It is no secret that CBD oil is becoming increasingly popular. All sorts of CBD products, from oils, balms, gummies, and more, are now used for their purported health benefits and relaxing side-effects. Some health benefits are supported by medical research, and it has prompted many people to consider using CBD for their pets as well, but is there really any benefit to doing this? CBD oil for dogs is available everywhere, but you shouldn’t make the final purchase before knowing all the facts.
What is CBD?
Before we get any further, we should probably define what CBD is. CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the two most well-known active components of marijuana. While psychoactive, it’s not the chemical responsible for “getting high” when smoking marijuana. This is the effect of the other main component of marijuana, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).
CBD products do not contain THC, and therefore, do not cause any of the intoxicating effects associated with marijuana unless they contain THC too. CBD products are made using CBD oil, which is extracted out of cultivated hemp or specialized high-CBD strains of marijuana like Charlotte’s Web or AC/DC. CBD oil is legal in most states if derived from hemp plants.
Claimed Benefits of CBD Oil for Dogs
Dogs are much the same as people in that they can develop many of the problems that we do. And because CBD can provide some health benefits to humans, some say they can do the same to dogs too!
- Pain management
- Help prevent seizures or epileptic episodes
- Alleviate inflammation
- Provide boosts for heart health
- Relieve nausea
- Lessen anxiety
- Provide “possible anti-cancer benefits”
- Possible benefits for osteoarthritis.
How Legitimate Are These Claims?
As we’ve said, there has not been much medical research on CBD in canines. Not only that but, the FDA has not approved CBD products for use in dogs, nor any animal for that matter. They emphasize that they can’t guarantee the safety or efficacy of the health claims posed by CBD oil retailers. It’s for this reason that the FDA warns pet-owners against using CBD products on dogs. Instead, they recommend speaking with your veterinarian about suitable treatments for your pet.
If you look at these health claims in more detail, you’ll find that almost all evidence to support CBD oil benefits in dogs is anecdotal. Few controlled studies have been completed, and the many of the completed ones produced inconclusive findings. You have to be careful with looking out for biased research.
The study linked above, for example, was done, in part, alongside a CBD company. So, while not necessarily inaccurate, it is in fact biased. The health claims associated with CBD use, both in humans and in canines, requires additional scientific research before legitimate claims can be made. So for now, we’ve only got anecdotal evidence, but that anecdotal evidence does happen to be strongly supportive of CBD‘s benefits.
Will CBD Get My Dog High?
It may be understandable to worry if CBD products will get your pets high. With CBD oils, however, there is nothing to worry about. THC is the psychoactive component of marijuana that causes people to feel high. CBD products by definition contain no THC (at least, not enough THC for an intoxicating effect). So have no worries; any CBD oil you give your dog will not get them high.
Are There Any Known Side Effects of Giving Dogs CBD Oil?
When it comes to side effects and the health benefits of CBD oil for dogs, more research is needed. One study conducted at Colorado State University by veterinary neurologist Stephanie McGrath gave CBD to 30 healthy Beagles. “Overall, the product was well tolerated clinically. However, clinically significant adverse effects, particularly diarrhea and elevations in serum ALP levels, are noteworthy and warrant further discussion and research.”
The American Kennel Club lists potential side effects of CBD use as:
- Dry mouth,
- Increase in thirst
- Low blood pressure,
Keep in mind, though, that these side effects are based upon side effects in humans. Ultimately, the FDA has not approved CBD for use in canines and has not issued a dosing chart as a result. Any CBD product or supplement carries the risk of an adverse reaction in your dog and you’d be using CBD at your own risk.
There can also be other risks associated with the products themselves, not just the CBD. For instance, giving too much of any kind of oil to your pet could cause weight gain and other health problems, and could even damage their organs. So could using the wrong type of carrier oil.
Since the FDA doesn’t provide dosing charts, it’s difficult to know what amount of CBD oil is safe for your pets, or even if it’s safe at all. This is why you should always consult your veterinarian before giving CBD or any other product to your pets.
What Dosages of CBD Should I Give My Dog, If I Decide to Use CBD Oil?
Unfortunately, there is no FDA approved dosage of CBD for dogs, mainly because they warn against its use in canines. It’s for this reason that we also can’t recommend what amount of CBD oil to give your dog.
However, some sources recommend doses of 1-2mg for every 10 lbs of body weight. 3mg per 10lb would be considered a very high dose. You should ask your veterinarian what amount to use, and remember that you’re using CBD oil for your dog at your own risk.
How to Choose the Right CBD Product for Your Dog
- First and foremost, be sure to give your pup the best quality CBD oil you can — this includes checking all of the other ingredients in the oil. There are many different products on the market, but they’re not all made equally.
- Also be sure that the products you purchase for your dog come with lab papers that contain test results regarding ingredients.
- Finally, always do your due diligence and research the heck out of a company before buying their CBD products for pets. Check out customer reviews and local headlines.
At the end of the day, your puppy deserves the best. If you decide to give your pets CBD oil treatments, you should go the extra mile to ensure it is the best product for them. So research the company, then call your vet and run the ingredients by them.
Make sure that you don’t give your pet a larger dose than the vet recommends, and watch closely for side-effects when you first start giving it to them. If you notice any problems, stop immediately and report it to your vet.
The main takeaway here is that you should have a vet that you trust, and you should follow their instructions when it comes to using CBD oil for dogs. If you’d like to try CBD for yourself as well, NuggMD’s state-licensed doctors are always available to help. Just head over to NuggMD.com today. You don’t even need an appointment!