Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychotropic phytocannabinoid of the plant Cannabis sativa L. CBD is increasingly being explored as an alternative to conventional therapies to treat health disorders in dogs and cats. Mechanisms of action of CBD have been investigated mostly in rodents and in vitro and include modulation of CB1, CB2, 5-HT, GPR, and opioid receptors. In companion animals, CBD appears to have good bioavailability and safety profile with few side effects at physiological doses. Some dog studies have found CBD to improve clinical signs associated with osteoarthritis, pruritus, and epilepsy. However, further studies are needed to conclude a therapeutic action of CBD for each of these conditions, as well as for decreasing anxiety and aggression in dogs and cats. Herein, we summarize the available scientific evidence associated with the mechanisms of action of CBD, including pharmacokinetics, safety, regulation, and efficacy in ameliorating various health conditions in dogs and cats.
Keywords: anxiolytic; epilepsy; inflammation; pharmacokinetics; regulatory.