Is CBD safe for dogs, or are there secret dangers we’re not aware of?

Generally, CBD is considered pretty safe for both humans and our best canine friends. Even though the science behind CBD is still new, pet owners who’ve used it for their puppies report great results and only a slight chance of side effects.

But still — how do we know that cannabidiol is really safe? Let’s find out:

What You Need to Know About CBD

Have you heard about the new magic cure for everyone’s problems, including your pet’s?

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a chemical compound derived from cannabis. It can communicate with the endocannabinoid system of mammals and make it secrete pain-, hormone-, and sleep-regulating chemicals.

It all sounds amazing, but how safe is CBD oil? And even if it’s safe for you, is CBD oil for dogs a good idea?

What Does CBD Do for Dogs?

There are many benefits of CBD for dogs, including pain relief, decreased anxiety, and overall health. One interesting study even found out that CBD can reduce the frequency of seizures in dogs.

But as with all novel substances, this one comes with its risks, too. And as science is still unsure about the consistency of the effects, we can help but wonder — is CBD good for dogs?

Side Effects of CBD Oil in Dogs

There are a few dangers of CBD for our beloved pooches. Even though we haven’t found any serious side effects of CBD oil in dogs, every pup is different and adverse reactions are possible.

Some of the side effects include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lowered blood pressure

But the positives far outweigh the negatives. Even so, can you easily get CBD for your dog?

One of the reasons why some people are afraid of trying CBD is that they don’t understand the difference between CBD and weed.

Simply put, marijuana and hemp come from the same species of cannabis. But marijuana has a high THC content (above 0.3%), while hemp only has up to 0.3%, so it’s not psychoactive. 

Still, while hemp oil is legal in the USA, you should always check your state’s policies before buying hemp-derived CBD oil for dogs.

Is CBD Oil Regulated by the FDA?

If you’re considering buying the best CBD treats for dogs, you’re probably also wondering: Has the FDA approved CBD oil? You might end up a bit disappointed.

CBD is FDA-regulated. But, as of this moment, there are no FDA-approved CBD products for dogs. So, none of the CBD products on the market undergo the same quality checks as FDA-approved drugs.

So we go back to the question — is CBD safe? There’s no one-sided answer to this question, so we have to dive deeper.

Is CBD Safe for Dogs?

When comparing hemp oil vs. CBD oil for dogs, one of the similarities is that they’re both considered safe for puppies. But people have more than one reason to doubt the safety of CBD.

THC in CBD Products

THC is the weed ingredient that makes you high. It’s not dangerous for humans, but it can be lethal for dogs.

Can dogs get high from marijuana? The better question to ask is — Is THC safe for dogs? And the answer is no. THC is toxic to dogs, and you should never try to make your pup high — it’s irresponsible and cruel.

Still, the THC amounts in CBD oils are usually really tiny — up to 0.3%. They’re considered safe, but you should always require a certificate of analysis from your chosen brand. That will ensure that the THC amount in the products is safe for your doggy.

What Does Science Say About CBD Safety for Dogs

Even though science still isn’t sure whether the CBD effects on pets are significant or not, most studies have found no dangers in using it. So if you ask your local scientist: “Hello, Dr. Scientist, is CBD oil safe for dogs?” they’ll probably tell you there’s no harm in trying it out.

The scientific background might be lacking, but there’s a ton of anecdotal evidence showing the positive effects of CBD on dogs’ health.

What Do Vets Think?

Vets in the US aren’t allowed to prescribe or recommend CBD for their fluffy patients. However, when asked whether CBD oil is safe, most tend to believe it is.

It’s vital to always talk with your vet if you’re considering CBD for your pooch. After all, the product might interfere with the absorption of other drugs in the body.

What Do Owners Think About Cannabidiol for Pets?

Some owners report side effects, but most seem to love CBD. The reason is the numerous health benefits. Separation anxiety is common in dogs, and owners say that CBD helps their puppers immensely. Usually, the benefits outweigh the risks.

But is CBD safe for cats? Like dogs, kittens can usually enjoy the CBD benefits without unpleasant side effects. But no matter whether you’re giving this cannabinoid to your dog or cat, always start at a low dosage.

A dog being given a CBD treat

What to Look For on the Market

Is CBD safe for dogs? Well, there are some CBD side effects in dogs, but they’re usually minor and dose-dependent. So what are the risks of CBD products not being tested by the FDA?

Without a set of rules to guide them and the FDA to assess them, CBD manufacturers can produce products of not the best and safest quality. So, you should know how to select your CBD pet company.

Here’s what you should look for when researching the safest CBD oil:

  • Third-party testing — It’s the golden rule of CBD. If the company tests its products in third-party labs and displays the results on its website, it’s probably legit and has nothing to hide.
  • Hemp source — The answer to “Is CBD oil safe for dogs?” depends largely on the hemp extract quality and origin. The company should always tell you whether it’s sourcing the raw material locally or from abroad. Usually, local hemp is the best choice as the manufacturer can observe the farming practices of the producer.
  • Natural and organic doesn’t mean better — Don’t fall for words and look for actual certification. If the company can’t show you its USDA Organic certificate, they’re most probably just using the words “organic”, “natural”, and “GMO-free” for marketing purposes.

Conclusion

Is CBD safe for your pup, or is it just a new-age marketing gimmick for profit without any benefits? 

Don’t worry. CBD is almost always safe for your dog or cat. While it can have some side effects, they’re easily managed by reducing the dosage. Even though the science behind CBD is still in its infancy, there’s a lot of anecdotal evidence to support its benefits and safety. So is CBD safe for dogs? Yes, but be mindful of the side effects and always talk to your vet before starting your pup on it.

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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.