Although it’s still new to the pet industry, CBD oil for dogs has been quickly gaining traction. While we at RAWZ do not give medical advice, we want to share what we’ve learned about CBD oil for dogs. We recommend consulting your veterinarian before giving your dog CBD oil. This post will focus on CBD, how it’s used with our canine companions, and some other considerations before incorporating it into your pet’s wellness routine.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is derived from the cannabis or hemp plant and is one of many cannabinoid compounds. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is another well-known cannabinoid, famous for its psychoactive effects. CBD oil does not contain THC or mimic its psychotropic properties. It’s important to note that CBD is not legal federally, but many states have legalized CBD oil for both humans and animals.
How Does CBD Oil Affect Dogs?
CBD oil for dogs mimics the body’s natural endocannabinoids, which regulate the nervous system, helping the system return to homeostasis. Dog owners have reported seeing improvement in anxiety, pain, arthritis, cancer, and other ailments. While there has been little scientific research on how CBD specifically benefits dogs, pet owners experiences have been overwhelmingly positive.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) notes that it is important to watch for a buildup of any substance to harmful levels with changes to a dog’s intake, particularly with drug treatment or supplements. The AKC recommends that pet parents closely observe their pets for any potential side effects.
"Generally speaking, the science supporting CBD use in veterinary medicine is lacking. There is abundant anecdotal evidence, but very few, if any, well-executed research studies.” Dr. Diane Brown, chief executive officer of AKC Canine Health Foundation.
Dog Health Problems CBD Oil Can Treat
CBD oil for dogs has been shown to aid in:
- Providing pain relief and improved quality of life for dogs with arthritis
- Calming seizure activity
- Reducing anxiety, which results in improved behavior
- Soothing skin itchiness and allergies
When used in conjunction with chemotherapy, CBD oil for dogs with cancer can aid in fewer adverse side effects, and slow the growth of cancer cells. CBD oil can also reduce pain and inflammation, and improve quality of life.
Potential Side Effects of CBD Oil in Dogs
The most common side effects of CBD oil in dogs include dry mouth, diarrhea, lethargy, drowsiness, inhibited liver enzymes, and upset stomach. Although uncommon, dog CBD oil can trigger allergic reactions. Side effects of CBD oil in dogs generally clear up within a few days. Summed up by the World Health Organization, “CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile.” A simple way to reduce the chance of side effects is to make sure you give your pup the right dosage.
"Data that looks at more empirical evidence and can point to specific interactions within an animal’s endocannabinoid system would be very helpful[...] looking at cannabis’s interactions with other ingredients in the animal’s diet and the safety of consumption are areas where we will hopefully begin to see further research.” Hillary Brown, director of research and development, SōRSE Technology.
How to Choose a CBD Oil for Your Dog: Key Considerations
If you and your canine companion’s health team decide to incorporate CBD oil into your dog’s regimen, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Source: Is the product organic or not? If not, is it free of pesticides and solvents?
- The product’s state: Are you looking for a CBD oil or a CBD-infused treat? While this is a personal preference, it’s easiest to control the dosage of CBD in a liquid form.
- Certified: Is the product supported by industry sources, such as the National Animal Supplement Council (NASC)?
- Testing: Has the product been tested? A quality product should display testing results on its website.
- Brand: Since CBD is a relatively new health supplement for dogs, it is best to go with established brands or those that have been extensively tested.
Best CBD Oil for Dogs: Top Products on The Market
Since we at RAWZ are focused on pet health through minimally processed food, we believe it’s best to leave the identification of beneficial CBD-based to the experts. The online database, Retrievist, a partner of the AKC, has an extensive review of the best CBD oil alternatives for dogs, specifically hemp oil.
We’ve gleaned a few of the top CBD products for dogs from our research. Remember, it’s always best to consult a veterinarian before starting any supplements for your dog.
All of Honest Paws’ products are made in the USA and come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Their products address various health concerns from reducing anxiety, increasing mobility, and soothing sore muscles. Honest Paws comes in a variety of applications, such as tinctures, treats, CBD-infused peanut butter and balms.
CBDfx has a variety of products for humans and animals. They offer pet products for anxiety, stress and mobility in tinctures, treats and a balm. CBDfx’s products are third-party tested and solvent- and cruelty-free. Products come with a 60-day money-back guarantee.
HolistaPet’s CBD pet products are cruelty-free, non-GMO and vegan. Their CBD oil for dogs includes treats, chews and shampoos. HolistaPet’s treats also have additional beneficial ingredients such as turmeric powder or Boswellia. All products have a 30-day money-back guarantee.
FAQs About CBD Oil & Dogs
While it’s always advisable to consult your veterinarian before incorporating any supplement into your dogs’ health routine, here are a few common questions:
Q: How much should I give my dog?
A: Individual dogs will have varying sensitivity to the effects of CBD, but a general rule is to start at a low dose and work your way up. According to Canine Journal, “a safe rule of thumb is 0.2mg of CBD per pound. So, if your dog weighs 25 pounds, you’ll give him 5mg of CBD.”
Q: Is CBD oil legal for dogs?
A: Like most questions concerning CBD legality, the answer is not black or white. Every state has laws around CBD and hemp oil. CBD for humans and animals is regulated differently.
Q: Is CBD oil for dogs safe?
A: The overwhelming experience of dog parents shows CBD to be safe for use with dogs. One thing to note is the appearance of raised alkaline phosphatase (ALP) levels in the bloodwork of dogs given CBD. The scientific consensus is unclear on whether this signifies liver damage or is just the result of skewed test results.
Remember, products containing THC are not safe for pets.
Q: Does CBD oil for dogs work?
A: Although the effectiveness of CBD as a treatment for dogs’ ailments is under-researched, it is expected that increased public interest will drive further study. Despite being forbidden from prescribing CBD products, a veterinarian can discuss products, potential risks, and benefits.
CBD oil for dogs certainly shows promise in improving many canine health concerns and may be worthy of consideration. As with any new addition to a pet’s diet, we encourage you to consult your vet before giving your dog any CBD products. We all want what’s best for our dogs, which includes feeding them a minimally-processed, high-protein food like RAWZ.