CBD Oil for Dogs: What to Know
We all love our dogs. Man’s best friend – what wouldn’t we do to help them?
Well, have you thought about giving your dog cannabis products…
It may sound extreme, but CBD oil for dogs is a new therapeutic treatment that is gaining popularity. We’ve rounded up everything you need to know about CBD oil for dogs to make sure you’re giving your dog the safest, and most effective, treatment possible.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is hard to avoid these days. This popular product is an easy-to-use form of CBD, a cannabinoid found in cannabis and hemp plants.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the major cannabinoids found in cannabis. If reading the word “cannabis” in an article about pet care has you a bit alarmed, there’s no need to worry. CBD is non-psychotropic, meaning that it doesn’t induce the intoxicating effects of cannabis. Another cannabinoid called THC is the compound responsible for the infamous “high” of cannabis.
One reason for CBD’s recent popularity boost is its therapeutic effects. Studies tell us that CBD has shown particular promise as an anti-inflammatory, anxiolytic, sleep aid, and skin treatment (1, 2, 3, 4).
More research is needed for us to fully understand the effects of CBD, but current research indicates that it is an effective treatment option for a range of conditions.
CBD’s effectiveness combined with its lack of psychoactive effects makes it an especially attractive therapeutic option. So it’s no wonder you see it everywhere these days.
Can You Give CBD to Dogs?
There is a lot of buzz about CBD oil’s benefits for humans, but what results can you expect for your four-legged friend?
The good news for Fido is that we have long known that endocannabinoid receptors exist in mammalian brains, meaning that mammals (like dogs) are able to experience effects from cannabinoids like CBD (5).
Further evidence that tells us that CBD oil for dogs is likely to be effective is the animal models commonly used in CBD studies. Most research into CBD is undertaken on mice, rats, and humans. With common effects seen across all species, these studies demonstrate the potential of CBD to induce its effects across a variety of animal species.
Research on CBD Oil for Dogs
CBD oil for dogs is not just a guessing game; there are some impressive studies involving canine subjects that highlight the powerful effects that CBD can induce in dogs.
There are two main treatment areas where CBD oil has shown particular effectiveness in dogs: osteoarthritis and seizure conditions.
Canine osteoarthritis, sometimes referred to as degenerative joint disease, is a progressive condition where the cartilage in your dog’s joints starts to deteriorate due to inflammation. When joint cartilage deteriorates, like in osteoarthritis, it removes the cushion protecting the bone. Without it, your dog experiences pain, decreased range of motion, and further inflammation.
The good news for dogs suffering from this painful disease is that CBD oil offers a promising treatment option.
A recent study published in the academic journal Pain found that CBD oil significantly reduced the pain levels of dogs with osteoarthritis. Researchers in the study gave osteoarthritic dogs CBD oil over a four-week period. As well as reduced pain levels, dogs in the study who received the CBD oil demonstrated an increase in mobility levels (6).
We know you might be skeptical, but the evidence about CBD as a treatment for canine osteoarthritis isn’t just a one-off. A 2018 study also found that CBD oil improved the condition of dogs with osteoarthritis. Dogs in this study received CBD oil twice daily for four weeks. Dogs who received the CBD oil experienced a significant pain reduction as well as an increase in activity (7).
This study tells us that the dose used (2 mg/kg of CBD oil twice daily) could offer pain relief and improve the quality of life for dogs with osteoarthritis.
Another debilitating condition that can affect dogs is seizure disorders. Seizures cause dogs to convulse and lose control of their muscle activity. Not only can this be terrifying for the dog and its owner, but it can also cause the dog to hurt itself or suffer brain damage.
Impressively, research into the effects of CBD oil for dogs tells us that CBD oil may be able to help fight seizures in dogs.
A study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medicine Association in 2019 found that CBD oil reduced the frequency of seizures in dogs with idiopathic epilepsy by 33% on average. The epileptic dogs in the study were given CBD oil twice daily for 12 weeks, and impressively, their owners reported no negative side effects (8).
This reduction is impressive, although it’s important to keep in mind the limitations of any study. This study was limited slightly by the fact that there were similar numbers of dogs who responded to treatment between the CBD and the placebo group. Further research is therefore needed to see whether higher CBD doses than used in this study (1.1 mg/lb twice daily) would be more effective.
How Is CBD Oil Administered to Dogs?
CBD oil is easy to take as a human, but it can take a bit more thought when giving it to a dog.
Luckily, products like our CBD Pet Tincture can easily be disguised in your dog’s food. In fact, these days you can even purchase dog treats infused with CBD oil. It’s too easy!
The Bottom Line
CBD oil may be largely consumed by humans, but that doesn’t mean your dog has to miss out.
Current research tells us that CBD oil holds a lot of potential as a therapeutic treatment for dogs, particularly in the areas of seizure and osteoarthritis management.
Further research involving CBD oil for dogs will be able to confirm whether or not the other benefits of CBD can help your dog too. If you’ve decided to introduce CBD oil into your dog’s routine, be sure to consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns and pay close attention to dosing recommendations.