In the world of natural health, CBD is a major contender. As more people are beginning to realize the health benefits of CBD products, there is a discussion about using CBD for dogs and other pets. In fact, many individuals claim that CBD has helped their dogs overcome medical issues. But others question whether or not CBD is safe for dogs.

What is CBD?

Although some people associate CBD with marijuana and drug use, that belief is far from the truth. Although CBD can be found in the cannabis plant, it is not the same as marijuana. Rather, it’s a component of the cannabis or hemp plant. 

There are various ways in which scientists can extract CBD as an oil from cannabis, and some of those methods remove all traces of THC. Because THC is the compound associated with the high that comes from marijuana, eliminating it from CBD results in a substance that has no mind-altering effects. 

While CBD without THC won’t get your dog high, it will accomplish other goals. CBD is renowned for its medicinal properties. As an anti-inflammatory, some pet owners believe it can improve arthritis, pain, and other issues caused by inflammation. It’s a powerful antioxidant and users have seen it reduce stress and anxiety in pets and humans alike. In senior dogs, CBD can be a powerful tool against common dog diseases.

Is It Legal for Pups?

The laws regarding medical marijuana are murky. Fortunately, medical marijuana laws do not apply to CBD products. It’s federally legal for you to buy pure CBD and use it on your dogs.

That said, there is one thing you should know. Some CBD products contain THC. Before you buy a CBD product for your dog, you should ensure that it contains no THC. This means only purchasing your CBD from reputable companies and buying products that are third-party lab tested. 

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How to Use CBD for Your Dog

As with any product, CBD is only safe for dogs when used properly. First, this requires you to use a pet-friendly formula. Today, you can find various forms of CBD on the market. You don’t want to serve a CBD gummy to your pup, as the sugar and other ingredients can cause issues.

When you shop for CBD, look for items made specifically for dogs or buy CBD oil. As previously mentioned, you should only buy CBD that contains zero or only trace amounts of CBD.

Once you find the right CBD, you need to get the dosing correct. Start with a low dose and work your way up until you see the desired effects. With a little trial and error, you’ll find the perfect CBD dosing. The ideal amount varies depending on the ailment, the size of your dog, and the manufacturer’s instructions for the CBD.

Treating the Right Ailments

While the medicinal powers of CBD are impressive, the compound isn’t a cure-all. Before you decide to try CBD on your pet, you should make sure your dog has ailments that can be treated with CBD.

One of the most common uses of CBD oil for pets is to relieve symptoms of pain and anxiety. Although some pet owners use medications to treat those issues, pharmaceuticals can lose efficacy over time. They also may come with undesirable side effects. As a natural alternative to pain and anxiety medications, CBD comes with little to no side effects.

Dogs who are prone to seizures may also benefit from CBD. According to one study, 89% of seizure-prone dogs treated with CBD experienced a reduction in seizures. For dogs who are not responsive to phenobarbital or for those who have side effects from the medication, CBD is a viable option.

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Is CBD Really Safe for Dogs?

Because CBD is a relatively new treatment, there are not as many studies on it as there are on other alternative treatments. There are very few clinical studies on the effectiveness of CBD in humans, and even fewer done on how effective it actually is in dogs.

Don’t let the lack of research scare you, though. The evidence that does exist shows CBD is safe for dogs. CBD is a natural compound with known medicinal effects. If you know what type of products to buy for your dog, you don’t need to be concerned about safety. To be as safe as possible, speak to your veterinarian before trying CBD on your dog. They will be able to advise you on how to safely administer the CBD. 

Additionally, do not use CBD in lieu of medical attention. Serious issues require the expertise of a veterinarian. Let an expert diagnose your dog, then look into CBD as a treatment option.

The biggest risk of using CBD on pets is the lack of regulation in the CBD industry. However, you don’t need to take a risk. When you work with a company that tests their CBD pet products in a lab, you know what’s in your dog’s CBD. Then, your pup can experience some relief from their issues.


About the Author: Aaron Smith is a writer and copy strategist for several companies and nonprofits. He often covers topics important to pet owners, and is a dedicated dog dad to his three pups: Buddy, Roxy, and Kaya.