Birds are curious little creatures. Whether they’re chirping away at the sunshine or pecking at your fingers for a treat, they’re full of personality. Having a pet bird means you’re always on the lookout for ways to keep the little one healthy. Unlike wild birds, caged birds are limited to their surroundings. They can’t just fly off into the sunset in search of new nuts, seeds, and fruits to snack on.
Which brings us to CBD. CBD and hemp oils for birds provide an easy way to ensure quality nutrition. By contributing good fats and micronutrients, CBD oils have become a popular supplement among bird owners. To learn more about what exactly CBD does, how hemp oils can benefit birds, and where to find the best brands, read on below.
What is CBD oil?
CBD oil comes from the Cannabis sativa plant, and it’s extracted for its wide range of nutritional benefits. While this is the same cannabis known commonly as marijuana, a different version exists – hemp. In order to be legally farmed, hemp cannot contain more than 0.3% THC, the compound that caused a high.
Thus, CBD products for birds (and all animals) are made out of hemp. Hemp is a miraculous plant, used in textiles, construction, and of course, nutrition. Your birds can even eat hemp seeds much like they would any other.
How does CBD work? The Endocannabinoid System in Birds
While its been highlighted in humans, birds, other mammals, fish, and reptiles all contain an endocannabinoid system. Our bodies feature multiple methods to maintain homeostasis. Our endocrine system operates off of feedback loops to tilt the scales when things start getting extreme. Our nervous system constantly emits signals to upregulate or downregulate bodily processes. And now, we know the endocannabinoid system does the same.
Endocannabinoids are internal compounds similar in structure to the same cannabinoids found in plants (like CBD). CB1 and CB2 receptors bind to these cannabinoids to start anti-inflammatory processes, neuronal regulation, appetite, and more. Research on this system in still in the early stages, however, due to its recent discovery and the taboo surrounding cannabis. However, we do know it’s a critical part of regular health in humans and birds alike.
Is CBD Oil Safe For Birds?
One of the best parts of CBD is the lack of known side effects. CBD oils act like any other dietary supplement, especially due to their high omega-3 content. Of course, as with anything, you should always proceed with caution. Each bird is an individual, and every bird will respond differently. Check with a veterinarian about appropriate dosing methods for your specific pet before beginning regular use.
Hemp seeds are nuts already found in the environment that birds take well to. High in fat and fiber, birds love eating these little seeds if available in the wild. However, captive birds might not have access to the same variety of nutrients. To facilitate a balanced diet, make sure you’re combining regular pellets with fruits, vegetables, and the occasional seed variety as a nice treat. You can also add CBD oil droplets to their food to provide fats and target the endocannabinoid system in particular.
With what issues can CBD help? – Why to give your bird CBD
CBD fights joint pain, protects against body-wide inflammation, and provides critical nutrients to aging avians. The CBD and fat content in hemp is also a great way to fortify the immune system. If your bird could use a little extra help, try CBD for the following benefits.
CBD fights joint pain
Even though they’re much smaller than us, birds still suffer from aches and pains. Whether you have a parrot, cockatoo, or macaw, CBD modulates pain and swelling. Research shows that CBD targets receptors within the body to limit pain perception and start downstream signalling of relief. Avian pain often goes undertreated due to risk of side effects and cost. Therefore, CBD provides a promising solution to help your bird get back to full health.
CBD helps your bird’s immune system
By managing inflammation and providing antioxidants, hemp oils protect the immune system. As consistent, chronic inflammation is associated with infection, birds lacking in proper nutrition may be at a higher risk of disease. Common diseases include parrot fever, proventricular dilatation disease, and psittacine beak and feather disease. While nothing replaces veterinary intervention, regular CBD treatment can help with some of the nervous, digestive, and skin conditions associated with these diseases.
Supports a healthy lifestyle in senior birds
Birds accompany us through all stages of life. With proper nutrition and care, parrots, macaws, and cockatoos can live for 20 years or more. As your bird grows old alongside you, treat it with the same care as you would any aging being. Older birds require specific dietary interventions as the natural aging process slows things down.
For cognitive health, CBD elevates the potential of dopamine, GABA, and serotonin, neurotransmitters involved in learning, motivation, and mood. Birds can get depressed too. In addition to providing plenty of environmental stimulation and activity, adding CBD oil treats memory and motivational decline as birds age.
Aging birds also require more omega-3 fats than most. Fatty acids help build immune cells and lubricate joints – two common health concerns in older animals. High omega-3 to omega-6 ratios in fats provide anti-inflammatory benefits, and hemp oils have an ideal 3:1 ratio. Regular administration of CBD and hemp oils can help your bird live a long, fulfilling life.
What’s the correct CBD dose for birds?
Make sure to check with your bird’s vet to get an exact amount, as individual cases vary. However, most hemp oils designed for birds suggest one drop, twice daily for every 500 grams of weight. To learn more about CBD dosing online, here’s a video featuring information from a licensed veterinarian.
The Best CBD Products For Birds
With all the love you have, you wouldn’t want to give your bird anything less than the best. That’s why we recommend Hempwell, one of the only products designed specifically for pets. Although they started in products for pet owners, a little cat named Ginger inspired the company to dive fully into pet products. They noticed that nothing existed to the rigorous standards they (and all of us) set for their own pets. A rare find, they make three different CBD products just for birds – regular hemp, calm bird, and bird relief. Whatever your friendly flier needs, Hempwell is happy to provide.
With ingredients that naturally cultivate your bird’s health, CBD oils offer multiple benefits with little to no side effects. Talk to your veterinarian today about starting CBD for your bird.