Asthma is a disease that causes inflammation of the airways. It can cause breathing difficulties, and in severe cases, it can be life-threatening. Asthma in dogs is the same as asthma in humans. The main cause is an allergic reaction to allergens in the environment.
Unfortunately, it can sometimes be very difficult to identify the allergens that are causing asthma. In many cases, the only way to treat asthma in dogs is with steroids and cortisone. However, the long-term use of steroids and cortisone can cause immune deficiencies. Ultimately, it can worsen asthma and cause other health complications.
Some pet owners who do not want their dogs to be taking synthetic drugs prefer to treat their pets with natural remedies. That has led to a growing interest in the use of CBD to treat asthma in dogs. CBD is non-toxic and it doesn’t cause any serious side effects. It also has well-documented anti-inflammatory properties. Here is a definitive guide to how CBD can be used as a natural alternative treatment for chronic asthma in dogs.
What Is Asthma and How Does It Affect My Dog?
Asthma is a chronic disease that can affect both humans and pets. It affects the airways that carry air to and from the lungs. If a dog has asthma, the walls of the airways become inflamed and swollen. That narrows the airways, making it difficult for the dog to breathe.
Asthma in dogs is very much like asthma in humans. It is an allergic reaction. When the dog is exposed to allergens, it causes inflammation and excessive mucus production. It’s natural for a dog to pant when they are tired or hot. If a dog pants all the time and coughs, though, that could be a sign of asthma.
Asthma in dogs is a chronic disease, so it will be with a dog for life. An asthma attack occurs when the dog is exposed to high levels of an allergen. A severe asthma attack can close the airways to such an extent that it becomes life-threatening. In such cases, the internal organs can become starved of oxygen.
Signs and Symptoms of Asthma in Dogs
Fortunately, the signs of asthma in dogs are noticeably different from natural panting. The first indication that your dog might have asthma is a persistent dry cough. A cough may come on suddenly, or it may develop over time. Asthma can be treated, so it is important that you take your dog to a vet if you suspect that your pet has developed asthma. Here are the most common symptoms of asthma in dogs:
- Breathing difficulties
- Breathing through the mouth
- Dry, hacking cough
- Reluctance to exercise
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
- Pale mucous membranes
- Blue gums
If your dog has a severe asthma attack it can be life-threatening. In a severe attack, the dog will have difficulty breathing and the gums will turn blue. If the gums turn pale or blue, that is a sign that not enough oxygen is getting into the bloodstream. If this occurs, you should get your dog to a vet as soon as possible.
What Are The Causes of Asthma in Dogs?
Asthma in dogs is usually caused by an allergic reaction to an allergen in the environment. There are so many allergens that can trigger an asthma attack that the cause of an attack is often never identified. Some of the common allergens that can trigger asthma in dogs include:
- Cigarette smoke
- Carpet cleaners
- Cleaning products
- Cat litter
- Mold Spores
- Air pollution
- Room fresheners
The above list is by no means exhaustive. There are many more allergens that could cause asthma in dogs. The first step in treating the disease, though, is to try to identify what may have caused an asthma attack. If the allergen can be removed from the dog’s environment, it will stop asthma. If a single cause cannot be identified and removed, there are medications that can be used to manage the symptoms of asthma in dogs.
Natural Treatments for Asthma in Dogs
Asthma in dogs is treated with steroids and cortisone to reduce the inflammation. Antihistamines may also be prescribed to open the airways. There are concerns, though, that the long-term use of these drugs can weaken the immune system.
As there is no cure for asthma and any treatment will have to be ongoing to manage the symptoms, pet owners sometimes prefer more natural solutions. These include herbal remedies to reduce inflammation and boost the immune system. Herbal remedies for asthma include:
Relieves dry coughs and chest infections.
Boosts the immune system and reduces inflammation.
Enhances the immune system and stimulates the regeneration of bronchial cells.
Used as an herbal treatment to treat asthma, coughs, and bronchitis. Inula also has a calming effect.
There are also herbal tinctures available for dogs with asthma. They contain herbs that have anti-inflammatory properties and herbs that ease coughs.
Asthma is essentially an inflammation of the airways brought on by an allergy. Many people have found the anti-inflammatory effect of cannabidiol (CBD) can be very useful in managing canine asthma.
CBD Is a Natural Anti-inflammatory Medicine
Inflammation is one of the body’s natural immune responses. It’s one of the ways that the body protects itself against injuries and pathogens. In diseases like asthma, the body overreacts to allergens and the immune system goes into overdrive. That causes severe inflammation and swelling of the airways. In the case of asthma, the severe inflammation of the airways can be life-threatening.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the compounds that are found in cannabis and hemp that are known as cannabinoids. Cannabinoids interact with the endocannabinoid system in humans and other mammals. The endocannabinoid system is part of what controls the natural balance in the body of mammals, which is known as homeostasis.
Research has shown that when CBD in introduced into the body, it interacts with the CBD receptors in the body. When it does, it helps to rebalance some of the body’s systems, including the immune system. One of the most documented effects of that interaction is the reduction of chronic inflammation.
The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD have been proven in many clinical studies. It has been found to be an effective treatment of the inflammation caused by many diseases, including arthritis, and asthma.
Unlike other drugs used to treat inflammation, CBD is non-toxic, and it does not cause any serious side effects. It is also safe to administer to pets, including dogs with arthritis.
Using CBD for Asthma in Dogs As Treatment
Research is still ongoing into the use of CBD to treat asthma. However, there is now a lot of clinical evidence to support the claims of asthma sufferers who have said that CBD controlled their symptoms.
Studies have shown that CBD has several effects that may be beneficial in the treatment of asthma. CBD reduces inflammation, as mentioned above, so it immediately reduces the symptoms of asthma. Scientists have also found that CBD inhibits the production of Tp and Th2 cytokines. These are hormones that trigger the responses of the immune system. In some studies, it was noted that CBD reduced the excessive production of mucus in asthma patients as well.
The clinical evidence that backs up the anecdotal evidence has led to the conclusion that CBD could be an effective treatment for asthma. Asthma in dogs can be a serious disease, so if your dog does have a severe asthma attack, you should take your pet to a vet as soon as possible. In the long term, though, all the evidence points to CBD being a viable treatment for chronic asthma in dogs.