What a Mess of Terminology: What is Cannabis Anyways
It’s completely normal that you’re feeling confused right now. Clearing up misinformation about all things cannabis is my job and I struggled with terminology at first as well. But you’re in good hands, so let’s start with cannabis sativa as it’s the root of the issue — no pun intended.
Both cannabis CBD oil and hemp CBD oil come from different varieties of the Cannabis sativa plant. For the most part, the varieties are chemically similar and they just have different ratios of chemical compounds called cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are the most active substances in cannabis and there are a lot them — at least 100. When ingested, cannabinoids act with different receptors in the body and when activated they produce therapeutic regulation and stabilization. These receptors are found all throughout the body and are normally activated by endocannabinoids that the brain produces.
The brain in all mammals naturally produces endocannabinoids to help repair, stabilize, and correct various organs and systems when they are dealing with heavy stress. Let’s say your pup gets hurt, the brain will produce endocannabinoids that attach receptors in the body that will naturally lower sensitivity to the pain.
So can you use cannabis oil for dog pain? The answer is yes, but you shouldn’t. Don’t worry, I’m about to explain.
Cannabis CBD Oil is Really Marijuana Oil
There are two main varieties of the cannabis sativa plant: marijuana (commonly and incorrectly called cannabis) and hemp. So what the difference? That would be THC or tetrahydrocannabinol.
THC is the most prevalent cannabinoid in marijuana and you can probably already guess why. THC causes marijuana’s high, and if you could take it out of marijuana you wouldn’t be able to get high, but you’d still have all the other cannabinoids that can produce therapeutic effects.
So why does THC cause such an effect and is unlike the other cannabinoids?
THC’s is cannabis’ natural defense mechanism against getting eaten in the wild. Unlike humans, most animals do not like the effects of THC and this keeps cannabis sativa safe in the wild. Well, that is until a pesky human comes around.
Hemp CBD Oil
Humans are weird and clever things. Poor cannabis; first it couldn’t deter humans away from trying to eat it, then the ones it did scare away got clever and bred out the THC.
That’s right, while some like THC, others do not and prefer not to be high when they consume a medicine that is helping them out. Remember, cannabinoids promote natural health systems, but we’ll get into that more later.
Really, it was children who suffered from rare forms of epilepsy, that only marijuana was known to treat, that sparked the idea to take out THC, but leave everything else. This lead to the creation of hemp CBD oil, because hemp only contains micro levels of THC. So little, in fact, that hemp is pretty much legal everywhere because THC is really the target of legalization.
In both of these two oils you’re seeing the term “CBD” or cannabidiol, so what the hell is that? If you guessed the second most prevalent cannabinoid in cannabis that has the most therapeutic effects compared to any other then congrats!
If you know anything about marijuana, you’ve probably have heard that recreational marijuana has high THC and medical marijuana has high CBD. While CBD is non-psychoactive it works incredibly nicely in the body because it “creates” more endocannabinoids for a stronger natural defense system — it will also attach to a few other receptors that can relieve stress and anxiety when activated.
How CBD Oil Works
Let’s say we have a wolf pack. We can have one of two leaders (THC or CBD), and the other wolves (cannabinoids) will support the leader in different ways — for example, one cannabinoid will allow THC and CBD to be easier to absorb in the bloodstream. The way cannabinoids work together to benefit one another is called the entourage effect.
If THC is the leader, he will directly attach to CB1 receptors, which normally only endocannabinoids attach to. This causes a high and some negative side effects, such as anxiety, among other things.
If CBD is the leader, then she will attach to enzymes that break down endocannabinoids before they can fully attach to receptors and this increases the body’s natural defenses — all without causing a high since CBD cannot attach to CB1 receptors.
Now we can have medical marijuana, with THC as the leader and CBD as second in command and this is good because CBD will stifle some of THC’s BS by actually reducing THC’s side effects. That’s why marijuana can make you anxious (too much THC) and also calm your anxiety (CBD’s doing).
Cannabis CBD Oil Vs Hemp CBD Oil
Cannabis CBD oil is a bad term because really it’s marijuana CBD oil — both marijuana and hemp come from the cannabis sativa plant so it’s simply bad to call either cannabis oil.
“Cannabis” CBD oil ill contain notable levels of THC and besides that being potentially illegal where you live, THC is dangerous to dogs in high levels and it will get them high. Dogs are already goofy enough as it is and they don’t need any more help in that department.
Hemp CBD oil, such as the kind you can see here, contains no notable levels of THC and is legally required to stay 0.03% or under. This amount is completely fine, and no known side effects from THC have ever been shown to present themselves whatsoever. Furthermore, since CBD cannot attach to cannabinoid receptors in the body, strangely enough, the side effects of CBD are very very low.
But the rare side effects can happen — most notably by potentially affecting the metabolization of hepatic drugs — so it’s always recommended to talk to your veterinarian before giving your pet CBD oil of any kind. But, by and large, hemp CBD oil has been helping a lot of pet owners give a better and healthier life to their cats and dogs.