CBD Oil for Dogs & Cats: Is it Safe?

by | Nov 30, 2020 | Health & Wellness

Pet parents all share an incredible bond, and most of us will do whatever it takes to make our pets feel better. Today, CBD is a natural supplement dominating the US’s pet and human market in sales. With CBD for pets being legal in the US if it contains less than 0.3 % THC, we all must know as much as possible as to how to use cannabidiol pet products most safely and effectively possible.

The take with pet CBD is that substantial research to investigate the veterinary benefits for pets of cannabidiol is ongoing, with health benefits looking incredibly promising. Today, we’re noticing that CBD for pets in the form of hemp-based supplements has become a trending choice. This is because a high-quality full-spectrum hemp oil has very few adverse effects.

Research has demonstrated how cannabinoid receptors interact with the endocannabinoids and phytocannabinoids and how CBD may help reduce seizure disorders, chronic neuropathic pain, cancer, and anxiousness, insomnia, and more. In this blog, we’ll examine what CBD is and what it can do for your pet? Also, whether CBD is safe for pets?

What is CBD?

CBD contains Omega-3 fatty acids that help to fight inflammation. A recent 2017  study demonstrates that the researchers “found an enzymatic pathway that converts omega-3-derived endocannabinoids into more potent anti-inflammatory molecules that predominantly bind to the receptors found in the immune system.” This finding shows how omega-3 fatty acids can produce some of the same medicinal qualities as marijuana, but without a psychotropic effect, via Science Daily.

Here’s the deal:

Reliable, high-quality CBD brands have numerous health benefits. This is because CBD may help dogs and cats with:

  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Side effects of chemotherapy and radiation
  • Chronic pain
  • Anxiety
  • Seizures and tremors
  • Cardiac health
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Cancer
  • General aches and pain
  • Arthritis
  • Fear
  • Skin irritations
  • Skin tumors

How Can It Help Treat Pets?

Over the past couple of years, veterinarians and pet parents have discovered via research the benefits of cannabidiol to treat numerous health conditions in pets. Today, dogs suffering from an array of medical conditions like seizures, pain, inflammation, cancer, arthritis, and digestive issues have found relief with the use of cannabidiol as a natural supplement. 

Cannabidiol offers numerous antioxidant properties that may prevent cancer, treat tumors, manage pain, reduce the side effects of chemo and radiation, and more. That said, it’s necessary to choose the right form of administration, capsules, tinctures, edibles, patches, and so forth, to get the best bioavailability for a specific health issue. 

Consulting with your dog’s veterinarian allows for an accurate CBD brand supplement choice to help with a specific health condition. You’ll also be able to discuss dosage and efficacy for your dog or cat’s specific health condition.

CBD oil is also packed with important minerals such as iron, zinc, and magnesium, all beneficial for human and pet health. Zinc is important for a good coat and skin in pets.

 CBD also yields elastin and collagen that results in a glossy coat. It is brimming with antioxidants and yields vitamins A, E, and C, which fight against free-radicals from pollution. 

The Endocannabinoid System

Cannabidiol works together with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in both pets and humans and allows for homeostasis. All pets have an endocannabinoid system with neurotransmitters in the endocannabinoid system involved in physiological processes like pain sensation, appetite, mood, and memory. 

That said, the endocannabinoid system is similar in all animals, but with differences between species. A dog’s endocannabinoid system is different in that dogs have a higher concentration of endocannabinoid receptors in their brainstem and cerebellum than any other species do. These structures control breathing, heart rate, and muscle coordination.

Hemp CBD Pet Products

When choosing a CBD pet product made from hemp, it’s best to opt for high-quality, safe, and effective pet products. It’s important to research companies and manufacturing methods before purchasing a product. You’ll need to check for complete and accurate labeling to ensure that you have less than 0.3% THC.


You should always begin at the lowest dose and then slowly work up to the as-needed dosing. If you do this, you’ll limit the chances of adverse reactions. When using pet cannabidiol products, you should first consult with your veterinarian for a complete diagnosis and to discuss how CBD may be beneficial for your pet. Here’s the take with CBD dosing:

  • Start with the lowest dosing to prevent adverse reactions, if any.
  • Use only pet CBD products with no THC
  • Your vet may recommend a specific dosage, which may differ for each pet and each condition.
  • The calculated dose should be divided for twice-daily dosing.
  • Doses up to 5 mg/kg/day have been recommended for serious seizure cases.
  • Follow the biphasic dosing curve when using CBD on pets.

