Does your cat have arthritis or joint problems?
If so, you’re probably wondering whether CBD can offer pain relief.
And I’ve got some some great news for you:
CBD has received a lot of attention as a potent, natural anti-inflammatory and painkiller.
Below I’ll explain how CBD can help cats with arthritis and pain from inflammation, and even recommend some brands of CBD pet products made specifically to treat this condition.
Plus I’ll highlight a few cats just like yours who are seeing amazing results!
What is Feline Arthritis?
Arthritis is a condition that causes chronic inflammation and pain in the joints.
It is caused by the degeneration of cartilage, which causes the bones in the affected joint to rub against each other.
This causes inflammation and chronic pain in the affected joints and will affect a cat’s ability to run, jump, or even walk.
Many people, even vets, think that feline arthritis isn’t very common.
However, studies have shown that up to 60% of cats over the age of 6 have arthritis in at least 1 joint.
The same research also showed that cats over 14 years old have a 80% chance of dealing with arthritis.
Here's the big problem:
Most cats won’t show signs of arthritis until the pain and inflammation in their joints is really bad, which might be why so many people think feline arthritis isn't common.
What Causes Arthritis in Cats?
There are a variety of factors that can cause arthritis in cats.
The most common is old age, as joints naturally degrade over time, but injury or trauma to a particular joint can also cause arthritis.
Cats that are overweight are also more likely to develop arthritis as their excess weight puts extra pressure on the joints.
Congenital abnormalities affecting the joints will usually also lead to arthritis.
Finally, severe infections from bacteria, viruses, or fungi can also cause arthritis in cats.
What Symptoms Does Feline Arthritis Produce?
Some symptoms of arthritis in cats include:
- Decreased activity
- Sleeping more than usual
- Struggling to find a comfortable position to sleep in
- Whining or growling when being petted or picked up
- Decreased appetite
- Weight loss
- Lame or stiffness in the affected joint or limb
However, like I mentioned earlier, it’s common for cats with arthritis to show no signs until their symptoms are really pronounced.
How is Feline Arthritis Normally Treated?
There is no cure for arthritis.
Hence, vets usually focus on minimizing your cat's symptoms and improving their quality of life.
They’ll usually do so by giving your cat prescription pain medications, such as Rimadyl, Deramaxx, and Novox, which are all non-steroidal anti-inflammatories.
However, they may also suggest opioids or corticosteroids, as they provide stronger relief from chronic pain and inflammation.
Cats can be very sensitive to prescription drugs, so your vet may want to monitor your cat's response to a medication when they first prescribe it.
Keep in mind that some arthritis medications can also produce side effects.
Most are mild (such as loss of appetite, nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, or lethargy), but some might be more serious, possibly affecting the GI tract, kidneys, liver, or other organs.
If your cat is overweight, your vet will also recommend they lose weight and may prescribe specific food to help with that.
They might also suggest using specific supplements or topical products to relieve your cats symptoms.
Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, for example, are often said to repair damaged cartilage and promote joint health.
Why CBD is an Amazing Natural Alternative to Arthritis Medications
If your cat suffers from arthritis and chronic joint pain, I highly recommend giving CBD a try.
CBD supplements have become really popular over recent years, especially among patients dealing with pain and inflammation.
That’s because CBD is a both a powerful painkiller and anti-inflammatory.
Below I’ll look a bit more at the science behind how CBD helps fight pain and inflammation, and what that means for your cat.
How CBD Fights Inflammation:
As I mentioned earlier, inflammation is a key characteristic of arthritis.
As the cartilage in the affected joints wears down, it no longer cushions and protect the ends of bones.
As a result, the bones in the affected joint start rubbing and grinding against each other.
This causes the joint to become inflamed and tender, and leads to chronic pain.
Overtime, this chronic inflammation only furthers the degeneration of the joint.
Luckily, CBD can help bring down the very inflammation that arthritis causes.
When CBD enter the body, it interacts with the Endocannabinoid System (or ECS).
The ECS is heavily involved in many different bodily processes and plays a key role in triggering anti-inflammatory responses.
Researchers currently believe that CBD helps trigger the body’s natural anti-inflammatory responses by stimulating the cannabinoid receptors that make up the ECS.
How it does so isn’t really clear.
The ECS is made up of 2 kinds of receptors; CB1 and CB2, which are designed to interact with anandamide and 2-AG (2 cannabinoids naturally produced by the body).
CBD doesn’t actually fit into either receptor, but still manages to stimulate ECS activity somehow.
Regardless, while scientists might not know exactly how it works, there’s plenty of research to prove CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties.
Studies show that CBD can help bring down inflammation in various parts of the body, including the intestines, stomach, and even in the brain.
In one of my latest articles, for example, I looked at a variety of studies that showed how CBD helps reduce inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract caused by Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
Studies also show that CBD can actively fight the progression of arthritis.
