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Is CBD Oil Safe for Dogs and Your Other Pets? Learn More Here.

So, is CBD oil safe for dogs and other pets?

Many people have an instant negative reaction to cannabidiol (CBD) or cannabis oil products because of their association with marijuana and THC. However, CBD is a medical product that’s often mixed with a carrier oil, while THC is the psychoactive element in marijuana.

Other people entirely doubt its legality in the first place, despite the 2018 Farm Bill legalizing hemp-derived oils and products.

However, if you’ve been using CBD products for a while, you’ll know they can do wonders for stress, skin inflammation, and pain. And as a pet owner, you might be considering giving your pet CBD oil or tincture but don’t know if there are safety risks associated with it. So consider your in-depth guide for use of CBD oil on pets. 



The Short Answer

CBD oil for dogs is generally safe. There aren’t many studies on the effect of CBD on dogs, but we know that CBD contains cannabinoids that interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system, which helps with balancing the body and regulating its processes. This, in turn, helps with anxiety.

As for cats, there’s no evidence that CBD oils can harm cats, but there isn’t much evidence either to support their health benefits for cats. Because the research is so sparse, it’s hard to make definitive statements, so I recommend you consult your veterinarian before giving using CBD oil for cats.

It’s also worth noting that there’s no official dosing chart for animals, even though that’s a big part of medical administration. In any case, before giving an animal CBD oil, make sure the product doesn’t exceed 0.3% THC content because that much THC could cause pets the same light-headedness, mood alterations, and diarrhea that humans get from marijuana.

Now, let’s dive deeper into CBD and the question: is CBD oil safe for dogs and other pets?

What Exactly Is CBD?

First and foremost, CBD and marijuana aren’t the same thing. Yes, they both come from the family of cannabis plants, specifically the cannabis Sativa plant, and both contain cannabinoids. However, CBD doesn’t come from marijuana – it comes from the actual hemp plant through a delicate extraction process that involves pressing hemp seeds to create hemp oil.

The main difference between hemp and marijuana is tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, which is a compound with mind-altering effects associated with the cannabis plant

Marijuana leaves contain an average of 50% THC and can be as high as 90%, while hemp contains less than 0.3% THC, which is safe for humans.


CBD Oil for Dogs?

CBD for Dogs

Dog owners, stay tuned because we’ll look at the effects that CBD oils and products could have on your dog in this section.

Again, the research is sparse, but we know some of the health issues CBD can treat in dogs are seizures and pain, especially in the nervous system. CBD products can also help with anxiety, cardiac health, and appetite stimulation if your dog refuses to eat.

Findings of Dr. Stephanie McGrath (Epilepsy)

We owe a lot of what we know about CBD oil for dogs to Dr. Stephanie McGrath’s findings on CBD in the market and pet stores. Dr. McGrath is, in fact, a star among vets in CBD research, 

Dr. McGrath ran some clinical trials on dogs with epilepsy and found that the cannabinoid in CBD oil reduced seizure frequency in 89% of the dogs tested. 

Considering nearly 6% of dogs worldwide are epileptic, these findings suggest that CBD oil can help improve the quality of life of dogs.

Pain Relief

There have been some studies on the effects of CBD products on the physical health of dogs, specifically dogs with osteoarthritis, or arthritis for short, which unfortunately affects nearly a quarter of all dogs.

One study on pharmacokinetics by Frontiers in Veterinary Science gave 16 dogs with arthritis cannabinoids through dosages of 2 mg CBD per kilogram (or 4.4 mg per pound) of body weight, twice every day. After four weeks, they found that CBD oil could help increase comfort and activity levels in dogs.

This isn’t surprising, as CBD is useful in anti-inflammation and pain relief, which are involved in arthritis in humans, dogs, and any species.

If you need more evidence of CBD’s benefits, check out this study on rats, which found that CBD actually slowed nerve damage in rat osteoarthritis. The study also suggests that CBD can prevent the degeneration of joints that causes arthritis.

Digestive Issues

If your dog refuses to eat or has problems with his or her digestion, then CBD can help stimulate appetite, causing weight gain. It can also prevent vomiting and nausea.

