If you are thinking about giving your dog CBD oil to treat a physical or psychological condition, you probably want to see the research which backs it up first.
As of the time of this writing, CBD oil is really just coming into widespread popular use thanks to changes in regulations.
As a result, while there is increasing interest in conducting research into the health benefits of CBD oil, there is still not a huge body of research currently out there — particularly for pets.
Nonetheless, there is already some scientific backing for using CBD oil in dogs. If we bring human and other animal research into account, there is even more evidence for CBD oil’s potential benefits.
Below, I share some of the studies which I have located for various conditions which you might use CBD oil to treat in your pet.
Studies which were actually performed on canines have been boldfaced so that you can locate them at a glance. The others have been conducted on other test subjects.
1. Arthritis and Joint Pain
Most of the research I have conducted on CBD oil in dogs has concerned arthritis and joint pain.
This is because I originally became interested in CBD oil for dogs when searching for a natural treatment for my own dog’s joint pain.
Let’s look at some data.
- This study on dogs with osteoarthritis was published in the journal Frontiers in Veterinary Science in 2018. The study was randomized, placebo-controlled, and run blindly with respect to both the owners and vets involved. The researchers concluded, “This pharmacokinetic and clinical study suggests that 2 mg/kg of CBD twice daily can help increase comfort and activity in dogs with OA.”
- Another study in 2015 was performed on rats with a rat model of arthritis. The researchers concluded, “These data indicate that topical CBD application has therapeutic potential for relief of arthritis pain‐related behaviors and inflammation without evident side‐effects.”
- The scientists who ran this study in 2005 called it “the first ever controlled trial of a CBM [cannabis-based medicine] in RA [rheumatoid arthritis].” The product in question was called Sativex, and it contained both THC and CBD. The researchers reported “significant analgesic effect was observed and disease activity was significantly suppressed following Sativex treatment.”
Based on these studies, we can say that CBD products appear to produce relief in cases of joint pain and arthritis in a range of different species.
As more research is conducted on CBD oil, we expect that a lot of the initial studies will continue to be in the area of arthritis.
As more studies are performed on dogs with arthritis, we will update this page to include additional research.
Epilepsy is another area where research into the effects of CBD has been a priority.
Now, there is cutting-edge research which literally just emerged on CBD and its effectiveness in dogs with seizures.
- This article reports on a study at Colorado State University, dated May 21, 2019. The summary reads, “Scientists have found in a small study that 89 percent of dogs who received CBD in the clinical trial had a reduction in the frequency of seizures. Nine dogs were treated with CBD, while seven in a control group were treated with a placebo.”
- This site adds, “Dr. Stephanie McGrath works at Colorado State University and has completed a pair of clinical studies on the effects of CBD in dogs with epilepsy or osteoarthritis since 2016” (the article linked was dated back in February 2019, so before the results which I shared above came out).
- A paper which was removed from this link states, “Experimentally, CBD attenuates experimentally-induced seizures in animals.”
- This research states, “Furthermore, the effects of several plant cannabinoids, most notably cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabidavarin (CBDV), in models of seizures, epilepsy, epileptogenesis, and neuroprotection are less ambiguous, and consistent with reports of therapeutically beneficial effects of these compounds in clinical studies.”
- Here is a paper which says, “Compared with THC, cannabidiol (CBD) shows a better defined anticonvulsant profile in animal models and is largely devoid of adverse psychoactive effects and abuse liability.”
- Another paper which has been removed from its link reported, “Unrelated to direct effects at CB1, CBD acts as anti-convulsant in animal models of induced epilepsy (27, 28). A pilot study shows that CBD might mitigate naturally occurring epilepsy in dogs (2).”
So if you have been thinking about giving your dog CBD oil to treat seizures, you may very well be on the right track, going by the research available.
This is another area where we hope to see more studies emerging in the near future on canines and other species.
Other Health Conditions
CSU is very much leading the way with CBD oil research in dogs. Research emerging from that University has focused very much on arthritis and epilepsy.
In short, as of the time of this writing, there really is nothing else to share in terms of research performed directly on dogs using CBD oil for other conditions.
Still, because dogs, like other species, have endocannabinoid systems, it stands to reason that studies conducted on humans and other animals could be pertinent to how CBD would affect dogs as well.
So allow me to briefly share a few other studies with you on CBD oil health benefits.
- Pain relief: According to this paper, “Cannabinoids have an analgesic effect on neuropathic pain in rodent models (thought to be mediated via the CB1 and CB2 receptors) in addition to other receptors, such as transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1). Secondary to nerve injury, cannabinoid induced antinociception is more effective in alleviating pain than opioid drugs by suppressing wind up and noxious stimulus induced central sensitization (Hohmann 2006).”
- Atopic dermatitis: This paper says, “Data are lacking on CBD in canine atopic dermatitis. Oral palmityl ethanolamine, an endocannabinoid, reduced the inflammatory response in Ascaris hypersensitive dogs (25).”
- Diabetes: Research says, “CBD inhibits development of diabetes in experimental models of diabetes in mice. Reduction of pancreatic inflammation and antioxidant effects are credited with this benefit.”
- Cancer: According to this source, “Many of the cannabinoids have antiapoptotic effects and reduce neoplastic proliferation in selected tumor cell lines. Anecdotal reports from both human and veterinary patients indicate the potential for complete remission and possibly even cure of a number of different neoplastic diseases.”
- Anxiety: A research review looked at CBD’s effectiveness in treating social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, OCD, generalized anxiety, and PTSD. The researchers stated, “Overall, current evidence indicates CBD has considerable potential as a treatment for multiple anxiety disorders, with need for further study of chronic and therapeutic effects in relevant clinical populations.”
How Can You Get the Most Effective Results Using CBD for Dogs?
You now are apprised of the state of research on CBD in dogs as well as other species.
While there is much research left to do to establish the benefits of CBD oil with certainty, evidence right now suggests its effectiveness for treating arthritis, epilepsy, and a variety of other conditions.
If you want to achieve similar good results treating your own dog CBD oil, here are some suggestions:
- Purchase high quality CBD oil to begin with from a trusted manufacturer which uses CO2 extraction to produce pure, potent products.
- Choose the right concentration for your pet. There are products which are ideal for large dogs and small dogs.
- Give your dog the correct dosage. Too much could cause side effects, but too little will not produce as powerful an effect.
- Pick a form your dog likes. You will find it easier to be consistent (see below) if the form of CBD you pick for your dog (i.e. capsules, tinctures, biscuits) is one that your dog doesn’t protest.
- Be consistent. With supplementation, consistency is essential if you want to see the best possible results. If you skip a lot of random days, the CBD oil will not be as effective.
- Be patient. While you may see some instant results from CBD treatment, some effects may not become evident until some time has passed. If you continue to administer the CBD over the course of weeks, you may notice cumulative positive effects as your dog adjusts to less pain and stress.
- Make adjustments if you need to. Maintain a log of written notes as your dog is trying CBD. Accumulate your own evidence, and make adjustments as you need to with dosing until you get the best results.
Where Can You Purchase High Quality CBD for Dogs?
I tried out a lot of different CBD oils and researched even more when I was looking for products for my own dog, Big Nellie. Check out my in-depth reviews to discover the CBD oil brands which I recommend. CBD has been a huge help to my dog, and hopefully will be for yours as well.