A few years ago, you probably wouldn’t walk into your local pet store and see CBD products for sale. But now, with the changes in regulations, we are starting to see CBD everywhere—even at pet supply shops.
In fact, there is a pretty good chance that you’ll find CBD treats for dogs right by the cash register. Store owners want to draw attention to CBD products for pets since many people are still not aware of their benefits.
Just what can CBD do for your dog? Is it safe? What is the right dosage? What form should you purchase? In this guide, you will get answers to all of these questions and more. That way you can make an informed decision about whether CBD is right for your pet.
Is CBD Safe for Dogs?
Let’s start with the first question you probably ask about anything new you are considering feeding your pet. You know CBD is safe for human consumption, but is it safe for canines?
The answer is a simple, “Yes!” CBD is safe for dogs.
It is not toxic to canines in any way, and it will not get your pet high. The “high” experienced when smoking marijuana comes from a different chemical compound called THC.
CBD products generally do not contain THC. Indeed, the best CBD products for dogs are extensively tested by third parties to ensure they are free of THC and other unwanted compounds.
Many of the therapeutic effects of marijuana can be attributed directly to CBD. So when you give your dog CBD oil, your pet can experience those health benefits without undesirable side effects.
CBD Benefits For Dogs
CBD can benefit dogs in many of the same ways that it can benefit humans. Some of the conditions which you can treat by giving a dog CBD include:
- Epilepsy symptoms
- Hip dysplasia symptoms
- Injury pain
- Immune system issues
- Cancer symptoms
- Appetite problems
If you have used CBD to treat your own health problems, you probably are already pretty familiar with the list above.
The reason that CBD helps pets in the same ways it helps humans is that it works the same way in the canine body as it does in the human body. Both humans and dogs have an endocannabinoid system. CBD acts directly on those receptors, which is how it exerts therapeutic effects.
Do Dogs Get Side Effects From CBD?
In general, most dogs should not experience side effects from CBD.
Again, CBD will not get your dog high. As for other adverse effects, you can usually avoid those simply by administering the proper dose.
If you do give your pet too much CBD, you might observe some poor coordination or a general lack of energy from your pet for a little while. Some dogs get diarrhea too, which happens if they take too much of an oil-based product. This effect is actually not from the CBD at all, but from the oil.
These side effects are temporary, so do not panic if you notice them. Just make sure to reduce the dosage the next time around so that it does not happen again.
Keep in mind that dogs, like humans, may be allergic to unpredictable substances. So if you see signs of an allergic reaction, discontinue use and consult with a vet.
Types of Canine CBD Products
While shopping for CBD products for your pet, you will notice that you have a few different options.
You can choose from:
- CBD capsules
- CBD oils
- CBD treats
This means that you can choose the form which works best for your pet. You might end up trying a few different forms of CBD before you figure out which one is most suitable.
How to Administer CBD to a Dog
- To give a dog a CBD capsule, either conceal the capsule inside some wet food, or break the capsule open and sprinkle it over the food.
- Feeding a CBD treat to a dog is like giving any other treat. Just hand it to your dog and let him enjoy.
- To administer CBD oil to a dog, you have to purchase a syringe (included with some CBD oil products), and then fill it to the proper dosage. Then drip the contents of the syringe into your dog’s open mouth.
Again, some methods may be easier than others depending on your dog’s personality. If your pet resists CBD oil, then try hiding a capsule in a treat—or simply giving a CBD treat. You may find your dog is more receptive to one of these alternatives.
How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog?
Let’s say you decide to go with cannabidiol oil for your pet.
The exact amount of CBD oil you should be administering depends on several different factors:
- Your dog’s weight
- What you are trying to treat
- The product’s concentration
Different products offer different charts because their concentrations are not the same, but you can view an example from King Kaninie here:
For that product, standard doses for general use are roughly as follows:
- 5-10 pounds: .1 ml
- 15-20 pounds: .2 ml
- 25 pounds: .25 ml
- 30 pounds: .3 ml
- 35-40 pounds: .4 ml
- 45-50 pounds: .5 ml
- 55-60 pounds: .6 ml
- 65-70 pounds: .7 ml
- 75-80 pounds: .8 ml
- 85-90 pounds: .9 ml
- 95-100 pounds: 1 ml
- 101-120 pounds: 1.1 ml
- 121-140 pounds: 1.3 ml
- 141-160 pounds: 1.6 ml
If your pet’s weight is in between any of the brackets, round down to be conservative.
Meanwhile, “medicinal” doses are significantly higher.