In 2000, researchers tested CBD on rodents with arthritis.
The researchers first induced arthritis in the rats’ joints using collagen, then waited until the animals started presenting symptoms.
They then administered CBD either orally or via intraperitoneal injection.
The study concluded that CBD helped block the progression of arthritis and protected the joints against severe damage from chronic inflammation.
More recently, a 2016 study by the University of Kentucky also tested the efficacy of transdermal CBD patches on rats with arthritis.
Using the patches over 4 days, the study found CBD helped reduced pain in the animals and also reduced swelling and inflammation in the treated areas.
CBD is a Natural Painkiller
Besides its anti-inflammatory properties, CBD is also renowned for being a great painkiller.
In fact, studies show that CBD and other cannabinoids can help reduce both physical and neuropathic pain.
This is great news for cats with arthritis or other joint issues, as they suffer from very intense, chronic pain that has a big impact on their overall quality of life.
The European Journal of Rheumatology recently published an in-depth article exploring the role of the endocannabinoid system in managing the pain associated with rheumatic diseases like arthritis.
The article explains that arthritic pain is both nociceptive (caused by damage to body tissue) and neuropathic (caused by nerve damage).
It also shows that CBD has been found to act on some of the key channels involved in mediating both nociceptive and neuropathic pain.
That’s precisely what makes it such an interesting alternative to regular arthritis treatment.
While I don’t have any cats, I’ve actually used CBD supplements to treat pain and inflammation in my dog.
Rosie was diagnosed with hip dysplasia, a condition which caused her a lot of grief as she got older.
Using a variety of CBD supplements (some of which I’ll mention later on in this article), I was able to bring down the inflammation and pain in Rosie’s hip.
This had a profound effect on her and helped her stay active and enjoy an improved quality of life.
And keep this in mind:
There seems to be much more information about the benefits of CBD for dogs, as opposed to cats. But this is mainly just a "marketing" issue. Everything CBD does for dogs, it also does for cats!
Are Other Pet Owners Using CBD to Treat Cats With Pain?
If you’re after some social proof from other cat owners who use CBD to treat arthritis and inflammation, here it is:
First we have Zoey.
Zoey is a 12 year-old cat who has been using CBD for years after she suffered an accident that tore her Achilles tendon.
The injury left her with a bad limp and arthritis which caused her a lot of pain.
Her vet prescribed medications to help Zoey with her symptoms, but they just left her feeling lethargic and drowsy.
Luckily, her owners soon discovered CBD, which helped reduce Zoey’s symptoms and even allowed her to give up her prescription medication!
Next we have Bogie.
Bogie is another cat who used CBD to manage a wide variety of health problems.
Left abandoned at a shelter, his new owners adopted Bogie and found out he had severe arthritis, among many other issues.
Bogie was in a lot of pain, and his owners even had to carry him up and down the stairs and lift him into the litter box.
Within a few weeks of starting him on CBD, however, Bogie’s owners saw a huge improvement in his condition.
“Within two weeks he was running up and down the stairs, playing and purring up a storm. His coat became silky smooth and his eyes clear,” they wrote.
Lastly we have Princess.
She's 23 years old and relies on CBD for her arthritis pain.
Ever since she started using CBD, Princess has been in a lot less pain (she used to cry out in pain from her condition) and is also more active.
Her owner notices a big difference when she uses CBD with Princess.
These 3 cats have seen greats results from a CBD brand called Canna-Pet. I've personally used this brand on my dogs, and also saw good results. You can find their cat specific products here: www.Canna-Pet.com
What CBD Products are Best for Cats With Pain?
If your cat suffers from arthritis, inflammation, or any kind of pain, I highly recommend trying CBD.
There are currently 2 CBD pet brands I recommended specifically for cat owners.
The first is HolistaPet, which makes CBD oil, capsules, and treats specifically designed for cats.
When treating arthritis, I’d recommend HolistaPet’s CBD Pet Tincture as I consider it the best option for treating chronic conditions like arthritis.
If possible, administer the oil directly into your cat’s mouth.
If not, you can mix the oil into their food or water.
If you think your cat will struggle to take the oil, consider trying HolistaPet’s CBD Cat Treats instead, or consider getting both.
Cats really seem to love these treats, and they make dosing really easy, as each treat contains exactly 2mg of CBD.
As of right now, HolistPet is the only brand which offers these convenient treats!
Alternatively, another brand of CBD I recommend for cat owners is Canna-Pet.
I’ve actually used this brand with my dogs.
When using Canna-Pet, I recommend starting with the Advanced Formula Capsules for Cats.
But, if your cat has very pronounced symptoms, you may want to try Canna-Pet’s Advanced MaxHemp Capsules for extra relief.