A 2021 peer-reviewed research study entitled "Evaluation of Oral Supplementation of Cannabidiol (CBD) in Horses" that was published in the Journal of Equine Veterinary Science investigated "the use of hemp-based CBD as a supplement for horses."
The study's authors noted that CBD "has gained popularity within recent years" and that the objective of their study was "to determine an appropriate dosage, CBD clearance from the blood, and to evaluate physiological and behavioral effects of a one-time oral dose of CBD in light-breed horses."
The research involved eight horses (four mares and four geldings) that were "acclimated to stall environment and feeding methods a week before treatment." Study subjects were given CBD that was "reconstituted in olive oil" and "fed on a mg/kg basis."
Feed intake (calculated as a percentage of body weight) "tended to be higher in horses fed the stronger dose and time of initial meal differed."
Horses were given one of two treatments: A low dose (0.3 mg/kg) and a stronger dose (0.6 mg/kg) of the CBD/olive oil mixture. The results of this study were used "to determine a dose amount for a longer duration...trial study of CBD supplementation and feed intake in horses."
As might be expected, the horses that received the stronger dose displayed "higher mean levels of plasma CBD compared with horses receiving the low dose." Feed intake (calculated as a percentage of body weight) "tended to be higher in horses fed the stronger dose and time of initial meal differed."
The CBD molecule
"Overall heart rates tended to be higher in the low dose horses," indicating a potential dose-dependent decrease in anxiety in the equine subjects. "However, all heart rates were within normal resting values throughout the collection period," reported the study.
"A single dose of orally-administered CBD oil did not result in abnormal heart rates or feed intake in horses over a 24-hour period."
The scientists concluded that "a single dose of orally-administered CBD oil, at either 0.3 mg/kg or 0.6 mg/kg, did not result in abnormal heart rates or feed intake in horses over a 24-hour period."
View the original study.