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What Does CBD Do For Dogs?

 young woman cuddling beagle

You’ve probably heard the buzz surrounding CBD.

What was already a budding industry has exploded in recent years with the legalization of all hemp-based products. So much so that experts estimate that the legalized cannabis market will likely hit the trillion-dollar mark by 2027.

While adults are the main audience for CBD products, a new channel has opened up for our furry best friends. Now, there’s a growing body of evidence that dogs can also be the beneficiary of CBD.

One of the main reasons people take CBD is to help settle their nerves. And for dogs, CBD can provide the same calming effects.

But what does CBD do for dogs? Is dog CBD even safe? This guide will answer these questions and more.

Is CBD Safe for Dogs?

As a responsible pet owner, you must do your research before you introduce something new like CBD dog chews to your pet’s diet. Although we share some similar physiological characteristics, you can’t simply assume that what’s safe for human consumption is also safe for your furry friends (we’re looking at you, chocolate).

The good news is that researchers agree that CBD is safe for dogs to use.

A 2019 study confirmed that dogs can consume up to 2 mg of CBD every 12 hours without any serious detrimental effects. However, it’s worth noting that the study of CBD is still a relatively new field. Researchers are currently seeking to better understand why and how CBD interacts with the human body and the ECS. As a result, the research on dogs is even more scanty.

Signs Your Dog Could Use CBD

So, how do you know that your dog is a candidate for CBD?

Age and behavior are the first things to be on the lookout for. Common behaviors that CBD could assist with include:

  • trouble getting up or sitting down 
  • aches and discomforts 
  • hyperactivity
  • separation stress
  • restlessness 
  • appetite problems
  • inability to sleep
  • aggression

That said, it’s wise to consult your veterinarian before you make a decision to use CBD for your dog.

What Does CBD Do For Dogs? 

Although research is still underway, early indications show that CBD interacts with dogs’ endocannabinoid system (ECS) in a similar way to humans. The ECS is responsible for regulating some of your body’s most vital functions, including:

  • appetite
  • sleep
  • emotions
  • cognition

Cannabidiol (CBD)—one of the 100+ naturally occurring cannabinoids within the hemp plant—stimulates cannabinoid receptors in a dog’s body, stimulating endocannabinoid production. This leads to a host of beneficial effects, including:

Separation Stress

Does your dog struggle when you’re away? Are they generally tightly strung, especially around strangers?

As a dog owner, it can be hard when your pup is stressed out. There’s no reasoning with it. And unfortunately, some dogs are naturally more predisposed to be upset—whether it’s caused by hopping on a plane, being left alone, or even interacting with other dogs.

One of the main reasons people take CBD is to help settle their nerves. And for dogs, CBD can provide the same calming effects.

Managing Aches and Discomfort   

As your dog ages, its body will naturally wear down. The energy and spring of its youth will eventually decline. Years of impact on the joints and hips accumulate, which can make it hard for a dog to sit or rise, let alone play the way it used to.

You can holistically target the source of your dog’s aches, especially when you use both a topical and oral form of pet CBD.  

By adding CBD to your dog’s maintenance routine, you can help put back some pep in their step and provide succor from common discomforts.


When your dog is wound uptight, they carry a lot of their stress in their muscles. New places, people or things can cause your dog to tense up. And this tension isn’t good for their health or well-being.

CBD can help your dog be at ease, causing them to release the stress they carry. This will help bolster their quality of life, while also helping them be more adaptable to new environmental stimuli. 

For many dogs that exhibit leash aggression and wariness towards strangers, a doggy CBD chew may be just the thing to help them relax and enjoy their daily walk.


You may have noticed that your dog isn’t as eager to attack the food bowl as it once did as a puppy.

Some dogs are finicky about their diet. Others grow pickier as they age. Certain foods that were “once-favorites” may now cause upset stomachs or indigestion.

By supplementing their diet with CBD, however, you can support healthy digestion and promote an exuberant appetite. 

Sleep Support

Does your pup have trouble getting its snooze on?

This is normal, especially as dogs get older. Their aches and stresses combined with a loss of physical faculties may make it challenging to maintain a deep slumber. And when their sight and vision start to go, some dogs become scared of the dark.

But you can fix this.

You can help your furry friend get a deep and restful sleep by giving them CBD an hour before bedtime. When CBD’s inherent qualities are combined with other natural ingredients like lavender and melatonin, you have the perfect recipe for doggy Zzzzzzzz’s.

