One pervasive question is the safety of CBD oil for dogs less than 12 months old. In this article, we will talk about CBD use for puppies – the expected benefits, considerations, and potential side effects.
Keep reading as we will explain everything you need to know before adding CBD oil to your puppy’s health regimen.
What Age Can I Start Giving My Dog CBD Oil?
When it comes to CBD supplements, there is no age limit – cannabinoids are perfectly safe and health-boosting for young puppies.
The World Health Organization says that “there is no abuse or dependence potential for animals using CBD” and “CBD is generally well-tolerated, with a good safety profile.”
On the same note, a study investigating the safety of CBD products clearly states that “hemp-based CBD appears to be relatively safe in healthy populations of dogs and cats.”
Can a Puppy Take CBD Oil?
Yes, a puppy can take CBD oil, and do not worry – it will not make your puppy “high.” Pet CBD oils are THC-free and do not have psychoactive properties. Plus, CBD oil has no known toxicity level meaning your puppy cannot overdose on this supplement.
If you are now wondering how much CBD oil you can give your puppy, the answer is between 1 and 5 mg of CBD per 10 Lbs (4.5 kg) of body weight per day. Depending on the reason for using CBD, you can give the full dose at once or divide it and use it twice per day.
When adding CBD to your puppy’s health regimen, there are two important considerations:
- Since young pups have sensitive stomachs, we recommend starting with a lower CBD dosage. This will give your puppy time to adjust to the new supplement and prevent stomach upsets.
- Do not exceed the recommended daily amount of CBD oil. Although CBD is non-toxic to puppies, giving high dosages increases the risk of adverse reactions and unwanted side effects.
Can I Give My 1-Year-Old CBD Oil?
Yes, you can absolutely give your 1-year-old pup CBD oil. Not only is it safe, but there are several benefits of CBD oil for dogs. This supplement can be used to boost your dog’s general health or to manage a specific physical or behavioral issue.
However, it is worth mentioning that, as with any other supplement, some dogs may experience side effects when first introduced with CBD. Luckily the side effects are mild and transient and include issues like:
- Dry mouth. CBD can decrease saliva production. The puppy is likely to increase its lip-licking frequency or water intake to combat the unusual dry mouth sensation. Keep in mind that increased thirst results in more bathroom breaks for your dog. Just make sure your puppy has constant access to fresh and clean drinking water.
- Lowered blood pressure. CBD can cause a sudden and temporary blood pressure drop which generally manifests with lightheadedness and increased sleepiness. If your puppy is feeling drowsy after receiving CBD oil, let it sleep off the effects. Once your puppy gets up, it will be as good as new.
- Diarrhea. As mentioned, puppies have sensitive stomachs and are prone to digestive upsets when introduced with new items. Practicing slow CBD introduction is a good way of preventing diarrhea. It is also helpful to give the CBD during or after meals instead of on an empty stomach.
Finally, we should note that finding the right amount of CBD for your puppy can take some trial and error phase. Therefore, if planning to use the CBD for a specific event, we suggest supplementing for several days before the event.
For example, if car rides make your puppy nervous and you have a scheduled vet visit next week, you should start giving your pet CBD in advance. This way, you will have time to experiment and find the right CBD dose for your puppy – to achieve relaxation without the potential side effects.
CBD is Safe for Young and Old Dogs
CBD oil is generally safe for dogs regardless of age. This is because all dogs have an endocannabinoid system (ECS), and CBD works by supporting its function.
The ECS is a regulatory system build of three components – endocannabinoids, endocannabinoid receptors, and enzymes. There are two types of cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2), and they are scattered throughout the body.
When the endocannabinoids bind with the receptors, based on their location, they regulate body functions like appetite, sleep, metabolism, energy, immunity, inflammation, mood, memory, etc.
Cannabidiol (CBD) replaces the body’s naturally occurring endocannabinoids and binds with their receptors, thus managing the above-mentioned functions. In simpler words, CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system to achieve overall health and balance or homeostasis.
CBD Oil for Puppies
We have already explained that CBD oil is safe for puppies. However, there are situations in which CBD is indicated and situations in which it is not. Let’s take a closer look at when to give and when not to give your puppy CBD oil.
When to Give Your Puppy CBD Oil
Here are some puppy-specific issues and situations that can benefit from regular CBD supplementation:
- Painful teething. Because of its anti-inflammatory features, CBD can manage gum inflammation and manage pain associated with teething in puppies. Alleviating the pain will improve the puppy’s mood and prevent destructive chewing.
- Immunity. Puppies have underdeveloped immune systems. CBD oil boosts immunity by supporting gut health, enhancing the efficacy of the natural killer (NK) cells, and featuring anti-oxidative and anti-inflammation properties. This immune-modulating profile gives puppies a healthy start in life.
- Anxiety and hyperactivity. CBD promotes calmness and relaxation, thus aiding puppies prone to stress and hyper behaviors. CBD balances mood and helps with noise-induced stress and stress-related aggressiveness. It also increases the total sleep time and improves sleep which is imperative for growing puppies.
When NOT to Give CBD to Your Puppy
Just because CBD oil is safe for puppies, it does not mean it is universally indicated. Namely, there are two situations when you should not give your puppy CBD:
When receiving certain prescription medications. CBD oil can affect the production of liver enzymes, thus boosting or inhibiting the effects of some meds. Therefore, if your puppy is on prescription medications, you need to talk to your trusted veterinarian before supplementing with CBD.
