Zookeepers Administer CBD Oil to Help Elephants Cope With Stress

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Image: ylq / Shutterstock.com

WARSAW, Poland – Two African elephants, Fredzia and Buba, have been prescribed CBD oil to help them mellow out. While they say an elephant never forgets, zoo workers at the Warsaw Zoological Garden in Warsaw, Poland, are hoping CBD will help the elephants forget their stress.

“We have started a project during which we will check the effect of CBD hemp oils on the mood of our animals,” the zoo announced.

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The herd at Warsaw Zoo seems to be struggling with the loss of one of its members.

“To begin with, the program included Fredzia the elephant, who after the recent death of Erna (the former head of the elephant herd) was a bit stressed and had a bit of trouble finding her position in the herd,” the zoo said.

For elephants, group dynamics are an important part of their daily lives.

“Elephants are extremely intelligent animals with very complicated brains,” Warsaw Zoo zookeeper Patryk Pyciński said. “They’re very social animals that are interdependent on each other and as a group, they create a complicated organism.”

Pyciński said elephants often struggle with the loss of a member for months or even years.

Warsaw Zoo veterinarian Agnieszka Czujkowska is overseeing the CBD initiative and said it could take several months to determine if the CBD is working. Czujkowska has already administered CBD to dogs and horses.

The experiment could help other veterinarians and zookeepers. Because elephants are socially complex, conflict and stress can often arise among members of a herd.

“We would like to see how CBD oil—hemp flower extract—affects elephants. Like most zoos we do research [and] we monitor the level of stress hormones. Thanks to this we will know if the substances [will] help the elephants,” Czujkowska said.

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