If you’re looking at CBD for dogs, there are a few different kinds of products worth considering. Like all mammals, dogs have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) that handles sleep, stress, inflammation, and more. This means cannabinoids like CBD, which interact with the ECS, can be an effective way of promoting wellness in your pooch.
While the science around CBD for dogs is young, most organizations, including the American Kennel Club, are confident that it is a safe supplement with little risk of harm. CBD can help your dog in many ways, so why not try it out and see how it works?
Well, that begs the question: which product should you give your dog? Let’s explore.
How Cannabinoids Help Your Dog
To better understand which products work best for your dog, it’s important to understand why CBD helps at all. When you give a dog CBD, it activates and prolongs their endocannabinoid system to produce more hormones. As this happens, dogs often feel more relaxed and calm.
CBD is just one of many cannabinoids. It works by slowing down enzymes that would normally stop the ECS at its usual time, allowing the ECS to stay active longer.
Other cannabinoids, such as CBG, bind directly to endocannabinoid receptors in your brain.
Basically, the more cannabinoids there are in your supplement, the better the product should work. Is this scientifically proven? Look, we won’t make any unverified claims here — the science of cannabinoids is young, and that makes it hard to prove anything for sure. But there is an abundance of anecdotal evidence.
What we do know is that when working together, cannabinoids cause what’s known as “the Entourage Effect” — wherein all the plant’s compounds work in combination to make each other more effective. Ideally, you’ll have the chance to try out different products for your dog until you find what works best.
What’s Out There Right Now?
For the most part, there are two kinds of CBD products for dogs: dog treats and tincture oils. Within those products, some contain more cannabinoids than others, and some are formulated for more specific purposes.
CBD Oil Tinctures for Dogs
Probably the oldest and most popular CBD dog remedy is the oil tincture. Today, most of these issues are handled with modern medicines. Still, not everyone is eager to give their dogs heavy medications when there are natural, non-toxic remedies available.
The nice thing about tinctures, when compared to other CBD products, is that they work quickly. A dropper under your dog’s tongue will get cannabinoids into their bloodstream in minutes, whereas dog treats have to be digested and can take more time.
The other benefit of CBD tincture oil for dogs is that you can easily measure exactly how much your dog gets. While CBD may be non-toxic, it’s still important that you don’t overdo it. Tincture oils come with a 1mL dropper that you can use to administer a more exact serving.
But won’t my dog hate the flavor? No way! CBD tincture oils are flavored to make it easy for your dog to enjoy. This tincture oil is flavored to taste like bacon. Who could say no to that?
Delectable Dog Treats
Don’t have the time or energy to use a dropper? Why not give them a dog treat? A quick online search results in a huge variety of CBD treats your dog can enjoy and benefit from.
Like tincture oils, each dog treat comes in a measured serving that you can give your dog without any trouble. If your dog is feeling extra yappy, you can give ’em an extra one without any worry that they’ll get too much.
Unlike tincture oils, dog treats can contain far more ingredients per serving. This means that if your dog needs a natural anti-inflammatory, like turmeric and chondroitin, a good CBD dog treat is a much better way to get it to them.
Dog treats come in different flavors and varieties. If your dog just isn’t loving the whole tincture oil thing, this may be the answer.
CBD Pet Balms
Dogs often suffer from dry and cracked skin, particularly on their paw pads and nose. This can lead to inflammation and even infection if left unchecked.
CBD Pet Balm contains wellness-enhancing CBD, along with soothing hemp seed oil, shea butter, and other effective ingredients. It not only soothes your pooch’s discomfort, it also moisturizes and protects against further irritation.
How Much CBD Should I Give My Dog?
While CBD isn’t toxic, that’s no excuse to give them huge servings for the fun of it. If given too much, dogs can develop tolerance, making it harder and harder for them to feel the effects of cannabinoids over time. You don’t want that.
CBD won’t knock your dog out. It doesn’t get them high, so you shouldn’t expect much beyond noticeable relaxation. If you get to 100mg of CBD (which is quite a lot) and your dog still isn’t responding, stop there. After too much CBD, dogs can suffer weight changes, diarrhea, and fatigue.
Just be reasonable with your dog. The writer of this article uses CBD on his dogs when they are left alone for more than an hour or so, and in his experience, it helps to calm them. However, CBD is no substitute for proper veterinary care. If your dog is sick, CBD isn’t going to fix it for long.
Finding the Best Products
Because CBD is a wellness supplement, it doesn’t deal with much government regulation. On the one hand, this makes it easy to find CBD products wherever you go, but on the other hand, the quality of those products may be in question.
The best place to start is with organic products. By choosing organic products, you’re ensuring that your supplement isn’t weakened by synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. Most people will tell you that organic products work better, and when it comes to your canine loved one, you should only settle for the best.
Broad spectrum products are also worth exploring. Because every dog responds to cannabinoids differently, giving them a variety only increases the chance that the supplement will work as intended.
Not sure what’s in the product? Read its lab report. These third-party chemical tests check for potency and safety in your supplement. For example, if there are residues from pesticides or from when the product was formulated, you’ll find out in a lab report. If your CBD brand doesn’t offer a third-party lab report, you should consider looking for a more reputable company.
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