Dogs are family members for many people, and taking care of them is a top priority. As more people become interested in using CBD oil to benefit their health, some pet owners are wondering if it might be helpful for their dogs too.
There's a lot of information out there about CBD for dogs. And it can be tough to figure out what's true and what's not. This guide breaks down the best CBD products for your pup based on his needs.
Plus, we cover the potential benefits of CBD oil for dogs and how to dose your furry friend correctly. So whether you're just starting to explore CBD products or have been using them for a while, this guide is for you!
- Dogs have endocannabinoid systems that may benefit from CBD oil supplementation.
- CBD for dogs may offer the same benefits towards a normal inflammatory response, mood, comfort, and more.
- High-quality CBD oil for dogs should be made from human-grade hemp CBD and a carrier oil such as MCT coconut oil or hemp seed oil.
- The most significant difference between CBD oil for dogs and humans is its potency. CBD for dogs will have a lower CBD content to suit their mass.
- Monitor your dog when giving them CBD to check for signs of discomfort and discuss CBD with your vet if your dog is on medications or is in significant pain.
What Is CBD Oil for Dogs?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the most talked-about cannabinoids. It's one of the main active components of the cannabis Sativa plant—but unlike delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD is non-psychoactive and does not cause intoxication.
This compound has been studied for its potential anti-inflammatory, anti-nausea, anti-epileptic, and analgesic effects. While researchers are only beginning to discover this naturally-derived compound's use in clinical trials, it shows promise to the medical community.
Many pet owners use CBD dog products for anxious behavior, discomfort, and joint health.
CBD and other cannabinoids are harvested from the resin glands speckled on the flowers of cannabis buds. This extract is highly concentrated, but it's challenging to use—it's sticky and nearly impossible to accurately measure the CBD content.
To make CBD extract easier to use, it's often combined with a carrier oil such as hemp seed oil or coconut oil in various concentrations of CBD extract—These are called CBD oil or sometimes CBD tincture.
CBD Extract Types
CBD is present in both hemp and marijuana plants. When choosing a CBD oil for dogs, make sure the product comes from hemp and not marijuana.
Hemp plants cannot have more than 0.3% THC, and marijuana plants are known to have much higher levels and will cause psychoactive effects that lead to an unpleasant experience for your pet.
With hemp extracts, you have three options: full spectrum, broad spectrum, and isolate CBD.
Full Spectrum CBD Oil
Full spectrum CBD extract is the least processed type of the three. The hemp resin is home to over a hundred cannabinoids and terpenes that lend to CBD's health benefits.
When researching "what is the best CBD for dogs," many experts recommend full spectrum CBD. This is because the synergy of the cannabis compounds working together produces more potent and well-balanced effects over administering CBD on its own—this is called the entourage effect.
This extract type does have up to 0.3% THC. Some THC is good for enhancing the benefits of CBD. This isn't enough to produce any high, so it's generally considered safe for most people and pets. However, there are some cases in which THC should be avoided altogether, which brings us to the following type of extract.
Broad Spectrum CBD Oil
Broad spectrum CBD starts off as full spectrum, but it undergoes an extra step to isolate and remove all traces of THC for a THC-free extract that still contains other cannabinoids like CBG, CBC, and CBN as well as terpenes for an entourage effect.
Those advised to avoid THC will turn to broad spectrum extracts, but they may be harder to come across as they require more effort to produce.
CBD isolate, sometimes called CBD distillate, only contains one cannabinoid, CBD. It's typically the cheaper option, and it's common to find because CBD brands can purchase this extract type in bulk to formulate into different products.
You'll still get CBD benefits from CBD isolate products, but it doesn't make for the best CBD oil for dogs or humans as you lack many beneficial phytochemicals. CBD isolate tends to be much weaker than the other two extracts mentioned, which means you may need to administer more of it to your pet to produce similar results.
What's The Difference Between Regular CBD Oil And CBD Oil For Dogs?
The dose of CBD is typically dependent on the mammal's weight, and because our dogs weigh much less than us, CBD oils for dogs contain lower strengths of CBD.
When shopping for pet CBD oil, make sure you shop with a reputable supplier. Like many products in the pet industry, companies will try to save money by using off-shoot ingredients that can't make it to human consumption.
