When considering CBD for dogs with anxiety, most people think of CBD oil. Bottled CBD oils with droppers are good options because they make it easy to measure the right dose. You can give CBD oil directly in the mouth or add it to food or a treat.
CBD advertising and labeling can be very confusing and even misleading, so to find the best hemp CBD for your dog, you will want to shop carefully. Check how and where the hemp is grown, and make sure it’s free of heavy metals and pesticides. It’s essential to buy only CBD that’s lab-tested for potency and purity.
Is hemp oil different from hemp CBD?
You may need to do some experimenting to find the right dose because every dog and every situation is different. The typical recommendation is 1–5 mg per 10 pounds of body weight, but there is no known toxicity level.
If you give your dog medications for anxiety or any other conditions, check with your veterinarian before using CBD oil. Holistic and integrative vets are usually very familiar with CBD and will be easily able to answer your questions.
How do you find the best CBD oil for dogs with anxiety?
Rescue pups struggling with PTSD, traveling, moving to a new home or adjusting to new people or other pets in their life, fireworks, trips to the veterinarian or groomer…reasons for dog anxiety abound. CBD can be the solution for those looking for natural options to prescription anti-anxiety drugs and their potentially harmful side effects. CBD can help anxious dogs settle into happier routines both situationally and over the long term.
Verdino doesn’t expect the CBD pet care momentum to slow down. If anything, as legalization continues to sweep the nation, more and more customers will be inquiring about hemp for their house pets. “I think it’ll be easier to prescribe and recommend to clients. I think it all depends on where the research goes,” he says. It remains to be seen if there will ever be a firm pharmaceutical consensus on CBD, but also, who’s to say that will actually matter?
Ramon Ramirez was at the South by Southwest conference, chilling under the black tents of the Fader Fort, when a vendor handed him a small complimentary dose of CBD oil drops for pets. This was 2019, CBD’s breakout year, as the upstart hemp sector swarmed every trade show and music festival in North America. “There were CBD dinner parties and CBD cocktails at dumb brand activations,” remembers Ramirez, who lives in Austin, Texas, and works in the media. A few weeks after the show, Ramirez was on a trip with his dog Penny, who can get anxious on her bad days. He needed to leave her in a room for four hours or more. A few drops of CBD certainly couldn’t hurt.
“Veterinary science is frustratingly limited, and when a pet is sick, you resent not knowing exactly why. You expect Dr. House-level diagnostics and instead get basically a cortisone shot,” Ramirez says. “CBD drops may very well be a snipe hunt. The appeal is more direct control in helping animals.”
Jen Weatherhead, the owner of ZenPup, is one of those newly converted entrepreneurs. Four years ago, when she was working in product development for a makeup company, she became the owner of two miniature longhaired dachshunds, Rooster and Roxanne — and Rooster spent his first months in Weatherhead’s care alone in the bathroom. Initially, Weatherhead believed Rooster to be a little eccentric; then she discovered that he had crippling anxiety. Rooster’s veterinarian wanted to put the dachshund on a Xanax prescription, but Weatherhead bristled at the idea of integrating human anti-anxiety medication into the diet of a 2-month-old puppy. Weatherhead was already using CBD in her personal life and reported some “pretty noticeable” changes with her own anxiety and temperament. So, she decided to see if Rooster could find the same relief. Weatherhead researched the CBD pet care space and described what she found as the “Wild West.”
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Ramirez is not alone. Recently, it feels like everyone is exploring the potential of hemp for their pets, from edibles to topical creams. Grand View Research estimates that the total revenue derived from CBD pet products could approach $400 million by 2027. That figure is contextualized by The Nielsen Group, which found that three-quarters of CBD consumers are pet owners and that 24 percent of them use hemp for themselves, their animals, or both. (Ramirez tells me that he absolutely has gotten high with Penny. “We ate snacks and hung out,” he says.) The Washington Post notes that a number of high-profile celebrities have started to fold pet care CBD tinctures into their endorsement portfolio. Mike Tyson partnered with Cesar Milan, of The Dog Whisperer fame, for a line of cannabidiol pet treats, and 311, one of the great marijuana bands of all time, added a pet-specific CBD oil last December.
“Now I get the drops out whenever there’s a thunderstorm,” says Ramirez. “Our dog mellows out and lies down. That’s basically it. But given how nervous she gets during storms, that alone makes a big difference.”
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Ramon Ramirez is indifferent to the science because he is not necessarily a CBD believer. That’s not the point. Ramirez recalls how two of his elderly cats passed away in the past year and the way he dosed them up with CBD down the stretch. He believed that it helped with their pain, no matter how true it was.
That’s the sticking point. To date, there is still not a medical consensus about the efficacy of CBD for humans and animals alike, including whether the widespread claims about pain relief and blunted depression hold up to scientific truth. It is clear that CBD can be useful in regard to certain medical conditions — last year, the FDA approved a CBD-derived treatment called Epiodelex which reduces seizures among those with rare forms of epilepsy — but that remains the only authorized CBD medication in circulation. Dr. Mark Verdino, chief of veterinary staff at the North Shore Animal League America, tells me there have been CBD studies that reveal a potential impact on arthritis pain and anxiety, but there are others that show no tangible difference between the placebo group and the group that received the medication.