Joints and Stiffness 

Does your dog have trouble with stairs? Issues getting up? Or take frequent pauses during walks?

As dogs age, their joints stiffen. A long walk or an especially exuberant play session may leave them a bit hobbled the next day.

This is where a CBD topical can help. By rubbing a doggy-specific CBD balm into their hips, shoulders and joints, you can help stiffness resulting from daily activities.

...hemp-based CBD won’t get your dog high. However, many CBD companies mislabel or flat out lie about what their products contain.

So, if you start making this a normal part of your dog’s daily recovery routine early on, you can help slow down the impact of the aging process.

Older Dogs

For both humans and canines, age is the great equalizer. Inevitably, it will cause the body to wear and slow down. But CBD can decelerate that momentum.

An older dog will likely deal with all of the issues we’ve discussed and then some. This makes CBD an especially useful supplement for senior pups.

By adding a daily serving of CBD, you can help your best friend age gracefully.

Will CBD Get My Dog High?

If you’re only passingly familiar with hemp-based CBD, you may wonder how similar it is to THC — the psychotropic cannabinoid found in marijuana. After all, they both come from the plant, right?

Yes. And no.

CBD and THC are the two most prominent naturally occurring cannabinoids found within the cannabis plant. Both can impact the endocannabinoid system, triggering many of its beneficial effects.

With that said, THC has psychoactive effects that we associate with the “weed high.” CBD doesn’t. Marijuana contains approximately 25-30% THC, whereas hemp-based CBD can’t legally be sold unless it has less than .3% THC content.

So, no — hemp-based CBD won’t get your dog high. However, many CBD companies mislabel or flat out lie about what their products contain.

Knowing that, before you give your pup CBD, you must do your research and ensure that your CBD company is legitimate. One of the best ways to confirm this is by asking for a label of accuracy guarantee and documents from third-party lab tests. 

What CBD Products Are Available for Dogs?

Are you already a CBD user? If so, you may just be tempted to give your dog the CBD you use. While this has been done safely, we recommend that you use a product that was specifically formulated for dogs.


Dog CBD dosage may be different. Or there could be an ingredient that's great for people but not so much for pups. That said, common CBD products for dogs include:

  • CBD Oil – Broad spectrum, hemp-based CBD oil can be given using a dropper. When taken sublingually, pet CBD oil can help dogs with sleep, stress, discomfort and energy levels. 
  • CBD Chews – Chews are an easy way for dogs to get the CBD they need. These fantastic tasting treats can support mobility and joint health in just a single chew while also helping them better manage daily stress or help support joints and hips.
  • CBD Balm (Topical)– Full-spectrum CBD balm directly targets a dog’s aches, discomforts, and joint stiffness due to normal daily exercise and activity. Simply rub it in and let the combination of natural soothing ingredients and CBD go to work.

Treat Your Dog With Zebra CBD

As a pet owner, you’re constantly on the lookout for ways to support your furry friend. Increasingly, more people are turning to CBD to help bolster their dog’s health in one of several ways, including:

  • helping with aches and discomforts  
  • relieving tension and stress
  • supporting restful sleep 
  • helping with digestion and appetite

So, when you choose a CBD product, you must know who you’re buying it from and what it contains.

This is what sets Zebra CBD apart from other CBD companies. We’re the only CBD company to have a Label Accuracy Guarantee™, so you know exactly what your dog will be ingesting. All of our doggy products were made specifically with pups in mind using nothing but premium hemp-based CBD and high-quality natural ingredients.

Want to take a holistic approach to your dog’s health? You’re in the right place.


Global Newswire. Growing Acceptance of Cannabis Sparks Explosion of CBD-Infused Offerings.

American Kennel Club. CBD Oil for Dogs: What You Need to Know.

Co-founder of Copycat Copywriters, Adam has written for dozens of CBD and cannabis companies on a wide array of topics, including regulations, economics, farming practices and biochemistry.

About the Author

Adam Biederman Image

Adam Biederman

As co-founder and lead writer of Copycat Copywriters, one of Adam’s primary areas of expertise is within the budding CBD and cannabis space. He has written for dozens of CBD and cannabis companies, producing a collection of white papers, press releases, blog posts, articles and ebooks about a wide array of industry-related subjects, including regulations, economics, farming practices and biochemistry.

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