CBD has been growing in popularity in the health world, and many wonder if it's safe for dogs as well. We cover the benefits of CBD & how to safely give CBD to your dog. You have a puppy and you want your fur baby to have a long, healthy and happy life. Yes, CBD can do that. Find out when you can start here.
Is CBD Safe for Dogs?
These days, it can seem as though there’s a new health trend popping up every day. One of the latest hot topics is that of CBD – otherwise known as cannabidiol.
From oils to edibles to lotions, CBD comes in many forms. This product is used to impart a feeling of relaxation and calm without the “high” felt from THC, which is the psychoactive compound found in marijuana.
You may be wondering – if I can receive these benefits, can the same be said for my pet? In this article, we’ll cover what CBD is, the benefits for dogs, and how to safely give CBD to your dog if you choose.
What Is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring compound found in the hemp (cannabis) plant.
Dating back to the 3rd century , cannabis was known for its healing properties and was used to treat a variety of illnesses and ailments like gout, malaria and cognition troubles.
Fast forward to modern day, the two most studied compounds of the cannabis plant are CBD (cannabidiol), and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). These two compounds are similar, with one key difference. THC is responsible for the ‘high’ that many people associate with marijuana. CBD on the other hand, can provide many benefits for the person (or pup) using it – without the intoxicating feeling.
Why Give Your Dog CBD?
Many dog-parents out there swear by CBD. And there are plenty of reasons for it. The most common being that as dogs age, many will develop aches, pains and anxiety (as humans do). There are plenty of medications that can be prescribed for these conditions, but many people find that they lose their effectiveness over time.
This is where CBD oil starts to become a larger, stand-out player.
CBD oil can help reduce anxiety in dogs – especially separation anxiety or a noise phobia (think thunderstorms or fireworks). It can also help reduce pain and inflammation – giving a dog suffering from arthritis a better quality of life.
If you choose to give your dog CBD in an edible oil form, it can begin to work in as quickly as 5-20 minutes after it’s administered. For anxious pooches, research has suggested that its efficacy improves if given over a period of time rather than all at once.
Benefits of CBD
Like we do, our pets have an endocannabinoid system that allows CBD to have an effect. This system allows the CBD compound of the cannabis plant to work its magic for our furry friends, just like it would for us.
Because of our similar endocannabinoid systems, many researchers are led to believe that dogs can experience most (if not all) of the same benefits that CBD provides for humans.
Some of the benefits of CBD for dogs are said to be:
- Decreases stress and helps with anxiety : It has been reported that giving your pet CBD oil can reduce stress associated with social/separation anxiety .
- Help to improve appetite : CBD triggers receptors in the brain that stimulate your pup’s appetite; it can help to decrease symptoms of nausea and can relax the central nervous system, making eating easier on your pup’s digestive tract if they’re feeling unwell.
- Decrease pain : Especially when it comes to inflammation and pain caused by auto-immune diseases like arthritis.
- Can prevent epilepsy or seizure episodes : In a recent study , 89% of dogs had fewer seizures when given CBD oil.
- Can help soothe skin conditions : CBD helps to repair the skin barrier, so that bacteria and allergens have less of an effect on your pooch.
- Helps with noise phobias : CBD products can help keep your pup calm during a thunderstorm or a night of fireworks.
Though there isn’t enough research to support being safer than traditional medicine, one key selling point for many people is that CBD has little to no negative side effects for dogs. Many show improvement with their conditions in as little as a few weeks.
Is CBD Safe for Dogs?
Yes, CBD is safe for dogs. Research from the WHO shows there is no abuse or dependence potential for animals using CBD, and determined that CBD may be a useful treatment for a number of medical conditions from anxiety to nausea.
However, it’s important to note that there still isn’t a high amount of scientific evidence yet to support its exact benefits for your furry friend. The few recent studies that have been conducted returned encouraging results – but it’s not yet a definitive answer.
As for veterinarians, you might find that many that are split in their recommendations. The primary reason for this is that it’s simply too early to tell whether or not CBD is an effective supplement for your pup.
