All responsible pet owners want to raise their furry friends with their health and happiness in mind. This is probably why you’ve stumbled across this guide for CBD when looking for a more natural way to alleviate your pup’s pain and anxiety, but is CBD actually safe for them to use?
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THC Vs. CBD: Know the Difference
Many pet owners mix up THC and CBD, but they’re completely different substances. While both can be found in the marijuana plant, THC is the psychoactive part. Unless CBD also contains THC, neither you nor your pup will get high. Never give your dog any product containing THC.
Is It Safe to Give CBD to Your Dog?
CBD shares the same metabolic pathway as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like Rimadyl and ibuprofen. For this reason, CBD produces a similar effect on the system as Advil, meaning it temporarily relieves minor aches and pains and arthritis symptoms.
While the jury is out as to whether CBD can help dogs relieve pain and anxiety and reduce seizures, studies have shown that it’s effective for these issues. With that said, many of these studies will use CBD in conjunction with other medications, so more research must be done.
According to a 2020 report, pure CBD is safe to use for dogs. With that said, you should consult a veterinarian first before giving your dog treats, oils, or any product containing CBD. You should also only use trusted CBD brands to ensure that your pup stays safe and healthy.
Is It Legal to Give CBD to Your Dog?
Some veterinarians are reluctant to suggest CBD due to potential legal repercussions and a lack of evidence that it’s helpful. While CBD isn’t approved by the FDA, neither are common supplements that vets often prescribe, such as fish oil, glucosamine, and numerous others.
Veterinarians are legally allowed to suggest CBD to pet owners, but this was a recent change, so you may find that they’re scared to bring up the topic. However, if pet owners bring up the topic of CBD use, vets are more than eager to discuss it and suggest the right dosage.
5 Best Practices for Proper CBD Use for Dogs
While it’s safe for most dogs to consume CBD (unless they have an allergy), it’s still a good idea to learn how to use it properly. While CBD overdose is incredibly rare, it still pays to be safe.
1. Consult with Your Vet
Before you start giving your dog CBD, it’s important to talk to a professional. Your vet can help you understand if CBD is appropriate for your pet and give guidance on the best dose and product. They’re more equipped to give your pup a dose based on their height and weight.
2. Choose High-Quality Products
Look for reputable and trusted CBD brands for dogs that have undergone third-party testing. This ensures that the product contains the advertised amount of CBD and is free from harmful contaminants. Always follow the instructions provided on the package and your veterinarian.
3. Start with a Low Dose
When you begin giving your dog CBD, start small and gradually increase the dosage over time. This enables you to monitor their reaction in case of any adverse effects or allergies. It’s also a good idea to be consistent, as you’ll minimize potential risks related to stopping and starting.
4. Observe Before Increasing the Dosage
Keep an eye on any changes in your dog’s health and behavior after administering CBD. If they’re not getting relief from their symptoms, or if you notice any side effects, consult with your vet before increasing the dose. Don’t forget to monitor interactions with other medications.
5. Store Properly
Keep the CBD oil in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight or heat sources, as light and heat may degrade its effectiveness over time. Always keep it in its original packaging, as these are often UV-protect bottles that prevent sun and other contaminants from affecting the CBD.
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