Posted on

what is cbd for dogs

Seemingly everyone wants to know about CBD for dogs. Just ask Leslie Sinn, CPDT-KA, DVM, and member of the Daily Paws advisory board: Her Behavior Solutions clients ask about using CBD products nearly every day. 

Robinson says that some people will give their dogs CBD products when they've been diagnosed with cancer. The products can potentially help with the side effects, but they don't cure the cancer at all. "If you delay proper care where something might have been more curative, you could be worsening [the sickness]," she says.

What is CBD?

The CBD compound interacts with humans' and dogs' endocannabinoid systems (ECS), which keeps our bodies' other systems working smoothly, Sinn says. The ECS receptors, which also help regulate pain, are found throughout our bodies-brain, muscles, liver, spleen-meaning CBD has an "enormous potential for influencing disease outcomes," she adds. It's why you might hear of dog owners using CBD to treat anything from anxiety to seizures to cancer. 

Thinking of giving your dog a CBD oil or chew? Read this first.

A clarification before we go on: Don't give your dog marijuana. It's not a CBD product, and it's actually toxic to dogs, sending them to the emergency vet in some cases, Sinn says. In early 2019, the ASPCA measured a 765 percent increase in calls on pet marijuana ingestion as more states legalized cannabis use. 

CBD oil is everywhere, and seemingly in everything. You’ve probably heard someone mention CBD, especially if you live with a chronic condition like pain or anxiety, or if you follow Kim Kardashian, who had a relaxing CBD-themed baby shower to celebrate her fourth child with husband Kanye West.

The question is, of course, how is it working. Verdino says, “So is it helping with the anxiety, or is it just making him drowsy? I don’t know, but it seems to help. So we have a symptom, and it helps with that symptom.”

“Does it actually help with pain, or does it just make them not care? We don’t know, but they seem to be less reactive to low level pain stimuli, for example arthritis and things like that, when they take the product,” explains Mark Verdino, MD, senior vice president and chief of veterinary staff at North Shore Animal League America. “And certain anxieties, they seem less reactive to certain things.”

As some states have begun to legalize both medical and recreational cannabis, the market has enjoyed an influx of readily available CBD, including CBD oil for dogs to treat pain, anxiety, to control seizures and more in the family dog.

Essentially, CBD is non-psychoactive but has a number of the same medical benefits as THC. This means you can take advantage of the therapeutic benefits for your pet without being concerned they will have the “stoned” feeling that goes with THC – which obviously would be very upsetting for a dog.