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Nearly every dog feels stressed from time to time. Once you've realized your dog is displaying some of the classic signs of temporary or separation anxiety, it's only natural to want to ease their discomfort. Whether you're currently a CBD user or not, you've likely noticed a marked increase in the number of companies offering pet products and dog treats with labels suggesting CBD helps calm anxiety.
Chances are that you've also noticed that manufacturers are adding CBD to just about everything. As a responsible pet owner, you probably don't want to give CBD to your dog without taking time to ensure you're making the right decision. We get it. That's why we're dedicating this space to explaining what CBD is, how CBD pet products work, and how to choose the best CBD-infused treats for your canine companion.
CBD (cannabidiol) is the most abundant of more than 113 cannabinoids in hemp extract (Komarnytsky et al., 2021). This active plant element interacts with multiple molecular targets, including the receptors of the endocannabinoid systems (ECS) (Fernandez-Ruiz et al., 2012), a messaging system found in all animal species (Silver, 2019). As the regulatory system responsible for nearly every crucial process, researchers believe supporting ECS function with CBD helps promotes internal balance (homeostasis) (Sallaberry & Astern, 2018).
Based on the feedback of nearly 2000 CBD users, that interaction translates to significant health and wellness potential. Adults of all ages report positive results using hemp-derived CBD for pain relief after physical activity, better sleep, relaxation, mild or temporary anxiety, and more. Although most of the evidence is based on lab reports and a small number of clinical trials, current studies suggest similar benefits for dogs. Unlike many other plant extracts, hemp-derived CBD is not-toxic for companion animals (Miranda-Cortes et al., 2023).
Many dogs whimper when their favorite person walks out the door or chew the occasional slipper when they're bored. The symptoms of separation anxiety are more troublesome. A dog might whine or howl extensively while you're away, urinate or defecate indoors, or display compulsive behaviors like excessive licking or scratching. Hypervigilance, aggression, cowering from loud noises, and destructive behaviors are also common (Kriss, 2021).
Although the only way to know if CBD could help your dog feel less distress is to try it, preliminary investigations are quite encouraging. In a survey of more than 2200 veterinarians, most providers with CBD experience report favorable results (Kogan et al., 2019). But not all hemp-derived CBD products are ideal.
CBD pet products are often made with low-quality hemp extract or carrier oils that can be difficult for dogs (and cats) to digest. Instead of picking up the first pack of CBD dog treats you find, it's best to stick with products made by knowledgeable, reputable brands that understand the importance of using high-quality, rigorously tested active ingredients.
Current studies suggest CBD pet products are well tolerated by dogs, and researchers report no adverse effects (Gamble et al., 2018). However, minor side effects are possible. Some dog owners say their pets seem more tired than usual or experience minor digestive upset. To minimize the risk of upsetting a delicate tummy, we generally recommend starting with a partial serving. Ideally, you'll want to take time to determine the smallest amount of CBD that produces positive results.
After giving your dog a partial treat or a small amount of a CBD pet tincture to see how their system responds, increase their serving size gradually over time in small increments. Like human CBD users, an amount of CBD that's best for your dog could be considerably more or a lot less than the serving size suggestions printed on the package. If your dog has a medical condition or takes medication, discuss your interest in CBD with your pet's veterinarian. Hemp-derived cannabinoids can interact with several over-the-counter treatments and prescription medications.
A few clicks on your keyboard will lead you to numerous companies selling hemp-derived pet products. But as you're scrolling through your options, you'll find many are made with hemp seed oil or hemp seed powder. Hemp seeds contain no CBD (Mead, 2016). Instead, look for products that also include the oil extracted from the plant's stalks, stems, and flowers. There are three main types.
Full spectrum CBD products contain all the cannabinoids, plant terpenes, and other phytonutrients produced in the plant, including a small amount of THC. The CBD to THC ratio eliminates any risk of intoxication. Broad spectrum products contain most of the same plant elements, but the THC is reduced to non-detectable levels. The CBD in products made with isolate powder works on its own.
