CBD has become incredibly popular in the United States. You may have seen it in beauty products at the drugstore, for sale at a local boutique, or even at the pet store. But what exactly is CBD, and how do you know what product to buy for your dog?
There are a lot of good reasons to try CBD, a naturally occurring compound of the cannabis plant that has been shown to have a range of health and wellness benefits. It is generally safe for dogs, and may be used to reduce symptoms of pain, anxiety, seizures, and more. However, before you add anything to your dog’s diet, including CBD, you should check with your veterinarian.
Buying CBD for your dog doesn’t have to be complicated. Below, we break down what you need to know about CBD and how to choose a product that is right for your pooch.
What Is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. Unlike another compound found in the cannabis plant, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it isn’t psychoactive, which means that it doesn’t produce a sensation of being stoned or high.
While research on the topic is still emerging, scientists believe that CBD may produce a range of benefits by interacting with the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. This system is present in both humans and dogs, and is responsible for maintaining balance or homeostasis in the body. For example, if you suffer an injury that puts your body out of balance, the ECS helps your body return to its optimal operation.
The ECS consists of three components: endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes. Our body produces endocannabinoids as needed. When they are released, the endocannabinoids bind to receptors throughout the body. Once the necessary action has been taken, then the enzymes break down the endocannabinoids.
It isn’t entirely clear how CBD interacts with the ECS. However, preliminary research on both humans and animals have shown that CBD may boost health and well-being in a number of ways.
Can My Dog Benefit from CBD?
There have been few scientific studies performed on CBD using dogs to date. A 2018 study involving dogs concluded that CBD may help to reduce pain and inflammation and improve pain and mobility in dogs with arthritis. A small study in 2019 found that CBD may help to reduce seizures in epileptic dogs.
Studies performed on humans, mice, and rats have shown that CBD may be effective at reducing chronic pain and inflammation, anxiety, depression, acne, seizures, and high blood pressure. Because the ECS is found in all mammals, this research may also be applicable to dogs.
According to one recent survey of licensed veterinarians who had clinical experience with cannabis products such as CBD, these products may be helpful with chronic pain (79%), anxiety (62%), acute pain (50%), and seizures (41%). Most veterinarians surveyed (over 80%) had not observed or received a report of any adverse effects, other than sedation.
Keep in mind, however, that while CBD is generally safe and well-tolerated, it may produce some side effects in dogs. For example, in humans, may produce side effects such as dry mouth, changes in appetite and weight, and fatigue or tiredness. It may also interact with certain medications, which is why it is important to always check with your veterinarian before adding it or any other supplement to your dog’s diet.
How to Buy CBD for Your Dog
Under current law, CBD products are legal in the United States – but they are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This can make it hard to figure out which products are safe and effective.
As an initial matter, you should only purchase CBD products that have been independently tested for safety and quality. The manufacturer should make these results available on their website so that you can review the third party lab results. Otherwise, there is no real way to know what exactly you are buying or what the product contains.
Next, look for products that are made from industrial hemp grown in the United States. Under federal law, industrial hemp must contain no more than 0.3% THC – a trace amount. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) considers THC to be a toxic substance for dogs and cats. While your dog would have to eat a lot of THC to reach a lethal dose (3 grams), the safest choice is to only buy CBD made from hemp grown in the United States.
Understanding CBD Processing Levels
CBD products are typically labeled as either full spectrum, broad spectrum, or isolate. These terms are used to categorize products based on whether they contain all or some phytochemicals found in the cannabis plant.
- A full spectrum product will have CBD and all other beneficial compounds found in hemp, including 0.3% or less THC, flavonoids and terpenes.
- A broad spectrum product will have everything that a full spectrum product does, other than THC.
- An isolate product will only have CBD, without any THC, flavonoids and terpenes.
The amount of THC in a full spectrum product made from American-grown hemp will be minimal, and is generally considered safe for dogs. However, if you want to avoid giving your dog any THC, you could choose a broad spectrum or CBD isolate instead.
Types of CBD Products Designed For Dogs
CBD products for pets come in a variety of forms, including treats, oils, and creams. Generally, oils or tinctures that you put under your dog’s tongue will work the fastest and may be the most effective. However, it may be easier to get your dog to eat an edible, or to rub a balm or cream onto an affected area, like an arthritic knee.
Introducing Your Dog To CBD Oil
Be sure to consult with your veterinarian before starting to use CBD products on your dog. Each dog will respond differently to CBD, which is why you should start with the smallest serving size possible and monitor how it affects your dog. From there, you can adjust the serving size. When you first start giving your dog CBD, you should document your dog’s experiences so that you can continue to refine their serving size and delivery for better results.
Some of Our Favorite CBD Products For Dogs
HolistaPet Superfood Dog Treats are specifically formulated for dogs and our furry friends around the office can’t get enough of them. The treats come in three different flavors, so you can find the variety your dog enjoys best. The three flavors are:
- Blueberry & sweet potato
- Green apple & peanut butter
- Pumpkin spice & cinnamon
Each treat includes 10mg of cannabinoids and there are 30 treats in the bag. The treats have no additives or preservatives and contain only the best organic ingredients to keep your dog happy and healthy.
Roxy by Hemplucid is a full-spectrum CBD tincture formulated specifically for dogs. It has a chicken flavor that your dog will be sure to love and is well-suited to help with pet pain or pet anxiety. You can mix a few drops into your dog’s food or apply the drops directly into your dog’s mouth to give them the daily benefits CBD can provide.
If your dog is a picky eater, Happy Tails Peanut Butter by Honest Paws may be your best bet. No dog can resist the incredibly enticing flavor of peanut butter. The peanut butter jars contain 160mg of CBD per jar, but Honest Paws also makes a peanut butter snack pouch that contains 10mg of CBD per pouch. The pouch is portable and perfect as a snack on the go.
If your dog is suffering from dry skin or concentrated pain in one specific area, the pet balm from cbdMD may be able to help. The balm contains a mix of CBD, olive oil, shea butter, beeswax, and MCT oil to moisturize skin and provide relief from external irritations.
Social is a well-known brand for humans, but their pet line is just as stellar. Their broad spectrum pet tincture comes in three different options: unflavored, bacon, and peanut butter. Green Wellness Life offers a $5 people and pets discount. So, you can buy the Social tincture for pets and a social product for yourself and get $5 off of your order!
Looking for Safe, Healthy CBD Products for Dogs? Start Here.
It can be hard to know how to best help your pet when they are struggling with pain, anxiety, or another condition. If you have decided to give CBD a try, you may be confused and overwhelmed by all of the terms and choices available. We are here to guide you through the process and can point you to the product we feel may be best for your dog from our online CBD shop for pets.
At Green Wellness Life, we aren’t veterinarians, and we cannot diagnose or treat your pet’s medical condition. What we can offer is the latest scientific research on CBD, as well as our experience and insight on which products have worked best on our pets. If you would like to learn more or simply need help picking a CBD product for your dog, contact us today at (888) 772-7875 (Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 EST), or fill out our online contact form.