The optimal CBD dosage for dogs depends on multiple factors, so it’s unique for each pup. That’s why we’ll go into detail and show you how to determine the best amount of CBD for your pet.

In their search for wellness, people put their trust in holistic natural medications. That’s where CBD comes in. It’s a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant. While its effects on the body haven’t been studied well yet, we’re seeing promising results showing its efficacy in decreasing pain, anxiety, and stress both for us and our furry best friends.

To better understand what all of this means, let’s cover the basics: 

What Is CBD?

Discovered in 1940, cannabidiol, or simply CBD is a compound found in the cannabis plant. It accounts for up to 40% of the cannabis extract.

Even though scientific studies remain inconclusive, CBD gains more and more popularity for its positive effect on stress, anxiety, and pain

The compound interacts with the mammalian endocannabinoid system (ECG), which manages metabolism, sleep, hormonal regulation, and stress.

When CBD interacts with the ECG receptors, it activates several molecular pathways that may reduce pain, situational anxiety, and depression.

So, can you give dogs CBD oil for the same reasons people take it? The short answer is yes. 

Did you know that this compound has the potential to reduce seizures in epileptic dogs? And that’s just one of the many interesting facts about CBD for animals

CBD dog studies are still in their infancy, so you won’t find any official dosage guidelines yet. But depending on your dog’s weight and the severity of its condition, we’ll show you how to calculate the optimal dosage.

Factors in Determining the CBD Dosage

Each CBD pet product company has its own guidelines. On top of that, dogs have different needs, so there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. That said, two main factors determine the best dosage for CBD for dogs. 

The Weight of Your Dog

That’s the main criteria when deciding on the proper CBD dosage —  the bigger the dog, the higher the amount.

But weight doesn’t always correspond to your pup’s CBD needs. Some dogs need as little as 0.2mg per pound of body weight. Others, like those with severe conditions, might require a much higher amount. 

That’s why it’s essential to start slow and increase the dose only when needed.

The Severity of the Condition 

To find out the ideal CBD dosage for dogs, you have to consider your reason for the medication.

If your dog’s healthy, and you’re giving it CBD simply for overall wellness, the amount will be in the lower range. But when your pup suffers from arthritis, a higher CBD dose will alleviate its pain better.

Activity Level

The correct CBD oil dosage for dogs also depends on the energy your pet has. 

Depending on how fast your dog can metabolize, the compound will stay in its system for about six to eight hours. Generally, the more active the dog, the faster its metabolism will be. So, more energetic breeds will process the CBD quicker than the less active ones.

As senior dogs have a slower metabolism, they won’t need CBD supplementation often. 

Underlying Health Conditions 

That’s another factor to consider when determining the correct dosage of CBD for dogs.

For instance, liver or kidney issues might interfere with the CBD metabolism in your dog. The compound can also hinder some medications that are processed in the liver.

So, if your puppy has any underlying health issues, you should talk with your vet before giving it CBD.

marijuana seeds and cbd oil bottle

How Much CBD Should You Give Your Dog?

Most CBD companies recommend a CBD dosage for dogs in mg per pound. A good beginner’s dose is 0.2mg of CBD per pound of body weight.

That said, some studies on dogs with osteoarthritis suggest a higher dosage of 1mg per pound twice a day. This makes 2mg of CBD per pound a day, which is ten times more than the beginner’s dose.

The condition you’re trying to fight matters most.

How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog After the Beginner’s Dose?

You should proceed entirely based on your dog’s needs.

A low dose of 0.2mg per pound is ideal for overall health. But when your pup’s experiencing moderate pain, anxiety, or stress, you can opt for a medium dosage of 0.3 or 0.4mg CBD per pound. Finally, if your pet suffers severe pain episodes, slowly increase the dose to the high end, which is up to 0.5mg per pound daily or as often as needed.

Depending on your dog’s reaction to CBD, you can always increase or decrease the amount. But make sure to keep an eye on your pet for a few hours after administration to decide whether they need more or less. 

How to Calculate the Optimal CBD Oil Dosage for Dogs?

Always start low. Some dogs can’t tolerate high CBD doses and could have an adverse reaction, like nausea or diarrhea. Still, it happens rarely.

So, how can you determine the correct dosage for your dog? It’s pretty straightforward.

Firstly, you should know your dog’s weight. It’s best if you measure it in a place with higher accuracy, like the vet’s office. 

Then, if it weighs 20lbs, you’ll need to multiply your pet’s weight by 0.2 mg, which is generally considered a good starting point. The result would be 4mg of CBD per day. The CBD dosage for pain is higher than that, so read on to find out more.

