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Is CBD Safe for My Pets?

Health & Science Posted Dec 18 2019

deciding if CBD is right for your furry friend, first speak with your veterinarian and get a professional opinion on the uses, effects and specific dosage levels of CBD.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of over 100 cannabinoids found within the cannabis plant that work closely with one another to deliver specific effects. Unlike its very popular counterpart, tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, there are no psychoactive effects related to CBD which means this compound is safer for people and their pets. Specifically, CBD is known for its medicinal properties, calming effects and much more.

Although much more research is necessary, many completed studies have concluded that CBD is beneficial to the mind and body, especially those suffering from chronic pain and illnesses. When referring to animals, many pet owners have found uses for CBD infused treats and oils to help their dogs or cats with a wide array of ailments.

Is CBD Oil Safe for Dogs?

Interestingly, humans and dogs both share the same cannabinoid receptors in the brain, allowing for very similar effects from CBD infused oils or treats. As such, pet owners across the globe have been using CBD for years to help their pets deal with anxiety, relieve pain and even treat seizures. CBD is absolutely safe for your pet but as we mentioned before, please make sure to first speak with your veterinarian before deciding if CBD is the right path for your dog or cat.

Health Benefits of CBD

In humans, numerous studies have been conducted on the health effects and benefits of CBD. To date, no negative side effects have been found after prolonged use of CBD. CBD has proven to be non-habit forming and studies have shown it is a suitable replacement for dangerous pharmaceutical drugs.

In dogs, fewer studies have been conducted on all possible health benefits of CBD. However, pet owners have supplied a good deal of anecdotal evidence that CBD has helped their pets relieve anxiety, treat seizures or epilepsy, reduce chronic pains from arthritis and boost appetites. Researchers at Colorado State University have even begun a study to determine if CBD is a viable replacement for modern epilepsy drugs to treat chronic seizures in dogs.

Does it Actually Work?

While many scientific studies have been carried out on humans, proving CBD to have numerous health benefits for people, few studies have been completed on the tangible benefits for dogs. Anecdotal evidence has been positive from pet owners themselves, stating that CBD has helped relieve pain from arthritis in their pet, reduce the number of seizures their epileptic pets experience, decrease the size of a tumor on a pet, etc. Clinical trials into the specific benefits of CBD for dogs are still being carried out, with research centers like the American Kennel Club investigating the use of CBD in canines, specifically.

Possible Side-Effects of CBD for Pets

No conclusive study has been conducted on the side-effects of CBD on dogs and other pets. However, the similarities in the effects of CBD on humans and dogs has led researchers to determine that side effects are analogous in both species. In particular with humans, extended CBD consumption did not affect hormonal regulation in the body or physiological developments unless an individual exceeded over 150mg per kilogram of body weight -- which is over 10,200mg of pure CBD for a person weighing 68kg (or 150lbs)!

Despite the lack of long term side effects from regular use of CBD, it not uncommon for your pet to experience one of the following side effects during the use of CBD treats or oils:

  • Dry Mouth: CBD has been shown to slightly reduce saliva production in humans, so don't be surprised if your dog gets a little thirsty.
  • Drowsiness: While CBD is lauded for its anxiety-relieving properties, this can also make dogs and other pets sleepy at times.

How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Pet?

The FDA has not currently approved any CBD pet treats for commercial use, so no official dosage chart is currently available. We recommend starting your pet off with 5mg of CBD per 10 pounds of body weight. So if you have a 50-pound Golden Doodle, start off with 50mg and work up from there.

Can I Give My Pet Human CBD Oil?

Giving your dog human CBD oil is technically completely fine. However, CBD oil designed for humans is usually more potent than products designed specifically for pets, so the dosage of the oil should be carefully monitored and administered.

If you accidentally give your pet too much CBD oil or Fido gets into your personal stash while you're at work, don't panic. Too much CBD is not life threatening for pets, and drowsiness and more rarely diarrhea, are the most likely outcomes of an accidental high-dosage of CBD. Despite this, always speak with your veterinarian in these instances to ensure the overall safety for your pet.

Choosing the Right CBD Product for Your Pet

In today's rapidly growing market, choosing the right CBD product for your pet can be tricky. Here's what to remember:

  • Go All Natural: Like with any product you choose for your pet, make sure only the highest quality ingredients are used. Pet products using all-natural, healthy ingredients will be the best for your dog. 
  • Don't Go Cheap: We all want to save money but choosing the cheapest CBD product for your dog isn't the best way to do so. Choose a product based on its ability to meet the needs of you and your dog, not its cost.

CBD Dog Treats

A cornucopia of CBD pet products for dogs exists out there with more coming to market every day. To start, bacon-flavored CBD treats are always a hit, while many companies offer CBD oils or tinctures that you can precisely measure giving you more control of the right dosage. No matter what you choose, there is an option to meet your needs.

For more information on selecting the right product for your dog, click here.

CBD Cat Treats

Cats can be picky, so choosing the right CBD product it tough. We recommend starting with a pure-CBD tincture and adding that to your cat's favorite food or treat. Remember, start with a low dose and gradually increase the amount to find the optimal amount for your pet.

Want to share your personal experiences with CBD and your pet? Leave a question or comment below and let us know what you think!

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