The hemp plant is susceptible to its growing environment, which means if the crop is grown with chemical pesticides or in contaminated soil, the toxins can end up in the final product and cause more harm than good.
While CBD oil generally uses neutral-flavored oil, full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD oil contain terpenes, aromatic plant compounds with a naturally bitter flavor. Some people and pets can be sensitive to these flavors, so you can find CBD oil products in different flavors. You might discover flavors like Tuna, Bacon, or Chicken for pets.
Why Are Pet Owners Using CBD Oils?
Since CBD oil became legal in all 50 states with the 2018 Farm Bill, it has become popular to support of various wellness goals. Since it has gentle yet effective effects and is more widely available, pet owners turn to it for their furry friends.
Some people are skeptical about the benefits of CBD oil for pets, while others swear by its healing properties. Let's look at some of the ways animal lovers are using pet CBD oil for their animals and what the research says to support its uses.
Support Joint Health In Pets
Joint health is significant for both humans and pets. Supporting joint health in our furry family members can help them stay active and playful well into their golden years. And as our pets get older, they may have a more challenging time with their joints.
CBD has been studied for its effects in blocking key inflammatory markers involved with chronic pain and inflammatory disease such as arthritis in animals . Researchers believe that inhibiting these inflammatory markers can help slow down degenerative diseases' progression to the joints, such as arthritis.
While CBD oil and CBD pet treats may be an excellent place to start to protect the joints and provide comfort, it's also crucial that you implement a healthy diet with ingredients that help to reduce inflammation.
Support Pain Relief In Pets
It's hard to see our furry friends in pain and even more challenging when we don't know how to help. There are high-quality CBD products on the market many pet owners are reaching for to provide their dogs with some relief from mild discomfort.
Some studies observed CBD inhibited pain signals to the brain to minimize discomfort from neuropathic pain . This is typically followed with a higher CBD dosage, and it's recommended that you seek advice from your veterinarian if your pet is on other medication or experiencing more than mild discomfort.
Supports Healthy Stress Levels
We all know what it's like to feel anxious. The sense of unease, the racing thoughts, the way everything feels just a little bit too much. Dogs can experience anxiety, too — and it can be just as frustrating and overwhelming for them as it is for us.
Dogs may exhibit anxious behavior like barking, chewing, pacing, and separation anxiety.
A CBD dog treat or pet CBD oil may help support healthier stress levels as CBD primarily interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This cell-signaling system plays a critical role in regulating mood and stress response.
It can support a healthy level of stress through a couple of mechanisms in preclinical trials:
- Boosting GABA activity in the brain slows down the stress response .
- Support healthy serotonin and dopamine levels for a calm and happy mood without intoxicating effects .
It may be helpful to give your fur friend CBD dog treats before car rides, visits to the groomer, or during thunderstorms to help mellow their mood. For the first few times administering CBD oils to your pets, carefully monitor them for any signs of discomfort.
Safety & Side Effects Of CBD Oil For Dogs
There's mounting evidence about the efficacy and safety of using CBD oils with dogs. Most dogs tolerate the compound quite well as long as you're using a high-quality CBD oil and in the appropriate dose.
The biggest concern with CBD oil for dogs is in the manufacturing process. It's always good to shop for CBD from reputable brands that have their products third-party tested for potential contaminants.
Our pets can't always let us know when something's not right, so it's recommended that you never leave your pet unattended after administering CBD oil.
Some of the potential side effects of dog CBD oil to look out for include:
- Poor appetite
- Skin rash (rare)
What Are The Types Of CBD Products For Dogs?
The most common CBD dog products are CBD oil/tincture and treats, but you can also find topical products to support skin irritation like chapped paws. Let's go over some of the popular options and how you can administer the products to your pets with minimal fuss.
CBD Oil/Tincture For Dogs
While you may want to share your CBD oil with your dogs, it's not always a good idea. CBD oil for humans typically has much higher potencies, making it easy to accidentally administer too much and giving your dog a negative experience.
CBD oils are an excellent option for dogs because they come in a wide range of potencies indicated by the milligrams of CBD on the bottle, and you have more control over the dosing for your pet drop by drop.
