Heidi and CBD (Part Two)

 Is it legal to give your dog CBD oil?

A 2018 farm bill made the widespread farming of hemp legal, in turn making hemp-derived CBD legal nearly everywhere in the US (not to be confused with marijuana-derived CBD, which is much more of a murky subject and depends on your state’s medical marijuana stance)

 That said, the 2018 farm bill that legalized hemp did not legalize veterinarians prescribing CBD to pets. They can recommend it, but no official prescriptions can be written.

Pet owners aren’t discouraged by the lack of guidance, though:  According to an online survey done across the Veterinary Information Network, two-thirds of participating vets said that patients ask them about cannabis for their pets at least once a month.

If you see a site that sells oil for people and animals, you may be wondering what the difference is. Trick question: There’s typically no difference. Flavoring, added ingredients like fish oil or different dosage suggestions may set the pet oil apart from the regular oil, but the base product is generally identical.

How much CBD should dogs have? There are no FDA-regulated dosages for dogs taking CB, but no adverse effects of giving a dog “too much” CBD have been found.

The general belief is that orally is the quickest method for dogs. For animals with strict diets, who will notice something extra being put in their food, oil can also be absorbed through the dog’s inner ear or the gums. Dogs can also lick oil right from the dropper itself, or right off of your hand.  

Weight is currently the main deciding factor when determining how much CBD a dog should have Recommendations vary by who you talk to, but the general idea seems to be 1-5 mg for every 10 pounds of body weight.

 Min Lee, the president of brand development at Honest Paws says a 75-pound German shepherd suffering from severe hip dysplasia would typically require a more concentrated delivery method (ie high-potency oil) than a 10-pound poodle who has anxiety. In the poodle example, edible CBD treats should be enough. Of course, small dogs could have a list of serious problems and big dogs could have a single mild one — the rule is simply to start small and note the dosage where you see changes in behavior.

CBD isn’t a fix-all for your dog’s pain or anxiety and doesn’t eliminate the need for vet visits, but it’s exciting to see customers gushing about it helping their dog.

Here’s what to keep in mind while you shop: Choose a site that sells a variety of dosages

This will make it easy to test out what works for your dog, and will be especially helpful if you’re buying for dogs of different sizes.

Some pet oil will be flavored and some won’t be. If your dog is picky reviews can tell you if other people’s pets liked the oil.

 To ensure that you’re buying a quality hemp product with less than 3 percent THC, the site should have ingredients and third-party lab results posted (or at the least, offer QR codes on each product) Bonus if you see CO2 extraction listed — that’s the gold standard purification process. Bigger dogs will likely require higher daily dosages than smaller dogs, and higher-potency oils are more expensive.

Have you given CBD to your pets?  I’d like to know.  How have they reacted? Please leave a comment below.

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