Full spectrum hemp extract (CBD) can be life-changing for your pet. If you are wondering about dosing information, chances are you have already made the decision to try it – all of the high fives to you! 

You might have heard different things from different companies about the right dosage. Some recommend dosing by weight, while some recommend dosing by ailment. Others recommend the same amount for people and pets, and even further on the spectrum some companies encourage you to dose by weight and ailment. It is no wonder that the dosage amount is such a hot topic and huge question. 

Before you can start understanding the right dose, it is important to make sure you have a full spectrum hemp extract (CBD) product rather than a broad spectrum or CBD isolate. Full spectrum means that the product has the most cannabinoids and terpenes possible to produce the maximum benefits. Once you have your full spectrum product, you are ready to find the right dose for your pet. 

Don’t be a weight watcher — why you should not dose based on weight

One of the most common ways to dose that companies recommend is to dose by weight. But that is not always best or the most accurate way to use full spectrum hemp extract (CBD). 

Despite common misconceptions, dosing has very little to do with your dog’s size or weight. Finding the right dosage depends on your specific dog, their specific ailment, and how sensitive their endocannabinoid system is. 

What does that mean for you? Dosing is not as cut and dry as it seems on the surface. 

To find the right dose for your pet, start with the recommended number of mg for your pet’s specific ailment. Depending on how sensitive your pet’s endocannabinoid system is, you may need to adjust the dose to be higher or lower depending on your pet’s reaction. 

To understand why weight is not the determining factor in dosing, consider the story of Nina and Odie. Nina is a 40-pound Doberman – she is roughly the size of a miniature pony and suffered from severe thunderstorm anxiety. Odie is a 10-pound miniature schnauzer who fits in a paper grocery bag with ease, and he also suffered from thunderstorm anxiety. Both take CALM 550 mg Full Spectrum Hemp Extract CBD with Lavender, but they both need dramatically different amounts. Even though Nina is four times the size of Odie, she only needs half a dropper (around 0.5 mL or 4.5 mg CBD) to calm down, whereas Odie needs a full dropper (sometimes more) to calm down before a storm. Two dramatically differently sized dogs who require dramatically different doses because their endocannabinoid systems are not identically sensitive. 

The most important thing to remember is that your pet cannot overdose on CBD. If you give your pet too much, the most that will happen is that they may become sleepy or have diarrhea. 

Dosing by ailment

The best way to determine the right dose is to go by their ailment and adjust from there. Based on Angela Ardolino’s education and training in medical cannabis, case studies, and research, we recommend the following dosages for dogs and cats: 

Noise, travel, or situational anxiety – Start with 9 mg before the triggering event. Wait 15-20 minutes and if your pet is still anxious, administer another 9 mg until you see results. 

General anxiety – Start with a daily dose of at least 9 mg. If you don’t notice a difference within one to two weeks, increase the dosage to 15 – 25 mg daily. 

Arthritis – Start with 9 – 12 mg daily. If you don’t notice a difference in one to two weeks, increase by another 9 – 12 mg daily until you see results. You’ll know you found the correct dose when you see your dog run faster, jump higher, and become puppy-like again.

Allergies – Start with 9 – 12 mg daily. If you don’t notice a difference within one to two weeks, increase by another 9 – 12 mg daily. Note: most often, allergies are caused by diet, and the diet should be altered to fully resolve the issue. 

Aches and Pains – Start with 9 – 18 mg situationally or daily. If your dog is still in pain after 10 – 15 minutes, administer another 9 – 18 mg. 

Cancer – For best results, administer 50 – 100 mg daily. However, to get started we suggest starting with 35 – 50 mg daily and increase if needed.

Seizures – Start with 35 – 50 mg daily and/or during seizure activity to stop seizures from occurring. Please consult your veterinarian if your pet is on phenobarbital before weaning. 

Autoimmune Diseases – Start with 35 – 50 mg daily and increase if needed.

How do I give it to my pet?

For the fastest and most thorough absorption, lift the lip and apply dose directly onto the gums, as the most direct way into the bloodstream. If added to food, the medicine may not be as effective and can take significantly longer (30-45 min.) to reach the bloodstream as it works its way through the gastrointestinal system.

Unlike many traditional oral medications, research has proven that CBD is effectively and quickly absorbed into the bloodstream. A study conducted by the Department of Pharmacy, School of Pharmacy at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel concluded that: “CBD was observed to have a large volume of distribution [in dogs studied].” In a study conducted by the Department of Veterinary Medical Sciences, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy, dogs were found to have a substantial amount of receptors in their endocannabinoid system, specifically in the spine, which allows dogs to more effectively use CBD. 

In other words, when administered correctly, full spectrum hemp extract (CBD) is extremely effective. 

Let’s Talk Micro Dosing (No, it’s not just for psychedelics)

When you say micro dosing, people might look at you sideways. Traditionally, micro dosing refers to taking small doses of LSD, which was introduced in the mid-1900’s by Dr. Albert Hofmann, a Swiss scientist. The idea of Hofmann’s study was that by taking small doses all day, you can maintain the benefits all day long and it will not wear off because it won’t fully leave the system all day. 

As you may have guessed, CBD and LSD are two totally different things, but they do have one thing in common: the effects can wear off relatively quickly. 

In fact, the half-life of CBD taken orally by a dog is about 4-6 hours, according to a recent study. Taking it way back to high school science class, that means that the medicine peaks around 2 hours and is gone from the system totally by 4-6 hours. 

Enter: Micro dosing! When you split your dog’s (or even your own) dose of full spectrum hemp extract (CBD) up throughout the day into smaller doses, the medicine stays in the system longer and doesn’t wear off. This is especially helpful for dealing with anxiety, aches and pains, and seizures.

Remember: whether you dose once a day or multiple times, make sure to fully wipe off your dropper before putting it back into the bottle. While we love puppy kisses, doggy drool can actually cause a full spectrum hemp extract (CBD) tincture to become less effective as the bacteria in the saliva can break down the formula. 

To learn more about full spectrum hemp extract (CBD), visit www.cbddoghealth.com


About Angela Ardolino
Angela Ardolino is passionate about animals and has dedicated her life to providing all-natural relief to of pets of all ages and breeds. Ardolino has worked with animals for over 20 years and operates Fire Flake Farm, a rescue farm in Lutz, FL. A medical cannabis expert, Ardolino holds a degree in the therapeutic uses of cannabis from the University of Vermont School of Medicine and is the founder of CBD Dog Health. Combining her background in broadcast journalism and her passion for pets, Ardolino is the host of a pet-centric podcast, “It’s a Dog’s Life” on Cannabis Radio. Additionally, she is the owner of Beautify the Beast, a natural pet salon and spa. Ardolino has five dogs and up to 10 residing on her farm who she is fostering or boarding. Visit www.AngelaArdolino.com and www.CBDDogHealth.com to learn more.

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Written by Krista Lyons at cbddoghealth.com

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