CBD oil is quickly gaining popularity as a helpful supplement for pain, anxiety, inflammation, and even acne. This has led many to wonder if CBD can prove equally beneficial for dogs. Though there’s no conclusive evidence regarding the effectiveness of CBD for dogs, some early studies have indicated that it may work for pets similarly to the way it works for humans.
What Is CBD?
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CBD is a chemical found in marijuana that is independent of the THC that gives marijuana its psychoactive properties. CBD usually comes from hemp, which is a form of cannabis that’s very low in THC to begin with. CBD is available in many forms, but CBD oil is the most commonly used product for pets, as it’s easy for them to consume.
Potential Benefits of CBD for Dogs
Reliable studies are sparse when it comes to CBD use for dogs, but some early experiments look promising. A 2018 study indicated that 80% of dogs with osteoarthritis showed decreased pain and greater mobility when taking CBD. A 2019 study indicated that CBD may help to reduce seizures in dogs with epilepsy. CBD has natural anti-inflammatory properties that can make it beneficial for pets with atopic dermatitis or pain issues.
Since CBD interacts with the receptors in the peripheral and central nervous systems, it can also be used to treat anxiety in dogs. CBD oil may be particularly useful for long trips or other unusually stressful situations where you want to help your pup stay calm.
Possible CBD Side Effects for Dogs
There are few studies on CBD in dogs, so the possible side effects are not well documented. However, we do know how CBD affects humans. Pet owners can monitor their dogs for similar side effects. CBD products can pull fluid from the body, resulting in diarrhea, dehydration, or dry mouth. CBD may also cause low blood pressure for a short period of time, which can result in lightheadedness. Drowsiness is another common side effect of CBD, but this may actually serve your purposes well if you’re using the product to help your pet relax.
How To Administer CBD to Dogs
Dosage recommendations vary wildly due to the lack of concrete data regarding CBD use for dogs. It’s best to start conservatively, at about 1 mg of CBD per 10 pounds of weight. You may increase this over time to about 2 mg per pound if your pet is tolerating the CBD well. Always check to make sure you’re using a product that contains only CBD and not THC. Some oils have a blend of both, but you don’t want to give THC to your dog. If you notice excessive panting, vomiting, loss of balance, or dribbling urine, your pet may have consumed too much CBD and should be seen by a vet.
If you’re interested in trying CBD for your dog, your veterinarian is always a good resource to start with. Monitor your dog closely when using CBD oil to determine how well it’s working for your individual animal.