Is CBD Oil Safe for Pets? What You Need to Know
CBD for dogs and CBD for cats have become more popular with pet parents in recent years. Some use CBD oil for dogs to keep their pup calm and centered, and CBD oil for cats can also be part of a well-rounded feline wellness routine. As you hear more and more about its remarkable, diverse applications, you might find yourself asking, is CBD oil safe for pets?
Research is an important part of introducing anything new into your pet’s life. To answer whether CBD is safe for pets, you need to know exactly what it is, how it works, and what to look for in a safe pet product.
What Is CBD for Pets?
One of the reasons many pet parents ask, “Is CBD oil safe for pets?” is that they are concerned that their dog or cat will experience psychoactive effects from using these products. This concern comes from a common misconception that CBD is the same as marijuana. Let’s debunk this myth right now: CBD will not get you – or your pet – high!
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of many compounds extracted from the cannabis plant. Another one of those compounds is THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, which causes the psychoactive effects known as “getting stoned” from smoking marijuana.
The 2018 Farm Bill drew a clear line between marijuana cannabis and industrial hemp, which by definition cannot contain more than 0.3 percent THC. This amount is far too small of a concentration to cause any psychoactive experience. Federally legal CBD oil derives from industrial hemp, so it will not be intoxicating for your pet!
The Farm Bill regulated industrial hemp cultivation, creating a safer environment for creating these products, so consumers know exactly what they’re getting when purchasing CBD for pets. This is part of what has made it such a popular choice for pet wellness: Fido and Fuzzy can benefit from the wholesome properties of this compound without any intoxicating effects.
How Is CBD Oil for Pets Made?
CBD is extracted from the industrial hemp plant through a few different processes, depending on the manufacturer. A CBD isolate is nothing but pure CBD, while broad spectrum and full spectrum CBD include other compounds from hemp. The key distinction between them is that full spectrum contains trace amounts of THC, while broad spectrum generally does not.
Whatever the formula, the CBD then is added to a carrier oil, like MCT oil or hemp seed oil. This oil can then be used in its raw form or added to several other products, like specialized CBD for cats and dogs.
How Does CBD Affect Pets?
To answer the question, “Is CBD oil safe for pets?” we have to understand how it works within our bodies. So let’s talk anatomy!
From snacks to quality time and (for some of us) a bed, we share a lot with our pets. And as mammals, we also share some common bodily systems with our cats and dogs, including the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. This system is affected when you give CBD for pets to your furry friend, and it’s the same system that responds in humans when they take it.
There are two major parts of the ECS: the CB1 receptor and the CB2 receptor. These receptors are like little messengers in the mammalian body. They influence many different biological processes, from motor function, immune cell activity, and appetite (all targeted by CB1 receptors), to our skin, bones, cardiovascular system, and gut.
Oh, and it’s not just mammals who share this incredible physiologic network – the ECS is present in all vertebrates. So birds, reptiles, fish, and amphibians have this same remarkable system, which means even your pet frog, lizard, or parakeet might reap the benefits of CBD for pets.
Finding Safe CBD Oil for Pets
To really know if CBD oil is safe for pets, you need to ensure that you’re purchasing a high-quality, reputable product. Here are some questions to ask while you’re shopping:
- Where did this CBD oil come from? A trustworthy maker of CBD oil for pets will be transparent about their entire product, from seed to shelf. Great CBD oil is extracted from an industrial hemp plant, and the best industrial hemp plants are grown in the USA.
- Has it been tested? The best products will have proof of independent, third-party lab testing. This testing generates a Certificate of Analysis, proving that the product contains less than 0.3 THC as legally required. Not only is this certification important for your pet’s health, but it’s also important for legality!
- What are the ingredients other than CBD oil? Some additional ingredients – like melatonin for sleep and relaxation, or glucosamine HCL to support joint mobility – can benefit your pet. You want to ensure that CBD oil for pets is clean and free of unnecessary additives or fillers that might disrupt your pet’s digestion.
- What does a veterinarian have to say about this product? You want to consult your veterinarian before administering CBD for cats or CBD for dogs, and it’s a good sign if the product you’re considering is veterinarian-formulated for your pet’s safety.
- Does the packaging give clear information and instructions? Any reliable product will provide plenty of information and direction on how to give your pet CBD as well as how much to use. Different animals will need different amounts depending on their weights, so it should come in various strengths and offer recommended serving sizes.
Can I Give My Kitten or Puppy CBD Oil For Pets?
While fully grown animals can benefit from CBD for cats and CBD for dogs, you shouldn’t give these products to kittens and puppies under a year old. Both physically and behaviorally, puppies and kittens are still developing. Their bodies are still growing and changing, and their minds are adjusting to new surroundings constantly.
It’s important not to introduce too many new things into a puppy or kitten’s wellness routine early on while you let them adjust. Furthermore, some of the situations that inspire pet parents to use CBD, such as to address noise aversion or separation issues, can dissipate as a puppy or kitty gets older.
Is CBD Safe for Dogs?