“We haven’t found anything that’s super alarming about CBD. But on the flip side, we still know very little about it and it’s really important for owners to know that and use it with caution until we have more information.”
– Stephanie McGrath, neurologist and assistant professor at Colorado State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
One word of caution: because it appears to be metabolized in the liver – similarly to humans – some vets caution against giving CBD to dogs with known liver issues.
If you decide to give your dog CBD, it’s important to know how much you should give. Like any new health supplement, food or medication, introduce it slowly. If needed, you can carefully increase the dosage.
See below for a handy CBD serving size chart for your dog:
It’s certainly up to you to choose how frequently to dose your dog with CBD. There are some recommendations out there advocating for once per day, others push for every 8 hours. A large part of the dosage decision depends on the symptoms that your pup is dealing with and their severity.
A good rule to follow is that your dog should experience some relief from their symptoms. Start small, and work up to a larger dose if needed.
Best CBD Products for Your Pup
We recommend our own Full Spectrum CBD Tincture for Dogs. We’re invested in providing our dogs with holistic ways to support their best health, whether that’s through balanced raw dog food, quality CBD, or a combination of the two. Our CBD tincture is derived from organically grown hemp in Minnesota, without GMOs, and has been 3rd party tested.
But if you choose to look elsewhere, it’s important to look for a few key things from a CBD supplier:
- Third-party testing. Since CBD products are not currently regulated by the FDA, you should look for information revealing the products have been tested by a third party. This means that a lab has verified the claims made on the packaging. You should find this information on the company’s website. For instance, you may see a seal of approval from the U.S. Hemp Authority, which means that company’s products meet its stringent standards of have passed a third-party audit.
- What ingredients are in it? On the product packaging and/or website, you should find a full list of ingredients in the CBD product. Make sure to consider all the ingredients in the product, and check with your vet before giving to your dog.
- Is it organic? Consuming organic helps you avoid the use of most synthetic pesticides found in conventional agriculture. Look at the ingredient list to see if they’re using organic.
- Where is the cannabis grown? Look for products grown in the U.S. since they are subject to industrial hemp regulations.
Now that you know what to look for in a supplier, you can choose the medium you want to give your dog CBD.
CBD comes in many of the same forms for pets as they do for humans. For example, you can feed:
- Oils that can be taken orally or mixed in with food
- CBD edibles in the form of chewable treats or filled capsules
- Topical creams or ointments used on the skin
It’s a good idea to speak with your vet or trusted pet-care provider to see if they have recommendations for products that may work for your pup.
Finally, if you can, try and find a local provider or pet supply shop that carries CBD products that are within your budget. You should always do your research to determine the right product type or amount administered for your pet. It may take a few tries to find what works best – but your pup will certainly thank you for it.
Can Puppies Have CBD?
Pet owners often ask the question, “Can puppies have CBD?” The answer is yes, but age does matter when first administering CBD to a fur baby. The following information will help all dog owners who would like to start their puppy (under one year of age) on CBD or hemp for a long life of health and happiness.
Is It Safe to Give Puppies CBD?
Yes, it is safe to give puppies CBD as long as they are at least 8 weeks old. Since CBD is natural, puppies can tolerate it well once they have developed enough to benefit from it.
What Age Can a Puppy Have CBD?
Experts say that 8 weeks old is when puppies can start to use CBD. Before 8 weeks of age, organs are not yet developed, so they are not ready to handle supplementation of any kind.
What About Hemp? Is Hemp Okay for Puppies?
Hemp oil is considered safe for puppies at the same age as pet CBD oil – 8 weeks of age.
Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil – Which Is Better for Puppies?
Hemp oil is made from the seeds of the Cannabis sativa plant or hemp plant, which is why some people call it hemp seed oil. CBD oil is made from the entire cannabis plant.
Hemp oil has little to no THC in it while CBD oil has a small amount of THC. In both oils, there isn’t enough THC to cause a psychoactive experience. In other words, your puppy will not experience a “high” when receiving hemp oil or CBD oil.