Many pet owners (and CBD users) find full spectrum (and broad spectrum) products the more potent option because of the way the combined effects of the plant's cannabinoids and terpenes maximize the contributions of each component, a property cannabis is known for called an entourage effect (Nahler et al., 2019). At CBDistillery®, you'll find the following selection of pure, potent full spectrum and broad spectrum pet products.
CBDistillery® pet tinctures are made with a blend of our third-party lab-tested full spectrum hemp extract and cold-pressed hemp seed oil for easy digestion. Each serving of our 150mg CBD Pet Tincture contains 5 mg of CBD. You can use this tincture to add the health and wellness potential of CBD to your dog's meal, to their water dish, or to make your own CBD-infused dog treats. The bulbed dropper makes it easy to adjust serving sizes as needed.
CBDistillery®600mgCBD Pet Tincture is made with the same ingredients but contains higher concentrations of CBD. Each 1ml dropper gives your faithful friend 20mg. Since each ml contains about 20 drops, that breaks down to 1mg per drop. Knowing this bit of information makes it easy to use this higher-potency product for smaller dogs. For example, a pup that responds well to a 5mg serving of our 150mg tincture will get the same effect with 5 drops.
Man's Best Friend CBD Oil Packs are great for sharing your enthusiasm for our hemp-derived products with your favorite sidekick. Our Regular Strength Man's Best Friend Pack gives you a bottle of our 150mg CBD Oil Pet Tincture plus a bottle of our full spectrum 1000mg CBD Oil Tincture for yourself. Our Extra Strength Man's Best Friend CBD Oil Pack features a 600mg bottle of our CBD oil pet tincture and a 2500mg bottle of full spectrum CBD oil made for humans.
There are many places you could buy CBD pet tinctures and dog treats, but not all products are the same. Many CBD brands claim their tinctures are pet-friendly but use carrier oils that are hard for dogs to digest. Companies adding CBD to dog treats could get away with using low-quality ingredients because their customers have no way to confirm the products have been screened for heavy metals, pesticide residue, or microbial contamination. Your dog deserves better.
CBDistillery® Pet Tinctures and Zesty Paws® soft chews are made with the same high-quality hemp extract you'll find in every product we offer. You can shop with confidence knowing CBDistillery® pet products are rigorously tested, quality assured, and backed by a 60-day satisfaction guarantee. You'll find a certificate of analysis (COA) on our product pages and a scannable QR code on every label.
Fernandez-Ruiz J, Sagredo O, et al. (2012) Cannabidiol for Neurodegenerative Disorders: Important Clinical Applications for This Phytocannabinoid? 75(2) Br J Clin Pharmacol 323-33. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2125.2012.04341.x
Gamble L, Boesch J, et al. (2018) Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Clinical Efficacy of Cannabidiol Treatment in Osteoarthritic Dogs. 5 Front Vet Sci 165. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2018.00165
Kogan L, Schoenfeld-Tacher, et al. (2019) US Veterinarians' Knowledge, Experience, and Perception Regarding the Use of Cannabidiol for Canine Medical Conditions. Front Vet Sci. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6338022/
Komarnytsky S, Rathinasabapathy T, et al. (2021) Endocannabinoid System and Its Regulation by Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Full Spectrum Hemp Oils. 22(11) Int J Mol Sci 5479. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22115479
Kriss R. (2021) Understanding, Preventing, and Treating Dog Anxiety. American Kennel Club.org.
Mead A. (2016) The Legal Status of Cannabis (Marijuana) and Cannabinoid (CBD) Under US Law. 70(B) Epilepsy Behav 288-91. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28169144/
Miranda-Cortes A, Mota-Rojas D, et al. (2023) The Role of Cannabinoids in Pain Modulation in Companion Animals. 9 Front Vet Sci. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2022.1050884
Nahler G, Jones T, et al. (2019) Cannabidiol and Contributions of Major Hemp Phytocompounds to the "Entourage Effect"; Possible Mechanisms. J Altern Complement Integr Med 70(5) PDF download
Sallaberry C, Astern L. (2018) The Endocannabinoid System, Our Universal Regulator. 34(6) JYI 48-55. https://www.jyi.org/2018-june/2018/6/1/the-endocannabinoid-system-our-universal-regulator
Silver R. (2019) The Endocannabinoid Systems of Animals. 9(9) Animals 686. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9090686