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Is CBD Safe for Dogs?

Is CBD Safe for Dogs?

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As dog owners, we all tend to go above and beyond when caring for our furballs, especially when they are feeling out of sorts. We'll try anything to get them to feel better, which is why many of us have considered giving hemp-derived CBD treats and oils to our pups. But is CBD safe for dogs?

There is a growing body of research showing that CBD is well tolerated by our canine companions. While your vet should always have the final word on the best course of action, CBD may be worth their consideration.

Curious? Here's what we know so far.

What Is CBD?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. It is one of over 100 cannabinoids this plant produces, including both hemp and marijuana types (although CBD is more predominant in hemp varieties).

Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis that you may have also heard about, CBD does not have any stimulating effects. When it comes to dogs, the other critical difference between THC and CBD is that the latter is non-toxic.

What Are the Effects of CBD?

We still need more time and scientific investigation to fully understand the effects of CBD. But that doesn't mean its benefits are a complete mystery. There is already a lot of preliminary study about CBD's safety profile and therapeutic potential — and that doesn't just go for humans, but dogs too.

Therapeutic Benefits 

Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, a lot of interesting research is coming out about how CBD could help dogs. Veterinary researchers are currently exploring how CBD may impact physical discomfort and inflammation. CBD also has promising results for improving stress, sleep, and mood.

You aren't the only one who sees parallels between CBD’s effects on people and pups. Let's look at a few of the more interesting outcomes published so far about CBD and dogs. 

CBD and Stress 

One study published in 2023 looked at how dogs react to stress when left alone or traveling in a car and whether a single dose of THC-free CBD could help reduce this stress. Dogs were divided into two groups, one left alone in a familiar room and the other taken on a short car journey. 

Researchers discovered that both scenarios caused stress, with the car journey causing more stress overall. However, no matter the scenario, the CBD treatment improved stress measures compared to a placebo for some of the dogs.

CBD and Physical Discomfort

Another study published in Frontiers of Veterinary Sciences looked at the effects of full-spectrum CBD on dogs with osteoarthritis. After four weeks, both vets and dog owners reported no negative reactions to the CBD treatment. They also noticed significant reductions in discomfort and increases in activity in the dogs

CBD and Seizures

In 2019, the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association published a study on using CBD oil to reduce seizures in dogs with severe epilepsy. In this study, 26 dogs were split into two groups: One received CBD oil daily, and the other received a placebo. According to the results, "a significant reduction in seizure frequency was achieved for dogs in the CBD group."

While these results are very exciting for dog owners, it's always important to remember that the effects will vary from one dog to the next. CBD products are not intended to treat any disease or condition.

Is CBD Safe for Dogs?

Woman caressing her golden retriever affectionately

When it comes to the health of our furry friends, the best source of information will always be your vet, and with so much discussion about CBD, you won't be the only one quizzing your veterinarian on the subject. Across the country, vets are increasingly fielding questions from dog owners about whether CBD is a good idea for their four-legged children. 

Gradually, a consensus has evolved. According to most major animal welfare and veterinarian organizations, CBD is safe for your dog

The Humane Society states it most clearly: "Yes, CBD and hemp products are safe for pets." The American Veterinary Medical Association has also noted that "CBD appear[s] to hold therapeutic promise in areas such as the treatment of epilepsy and the management of pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis." Still, it is also careful to say that "the available scientific evidence pertaining to their use in animals is currently limited." 

Finally, the Canadian Association of Veterinary Cannabinoid Medicine encourages more study but agrees, "Based on anecdotal reports, and studies done to date, it appears that CBD is well tolerated."

What Are the Risks?

Expert opinions are one thing, but nothing replaces speaking directly to your vet. Your veterinarian knows your dog's health history and will always offer the best guidance on how to proceed. Remember, all products for your dog, whether vet-approved or not, come with the risk of side effects

What we know so far about the risks of CBD for dogs is that it seems to alter how the liver metabolizes certain other compounds, including medications. This means if your dog is already taking a prescription, CBD may alter its effectiveness. The other reported side effects are generally mild. According to the American Kennel Club, "The worst CBD has been documented to do is cause diarrhea." 

Again, dogs may tolerate CBD well, but your vet will know best.

Dog CBD Products: Tasty Treats and Tinctures

dog sitting next to cbd dog treats

Shopping online, you will find a wide variety of 
dog DBD products, from oil tinctures to chews and even topical joint creams. However, if you're in the market for veterinarian-formulated CBD dog treats, you've come to the right place.

At Hometown Hero, we worked with a veterinarian to create our Calming CBD Dog Treats with real full-spectrum CBD (not generic hempseed oil with no cannabinoids) to offer your four-legged friend comfort from joint pain and external stressors such as:
  • Thunderstorms
  • Fireworks
  • Unfamiliar People
  • Unfamiliar Places
  • Fright-Induced Aggression
  • Travel
And yes, that's 20mg of full-spectrum CBD per piece, which contains the whole profile of the hemp plant, offering greater effectiveness compared to CBD isolate or broad-spectrum CBD. Although full-spectrum CBD does contain THC, it's at such a trace amount that if consumed at the recommended amounts listed on the bag, it should not deliver negative effects (again, we developed these treats with a real veterinarian.) That said, they are only recommended for dogs 10 pounds and over.

But besides the hemp-derived relaxation for your pup, these treats also offer premium flavor. They were made with all-natural, human-grade ingredients to deliver the savory delight of a  Chicken Dinner or sweet, creamy Peanut Butter goodness. 

CBD for Dogs: A Safe and Vet-Approved Regimen for Relief

Can dogs have CBD? The short answer is yes! The research tells us that CBD is perfectly safe for dogs and well-tolerated with mild side effects. Just remember to consult your veterinarian about any new CBD treats or tinctures to ensure they’re the best options for your canine companion.

To all the dog moms and dog dads out there, until next time. Happy exploring, and mind your mind.

FDA Disclaimer:
 The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from health care practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requires this notice.

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