A dog next to a CBD tincture. Text reads "CBD For Pets: What to know"

Like weighted blankets and thunder shirts, every proud pet parent will do whatever it takes to make sure that their pets are happy, healthy, and comfortable. Now that CBD pet products have flooded the shelves, we want to help you figure out what’s best for your furry family members. In this post, we’ll address common questions and claims made about CBD for pets, like

  • How does CBD Work? 
  • What is CBD for Pets?
  • What are CBD’s side effects?

What Is CBD?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the 113 known cannabinoids, or chemical compounds, present in cannabis plants. Cannabidiol is one of the more well-known cannabinoids, second only to THC. 

Atomically speaking, the two aren’t all that different. The real big difference between CBD and THC is in their respective effects. While THC is known for its intoxicating effects, CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning pure CBD won’t get you high. 

The World Health Organization has even stated, “In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential….” 

Read more: What Does CBD Do?

How Does CBD Work?

Cannabidiol interacts with human bodies in a number of ways— the main being its effect on our endocannabinoid system— a biological system native to humans, cats, dogs, and more. 

The endocannabinoid system is a network of receptors that helps us regulate: 

  • Sleep 
  • Mood
  • Stress
  • General appetite and metabolism
  • Memory and learning
  • Inflammation

Some believe that consuming external cannabinoids like CBD can actually help a user’s entire endocannabinoid system run more efficiently.

Sure, but what about CBD for pets? Because our pets have similar endocannabinoid systems to humans, some believe CBD interacts with their peripheral and central nervous systems in the same way that it does with humans.

What Does CBD For Pets Do?

There are few scientific studies on CBD’s effect on pets. And, given the relatively short time that CBD has been federally legal, it makes sense. Expect more efficacy and risk studies to come out soon.

That said, many pet owners who do use CBD say that it helps with: 

  • Anxiety
  • Sleep
  • Appetite
  • Nausea 
  • Joint Pain & Mobility 
  • Seizures 

Note: The first data for the veterinary-specific use of CBD to treat seizures in dogs was released in 2019. Researchers found a statistically significant 89% reduction in seizure frequency in dogs receiving small amounts of CBD compared to the 43% reduction in the control group. The results warrant additional studies into CBD dosage and seizure frequency.

Additional research into CBD for pets is being pursued by the American Kennel Club, specifically to evaluate the use of CBD in treatment-resistant epileptic dogs.

CBD For Pets: What are the Side Effects?

Because there is little research into pet CBD use, veterinarians can extrapolate potential animal side effects based on how CBD affects humans. 

Dry mouth: CBD can slow the production of saliva. CBD for pets could manifest itself as increased thirst.

Low blood pressure: Large doses of CBD can cause a temporary drop in blood pressure. This can lead to brief feelings of light-headedness.

Drowsiness: While many owners use CBD for pets to manage anxiety, you can overdo it. Too much CBD may make your pet drowsy. 

The best way to avoid any unwanted side effects is to consult your vet. Based on the weight and condition of your pet, they may have some insight and can recommend a dosage schedule. If not, look for dosing instructions on your CBD product and start on the lower end of that spectrum.

How To Find the Best Pet CBD Products

A Certificate of Analysis (CoA)

Any and all vendors should be upfront with providing you with a third-party certificate of analysis. Find Sunset Lake’s third-party test results here. A certificate of analysis should tell you about the potency of that specific product and tell you what other cannabinoids may be present.

See our more in-depth: How do you read a CoA?

Would you take it?

What’s in the product? Insist on seeing the ingredient list and look for any eyebrow-raising additives. If you wouldn’t take it, is it acceptable CBD for your pet?

Where was the CBD grown?

Don’t shop based on price alone. A lot of CBD, and this includes CBD oils for dogs and cats, is grown in sub-optimal conditions and may contain higher concentrations of heavy metals.

Look for companies that use sungrown hemp, provide adequate CoAs, and sustainably farm their CBD.

Check Out Sunset Lake’s CBD For Pets

Check out Sunset Lake’s lineup of CBD for pets. We only use CBD from hemp that we grow on our farm in Northern Vermont and currently carry a 600mg Full Spectrum CBD Pet Oil, CBD Dog Treats, and a bundle of both. Everything is made with the highest quality ingredients we can source, handcrafted, and shipped directly from our farm.