To make things less complicated, if you’re having difficulties finding the right dose for your cat and for some reason are unable to weigh him or her, visit your veterinarian to get his or her correct weight. 

A CBD dosage is based on your cat’s or dog’s weight, so you will need to convert your pet’s weight from pounds to kilograms. You can do this by dividing the weight in pounds by 2.2 = 5 kg. Multiply the mg’s in the dose to the number of kg in weight. If the dose is 0.2 mg/kg, you would have to multiply 5 kg by 0.2 = 1mg.

CBD Oil for Cats

Cannabidiol oil, also known as CBD oil, comes in a wide array of options for cats like CBD oil tinctures, treats, capsules, lotions, and can be taken orally or applied topically to the skin. CBD products can be applied directly to skin irritations or hot spots in cats. 

Nowadays, cat treats, and cat CBD tinctures are fast becoming a popular option since cat parents realize that CBD oil for cats is safe and has very few side effects. That said, always opt for THC-free CBD cat products, and triple check the potency of all tinctures since they will all vary according to the brand.

Dermatitis in Cats & Dogs

CBD tinctures, capsules, topicals, and treats are useful for treating chronic and mild skin conditions in cats. Dermatitis is caused by skin inflammation that may result from allergens, trauma, bacterial, viral, parasitic, or fungal infections, external irritants, burns, and infection. As your pet ages, he may be afflicted with allergies, skin disorders, itchiness, and chronic pain. CBD may be beneficial in managing your furry friend’s discomfort, allowing him relief from inflammation and chronic pain. 

CBD as a Superfood

CBD is regarded as both a superfood and a supplement with numerous health benefits gained by its minerals like iron, zinc, magnesium, antioxidants, vitamins A, E, and C, which protects from free-radicals resulting from everyday pollution. 

CBD offers all 21 amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. CBD also contains phytocannabinoids, terpenes, and fatty acids, which all help with stress relief.

CBD has been proven to help reduce cell damage that occurs from free radicals. That said, cannabidiol oil (CBD) can help dogs with skin allergies, inflammation, itchy skin and promote a healthy coat and skin in dogs. “Cannabidiol, THC, and BHT all prevented dihydroergotamine oxidation in a similar, concentration-dependent manner indicating cannabinoids to be comparable to BHT in antioxidant potency,” NCBI.

The study adds that “The antioxidative properties of cannabinoids suggest a therapeutic use as neuroprotective agents, and the particular properties of cannabidiol make it a good candidate for such development. 

Although cannabidiol was similar in neuroprotective capacity to BHT, cannabidiol has no known tumor-promoting effects. The lack of psychoactivity associated with cannabidiol allows it to be administered in higher doses than would be possible with psychotropic cannabinoids such as THC.”

CBD as an Anti-Inflammatory

CBD for pets may be beneficial for its healing benefits for dogs with   inflammation. Research proves that “Cannabinoids are a group of compounds that mediate their effects through cannabinoid receptors. 

“Cannabinoids have exhibited the significant potential to be used as novel anti-inflammatory agents, and specific targeting of CB2 receptors holds the promise of mediating immunosuppressive effects without exerting psychotropic side effects.”

A recent 2018 study on CBD and canine arthritis at Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine by Dr. Joe Wakshlag tested to see whether pain from osteoarthritis and multi-joint pain could be eliminated CBD oil. 

The CBD oil was made from industrial hemp or placebo hemp, and dogs received it every 12 hours for 4 weeks. Cornell worked together with ElleVet Sciences that created soft CBD ElleVet Mobility chews, which are hemp-based. The chews also contained chondroitin and glucosamine, two natural compounds that help with movement in arthritic dogs. 

Is it Safe?

Your first question will be, whether it’s safe for pets?

When purchasing any cannabidiol pet product, you’ll need to ensure that it’s made specifically for pets. Full-spectrum hemp oil pet products may be beneficial for anxiety and arthritic pain, as well as other health conditions and your vet may combine both conventional pet meds with a CBD pet product.

When exploring CBD pet products, the most important question is if a product uses an isolate or a full-spectrum oil, which is the most potent and comes from the entire plant. Here’s the deal with possible side effects:

  • May interact with certain pet meds
  • Lowers blood pressure 
  • Lethargy
  • Possible allergic reaction
  • Possible lethargy

Extraction Method

Extraction of the oil occurs via a carbon dioxide process called CO2 extraction, which entails using pressurized carbon dioxide to extract the CBD from the entire plant. CO2 functions as a solvent when reaching extreme temperatures, yet because it is under boiling point, it’s cold. It is processed to create oil from the plant. It is also a clean and environmentally friendly process. 

