CBD products have made their way into almost every market--pet care being one of the most prevalent. Although there’s still quite a bit more research to be done regarding the effect of CBD on cats, data for CBD in dogs appears very promising--particularly for conditions like osteoarthritis and seizures. (Fun fact: it’s also been shown to allay human seizures, as we’ve noted before.)
Whether your furry friend suffers from anxiety, chronic pain or sleep issues, CBD could be incredibly helpful. In this blog post, we’ll deliver the 411 on what CBD is, why it may be good for your pup, and how to administer it properly.
What Exactly is CBD?
Despite recent changes in society’s collective attitude toward CBD, there are still misconceptions surrounding cannabidiol. Many people assume that, due to CBD being derived from cannabis, it’s an intoxicating and/or dangerous substance. That is...absolutely not true.
THC is the psychoactive compound found in cannabis. CBD is another compound that does not contain any hallucinatory properties. CBD and THC are just two of over 100 cannabinoids present in any given cannabis plant.
You can extract CBD alone (voila! CBD isolate) or use CBD derived from hemp, which, by definition, may contain up to 0.03% THC, by dry weight. (That’s the limit permissible by law, where CBD is legal.)
If you want more info on what CBD is, its history, and how it works magic in mammalian bodies, check out this post.
Why Do People Give CBD and Hemp to Dogs?
Funny enough, many of the reasons coincide with ones that lead humans to take CBD themselves!
Dogs who suffer from anxiety can find relief with CBD, as can dogs who are simply easily stressed out. If you have a dog who suffers from separation anxiety, for example, CBD may be incredibly helpful.
Inflammation & Pain
CBD has anti-inflammatory properties, making it seriously advantageous for pups who suffer from arthritis, other chronic inflammatory conditions, or need a little help managing pain while recovering from illness or surgery.
Yep--we’ve said it before, we’ll say it again: this little miracle of science has actually managed to keep seizures under control in dogs and humans. Research on the topic is still emerging, but if you think CBD may help your furry friend, it’s worth discussing with your vet!
Of course, it’s important to note that CBD oil, treats, and topical products are not one-stop cures for pets. Particularly if your dog is already taking medication* or has severe symptoms, you should consult a professional before administering CBD.
*CBD can, in rare cases, interfere with other medications.
A Note on Sourcing Products
One of the best things about the CBD industry is that it’s constantly evolving. Unfortunately, that evolution can cause quite a bit of confusion over what products are high quality and which are second-rate gimmicks.
A couple of things to watch for:
a) the extraction method (we believe that CO2 extraction is the only way to go, since it’s completely free of chemical solvents)
b) whether the product is tested by an independent lab. Any reputable CBD company should readily provide a certificate showing that their products are stringently tested by a third party. If they can’t (or won’t)...Do. Not. Buy. That. Product.
How to Give CBD to Dogs
At VidaDrops, we’re pet parents too--dedicated to helping you find the best CBD products for dogs available. Some of the most popular include:
CBD Oil. CBD oils are the most popular method and offer good value for money, a variety of flavors, and can be administered in several simple ways.
The best method of giving CBD oil to your dog will depend on how tolerant he or she is of medicine--or what they might perceive as medicine. Our oils come in two pup-tested, pup-approved flavors: beef and salmon oil (flavored by real salmon oil, so your dog gets the benefits of Omega-3s as well). As a result, we rarely hear about customers having problems getting their dogs to like it.
Others, however, are pickier and may prefer to have CBD oil mixed into their food to hide the taste, or dropped onto a porous dog treat. You might even try mixing it into a bit of pumpkin puree or all-natural peanut butter.
CBD dog treats. Dog treats infused with CBD or hemp can be a wonderful alternative to pure CBD oil--particularly for dogs who dislike taking medicine, since they come in tasty flavors like cheese or bacon.
- CBD Creams and Balms. If you’re on the hunt for a topical solution for aches and pains, there are dog-friendly creams, balms, and salves infused with CBD. These products can be very soothing, and easy to apply.
Of course, this list is by no means exhaustive. New CBD products for pet care are emerging all the time. Just make sure to do your research before you buy! When in doubt, we suggest starting with an oil. It’s the most bioavailable form of CBD available, and easily added to food.
The Best CBD Dosage for Dogs
It’s vital to keep in mind, when you’re giving CBD oil to dogs, dosages will vary based on their size and individual needs. As a general rule, it’s good to start with a small dose (the smallest recommended by the manufacturer), monitor the results, and increase if needed. Most manufacturers will include guidelines on the packaging that relate to your dog’s size and needs.
CBD and hemp oils are still in relatively new stages of development in pet care, so opinions on the proper dosage may vary from product to product. If you’re unsure, start by considering your dog’s weight, size, and the severity of his or her condition. For our pet CBD oils, we recommend 0.1-0.2 ml per 10 pounds of body weight to start, but if you see no change after a few doses, you can increase it incrementally. Only you can know the right amount for your dog.
“Overdosing” isn’t a huge concern here, as there’s little to no evidence for toxicity of CBD in dogs, but pet parents should still take care when venturing into CBD treatment. Start small and take it steadily, following the manufacturer’s instructions, and make sure to keep an eye on his or her reactions over time.
If you’re planning to give CBD oil or hemp oil to your furry friend, make sure that you do your research. Pay attention to things like the reputation of the purveyor, whether they submit to third party testing, their extraction method, and dosing information. Also take into consideration the severity of your pup’s symptoms and other medications that could interact negatively with CBD. If you’re unsure, ask a vet.
Once you’re confident in your selection, administer carefully, and watch your dog live his (or her) best life!
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