You can administer CBD oil drops directly into your dog's mouth, but you can mix it into their wet food if they're fussy. As we mentioned earlier, many flavored options like Chicken or Bacon may make the CBD oil for dogs more appealing.
CBD Dog Treats
CBD dog treats in biscuits, or soft chews are a great way to give your pet pre-measured doses of CBD disguised as a tasty treat.
Whenever you shop for CBD pet products, ensure that all the ingredients are suitable for your pet—not just CBD. Some brands may make dog biscuits with subpar ingredients—full of filler—and sprinkle some CBD extract to charge a premium. Shop with a CBD brand that cares about your dog's health as much as you do.
We prefer to use organic CBD oil and other naturally derived ingredients for a well-rounded high-quality treat that's actually good for your pet.
CBD brands are getting more and more creative with products available for pets. Some pet owners may find one product helpful, especially in dry or frigid climates, are CBD topicals like balms and creams for your dog's paws.
Cold weather and salt on the road can leave your pet's pads chapped and chaffed. CBD balms for dogs are made with a beeswax base to help lock in moisture in the delicate skin on the paws. CBD interacts with endocannabinoid receptors in the skin tissue to support the skin organ's function in regulating inflammation and healing function.
Some CBD oils are made for conditioning the fur and skin for a healthier-looking coat. Since CBD doesn't enter the bloodstream when applied topically, it won't deliver on some of the benefits we outlined in the benefits section of this article. Still, it may help with some localized discomfort and help with the quality of their coat.
Is Organic Hemp Oil The Same As CBD Oil For Dogs?
Unfortunately, the CBD industry is riddled with scammers. There are brands selling hemp oil as CBD oil products to unassuming customers.
Hemp oil or hemp seed oil comes from a different part of the hemp plant than where CBD is produced. CBD and other cannabinoids are found in the resin glands on the flowers, while hemp oil comes from pressing the seeds to release their natural oils.
While organic hemp oil may have some nutritional benefits, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, hemp seeds don't contain any cannabinoids to lend any concessions to the endocannabinoid system. The hemp seed oil shouldn't cost nearly as much as CBD oil.
To make sure you're purchasing CBD oil for dogs and not just regular hemp seed oil, look to see the certificate of analysis showing how much CBD is contained in the product.
How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog?
CBD dosage is often based on weight—but there can be various other factors that affect CBD dosings, such as age and lifestyle.
Like humans, it can take some experimentation to find the correct dose, but an excellent place to start is to base the amount on your pet's weight and slowly work your way up over a few weeks.
Administer the first low dose to your dog and monitor their behavior to ensure you don't see any discomfort. If you find that your dog was too sensitive to the first dose—they're dizzy, not eating, or sleepy—you may want to decrease it.
It's recommended that you start with 0.25 MG of CBD for each Lbs your pet weights and work your way up by 0.50 MG more or less, depending on your pet's needs.
How To Choose The Best Rated CBD Oils For Dogs
When you Google "the best CBD oils for dogs," you'll find no shortage of CBD brands to shop from. The trouble is shopping for a quality CBD oil that also provides you with value.
We've outlined a quick shopping guide for you to avoid wasting your hard-earned cash with ineffective or scam CBD products to avoid wasting your hard-earned money.
Choose Full Spectrum CBD or Broad Spectrum CBD
Most cannabis experts and veterinarians agree that you'll get the best CBD oils that should contain various naturally occurring phytocannabinoids for the entourage effect.
While CBD isolate products may appear most cost-effective, you'll need more of the product to reach the same level of effects because it lacks the entourage effect.
It should be noted that full spectrum CBD oil will contain up to 0.3% THC, which shouldn't be an issue for most pets, but in case your veterinarian advises against full spectrum CBD oil, you can choose broad spectrum CBD.
Keep in mind that the CBD dosage for full spectrum CBD oil or broad spectrum will be much less than you would with isolate CBD oil due to the compounding effects of the other compounds. This will be a better value, but it should provide your dog with a better overall CBD experience.
Other Ingredients In The CBD Products
The best CBD oils will also contain other high-quality ingredients to support the effects of CBD.
A common problem we've come across in the industry is sub-par MCT oil close to the expiration date to use poor-quality oils. Since we all want what's best for our animals, we recommend shopping for your pet products with brands that have a love for animals too.