Pet owners should examine all the premium hemp oil extract products to see if they have CBD on the packaging. Due to certain industry requirements, numerous pet products with CBD will only be labeled premium hemp oil extract products. 

We all may have become confused with so many CBD products out there on the market! Numerous pet specialty stores have included newsletters and handouts for pet parents to update information on treats and edibles, as well as CBD oils for pets. 

Companies like Animal Nutritional Products have based their CBD product line on dealing with serious health issues in dogs like osteoarthritis, anxiety, and urinary tract disease. Here’s the take when purchasing:

  • Hemp CBD should be 100% food grade.
  • Should be made using CO2 extraction
  • No solvents like butane
  • Full-spectrum lab testing by a third party for purity and potency
  • Lab certificates available for pet owners to examine before a purchase
  • Pesticide and herbicide free
  • Made with non-GMO hemp

Consumers are advised to ask whether their CBD product of choice is a full-spectrum oil or if it uses an isolate. Also, if the hemp used is from locally grown USA hemp? European sourced hemp may have originated from China and ended up being processed in Europe. That said, hemp from China is not of as high quality and purity and may contain bio-contaminants and heavy metals. 

Today, hemp mainly originates from 4 states, Colorado, South Carolina, Oregon, and Kentucky. 

Simple Tips

All pet CBD product potencies are different, so you will have to know the CBD pet product’s concentration by understanding how many “mgs” of CBD is in each milliliter of oil? (ml)

Consult with your veterinarian or a CBD cat product expert if you’re not 100% sure about dosing.

  • Fully panel tested by a third party with a certificate of inspection.
  • Varying doses for cats of all sizes 
  • Ingredients include natural broad-spectrum CBD with DHA, essential oils, and hemp oil.
  • Made with natural cannabidiol oil that is organic & vegan
  • Oral syringe provided for easier oral administering
  • Dosing chart included for safety (call your vet if you don’t understand the dosing chart)
  • Effective in helping with anxiousness, stressful situations like travel, storms, trips to the vet, & car rides, which most cats dislike
  • High-quality CBD cat products have added ingredients for optimal cat health.
  • Works fast and may be used together with veterinary-approved pharmaceuticals
  • Cost-effective
  • Organic and natural with no contaminants like glysophate
  • Works with seizures, joint pain, skin allergies, itchy skin, and more
  • Made in the USA
  • Veterinarian recommended
  • Made especially for cats, an added plus since dosage and efficacy are cat friendly.
  • Popular tuna or chicken flavor that cats love
  • Non-GMO using C02 extraction for purer quality
  • Packed with Omega 3,6,9 for skin, coat, brain health, and anti-inflammatory purposes.
  • Easy-to-administer to cats with a dropper
  • Contains a high-quality hemp seed oil
  • Added vitamins, omega’s, terpenoids, flavonoids, and phytochemicals for optimal benefits in cats.

Work With Your Veterinarian

It’s too bad that so many of us grew up with a social stigma attached to THC, marijuana and the like for several reasons that relate to both CBD oil for dogs and CBD oil for cats. First, marijuana, THC and the like have nothing to do with CBD oil and this type of treatment for the conditions we mentioned above. Secondly, this perceived stigma and faulty identification can lead to too many people hesitating to talk about this approach with their veterinarians. That may lead some dogs and cats to suffer needlessly or to be given prescription medications that can in some cases inflict their own types of damage.

Therefore, if you’re thinking of using CBD oil for dogs or CBD oil for cats, don’t hesitate to talk to your veterinarian. He or she will be receptive to what you’re asking about regardless of his or her opinion of this approach. It’s legal, it’s legitimate and it’s worth the modicum of effort required to explore its possibilities. Not to mention, your veterinarian can help you identify the right reasons for treatment, the right products to put to use and with other variables that will likely arise as you move forward. CBD oil for dogs and CBD oil for cats can work wonders, but it’s always better to do things like this with medical oversight.

Final Thoughts

With the huge popularity of CBD as a natural supplement for pets and people, CBD has proved beneficial in natural healing and treating inflammation and pain. CBD products are the rage right now, but to get the best CBD pet products, one needs to look for NASC –approved.

You can read more about pet insurance and dental care here.


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