Finding the proper dosage of CBD for your pet is vital as to whether or not a product will yield effective results. As a consumer, it's hard to know where to start, oftentimes resulting in frustration and misguided distrust in CBD products. The most common misstep I've seen is pet owners selecting a dosage so low that there are no perceivable effects. On the other end of the spectrum, I've also encountered people who were giving their tiny dogs MASSIVE amounts of CBD, something we certainly don't recommend.
So, how do we find the right dosage?
Many factors need to be considered when finding the proper dosage of CBD for your furry friend, such as their general health, metabolism, and activity level. The most prominent factor you should consider, however, is your pet's size. Dosages typically range from 1-2mg (per 10lbs) for improving general well-being or between 3-5mg (per 10lbs) for therapeutic effects. 2mg (per 10lbs) seems to be a reliable dosage and is considered a safe place to start. Begin on the conservative side and work your way up as needed. If you are on the higher side of the spectrum you can always try a lower dose with one serving in the morning and another at night. If you take some time to experiment you can find some great results. You can use this information as a quick-reference cheat-sheet to make life a little easier.
While introducing CBD to your pet's daily routine, keep in mind that, just like people, every dog and cat is unique. Even if two pets are the same size and receive the same dosage, the effects can vary. I'll share some personal experience as a case study to illustrate this very point.
We are the proud fur-parents of three senior rescue dogs and a puppy. I know we're crazy.... Three are roughly the same age (11-13yo) and weight (60, 65 and 75lbs) and they all benefit from different dosages. The puppy clocks in at 18mo and 45lbs and has his own dosage as well.
First, we'll introduce you to Duncan. He's an Australian Kelpie, which is a working breed. Despite being 12 years old, he is still very active, and we play fetch every night after dinner without fail. He doesn't have any mobility issues but does struggle with anxiety. Seeing another dog, even on tv, causes him to panic and puts him in severe distress. As a senior dog, this kind of stress is detrimental to his health, which is why we have chosen to incorporate CBD into his daily routine to promote his well-being.
1mg - At a dosage of 1mg (per 10lbs), Duncan seemed slightly more active with no impact on his anxiety. We gradually increased that to twice per day but also didn't notice much change.
3-mg – We then tried 3mg (per 10lbs), resulting in his activity level remaining the same and a calmer demeanor. Next, we tried 3mg (per 10lbs) twice a day. This certainly calmed him, but he spent the majority of the time sleeping. His activity decreased, and he would go 2-3 days without playing. We decided that 3mg (per 10lbs) once per day would be ideal for his needs. At this dosage, he remains active, which is great for his overall health, and we can address the anxiety if needed. With some experimentation we were able to find a dose to keep him even without being sedated. We could sedate for those special occasions (4th of July, company, nail trim etc...) but we don't need to be so heavy handed.
Dexter is the exact opposite of his rambunctious brother. He has always been a very laid-back dog who prefers to saunter at his own pace, which is basically slow motion. Unfortunately, Dexter suffers from mobility issues that have grown over time. As a young pup, he would end up tweaking his back every now and then, and his vet prescribed a medication that we would only need to give him on rare occasions. Over the years, this became more and more frequent until it reached the point where it was almost every day.
It turns out that Dexter has severe arthritis in his back in addition to spinal degeneration. This brought him so much pain that he couldn't even lift himself off the floor and instead would just cry and tremble. Scared and concerned that we might have to consider putting him down, we decided to give CBD a try.
1mg - We basically tried the same dosages as Duncan. At 1mg (per 10lbs), we saw a slight improvement, but he was still struggling. When increased to twice per day, he started moving around a little better but not enough.
3mg – With 3mg (per 10lbs) once per day, Dexter was getting off the floor without struggling and seemed back to normal. So much so that he was back to roughhousing with his brother. Dex loves playing with Dunc but would often overdo it. This would result in him slowing down a bit right before bedtime. So, we eventually bumped him up to 3mg (per 10lbs) twice per day to mitigate the damage he does during playtime. We've kept his dosage at twice a day, and now he's more active than ever, which is great for his overall health. We went from not being able to even scratch our dog's back without him crying in pain to now being able to apply gentle traction to his back and stretching him out. He loves it!
6mg – Dexter had a particularly bad day once from jumping off the bed, so we tried 6mg (per 10lbs). He basically slept all day, and when he did wake up, he seemed very groggy. It was just way too much for him. We decided to take it down to 5mg for rare, stressful situations like a challenging vet visit or the 4th of July.