Different Types of CBD Oil
When starting a puppy on CBD oil, it’s important to know the difference between the types before choosing one for your pup.
Full Spectrum CBD Oil – This type of CBD has all of the components of the cannabis plant. It has less than 0.3 percent of THC, which again, will not cause any ill effects.
Broad Spectrum CBD – This type of CBD contains all the components of the cannabis plant like full spectrum CBD but does not contain any THC.
CBD Isolate – This is pure CBD and does not contain any other compounds from the cannabis plant.
Pet CBD Oil vs. Human CBD Oil
Humans and dogs have an endocannabinoid system (ECS), which interacts with the cannabinoids in CBD oil. The ECS is a vital biological system involved in general health, so ensuring the ECS functions optimally is important.
CBD oil marketed to humans is no different than those labeled pet CBD oil. The way they are manufactured is exactly the same. However, pet CBD oil has carrier oil that further improves the health of our beautiful canines. For instance, it may include cod liver oil, MCT oil and olive oil. The other difference between pet CBD oil and human CBD oil is that it may be flavored in a way that our furry friend will take it easier, such as flavored with bacon or peanut butter.
When shopping for CBD products for your puppy, you can use the CBD oil tincture but you may find it easier or more fun to give your pup CBD dog treats.
CBD Oil Dosage for Puppies
CBD dosage has to do with the weight of your puppy. The starting dog’s weight is 10 pounds, so if your puppy at 8 weeks old isn’t 10 pounds, simply cut the dosage in have for 5 pounds.
The starting CBD dosage for a dog’s weight of 10 pounds is 1mg. After the puppy has been taking 1mg for a few days, it’s okay to increase it to 2mg and then 3mg with that being the top CBD dose for your puppy. High levels of CBD will not increase its benefits, so do not overdose your puppy on CBD.
The chart below can help dog owners know how much to give their puppies as they grow:
The Health Benefits of CBD Products on Puppies
Since you’re interested in knowing if puppies can have CBD, it’s likely you already know the health benefits of CBD but let’s review.
- Lowers Anxiety
- Relieves Pain
- Reduces Risk of Cancer
- Immune System Support
- Cardiovascular System Support
- Gastrointestinal Support
- Nervous System Support
- Reduced Risk of Seizures and Convulsions
- Reduced Joint Pain
As you can see above, CBD oil can calm an anxious puppy and set the pup up for a lifetime of health.
CBD Pet Products
The CBD pet products industry has exploded to cater to the canines of the world. There are many choices when it comes to dog products that contain hemp plant oil or CBD oil.
Dog Treats – Dog CBD treats are the most popular among pet owners. They are made to be delicious and serve two purposes – rewarding your pup and providing support to the endocannabinoid system, which improves your dog’s health.
CBD Tincture – This comes in a dropper. Some dog owners have an easy time dropping the dose into the dog’s mouth, while others feel placing it on a treat, peanut butter, or food is easier. The only consideration when placing the drop(s) of CBD on food is that the dog may not consume all of it, especially in the case of a puppy. Just as long as you know your pup will eat all of the food, this way to administer CBD should work well.
The benefit of using tincture is that you can add any carrier oil you would like, such as olive oil, MCT oil, or fish oil. This gives dog owners much more flexibility in administering it.
Capsules – Capsules with Hemp – CBD oil is available and may be the best choice for some puppies. The capsules (like CBD dog treats) have the dosage as marked on the container, so dosing is brainless.
The Best CBD Oil
The best CBD oil you can purchase for a puppy is non-GMO broad-spectrum CBD. Non-GMO is not genetically modified, so it’s in its purest form. You can be confident that you’re receiving the best hemp or CBD oil when you choose non-GMO.
CBD Brands D.O.G. Recommends
We know you have many decisions to make as a proud puppy owner. At Dog Ownership Guide, we want to make sure you receive the very best in dog products. Below are the CBD brands we recommend.