When there is a non-medical solution for the issue. Namely, if there is an underlying behavioral issue like anxiety or aggression, your first management choice should be training or behavior modification. If this does not work, you can take the problem to the next level and add CBD to the menu.
CBD Oil for Adult Dogs
CBD oil can manage anxiety and hyperactivity in adult dogs too. In adults, CBD may offer beneficial help with the following problems:
- Allergies. CBD can inhibit histamine release, thus playing an important role in allergy prevention. Described as a therapeutic opportunity in skin health and disease, CBD can help with contact allergies, atopic dermatitis, and food allergies.
- Seizures. CBD is a promising anti-epileptic drug that balances the dog’s nervous system and may reduce the frequency and intensity of seizures. It can also boost the effects of conventional anti-epileptic drugs.
- Aging. CBD is a novel anti-inflammatory drug and has proven anti-oxidant properties. Since chronic inflammation and oxidative stress contribute to aging and disease development, it is safe to assume that CBD supports general wellbeing.
CBD Oil for Senior Dogs
CBD oil supports physical and mental wellbeing, and in senior dogs, it can help with several age-related conditions, including:
- Arthritis. CBD oil can help dogs with canine arthritis by managing joint inflammation and relieving joint pain. Studies show that CBD “can help increase comfort and activity in dogs with osteoarthritis.” CBD can even serve as an NSAID substitute.
- Cancer. As a promising anti-cancer drug, CBD can decrease cancer cell reproduction and inhibit tumor growth. It can also enhance the therapeutic efficacy of conventional anti-cancer treatments and help manage their side effects (vomiting and nausea).
- Cognitive dysfunction. Because of its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, CBD is a powerful neuroprotectant. The neuromodulating activity is critical for preventing cognitive damage and alleviating symptoms of neurodegenerative diseases.
How to Shop for the Best CBD Oil for Dogs
When you are a puppy owner, the pet market can be a confusing place. Today, many brands offer CBD products, and sadly not every supplement featuring the words “CBD oil” and “dog” is safe and efficient.
To find a high-quality CBD oil, pet owners need to ensure the supplement checks the following boxes:
Full Spectrum Oil. As its name suggests, full-spectrum CBD oil contains all of the beneficial cannabinoids found within cannabis plus health-boosting compounds like flavonoids, terpenes, and fatty acids. This full-plant extract is preferred over isolate CBD oils or broad-spectrum oils, although those can still do some good.
Hemp CBD oil. Pet CBD oils must be extracted from hemp and not marijuana. This is because marijuana contains THC – an active ingredient with toxic potential for dogs. Plus, hemp oil needs to be extracted from the whole plant and not just the hemp seeds. Hemp seed oil is still healthy but does not contain cannabinoids.
Organic and 100% Natural. Make sure the hemp oil came from a farm with organic practices. Ideally, you want a CBD oil that was not treated with pesticides, solvents, or fungicides. You also want a CBD oil free from compounds with questionable quality like GMO ingredients and allergens like soy, dairy, corn, or gluten.
CO2 Extraction Method. The extraction process can alter the quality of the CBD oil that you buy your dog. When manufacturers use CO2 extraction, the result is a full-spectrum CBD oil free from impurities and potentially harmful ingredients.
Certificate of Analysis (COA). Dog owners can ask their CBD brand for a Certificate of Analysis to guarantee the oil’s purity. When done correctly and by a third-party lab, the COA will clearly state the oil’s content (good and bad).
Reputable and Trustworthy Brand. The right CBD brand will be transparent about its ingredients and show consistency in its good manufacturing practices. It is also likely to offer a money-back guarantee and display success stories from satisfied customers.
Finally, if your dog is not a fan of CBD oil, keep in mind there are other CBD supplements like CBD dog treats – bites and soft chews as well as CBD-infused edibles like peanut butter. There are also CBD oils with dog-friendly flavors.
Our Final Thoughts on CBD Oil for Puppies
CBD oil is safe, efficient, and health-boosting supplement for canines of all sizes and ages – small dogs, large dogs, puppies, adults, and seniors.
When using CBD for puppies, make sure you get a high-quality product from a reputable brand and use it following the manufacturer’s guidelines.
On our Honest Paws website, you can check our CBD oil reviews and learn more about CBD for pups. With CBD oil, it is never too early to set your puppy on the road to healthy adulthood.
Cannabidiol, a non-psychotropic component of cannabis, attenuates vomiting and nausea-like behaviour via indirect agonism of 5-HT(1A) somatodendritic autoreceptors in the dorsal raphe nucleus – PubMed (nih.gov)
Effects of acute systemic administration of cannabidiol on sleep-wake cycle in rats – Marcos Hortes N Chagas, José Alexandre S Crippa, Antonio Waldo Zuardi, Jaime E C Hallak, João Paulo Machado-de-Sousa, Camila Hirotsu, Lucas Maia, Sergio Tufik, Monica Levy Andersen, 2013 (sagepub.com)
The effect of cannabidiol on canine neoplastic cell proliferation and mitogen‐activated protein kinase activation during autophagy and apoptosis – Henry – 2021 – Veterinary and Comparative Oncology – Wiley Online Library