CBD and hemp products for dogs have become popular. This trend has led to treats containing CBD oil, a hemp byproduct, that claim to help dogs with a number of ailments from anxiety to chronic pain. But does CBD oil for dogs work? And what do you need to be aware of before starting your dog on this new supplement?
What is CBD Oil for Dogs?
CBD stands for “cannabidiol.” This is a compound found in hemp and cannabis. For the most part, CBD does not contain THC, the psychoactive substance found in marijuana. Indeed, most CBD produced for consumption by both humans and pets are cultivated from hemp and not marijuana plants. Hemp is also used for the production of textiles, rope and other industrial products.
Due to the laws surrounding CBD, your vet might have a hard time providing you with definitive information on the efficacy of CBD for your dog. However, anecdotal evidence from people and pets that use it say there are many benefits to CBD.
The Benefits of CBD Oil and Treats for Dogs
There is not much scientific evidence to support claims for CBD use in dogs because there just haven’t been enough studies. Anecdotal evidence, however, paints a positive picture for people looking to help their dogs relieve symptoms of the following:
Dogs with anxiety may benefit from CBD oil laced dog treats or CBD oil added directly into their bowl of food. With CBD, the dog feels a sense of calm. Dogs with anxiety from noise phobia have also been known to have decreased symptoms when using CBD. While there are alternatives to treating a dog with separation anxiety, like boarding your dog, or doggy daycare with additional fitness activities, when you’re away from home, CBD might be a good alternative when you need to leave the house for short trips.
Nausea or Lack of Appetite
Dogs with stomach issues may experience relief with CBD. There are endocannabinoid receptors all over the body, including the digestive system. This may calm an upset stomach.
There is hope the CBD will be a breakthrough drug for the treatment of epilepsy in dogs. In fact, the AKC Canine Health Foundation and Colorado State University have partnered together to run clinical trials to test just this theory. This large-scale study will be the first of its kind and, hopefully, offer some guidance for pet owners with dogs that suffer from epilepsy.
Some dog owners have reported a relief in symptoms of pain in their dogs when using CBD products. This is one of the main benefits of CBD oil that vets are excited to study. This may innovate the way we treat pain in our pets.
What to Watch Out For
You should never give your dog products containing THC. In fact, it can be dangerous for them to consume. CBD, however, has been shown to assist with symptoms like pain in dogs. Here are the results from a Cornell study on “Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Clinical Efficacy of Cannabidiol Treatment in Osteoarthritic Dogs”: “Clinically, canine brief pain inventory and Hudson activity scores showed a significant decrease in pain and increase in activity (p < 0.01) with CBD oil. Veterinary assessment showed decreased pain during CBD treatment (p < 0.02). No side effects were reported by owners; however, serum chemistry showed an increase in alkaline phosphatase during CBD treatment (p < 0.01).”
That’s just one study showing how preliminary research is positive for CBD oil for dogs. These should serve as an example of scientific evidence to support your choice to use CBD for your pet.
Possible side effects for dogs using CBD include:
- Drowsiness: The calming effect of CBD might lead to your dog feeling drowsy. The higher the dose, the greater the drowsiness.
- Lower Blood Pressure: CBD may cause a brief drop in blood pressure that might lead to a bit of light-headedness.
- Dry Mouth: Lowered production of saliva has been reported with the use of CBD. It might make your dog thirstier, too. So, be sure their bowl of water is filled.
How to Choose CBD Oil for Dogs
There are plenty of products out there today on the market, but which product is right for your pet? We suggest buying high-quality CBD products for your dog. Some CBD oil for dogs comes in a dropper bottle to be added to food. Then, there are CBD treats that you give your pet. You should look for organic products with analysis results from the manufacturer so you can make sure it’s safe for your pet. There should be little to no THC in any CBD product you give your dog. Lastly, don’t shop for the cheapest products. Some may contain pesticides and herbicides that are dangerous for your pet. Stay safe!