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April 25, 2023

CBD Dosage for Dogs

Estimated Read Time: 11 min

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By Valerie Orta on April 25, 2023

Determining the proper CBD dosage for your dog depends on several factors, including size, age, reason for using CBD, and the concentration of the CBD product.

Our furry friends bring so much joy to our lives. Dogs are always there for us whether we need a cuddle or a laugh. When the time comes, you want to be there for your dog. As dog owners, we are responsible for taking care of them and supporting their health and happiness however we can. That's why many pet owners are turning to CBD to help their dogs feel better.

One of the ways dog owners have been there for their dogs is through CBD. CBD, or cannabidiol, is a natural compound found in cannabis plants. It's known for its potential health benefits, such as promoting balance and calm. CBD is also considered safe for dogs and is available in pet-friendly products. But before you give your dog CBD, it's essential to know the right dosage to avoid any unwanted effects.

Here are some important factors to consider when determining the right CBD dosage for your dog:

  • Every dog is different: Just like humans, dogs come in all shapes and sizes, and their bodies may react differently to CBD.
  • Start low and go slow: It's recommended to start with a low dosage and gradually increase it until you see the desired effects. This allows you to monitor your dog's response and avoid potential side effects.
  • Consider your dog's weight: Dosages are typically based on a dog's weight, with a recommended range of 0.25mg to 0.5mg of CBD per pound.
  • Consult with your veterinarian: It’s always a good idea to consult with your vet before giving your dog CBD, especially if your pet takes any medications or has underlying health conditions.

By considering these factors and finding the right dosage, CBD can be a helpful supplement for your dog's health and well-being. Let's explore this topic further to ensure you're well-equipped to make the right decisions for your furry loved ones.

What is CBD?

As a dog owner, you want to make sure you're making informed decisions regarding your pet's health. CBD is a popular topic these days, and it's important to know what it is before you give it to your dog. So, what exactly is CBD?

Here are some key points to keep in mind:

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a plant-based compound found in the flowers of certain varieties of the Cannabis Sativa plant.

CBD is typically extracted from a specific variety of cannabis called hemp, which is grown for its high CBD content and low levels of THC (the psychoactive compound in cannabis). Unlike THC, CBD does not have psychoactive effects and is not intoxicating.

The hemp plant also contains many other beneficial compounds, including other cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes. These compounds work synergistically to deliver exciting wellness effects and benefits to your pup.

It's important to note that not all CBD pet products are created equal, and there's a lot of misinformation out there. That's why it's essential to research and only choose high-quality CBD products specifically formulated for pets.

By understanding what CBD is and where it comes from, you can make informed decisions about whether it's suitable for your dog. In the next section, we'll explore the types of CBD for dogs, so keep reading to learn more.

Types of CBD for Pets

Like with products for people, pet CBD can come in different forms, and choosing the right one for your dog is important. Here's a breakdown of the three main types of CBD for pets:

Full spectrum CBD

Full-spectrum CBD is a hemp extract that retains all the beneficial compounds in the hemp plant. It is widely considered the most beneficial form of CBD.

Besides CBD, full-spectrum CBD also contains the other hundreds of compounds found in the hemp plant, including other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. These compounds work together to create an entourage effect, amplifying each compound's benefits to deliver the ultimate CBD experience for your pet.

While full-spectrum CBD is the most effective form of CBD, it does contain trace amounts of THC (no more than 0.3%), which some pet owners may be hesitant to give to their pets.


Broad-spectrum CBD is a good option for pet owners who want their pets to experience the benefits of CBD without any detectable amounts of THC. This form retains all the beneficial compounds in the hemp extract except the small amounts of THC have been removed.

When it comes to full spectrum vs broad spectrum CBD, while broad-spectrum CBD is still effective, its entourage effects are slightly less amplified than full-spectrum CBD.

CBD isolate

CBD isolate is a highly purified form of CBD that contains 99% CBD. The hemp extract undergoes additional processing to remove all other compounds, leaving behind a pure form of CBD.

While CBD isolate is still effective, it doesn't contain any other beneficial compounds in the hemp plant, like full-spectrum and broad-spectrum, which means it doesn't produce the entourage effect.

What Are the Health Benefits of CBD for Dogs?

Much inaccurate information about CBD online could leave you wondering whether giving CBD to your dog is the best choice.

However, there are several reasons why dog owners consider giving CBD to their pets. It offers numerous potential benefits to the dog, whether for everyday wellness or to help deal with a particular challenge. Here are some of the benefits associated with giving CBD to dogs:

Joint support

As dogs age, they can develop joint issues that cause discomfort and limit mobility. Giving them CBD provides the support they need to maintain healthier joints longer. CBD is believed to help soothe aching joints and improve mobility. It also allows dogs with joint tightness to move around more easily and with less discomfort.

GI support

The health of a dog's gastrointestinal (GI) tract is important to its overall well-being. CBD may promote the growth of good bacteria in the gut while eliminating harmful bacteria with its antibacterial properties. This can help support the functioning and health of the GI tract, ensuring that dogs maintain their health and vibrancy. Additionally, CBD may support a dog's appetite, making it potentially helpful for dogs who are not eating enough.

Calming support

Dogs can become easily stressed and uneasy, especially when experiencing new situations or changes in their routine. CBD may provide calming support, helping dogs to relax and alleviate stress and anxiety. This can help to reduce excessive barking, salivating, and pacing and promote better sleep at night.

