Over the last few years, CBD use has increased among pets, particularly dogs and cats.
More and more dog owners are turning to CBD to treat different ailments and conditions in their dogs. However, the rise in CBD use has also led to a corresponding rise in its safe use questions.
One of the most frequently asked dog owners’ questions is, ‘how much CBD oil should I give my dog?’ This is understandable because no one wants to risk giving too much CBD to their furry friend, especially with its close ties to marijuana.
For those searching for the answer to this question, you have come to the right place.
Many dog owners are also curious about how to avoid and manage overdose of CBD in their dogs. This article will also consider that, as well as other essential aspects of CBD administration to dogs.
CBD Oil for Dogs
CBD stands for Cannabidiol, and it is a type of cannabinoid, a group of chemical compounds found naturally in the cannabis plant, Cannabis Sativa. Hence, CBD is not psychoactive and will not give that feeling of ‘high’ in dogs.
While CBD use is steadily on the rise today, there still isn’t much research to support its use in dogs. In fact, some states don’t permit veterinary doctors to recommend them to users, let alone prescribe them. The FDA also has not approved its use in pets, including dogs and cats. Notwithstanding, the few studies available are showing promising results.
The lack of approval by the FDA doesn’t make them useless or harmful; far from it. You can give your dog CBD oil. CBD has been shown to have several benefits in dogs, some of which we will consider below.
Benefits of CBD to Dogs
Dogs may start to get increasingly anxious as they age. Their responses to stimuli in their environment may change. The resultant effects are the dog becoming easily stressed and exhibiting unnecessary behaviors, like barking loudly for no reason. The use of CBD in reducing anxiety is because of its easy access to the dog’s endocannabinoid system, responsible for regulating emotions in dogs.
2.Treatment of Osteoarthritis
According to research, CBD can help in the treatment of osteoarthritis in dogs. About 80% of dogs that took CBD doses in that research showed better mobility and reduced arthritic pain. This property of CBD is primarily due to its anti-inflammatory properties, which lowers inflammation around joints. Note, though, that CBD is not a cure for arthritis. It would be best if you still visited a vet.
3.Lowers Occurrence of Seizures
There is not nearly enough research to confirm that CBD alone can actually lower the occurrence of seizures in dogs. However, it is believed that adding CBD to seizure medications can potentiate the effect of seizure medications. The result of this drug combination is a reduction in the seizures epileptic dogs experienced.
If you have an aging dog, you may have noticed that they aren’t as enthusiastic about eating as they were some years back. Some may eat but get nauseated and vomit after some time. Both of these are unfavorable, especially for aging dogs. Because, as with humans, proper nutrition is vital in maintaining the immune system of dogs. While CBD itself isn’t food and shouldn’t be given as one, it can help dogs eat more. It does this by stimulating their appetite. CBD can also prevent vomiting in dogs by suppressing nausea.
5.Retards Cancer Progression
Studies have shown that CBD can help retard the growth of cancerous cells. It can also help lower the side effects that accompany many cancer medications. While these studies are not fool-proof, recent results are encouraging.
How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog?
CBD oil is obviously beneficial to your dog. But there are still several factors that come into play when exploring the full benefits of CBD oil for dogs. Perhaps the most important of these factors is the correct CBD dosage for dogs.
Many dog owners ask this question a lot but often complain of the different answers they get. What some products recommend are different from what others recommend. Some products don’t even recommend anything at all. The dosage chart of a company or CBD product may also differ from another company’s.
These get dog owners confused, with many of them backing out from using CBD oils altogether. But exactly how much should you give your dogs?
If you were expecting a straightforward answer, you’re about to be disappointed. To start with, the amount to give depends on your dog’s weight. You cannot expect to give a 150-lbs dog the same amount you’ll give a 30-lbs dog. This is why you must have weighed your dog before using CBD oils. Don’t just estimate or guess.
Then to the moment of truth – the recommended dose is one to two mg of CBD oil per 10 pounds. You’re probably thinking, ‘that is a straightforward answer!’ Well, not quite. Despite this recommended value, there is no one-size-fits-all value. Before you get confused, it simply means this value may not apply to all dogs.
All dogs don’t react the same way to the same CBD dosage. This means your dog that weighs 50 pounds may react differently to your neighbor’s that also weighs 50 pounds. Many factors are responsible for this.
One of these factors is, of course, the breed of the dog. But even dogs of the same breed may react differently to CBD. Other common factors are the age of the dog, activity level, and condition of the dog.
Note that of all the factors mentioned, your dog’s weight is the most important. Large dogs will need a higher dosage of CBD oil per day than small dogs. For dogs that weigh the same, the other factors come into play. For example, an active dog with a high metabolism rate may need more CBD oil than a dormant one with a slow rate of metabolism.
So, to be on the safe side, the starting point should be one mg of CBD oil per ten pounds of your dog’s weight.
If you don’t notice any adverse reactions or side effects, you can slowly increase CBD dosage to two mg. Some dogs can even take up to three mg of CBD oil but don’t go beyond this. And it would help if you also were very wary about nearing this 3mg mark.
Administering the Right Dose of CBD
It is one thing to know the right dose to administer; it is another entirely to administer it properly. CBD oils typically come in different concentrations. CBD oil products usually state the total amount of CBD they contain on their container labels, usually in milligrams, mg. This piece of information is crucial when administering CBD oil to your dog.
Therefore, make sure you only buy products that clearly state the amount of CBD they contain.
Then to the actual administration of the oil. This may get a bit technical, so pay close attention. Start by checking the total amount of CBD oil in the product. To make it easier to understand, let’s use a product, X, to demonstrate. Assume product X has 500mg of CBD.