But how do you know the amount of oil that will contain 4mg? 

Most CBD oils come in 30ml bottles. Each brand offers different CBD amounts, but the most frequent ones are 250mg, 500mg, and 1000mg.

So, in a 30ml bottle of 250mg CBD, there’s about 8 mg of CBD per ml. And if your dog only needs 4mg a day, you have to give them only 0.5ml of the oil.

CBD Dosage for Dogs by Weight

When shopping for CBD products online, know that most companies will have a CBD dosage chart on their website. It’s best to follow the specific guidelines. But in case you can’t find the chart, here’s one we created for general use. 

Bear in mind that’s only an example. Every dog is unique and has individual CBD requirements. 

Weight (lbs)Low (General well-being) 0.2mg CBD/lbMedium (anxiety, stress, low appetite, medium/occasional pain, etc) 0.3mg CBD/lbHigh (severe pain, arthritis, etc.) 0.5mg CBD/lb
20.40.61
511.52.5
10235
204610
50101525
60121830
100203050
150304575

Fig 1. CBD oil for dogs dosage chart. 

What to Look for in a CBD Dog Product?

With an increased CBD demand and the booming alternative medicine market, fake products are everywhere

That’s why you should consider the following when looking for the ideal CBD supplement for your furry friend.

Is the Provider Reliable?

Check the reviews on Trustpilot or ask your vet if they’ve heard of the company.

Another detail to look for is information about the provider’s manufacturing process. Companies with high ethical standards will make it readily available on their websites.

Was the Product Tested For Quality and Purity by Third-Party Labs?

Good quality CBD products usually undergo lab testing for harmful bacteria, pesticides, or molds. If asked, the providers should supply you with a certificate proving the quality of their CBD products.

How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog?

A trustworthy provider should be able to guide you through the product-specific details.

If they can’t or don’t answer, better not waste your money and time on these products. There are plenty of other options. 

What Oil Base for CBD Products Do They Use?

Base oils make CBD easier to digest.

That’s how you can spot poor quality products right away. Take a look at the label. If you see alcohol as the base for CBD, don’t buy it.

Some suitable CBD bases are hemp, coconut, and olive oils.

giving cbd oil to a dog

Types of CBD Products for Dogs

Now that you know how to calculate the optimal CBD oil dosage for dogs, you’re ready to dive into the different CBD dog product options.

The most common ones are oils, tinctures, edibles (treats or chews), pills, and topical creams.

You can check their pros and cons, as well as our best recommendations below. 

Edibles

These are arguably the most common CBD dog products. You can easily estimate the CBD biscuits dosage for dogs by following the oils guidelines.

The difference here is that some treats can be difficult to break and measure precisely. That’s why they’re recommended for bigger dogs, requiring higher CBD doses. 

But soft CBD chews are also becoming a thing. They’re perfect for puppies, as they can be divided and measured with no trouble.

Our top recommendation for an incredible treat with CBD for dogs is the Hemp dog treats by HempMy PET. They have a large dog formula with pumpkin, which is infused with 5mg of high-quality CBD. If you have a puppy, you can try the 2mg CBD pumpkin harvest biscuits for small dogs.

Plus, HempMy PET makes its CBD treats in small batches, using only the finest ingredients.

If you also have a cat, there are various CBD cat treats for anxiety relief and joint pain, too. 

CBD Oils and Tinctures

CBD dosage for dogs is easy to estimate in oils and tinctures. The bottles come with pipettes, making the dosing highly accurate and eliminating the risk of giving your pet too much or too little.

One of the best CBD oils for your dog is the organic hemp seed oil from HempMy PET. It’s a full-spectrum CBD oil that also contains other healthy cannabinoids — CBC and CBG.

CBD Capsules

These have the CBD and base oil inside a collagen capsule and, due to the higher CBD concentration, they’re an excellent option for bigger doggos.

It’s a bit more challenging to estimate the correct dosage of CBD for dogs using CBD capsules. Picky eaters might also frown upon taking them.

But if you want to try these out, our best recommendation goes to Holistapet and their CBD capsules for dogs. Plus, you can open their capsule and add it to the food for easier ingestion. Additionally, they’re made from 100% natural ingredients and come in five different strengths.

Topical Creams

We recommend topical CBD products for skin ailments and injuries

For instance, if your puppy loves running around, its paws are probably chapped. In that case, you might want to try the LalaHemp topical. It’s a fantastic full-spectrum CBD product helping you heal your puppy’s inflamed skin. Massage the problem area with it for a few days, and you’ll soon forget about the chapped and itchy skin.

