Disclaimer: This information is not intended to provide or substitute for any medical advice. If you believe your dog has a health condition that CBD could help with, please consult your veterinarian before administering any CBD product to your dog or before replacing any vet-prescribed medication for CBD.
Could your dog forget who you are? If they have seizures, it’s possible. It’s estimated that 1–5% of dogs suffer with seizures during their lifetime. Typically, seizures can last for up to two minutes and may cause a loss of consciousness, involuntary repetitive movements or out-of-character aggressive behavior.
If left untreated, over time, seizures can cause brain damage that can actually be seen on an MRI. Much of this damage is in the hippocampus, which is the part of the brain that’s primarily responsible for processing memories.
What Causes Seizures in Dogs?
Seizures have many known causes, such as:
- Birth-brain abnormality (In these cases, seizures usually start within year one.)
- Brain tumor
- Head trauma
- Brain inflammation
Idiopathic epilepsy is very common in dogs. In this case, a vet is unable to tell exactly what’s causing the seizures. All they can do is try to reduce the number of seizures to maintain your dog’s quality of life. A vet may prescribe phenobarbital. While this drug is very effective, it also has many side effects like fatigue, confusion and liver damage if a dog is on it long-term.
Thankfully, CBD has been clinically proven and is approved by the FDA to treat seizures in humans.
How Can CBD Help with Dog Seizures?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of more than 100 active compounds found in the cannabis plant. It’s completely non-psychoactive, and has a multitude of uses. It can be extracted from either hemp, a non-intoxicating fiber of the cannabis plant, or marijuana, which contains psychoactive THC. When CBD is extracted from hemp, it has less than 0.3% THC, making it a pure and effective option for anyone who wants to experience the benefits of cannabis without the high. But if extracted from marijuana, there’s the likelihood a CBD product could contain traces of THC, since marijuana has anywhere from 5–20% of THC, depending on the strain.
For pet owners, it’s never a good idea to give your animal a CBD product with any amount of THC in it, since THC is toxic to dogs and could get them high.
However, pure hemp-derived CBD is safe for dogs and can help with anxiety. But one of CBD’s most powerful benefits is that it can reduce inflammation, which could, in turn, help prevent seizures. The anti-anxiety effects of CBD may also help to reduce dog seizures, as chronic anxiety takes a toll on the mind and body. In addition, studies have shown that CBD has an anti-tumor effect, meaning it may help to slow or even shrink a brain tumor that’s causing seizures. But is there proof?
Here’s what the research has to say:
The Proof that CBD Can Help with Dog Seizures
First, we should note that a CBD drug was approved by the FDA for the treatment of human seizures in 2018. So CBD isn’t just another herbal supplement built up on junk science or false claims.
A study from the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics showed that CBD caused “a dramatic drop of mitochondrial oxidative metabolism...and viability in glioma cells.” In other words, it shrunk a tumor. The study goes on to state that the effects were evident within 24 hours. And, scientists found that when they tried to cause a tumor in lab mice, CBD prevented the tumor from growing in the first place.
Another study, published on PubMed, also recaps several relevant studies that demonstrated CBD’s ability to reduce inflammation in the:
- Other parts of the body
Plus, a double-blind, randomized, controlled study of 171 human patients with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, a form of epilepsy, saw a 44% reduction in seizures compared to 22% on placebo.
Furthermore, studies show no side effects in humans, mice or dogs—indicating that CBD is safe for humans and pets. In fact, one dog study proved that CBD can reduce arthritis inflammation in dogs with no side effects. While research specifically on dogs has been lacking thus far, more studies on both dogs and cats are currently underway. So we can expect to see even more results soon.
Can You Get CBD from Your Vet?
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has instructed vets not to recommend CBD for dog seizures at this time despite the amount of scientific proof that exists. However, it’s only out of extreme caution, which is normal for any credible and careful medical organization. They simply want to keep patients safe.
But you can still find CBD for your dog by shopping for a pet CBD product.
How to Choose the Best CBD Oil for Dog Seizures
1. Check for Third-Party Testing and All-Natural Ingredients
The AVMA is hesitant for a reason. Currently, the CBD industry is unregulated. That’s why it’s paramount to choose a company that can verify the purity and safety of their pet CBD products. Check the ingredients to make sure there are no harmful flavors or colorings. The best CBD oil for dogs will have all-natural ingredients and as few additives as possible.
2. Pay Attention to the Potency
Look for a potent product, and never let the low price of a product fool you. The same 30 ml bottle might contain only 150 mg of actual CBD with a lot of fillers—or it could contain a lot more. With a quality CBD product, you’d need to administer one single drop twice a day depending on your pet’s body weight. But with a lower concentration, you could need up to five or more drops twice a day. So know that quality matters.
3. Find Out How the CBD is Extracted
Do some research to learn how the company extracts the CBD they use in their products. To be on the safe side, choose a brand that uses the CO2 extraction process. It’s a cleaner way to release the relevant plant compounds without any lingering residues or other unpleasant additives.
4. Go Local
Seek out products made in the USA. The shorter the distance your product has to travel, the better it is on the environment. Plus, it helps support jobs in the U.S.
5. Choose Only Hemp-Derived CBD Products for Your Pet
Always make sure you’re giving CBD to your dog with 0% THC. THC is the substance that causes a psychoactive high. It’s not only illegal in many states, but also it can make your dog sick, since THC is toxic to dogs.
Ultimately, you want to be as cautious and as thorough as possible when shopping for CBD products for your dog. With so many CBD products on the market, it’s difficult to know which is the best. Our advice? Be cautious, be conscious and choose Bido Pet CBD by Curaleaf Hemp. We make every product from pure hemp-based CBD, with 0% THC and absolutely no artificial flavors, colorings or additional solvents.