Despite being the same age and weight, Dexter takes twice as much as Duncan. All it took was some time and a little trial and error to find an appropriate dosage for each of them, resulting in two happy and healthy senior dogs. If anything changes in the future, we will adjust accordingly.
Harlow has had a challenging history. He spent 7 years in an outdoor rescue and his favorite pastime is sunbathing. Unfortunately he developed skin cancer and had Multiple major surgeries followed by 19 sessions of radiation. We were his medical fosters and fell in love with him and adopted him halfway through the process. After 1.5years we managed to get him into the maintenance phase consisting of cryo and laser treatments.
Har' is very chill, doesn't have any anxiety or mobility issues. He's 75lbs and outweighs his brothers by 10-15lbs. If we give him 1.5mg per 10lbs he's dead to the world for 3.5 hours. This is not typical at all, just the way he responds. He's at half of Duncan's dose. 1.5mg per 10lbs is usually a general wellness dose for most dogs. Even with meds from the Vet, the "typical dose" for his weight hit's him VERY hard. He's just sensitive a sensitive boy. He's a great example of why we suggest starting low and working your way up.
Ollie is on another level. She is a combination of every difficult high energy breed. Chow, Husky, multiple shepherd breeds, etc....
Needless to say she has A LOT of energy and never stops. She needs to be in the 5mg per 10lbs territory to calm her down and just relax.
She wouldn't sleep through the night. Every couple of hours she would want to go outside or bop you on the head with a toy . It went on for months. We started giving her 3mg per 10lbs an hour or so before bedtime and she started sleeping through the night. She eventually adjusted to the new routine and is now on a normal sleep schedule. Even though Ollie is the smallest and youngest she takes the highest dose of the bunch. This might change over time as she gets older and calms down and we will adjust as needed. There's no one size fits all. Take the time to experiment and you'll find the sweet spot.
Selecting the Right Brand
There are many reputable brands of CBD products on the market; however, these products will not do your pet any good if you are administering the wrong amount. Pay attention to the product's ingredients and dosage amount rather than buzzwords on the packaging. It's very common to see "calming" in the description. Now, some brands actually include other herbs that might promote calming, but some are just regular dog treats with 2mg of CBD. If you are trying to calm your 50lbs dog with 2mg treats, this can end up being a costly endeavor.
Our intentions are not to disparage other brands, but to shed awareness on the subject of using CBD effectively to boost your pet's well-being. If you have chosen a trustworthy product that doesn't seem to be working, give it some time, and adjust your dosage. I've spoken to many people that claim CBD doesn't work because they've tried various products in the past with little to no effect. After asking only a couple simple questions, it becomes overwhelmingly clear that they were using an incorrect dosage.
The Birth of Celestial Stem
Celestial Stem was born out of being a frustrated consumer. Like so many others, we ran into problems such as trying charlatan products that probably didn't contain what they claimed; to finding reputable brands but having to spend $60 PER DAY to get any results because the dosages were so low.
We are an animal-loving company and adore our furry family members. What makes us different is that we offer pet products with dosages suitable for medium to large size dogs. We are also committed to bucking the industry trend of insane markups so all people and pets can benefit from these helpful products.
If you are a pet parent of a bigger dog, then you know finding a product suitable to their size is rare. Our CBD dog treats are vegan, organic, and come in 2mg 5mg, 10mg, and 20mg formulas. We even have a 500mg Organic CBD Almond Butter. Our 1500mg CBD Oil for pets (tinctures) is great for large dogs or giving multiple dosages per day or a multiple dogs household. It's a great way to make things more affordable. Don't worry, we have the little guys covered as well. The CBD pet tinctures give you the ultimate flexibility to fine tune the dose and a convenient way to adjust on days that are more challenging than others. Even if you don't buy from us, give CBD a chance to work. It really can help improve your pet's life. We also have a huge selection of Pet supplements including Non-CBD functional pet treats, dental chews as well!
We always recommend starting with half a dose once a day and adjust from there. Although CBD is widely tolerated, some pets may be more sensitive than others, and it's always best to start on the conservative side to see how your pet reacts. Always check with your veterinarian before making any changes to your pet's dietary or health regimen. Especially if they have preexisting conditions or are on medication.
For those of you that are still skeptical or are eager to learn more, please check out a very informational article on the Endocannabinoid System in pets available on our blog. It goes into detail on what the ECS is, what it regulates, and how CBD interacts with it. It's worth the read.
Stop by and visit
Swing by our CBD shop in Mesa, AZ of one of our farmers markets in Gilbert and Queen Creek!