How to Give CBD Oil to Dogs

You can administer the oil in the following ways:

  • Pour it directly into your pet’s mouth. Be careful not to touch the pipette to the mouth, or you risk contaminating the rest of the oil in the bottle.
  • Pour it over your puppy’s food.
  • Put a few droplets on your finger and massage them over the dog’s gums. This will stimulate the production of saliva, which will then speed digestion.
marijuana leafs

CBD Dosage for Dogs With Health Conditions

The CBD dosage depends a lot on the condition you’re treating, so milder health issues would require less.

Let’s check the appropriate amount for the most common health issues. 

CBD Dosage for Dogs With Pyoderma

Pyoderma is any skin condition characterized by lesions filled with pus. Other  symptoms might include:

  • Hair loss
  • Itchy skin
  • Yellow papules
  • Skin bleeding

The CBD won’t cure the disease, but it can decrease the pyoderma inflammation and itching. 

There’s no correct CBD dosage for this skin condition, so it’s best to start slow and increase until you see desirable results.  

CBD Dosage for Diabetic Dogs

Diabetes can be awful news for you and your puppy, but recent studies suggest that CBD might help.

In 2006, scientists from the Hadassah University Hospital treated diabetic mice with 2.2 mg of CBD per pound of weight per day. What they showed was that the CBD amount reduced the production of proinflammatory molecules associated with diabetes. 

That said, bear in mind that the results of a study with mice aren’t necessarily the same for dogs. Before starting treatment with such a high dose of CBD, go to your vet first.

CBD Oil Dosage For Seizures in Dogs

A recent study on the CBD effects on epileptic seizures in dogs found that 1.1 mg of CBD per pound significantly reduced the seizures.

How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog for Anxiety?

Situational anxiety frequently occurs with dogs. Besides, it can make going to the vet, traveling, or moving to a new home a pretty unpleasant experience for both you and your pooch.

Administrating 0.2 mg per pound 30 minutes before a stressful event can significantly decrease the struggle.

How Much CBD Oil for a Dog With Arthritis?

1 mg of CBD per pound twice a day seems effective in dogs with osteoarthritis.

But you should still talk to your vet first. 

How Much CBD Oil for Dogs With Joint Pain?

Depending on the pain intensity, you should give your dog 0.2–0.5 mg of CBD per pound

Monitor the response and slowly increase the dose if needed.

CBD Oil Dosage for Dogs With Cancer

Research is scarce, but there are some promising results about the effects of CBD on cancerous growth.

That said, you won’t find a recommended CBD dosage for dogs with cancer yet.

Side Effects

Even though CBD is relatively safe for use, you should be aware of some minor side effects.

  • Drowsiness. 

Due to its calming effect, higher CBD concentrations, like the 1000 mg one, might result in a drowsy doggy. That’s why if you’re considering it, you should first ask your CBD provider for the proper dosage of 1000 mg CBD for dogs. 

  • Lowered blood pressure

Some dog owners note that higher CBD doses can temporarily lead to lowered blood pressure.

  • Vomiting.

As gross as it sounds, you should know it can happen if your dog rejects the CBD. It’s mostly due to the bitter oil taste. On the bright side, you might find a bacon-flavored option for your furry baby.

  • Diarrhea. 

In this case, you should lower the CBD oil dosage for dogs and observe whether it gets better with time. If it doesn’t, give your pet a break from CBD for a while. 

Conclusion

CBD can be an excellent holistic addition to your precious pup’s diet. Many owners report great results, even with the lower CBD concentrations and doses.

The cannabis compound can help your doggie with anxiety, stress, pain, and even osteoarthritis. Science is still young in this area, so there’s no official CBD dosage for dogs chart available.

Generally, a dose of 0.2 mg CBD per pound is a good starter amount. Experts recommend higher doses of up to 0.5 mg for more severe conditions, such as intense pain.

You’ll find all types of CBD products for dogs on the market — from CBD oils to treats, pills, and topicals. Just remember to start slow and adjust if needed.

Good luck!

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Avatar for Meg Petrova
Miglena loves spending time with friends and talking about science over a glass of wine. Born and raised in a small town, she’s always been surrounded by animals. Cats, dogs, chickens, cows, and goats have all been her companions from an early age. Her passion for the animal kingdom became even stronger after she went to study microbiology in Scotland. Miglena’s love for writing, combined with her curiosity, makes her a valuable member of the pawsome advice team.