Mental support

Like humans, dogs have an endocannabinoid system that helps regulate memory, sleep, appetite, and mood. CBD interacts with this system to help promote the normal and healthy functioning of the brain, ensuring that dogs maintain a balanced system and get enough rest and sleep to maintain optimum brain function for longer.

Signs That Your Dog May Benefit From CBD

If you're still mauling the idea of giving CBD to your dog and are still determining if it will have any impact, here are some signs that CBD could help you decide whether it's the right time to give CBD to your dog.

It's important to note that if your dog is already on medication, it's best to consult your vet before adding CBD to their routine. Also, most dog owners have reported consistent and regular use of CBD to have the best results.

Change in behavior

If you notice that your dog is displaying antisocial behavior, is easily startled, or becomes aggressive, it might be experiencing some environmental-related stress or other issues. CBD is believed to have calming and relaxing effects, which could help your dog feel more comfortable and ease back into their old lovable habits.

Mobility and discomfort-related issues

Do you notice your pup isn't as excited for walks? Or that she moves a little gingerly? As dogs age, they may start experiencing joint issues and pains, making them less mobile and affecting their quality of life. CBD is believed to have anti-stiffness and natural relief benefits that could ease discomfort and make it easier for your dog to move around and enjoy a fuller life.

Mood and behavioral issues

If your dog is acting uneasy or displaying behavioral issues, such as chewing or destroying things, it could be experiencing separation stress. CBD might help lessen their agitation and help them settle into a sense of calm, which could also improve their behavior.

Factors to Consider When Determining How Much CBD to Give to Your Dog

Like in people, there's no specific amount of CBD you can give to dogs that cuts across the board. Instead, the ideal CBD dosage for dogs varies depending on various factors that you should consider to help you come up with the right serving for your dog. Here are some things you should consider before deciding on the right serving for your furry friend. Always consult your veterinarian before giving CBD to your dog, especially if they're on medications.


One crucial factor to consider when determining how much CBD to give your dog is their size. Generally, the larger the dog, the more CBD they need to experience the desired effects. On the other hand, smaller breeds require lower doses than larger species.

Reason for giving CBD

The reason for giving your dog CBD also affects the dosage. If you're using it to promote everyday wellness, your dog won't need as much CBD as when using it to address a particular issue your dog is facing.

Age of the dog

Age is another essential factor when determining your dog's CBD dosage. Younger dogs are more active and have a higher metabolism, so they can absorb CBD more efficiently. Older dogs, however, have slower metabolisms, so they may require a higher dose and more time to experience the desired benefits.

The concentration of the CBD product

The concentration of CBD in the product you're using also affects the appropriate dosage. Different brands and products have varying CBD concentrations, meaning that higher concentrations require smaller doses, while lower concentrations need more CBD for the desired benefit. Pet chews generally have a higher concentration of cBD than pet CBD sprays, for example. Therefore, reading the label carefully to determine the CBD concentration and calculate the appropriate dosage for your dog based on weight and other factors is essential.

Why Giving Your Dog the Right CBD Dosage Matters

Although CBD is not toxic and well tolerated by dogs, giving it the right amount is crucial. It ensures you give your dog the best chance of having the best CBD experience and preventing adverse side effects.

Giving your dog too much CBD could result in some mild and temporary side effects like:

  • Lethargy
  • Excessive salivating
  • Bowel disturbance
  • Sleeping too much

How Much CBD To Give To Dogs

Determining the right dosage of CBD for your dog can be overwhelming, but three schools of thought can help guide you. Here they are:

By weight

One way to determine the ideal CBD dose for dogs is by their weight. Typically, dog weight is divided into three categories: Small, Medium, and Large.


Small dogs that weigh up to 20 pounds can take between 3 to 6 mg of CBD for up to two servings per day. The exact amount of CBD to give your dog depends on their tolerance and experience with CBD.


Dogs weighing between 20 to 50 pounds are considered medium-sized. Breeds like French bulldogs, basset hounds, border collies, Australian shepherds, and Siberian huskies fall under this category. They can take between 6 and 12 mg of CBD twice per day, depending on their weight and how long they have been taking CBD.


Large dogs, like Great Danes, Rottweilers, German shepherds, pointers, retrievers, and boxers, weigh over 50 pounds. They can take between 12 and 18 mg of CBD twice daily. The amount of CBD you should give your dog depends on their weight and previous experience with CBD.

CBD based on the situation

The amount of CBD you should give your dog can also depend on the situation or challenge your dog faces. Here are some recommended CBD servings based on specific wellness needs:

  • CBD for joint support – The recommended CBD serving to encourage natural joint relief is 1-2 mg/lb of CBD, given twice daily.
  • Hyperactivity and stress – 1-2 mg/lb is also thought to be the ideal dose for dogs with hyperactivity, aggression, and stress.
  • Skin and coat support – A similar serving of 1-2mg/lb of weight is also considered effective for soothing skin irritation.

Starting slow

This is the golden rule for administering CBD to dogs. Although it's wise to consider the weight and wellness of your dog, it's important to start with a small serving size and gradually increase it over time. This helps the dog to adapt to CBD and allows you to monitor their experience.

Wrap Up

Ultimately, the appropriate CBD dosage for your canine companion hinges on various considerations, such as their body weight, age, specific health status, and the potency of the CBD product.

You can also use weight and wellness status to calculate the CBD you give your dog. However, starting with a low dosage and gradually increasing it over time is essential to monitor your dog's response to CBD.

Always consult your veterinarian before giving your dog any CBD products, and ensure you purchase high-quality products specifically designed for pets. With these tips, you can give your furry friend the benefits of CBD while ensuring their safety and well-being.

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