsessive-compulsive equine behavior.

Dr. Guay stated “By the end of this study, we hope to have the data that will define and document what exactly is going on with the horses. Is it actually helping to minimize stress and stereotypical behavior?” She hopes that once the evidence is available for horses, food production animals can be next on the list to be studied.

At this time, the amount of studies and research regarding CBD for horses is still limited, but the amount of anecdotal evidence is exceptional. First-hand accounts from horse lovers and equine veterinarians have indicated that CBD has resulted in significant improvement of their horses’ ailments.

Related: CBD for Horse Anxiety

Is CBD Safe For Horses?

We understand, similar to pet parents, horse lovers want to ensure their best friend is completely safe at all times. Thankfully, several research studies have shown that CBD has a great safety profile for all animals. CBD has also shown to be well-tolerated with very mild adverse side effects, such as occasional drowsiness and mild diarrhea. Unlike THC, CBD does not cause any type of ‘high’ in your horse (or any animal). Instead, CBD is primarily utilized for therapeutic purposes to keep your horse healthy.

A set of clinical trials tested for adverse reactions from escalating doses of CBD for dogs, with a maximum dose of 640 mg of CBD. (That’s 7-12x higher than our standard recommended dose for HORSES! And up to 70x higher than our standard recommended dose for dogs!) Even with such a high dosage of CBD for dogs, no lethal dose detected and adverse events were mild. 

A study conducted by LSU School of Veterinary Medicine recently conducted a study involving horses focused on safety, comfort, mobility, confidence, and behavior. The purpose of the study was to determine if CBD leads to any negative effects in horses in particular. 

In the study, 20 healthy adult Thoroughbred horses were evaluated for approximately two months. Before the study began, blood work (CBC and biochemical panel) was reviewed. The horses were then divided into two control groups; one group was treated with supplements containing CBD and the other was a control group who did not receive any supplementation.

CBD oil for Horses Administering

The horses were monitored daily for any signs of adverse reactions. Bloodwork was evaluated on days 28 and 56 approximately two hours following administration of the CBD supplement.

The study concluded there were no adverse effects from CBD supplementation in horses. The CBD supplement did not cause sedation or any lack of muscle control. And, did not change the horse’s gait. CBD was determined to be completely safe.

CBD for Horses Reviews: 20-Year-Old Paso Fino Horse

According to a study conducted by the AVMA, a woman named Becky Flowers decided to try cannabis for her 20-year-old Paso Fino horse who was suffering from degenerative ligament disease.

The study states “The Southern Californian’s pet horse, a 20-year-old Paso Fino named Phoenix, had had degenerative ligament disease for several years. But nearly a year ago, the condition worsened. Phenylbutazone, glucosamine, Cavallo boots, cold and warm wraps—whatever Flowers tried, it didn’t help the horse for long. Eventually, Phoenix lay on her side and stopped eating and drinking.

Instead of resorting to euthanization, Flowers made the decision to try cannabis for her horse, as she had found it to be a more powerful analgesic, providing more pain relief than any medication she had seen prior. She had tried cannabis herself for various conditions, including surgeries, spinal spurs, and arthritis. She wondered, if it worked for her, could it also work for her horse?

She stated within one hour of ingesting the cannabis, Phoenix had begun to walk, eat, and drink. Ms. Becky Flowers stated in an excerpt, “with cannabis, I don’t worry about potential liver damage as with bute (Phenylbutazone). I also don’t worry about overdosing, as I only give her a small amount. She never appears panicky or disoriented. She’s just her normal, happy Phoenix.”

CBD in Equine Competitions

As horse people ourselves, we understand the concerns that come along with horse life. One of the concerns we hear about using CBD for horses is competition involvement, for those who are involved in barrel racing, shows, and other equine events.

If you are involved in horse competitions, the FEI and United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) declared strict rules regarding any medication prior to any type of event as of September 1, 2019. THC is one of the cannabis-derived products involved in this type of violation. If your horse has been taking cannabinoids, it may be recommended to stop dosage for approximately 10 days prior to the event.

CBD Salves & CBD Oil for Horses

Our Full Spectrum Hemp CBD is extracted from premium, organically grown hemp. Formulated specifically for your equine, using only the highest quality ingredients. Our CBD salves for horses and CBD oil for horses help to reduce inflammation, calm anxiety and restore balance to the equine body and mind.

CBD oil for horses - CBD tinctures on Horse BackOur three CBD tinctures for horses, CALM: CBD Oil for Horses, EASE: CBD Oil for Horses, and HEAL: CBD Oil for Horses contain full spectrum cannabinoid blends and essential oils, formulated to provide your equine friend with the high quality natural remedies they need to reduce inflammation, manage anxiety, and restore balance to their body and mind.

Our three CBD salves for horses, SOOTHE: CBD Salve for Horses, NOURISH: CBD Salve for Horses, and REMEDY: CBD Salve for Horses are designed to provide localized relief for allergies, sweet itch, rain rot, pain and inflammation, as well as promoting healthy cell growth.

Final Thoughts

Angela Ardolino with Horses

The endocannabinoid system is responsible for keeping your horse’s body in balance. If there is some type of imbalance, the compounds from a full spectrum hemp extract, rich in CBD, may assist in triggering the correct response to allow your horse’s body to heal naturally.

When cannabinoids, like CBD, are introduced into the endocannabinoid system, they help to promote balance in our bodies, as well as our dogs, cats, and horses. Particularly those who have some type of ailment or deficiency (including cancer, seizures, anxiety, inflammation, and pain).

Additional research on CBD for animals is being conducted every year, and there are continuous advances in how to best utilize the endocannabinoid system to heal the body naturally. We are coming to understand the endless therapeutic potential of CBD more every day!