Can CBD Help Your Dog?

Can CBD Help Your Dog? Research Studies Offer Promising Results

They may love nothing more than to chase a squeaky toy across the floor or curl up on a warm pillow, but even man’s best friend can feel aches, pains, and worries. While they may not show it as readily as humans, dogs can suffer from arthritis, inflammation, anxiety due to separation or loud noises, and other maladies that can negatively affect your furry companion’s quality of life.

In an attempt to address those issues, veterinary scientists are looking more closely at CBD, the hemp-derived substance that millions of people believe offers relief from anxiety, chronic pain, and other medical problems. North American scientists are already evaluating the efficacy of CBD on canine health issues such as arthritis and epilepsy, in addition to evaluating how they tolerate the substance.

As with humans, CBD is no miracle cure. But like other mammals, dogs have an endocannabinoid system, comprised of receptors and neurotransmitters that scientists believe help regulate everything from mood to appetite to the immune system. And given that CBD contains very little THC (the psychotropic compound found in its cannabis cousin marijuana), there are no worries about Fido or Rex getting high.

A Positive Effect

So can CBD help dogs? A randomized Canadian study performed on 20 beagles by Canopy Animal Health of Toronto indicated that dogs tolerated increasing serving sizes of CBD with minimal adverse effects, as compared to dogs that received THC or a mixture of CBD and THC. At Ithaca College in New York, veterinary researchers explored the safety and efficacy of CBD use on dogs with osteoarthritis — and determined that 80 percent of the dogs taking the compound showed “significant improvement in pain levels and quality of life.”

At Colorado State University, researchers explored the potential effect of CBD on canine epilepsy, given that a drug including the compound has been approved to treat certain types of severe epilepsy in children. Eighty-nine percent of the dogs in the study taking CBD experienced fewer seizures compared to those on placebo, although results were somewhat tempered by the fact that only 16 dogs were included in the study.

Still, “overall, what we found seems very promising,” said Dr. Stephanie McGrath, a veterinary neurologist who led the Colorado State study. “… It does seem like there is a positive effect from the use of CBD for dogs with epilepsy.”

Still, researchers say to be careful. While not known to be lethal, overdoses can occur, resulting in lethargy, ataxia, urinary incontinence, vomiting, or an inability to rise from the ground according to information from the ASPCA.

With serving sizes, start small

For dogs, serving sizes of CBD depends on the animal’s weight. If it’s being offered in treat form, the rule of thumb is one for dogs of 15 pounds or less, and two for dogs over 15 pounds. When using liquid, dogs under 25 pounds can receive between 4 and 9 milligrams depending on the severity of symptoms, while dogs weighing between 26-45 pounds can receive between 6-12 milligrams, and dogs 46 pounds and over can receive between 9-15 milligrams.

To be safe, start with smaller serving sizes and work your way up, watching the animal for any adverse reactions. Checking with your veterinarian is also strongly advised to address your pet’s condition to see if it can be treated with all-natural, plant-based agents like Nature's Highway Pet Tincture and Dog Chews.

Another study involving researchers from Colorado State and North Carolina State stated that CBD when served in either oil or edible form showed the most effectiveness in relief of pain, anxiety and seizures, with sedation being the most common side effect.

For both humans and dogs, CBD research continues to evolve. After all, its parent plant only received the OK from the federal government when industrial hemp was legalized in 2018. And with no federal regulation, consumers place their trust in companies like Nature’s Highway, which controls every step of the production process down to the hemp grown on its South Carolina farm — ensuring purity for you and your pet.

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Please consult with a doctor prior to use.

In keeping with FDA regulations, Nature’s Highway does not make specific claims,​ but encourages customers to seek out more information about usage and benefits from trusted third-party sources.

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