Does Cannabis Work For Dogs?

4 min read
marijuana for dogs

The cannabis industry is an increasingly popular market that has no signs of slowing down. CBD is one part of this industry that has expanded at an exponential rate. In 2018, the global CBD market was valued at almost $3.1 million. By 2024, leading cannabis researchers suggest that CBD sales in the United States alone could surpass $20 billion. Much of this prediction is due to the increase of CBD in pets, and most specifically dogs. The hot debate amongst dog owners is whether or not CBD works for their pet, or if CBD is helpful or hurtful to their companions. As exciting as it sounds to include fur babies into your cannabis-related adventures, there is pertinent information you should know before dosing your pet. For a quick refresher on CBD and how to take cannabidiol for yourself, here are six ways to consume CBD.

THC vs CBD for dogs

If you need a refresher, THC and CBD both come from the same plant. However, despite both being cannabinoids, THC is extracted from the marijuana plant, while CBD can come from both marijuana and hemp plants. The main purpose of CBD consumption in pets is to treat pain, anxiety, and seizures. It is best to use hemp-sourced CBD since it contains little-to-no psychoactive ingredients. This is very important to know and understand, as feeding your dog THC-infused anything could cause abnormal effects. Think about the worst high you’ve ever had and then imagine your dog feeling those same effects - need I go on? CBD is a very beneficial product, but only when used correctly. For the time being, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not approved CBD for use in animals and has not issued dosing recommendations, so usage should be consulted by your pet’s veterinarian, as it may interact with any existing medication your pet is taking. 

dog treat cbd


Does CBD work for dogs?

With the lack of studies available to prove scientific evidence involving CBD, it is difficult to say whether CBD concretely works for dogs or if they just make them tired enough that it is misinterpreted as a viable solution. Although there are no studies to officially put the ongoing debate to rest, there are several true-life stories where owners have given CBD to their dogs and experienced a massive shift in mood, daily activity, and overall well-being. 

When should you give your dog CBD?

As a pet owner, you are most aware of your dog’s behavior and daily habits so this is entirely your choice. Dog owners could consider the addition of CBD when their dog has anxiety, nausea, digestion issues, seizures, chronic inflammation, and severe pain. For example, many elderly dogs have a lot of these symptoms and to ease the pain of their day to day, CBD is incorporated into a dog’s diet based on his or her condition. 

How should you give your dog CBD?

There are many ways to administer CBD to your dog: topicals, oral sprays, and even treats! Consulting with your dog’s veterinarian is the safest approach to slowly introducing CBD into your dog’s life. The best way to begin your dog on a CBD regimen is to start out in small doses (recommended by his/her vet) and monitor the reaction your dog has. If you are giving your pet CBD for pain, you should monitor what his/her pain level is like and any other irregular behavior that might occur. 

Can you give your dog human CBD oil?

Technically, yes. However, there are many things to consider when administering human CBD oil to your dog. First, human CBD is more concentrated and recommends a much higher dosage than what a dog needs. Secondly, human CBD can contain artificial flavorings and sweeteners that contain Xylitol, which can be deadly to canines. It is best to look for CBD oils that are 100% CBD and contain no other additives. Again, with a lack of scientific studies, it is difficult to properly dose your dog so a veterinarian will be your most ideal resource.

pug in hoodie

So, should you give your dog CBD?

It is never an easy choice for making decisions when it comes to Charlie’s health. He’s probably been part of your life for years, I bet you couldn’t imagine yourself without your fur baby. You want them to have the best life, because let’s be honest - most of us prefer our fur babies over our own family and friends. It is great to be cautious of this decision as it will impact your dog’s life, but by following the proper protocol there are a lot of benefits for you and your pup. A nervous dog could have a meaningful solution to his anxiety, or a dog with chronic pain could have a means of being able to sleep without waking up to every ailment. A dog with seizures could be able to have a somewhat normal day, and a dog that hasn’t been able to eat properly could finally be able to keep a meal down. 

There are so many doubts surrounding the conversation of CBD. While there are a lot of scientific studies and evidence to support THC and its benefits, there is not much regarding CBD yet, so if you choose to bring your dog onto the cannabinoids train, remember to start out slow and speak to your vet. See what works and go from there!

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