The National Cancer Institute conducted a study on animals (though they didn’t specify which) and found that cannabinoids helped their appetite, which led to more eating. They believe the reason for this is in the nervous system and how it interacts with CBD, possibly giving the animals a feeling of reward.

CBD Side Effects on Dogs

Even though there’s no science on the side effects of CBD on dogs, we can predict what might happen to a dog based on what we know about CBD’s side effects on humans.

CBD is commonly taken for relaxation and anxiety treatment. And it’s no surprise that the way it calms the nerves and relaxes the muscles can cause drowsiness and even slightly decrease blood pressure, especially if taken in higher doses than recommended.

Some studies have also shown that CBD oil decreases saliva production in dogs, so don’t be worried if your dog seems more thirsty or has a dry mouth.

These things sound uncomfortable for your dog at best and dangerous at worst, but remember, they’re often the result of overdosing. So, as long as you keep your dog’s doses at a moderate level, everything should be fine.

Did we satisfactorily answer the question: is CBD oil safe for dogs and other pets? Please let us know if not!


CBD Oil for Cats?

CBD for Cats

If you’re a cat owner, be on the lookout for the benefits that CBD can have on your cat. Let’s take a look.

Testimony of Dr. Gary Richter

Dr. Gary Richter is a seasoned veterinarian and owner of a vet clinic in California, and he says that CBD is generally safe for cats in moderation. However, it can give your pet a stomach upset and may even sedate him or her. This can be relieved by cutting the cat’s CBD intake, though. 

In Dr. Richter’s opinion, the more significant issue is making sure the pet receives an adequate dosage and that you’re avoiding any possibility of overdosing. 

Another problem that Dr. Richter spoke about is the controversial nature of CBD and that it might be difficult to consult your vet on issues regarding CBD oil for pets depending on where you live


Like most mammals, CBD has a calming effect on cats. It can mitigate their anxiety, calm them down if they’re aggressive, and even reduce their seizure frequency if they’re epileptic.

Remember that the THC concentration in CBD products is so negligible it might as well not exist, so your cat won’t be getting high off a CBD product, though he or she might feel a little lightheaded if their intake is too high.

Determining the Dosage

The typical dose recommendation for cats is 1-5 mg of product per 5 kg/10 lbs. I advise you to start at the bottom and increase the dose as needed. If your pet has a more severe condition, you can increase this limit as required, but do it gradually.

Type of CBD

For cats, CBD isolate is recommended, as it’ll give your cat the needed cannabinoids without any additional compounds.

The Research on CBD Oil for Pets

One thing you can’t ignore in all of this is that the research on CBD and its effects on animals is very sparse, so it’s hard to make definitive statements. Our best bet is to go with what little we have. We could also draw conclusions based on what we know about the effect of CBD on humans.

Did we satisfactorily answer the question: is CBD oil safe for dogs, cats and other pets? Please let us know if not!


Speak to Your Vet About CBD

Consult a Vet!

It’s important to note that CBD might have harmful side effects if taken alongside certain other medications. And If you’re ever unsure about conflicts between CBD and any medication your pet already takes, remember that there’s a professional who’s there to make sure all pets are OK, and you should consult him or her regarding more specific questions you might have.

Did we satisfactorily answer the question: is CBD oil safe for dogs, cats and other pets? Please let us know if not!

Final Thoughts

To recap, CBD products are generally safe for pets. A CBD product can help your pet with several conditions through relaxation, making it particularly useful for animals with anxiety, aggression, or frequent seizures.

CBD can also relieve pain by enhancing the endocannabinoid system in the body, which does wonders for animals with osteoarthritis, trauma, or other joint problems.

Your pet’s dose must be moderate for them, so start with smaller doses and amp it up a little if you’re not noticing an improvement. Also, CBD can conflict with other meds that your pet might be taking, so speak with a vet if you’re unsure how CBD might react with them.

Did we satisfactorily answer the question: is CBD oil safe for dogs and other pets? Please let us know if not!

About the Writer

Anna N.

Anna is a freelance writer currently based in the NE covering the intersection of cannabis culture and personal self-care. When not writing, Anna enjoys reading, exploring local joints and taking long walks with Bruno, her Golden Retriever.