The next step is to check the volume of the bottle’s oil, usually stated in milliliters, ml.
This is different from the total CBD content. How so?
The CBD content in milligrams is the amount of CBD in the oil. The volume in milliliters is the total amount of oil in the bottle. That’s oversimplifying it, but it should do the trick. Let’s assume our product X is a 25ml bottle.
We can tell that our product X contains 20mg of CBD per ml of oil with simple maths. We got that by dividing the CBD content by the volume of the bottle.
After this, you should weigh your dog if you haven’t already. Then from the weight of the dog, you can tell how much CBD it needs. Earlier, we stated that you should start administration at a dosage of 1mg per ten pounds. If your dog weighs 20 lbs, you are going to need two mg of CBD oil.
Going back to our product X, we calculated that it contains 20mg of CBD per ml. To get the two mg of CBD oil your dog needs, you will need 0.1ml of the oil. You can use this simple calculation to administer the right dose of CBD oil to your dog.
Remember that you can work your way up to around two mg if your dog doesn’t react negatively to one mg. You can give the right dose of CBD oil twice a day. But make sure you don’t exceed five mg of CBD oil per day. You can give the oils as drops.
How Long Do CBD Doses Last?
The duration of CBD doses also varies in dogs.
However, they generally last between four to eight hours. One of the most critical factors that come into play here is the age of the dog.
As dogs reach their older years, it starts to take longer for foods and drugs to digest. Consequently, you may need to wait longer to administer the next CBD oil dose in older dogs. Other factors, like breed and activity level, also come into play.
CBD Overdose in Dogs
You must know the overdose of drugs can be harmful to your dog. Overdose is especially bad for animals because they can’t properly communicate their symptoms. The implication of this is lots of damage may have been done before you even notice it.
There’s good news, though. While the right dosage is around 2mg per 10 pounds, higher doses are nowhere near being fatal. Permanent damage is also unlikely. This is due to the non-psychoactive nature of CBD. Still, it isn’t ideal for giving higher doses of CBD oil to your dog.
While CBD overdose will not seriously harm your dog, THC overdose can be devastating. That isn’t much of a surprise, as even small quantities of THC can harm your dog.
As such, you need to be very careful with your drugs. Always keep them out of reach, and ensure you go the extra mile if you have very energetic and naturally curious dogs. You also should ensure you get the weight of your dog taken before administering CBD.
Should I Give CBD Oil with THC to My Dog?
CBD and THC are related in that they are both cannabinoids and extracted from the cannabis plant. However, the effects they give are very different. For starters, THC is psychoactive while CBD is not.
THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, is the substance that gets people high in marijuana. CBD, on the other hand, although containing tiny amounts of THC, will not get you high. The safe amount of THC in CBD is 0.3% or lower.
To answer the topic question – should you give CBD oils with THC to dogs? Consider the following side effects THC brings and decide for yourself.
- Excessive barking
- Dilation of pupils
- Anomalous heart rate
- Reduced blood pressure
- Abnormal body temperature
- Loss of consciousness
- Poor breathing
- Loss of coordination
It’s not a difficult answer to infer.
But to be clear, the answer is no. You must not, under any circumstance, give any amount of THC to your dog. When buying CBD products, make sure you look carefully at their constituents. If you spot THC, then stay off completely.
Symptoms of CBD Overdose in Dogs
Even though no one wants them, an overdose may happen, especially during the early stages of CBD administration. Below are symptoms you should look out for in your dog to tell a likely overdose.
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Gastrointestinal upsets
In larger overdose cases, the dog may lose balance and be unable to stand or walk right, sedation may set in, and poor control over urination.
Managing CBD Overdose in Dogs
As earlier mentioned, an overdose of CBD isn’t anything too serious. Most dogs feel better after a while and just ‘run it off.’ However, substantial ingestion of CBD may require medical attention, particularly if there are gastrointestinal problems.
The first step to controlling the situation is isolating the dog. This makes sense, as dogs in this state are more prone to injuries that may cause even worse conditions. You don’t have to load up your dog with drugs; proper rest and your affection will go a long way.
If you suspect that your dog may have ingested THC, you should visit your vet immediately. First aid care you can give are anti-emetics and electrolyte water.
Preventing CBD Overdose in Dogs
To start with, keep drugs out of sight at all times. Don’t take any chances, even if the dog is trained. Then make sure you adhere strictly to the proper dosage, which is one to two mg of CBD oil per 10 pounds.
Another way to prevent CBD overdose is by buying quality CBD oil products.
This may be a little tricky as vets generally don’t recommend them. Still, you have to be smart when purchasing. One thing you must look out for in any CBD oil product is proper labeling. If the product isn’t labeled, don’t buy it. If you also see THC among the ingredients, you should steer clear of such a product.
The best products to buy are ones with some certification, like a certificate of analysis. You can also ask for recommendations from quality dog breeders.
Another thing you should look out for in the product is the mode of administration. CBD oil is typically given in drops. As such, go for bottles that have a proper mechanism for dropping oils directly to your dog’s tongue.
CBD is fast gaining prominence among dogs, our little furry friend. Although approval by the FDA is pending, you can still give your dog CBD oil. It has been shown to have several benefits for dogs, especially aging dogs.
Despite their popularity, many dog owners still don’t know the right amount to administer to their dogs. We recommend one to two mg of CBD oil per ten pounds of your dog’s weight.
Note that your dog may react differently from other dogs, and this is perfectly normal. As such, start your dosage of CBD low and slowly work your way up. Don’t just blindly follow a dosage chart. If you notice your dog cannot handle the dose of CBD you are giving, feel free to reduce it.
In any case, though, do not give more than three mg of CBD oil per ten pounds of dog weight.
Thank you for reading!