- 5 pounds: .2 ml
- 10 pounds: .5 ml
- 15 pounds: .6 ml
- 20 pounds: .8 ml
- 25 pounds: 1 ml
- 30 pounds: 1.2 ml
- 35 pounds: 1.4 ml
- 40 pounds: 1.6 ml
- 45 pounds: 1.8 ml
- 50 pounds: 2 ml
- 55 pounds: 2.2 ml
- 60 pounds: 2.4 ml
- 65 pounds: 2.6 ml
- 70 pounds: 2.8 ml
- 75 pounds: 3 ml
- 80 pounds: 3.2 ml
- 85 pounds: 3.4 ml
- 90 pounds: 3.6 ml
- 95 pounds: 3.8 ml
- 100 pounds: 4 ml
- 101-120 pounds: 4.5 ml
- 121-140 pounds: 5.2 ml
- 141-160 pounds: 6.5 ml
“Medicinal” doses are for treating symptoms associated with conditions such as epilepsy or cancer.
If you want to treat acute pain or inflammation or soothe a panicked pet, a dosage in between the standard and medicinal amounts is ideal.
Keep in mind you cannot simply transpose these numbers for any or all CBD oil products for dogs. They apply specifically to this product. I have shared them simply to give you an idea of the sort of dosages you may see.
Different oils may have a higher or lower concentrations of CBD. That means that you would need to give your dog a smaller or larger dosage in terms of ml to provide an equal amount of CBD.
Remember, CBD oil is safe for dogs.
If you overdo it slightly, there may be some temporary side effects, but you do not need to worry too much. If you are unsure what dosage to use, consult with your vet or err on the low side to be safe, and increase it if needed.
Obviously you should be careful not to drastically over-administer. Too much of a good thing isn’t good for anyone, human or canine.
What is the Dosing For Capsules or Treats?
Since capsules and treats are administered differently from oil, they are measured differently as well. The principle is the same though—the dog’s weight and the intended use of the treatment will determine how much you need to give to constitute an effective dosage.
So with capsules, you will also see a chart on the back of the product, likely telling you both the mg needed as well as how many capsules that is equivalent to for your dog’s weight.
Again, a different product may contain more or less CBD in each capsule, so each time you try a new brand, you need to check the chart on the back again. The right amount of capsules for one product may be the wrong amount for another.
The same goes for treats.
Here is a sample image of a chart on the back of a CBD treat product:
You can see that this product also lists the dosage in both mg and treats. It also tells you how many servings a day is appropriate.
Tips For Choosing The Best CBD Products for your Dog
You now should have a pretty good idea how to select proper dosages and administer them to your dog. But how do you pick the highest-quality CBD products which are safe and healthy for your furry pal?
- Check to make sure that there is zero THC in the supplements which you purchase for your dog. Not only do you not want your pet to get high, but you want to protect his or her health. THC is classified as having moderate to severe toxicity for dogs, and can have a slew of very dangerous physiological effects, including seizures, lethargy, low blood pressure, and coma.
- Make sure that the product you buy has no petroleum byproducts from the extraction process. Third party testing can help to verify this, but you can also look for CBD which is processed through the use of CO2 instead of butane or ethanol.
- Look for third-party testing. This is how you can verify that a product is free of contaminants like the byproducts and THC mentioned above.
- Buy organic. This will help to ensure that the product is free of pesticides. If you can, also shop for a product which has been grown and harvested in a sustainable way.
- Look for full spectrum CBD. This is CBD which contains a variety of healthy compounds from the entire hemp plant. These compounds together may produce a more powerful effect—the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
- Look up the reputation of the company you are purchasing from. Ever since changes in the legal codes made CBD more widely available to consumers, more and more manufacturers have flooded the market. Quite a few of these are new startups. There is nothing wrong with doing business with a newcomer, but just make sure that you check up on the background of the company and take a look at customer reviews first. Alternatively, stick with well-established brands with a reputation for quality.
- Pick a product which is affordable for long-term use. Most of the uses for CBD for pets are long-term in nature. Choose a product which won’t break the bank. But do not necessarily go with the cheapest CBD you find. You do get what you pay for, so value should be your prime consideration.
- Pick a manufacturer which offers great customer service. If you have questions about treating your dog with CBD or you need help with an order, you want to be dealing with a manufacturer which will be there to assist you. The support team should be friendly, knowledgeable, transparent, and easy to reach.
Conclusion: CBD Is a Natural, Healthy, Safe Way to Enhance Your Dog’s Health
Just as CBD has excellent health benefits for humans, it can also provide wonderful advantages for canine companions. You now know that CBD is safe and non-toxic for dogs, and you have some tips to help you select trusted, high-quality products from reliable manufacturers.
Need help narrowing down your search? On our site, you can read in-depth reviews of CBD oils, treats and capsules for dogs. Or, if you prefer, you can simply click the links below to jump straight to our current top recommendations. Enjoy sharing the benefits of CBD with your dog!