If you follow natural health, you’ve likely heard of the exploding popularity of CBD oil for dogs. However, with its popularity comes a plethora of low quality sellers looking to make a quick buck. We put together this buying guide to help you choose a product that will make the most impact on your dog’s health.
#1 – Never Purchase a CBD Oil Product Without Looking at the Certificate of Analysis (COA)
A certificate of analysis (abbreviated COA) contains laboratory testing results of your CBD oil. Ideally, the certificate should show high amounts of CBD and zero THC.
If you cannot find a COA on the website of the CBD seller you’re considering, move on. Legitimate CBD oil brands will have nothing to hide.
You can view examples of CBD COAs here.
#2 – Ideally, Choose “Nano-Sized Microemulsion” CBD
The quality of CBD oil varies greatly. One of the most important factors in determining the quality and potency of a CBD product is the method in which the CBD is emulsified. Any quality CBD oil will at least boast “Liposomal Emulsion”, but ideally use “Nano-Sized Emulsion”.
- Standard Emulsion: Large particles, poor absorption. Lowest quality and lowest price oils.
- Liposomal Emulsion: Smaller particles, good absorption. Price will be slightly higher than cheap oils.
- Nano-Sized Emulsion: Smallest particles, excellent absorption. Very few CBD brands produce their oils this way.
#3 – Choose a Product With “No Detectable” THC
While all CBD from hemp should contain low THC (under .3%) we strongly recommend purchasing a product that contains zero detectable THC on the certificate of analysis. Dogs react much differently to THC than humans, and although under .3% would never make human “high”, even trace amounts of THC can have negative effects on small animals. Again, this information should be viewable on the COA. (see point #1)
Related: Considering CBD treats for your pup instead of oil?
#4 – Only Purchase an Organic Hemp Product
As many of us already know, buying organic matters more for certain kinds of plants. Because hemp has the unique ability to pull toxins from the soil, choosing an organic product is absolutely crucial. If a product is not organic, simply skip it and choose a better option.
#5 – Low Price May Be a Red Flag
If the price of a CBD oil is significantly lower than others, odds are the company is cutting corners on quality, or the amount of CBD is very low.
Related: Considering CBD treats for your dog instead of oil?
#6 – Beware of Products Labeled Only as “Hemp Oil”
Many manufacturers skirt regulations by not putting the term “CBD” on their product label, and call it only “hemp oil.” If you cannot verify the amount of CBD in a hemp product, DO NOT buy it. Again, this information should should be verified and located on the seller’s COA.
Also, note there’s a significant difference between “Hemp Oil with CBD” and “Hemp Seed Oil”. Hemp seed oil is a perfectly acceptable medium as long as it also contains added CBD. However, hemp seed oil alone does not contain enough CBD to be therapeutic.
#7 – Choose Full-Spectrum Instead of CBD Isolate
You may come across the term “full-spectrum CBD oil” or “CBD isolate”. A full spectrum product uses the many cannabinoids and terpenes found naturally in hemp, while a CBD isolate product contains only CBD. We believe nature knows best, and using a product that more closely mirrors what nature designed is ideal. Many believe the whole plant offers an “entourage effect” where your dog benefits from a more complete variety of the phytochemicals found in hemp.
#8 – For Therapeutic Use, Only Buy as a Tincture
CBD infused dog treats and chews have their place, but to ensure maximum potency and purity, we recommend only purchasing pure CBD oil in a tincture. Using a dropper, you’ll be able to more effectively control the dosage of CBD without having to give too many calories. In addition, many CBD treats are processed with heat, which damages the potency of the precious cannabinoids, rendering them less effective on your dog.
Some people have concerns about using a tincture when administering CBD to their dog. While the dropper can be placed directly in your dog’s mouth, we find it’s easier to drop the oil directly on your dog’s food or favorite treat.
The CBD Oil Recommended by iHeartDogs.com
We’ve developed Cannanine™ brand of CBD Hemp Oil for Dogs. In addition to taking into account each of the 8 points above, the Cannanine ™ is the only product that supports animal shelters with each purchase. Every bottle provides 7 meals for shelter dogs!
If you’d like to dive deeper into the topic of CBD for dogs, we’d encourage you to visit our Ultimate Guide to CBD for Dogs. In this document we discuss most common uses, risks, side-effects, scientific studies, and much more.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified healthcare professional.