For pet treats especially, it's easy to fill the soft chew or biscuits with fillers rather than ingredients that are natural and good for your dog's health. We always say that the simpler the ingredient list, the better.
Potency Of The CBD Products
CBD products are available in many different strengths, and it's essential to be aware of how strong the product is before feeding it to your dog.
The CBD content should be labeled in MG on the bottle, and the brand should tell you how much each dropper full or treat delivers. If the product has too little CBD—it may not achieve the benefits your pets needs. However, too much CBD could result in an uncomfortable experience.
Pet oils are perhaps the most straightforward product to work with when it comes you're first figuring out your pet's dose. For smaller dogs (less than 15 lbs), start with a CBD strength of 150 MG (per 30 mL of oil).
For medium to bigger dogs around 30-50 lbs, you may want a more substantial strength of around 300–600 MG of CBD.
Third-Party Lab Certification
Third-party lab testing isn't mandatory in the CBD industry, but it's become the best practice for ensuring high-quality CBD oils and customer transparency.
You can find most third-party lab certifications on the company's website. It should tell you the exact amount of CBD the product contains and the presence of potential contaminants. Referencing the lab test is the only way you can be assured of the product's quality and potency.
When reading the certification, make sure the contaminant report reads "ND" or "Not Detected" for heavy metals, pesticides, solvents, and mold.
If you purchased a full spectrum or broad spectrum CBD oil, ensure that the THC content is well within the range—below 0.3% THC for FS and 0% for BS.
You also want to read that these CBD extracts have a range of phytochemicals such as terpenes and other cannabinoids (CBG, CBC, CBN).
Shop For Value With Quality
CBD oil price points are always all over the map. To determine the value of your CBD products across different brands, it's helpful to calculate the cost of mg of CBD in the bottle because some CBD products may appear to be a good value at first glance until you realize you're paying a lot more for the cost per mg.
The best quality CBD oil for dogs is around $0.05–$0.12 per MG of CBD oil (full spectrum CBD/ broad spectrum CBD).
Often times you'll find a much better value for shopping with a CBD oil with a higher potency. You would just need to adjust the CBD dosage accordingly to ensure you're not giving your pet way too much.
Customer Service & Return Policy
When it comes to shopping with any online brand, a big red flag is terrible customer service, especially with something as important as health and wellness products.
Read reviews outside of the company website on forums and review sites that can glimpse how the brand treats its customers. If the company is challenging to get ahold of or generally has an overall negative review, it's probably best you shop elsewhere for your CBD products—there's no shortage of CBD brands.
A good return policy is also a bonus. It's not very common, but it also gives you peace of mind when shopping because if the product doesn't work out for you and your pet, you can always return or exchange it.
Neurogan Best CBD Oils For Dogs
We love our pets at Neurogan, so we work with the best organic hemp farmers in the United States and product formulators to create CBD products for dogs, cats, and horses that are gentle, safe, and effective at affordable prices.
For CBD dog products, we have CBD oils and treats available in both full spectrum and broad spectrum options because we strongly believe in the benefits of the entourage effect for supporting overall endocannabinoid function in mammals based on scientific literature.
Our pet products use the same quality of CBD extract and ingredients we use in our human-grade products to ensure the CBD oil we give our dogs is of superior quality.
All our products also come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If your pet isn't happy with their CBD dog treat or oil, reach out to our customer service team and we'll make it right.
The Takeaway: Shopping CBD Oil For Dogs
Dog owners are finding a lot of benefits in using high-quality CBD products as part of their dog's wellness routine, from supporting comfort, curbing anxious behavior, and supporting joint health.
Unfortunately, there's still a lot of misinformation about what CBD oil for dogs can and can't do. CBD tincture should not replace veterinary care. While CBD has been found safe and effective, it's not a cure-all compound. If your pet is in distress, you must get them the professional help they need to be comfortable.
When it comes to shopping for the best CBD oil for dogs, do your research on the brand and look into exactly what's in the product by referring to the third-party lab tests. A general rule for us as pet lovers is to not administer any CBD products we wouldn't eat ourselves.
If you're interested in learning more about CBD oils for dogs or other pets, dosing, and how to administer these products to your dogs, you can check out our blog.
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