Like all mammals, dogs process CBD with their ECS, so dogs can experience some of the same wellness benefits humans experience with these products. While formal studies are still ongoing, many pet owners would answer the question “Is CBD safe for dogs?” with a resounding yes.
Dog owners use CBD for a variety of reasons. Some just include it as a part of their pet’s daily health routine, while others have reported that it can help Sparky manage his stress signals, noise aversion, or separation issues. Whatever your motivation, CBD for dogs can be a wholesome addition to your pet’s active, healthy lifestyle.
Concerns with CBD for Dogs
While there is limited research regarding positive or negative reactions observed when dogs use CBD, there are some things to watch out for after introducing it to your canine companion.
- Thirst or dry mouth: You might notice your pooch heading to the water bowl a little more often after giving him CBD for dogs, as it can reduce saliva.
- Drowsiness: This can be the desired effect for some dog parents who want their pet to take it easy and get some rest, but in excess, it can be concerning.
- Low blood pressure: This can be a little harder to notice, but too much CBD can sometimes reduce blood pressure and cause brief dizziness. That’s why it’s important to follow serving suggestions carefully.
Many of these issues result from giving your pet a serving size that is too large. How much CBD you give to your pet depends on their weight, so it’s important to be very careful with quantities when introducing it and always carefully monitor their reactions.
CBD Oil Products for Dogs
CBD oil products for dogs can be administered in various ways, from peanut butter to soft chews. Here are some of the best products for dogs:
- CBD Oil Tincture: Tinctures are super easy to use and give you specific control over the serving size. CBD oil tinctures for dogs are perfect if you have a couple of different-sized dogs (or maybe a whole household!) who need different amounts of CBD.
- CBD soft chews for dogs: These are a great choice for smaller dogs or senior dogs with sensitive teeth
- CBD oil treats for dogs: Your dog might not be able to understand the wholesome benefits of CBD for their body, but they can definitely understand a treat! Treats with pre-measured amounts of CBD make it easy to be consistent with serving size.
- CBD balm: Rubbing a balm infused with CBD onto paws, noses, and other hot spots can be a wonderful bonding massage for your pampered pooch!
- CBD peanut butter: If you have a dog, chances are he or she loves peanut butter. CBD-infused peanut butter turns this nourishing part of their daily routine into an extra-special treat!
- Special Pet CBD Formulas: If you have specific goals for your pet’s health, look for supporting ingredients in the products you purchase. Our CBD Hip+Joint Chews for Dogs, for example, use glucosamine hydrochloride to support joint mobility, and CBD Calming Oil for Dogs contains melatonin and valerian root to encourage relaxation.
Is CBD Oil Safe for Cats?
The safety of CBD for cats depends on a lot of factors, and cats can be especially sensitive to things like additives and fillers (which good CBD oil for cats won’t have). If you’ve chosen a safe, wholesome, THC-free* product for cats, your kitty may enjoy a variety of benefits – such as supported mobility (race up those stairs, Shadow!), appetite, calm, and even healthier skin.
Concerns with CBD for Cats
Again, no formal studies have been done on potential reactions in the use of CBD for cats. You should monitor your cat for the same possible concerns found with dogs, as well as some others.
- Drowsiness: Cat parents have reported some increased drowsiness in their kitties, especially if given more CBD than is appropriate for their weight.
- Excessive thirst: CBD’s saliva-reducing properties apply to cats, too. So your feline might be thirstier than usual.
- Upset tummy: Cats have very sensitive digestive systems, so depending on what delivery method you choose, they might experience a stomach upset after taking CBD for cats.
Choosing the right serving size for your cat is of the utmost importance when introducing CBD for pets. It’s also important to choose the right kind of product (treats, soft chews, or tinctures) for your pet’s unique body!
CBD Oil Products for Cats
Now that you know how to tell if a CBD oil is safe for cats, you need to make another important decision. How will you get your sometimes-finicky feline friend to take it? Good news: there are lots of ways!
- CBD tinctures for cats: Tinctures offer ease and simplicity – just use the dropper to slip some into your feline’s favorite food or snack. This method is popular with many pet parents because they can control the serving size.
- CBD treats for cats: Many kitties struggle with teeth sensitivity, so soft chews make a perfect way to give your pet exactly the amount of CBD that he or she needs. The fun chicken-catnip flavor means that Snowball will come running when she hears you open the treat canister!
- Specialty Formula CBD for cats: Some pet parents want to be efficient with their cat’s diet and utilize CBD for its wellness benefits along with other ingredients to support health goals. If you’re looking to support your cat’s overall kidney health as they age, our CBD Kidney Support Chews for Cats can help with special ingredients like licorice root powder, astragalus root powder, and nettle leaf extract.
Ask Your Veterinarian: Is CBD Safe for Pets?
“Is CBD oil safe for pets?” is definitely important to ask before adding it to your pet’s daily routine. If you have any questions about CBD and your pets, talk to your veterinarian, who can give you plenty of advice and guidance specific to your animal’s health.
We all want our furry friends to be happy, healthy, and – above all – safe. Finding CBD oil that is safe for your pet can be a wonderful addition to a healthy pet lifestyle, including lots of exercise, play, and healthy food.