Dog CBD Safety Study

There are probably, at this point, thousands of CBD pet products. Ranging from tinctures, soft gels, gummies, treats, and CBD Peanut Butter or Coconut Oil to name a few. Not a Fan of Peanut Butter for Dogs), but that’s another thing entirely. See Here for our reasoning.

In 2021 according to some reports, the sales of CBD for pets was estimated at 629 Million. In 2025 it is estimated to hit 1.1 Billion.

Despite this, there have not really been any studies evaluating the long-term safety of CBD. There have been several studies evaluating short-term and medium-term safety, but most studies have been under 12 weeks.

In a recently published study, they administered 4 Mg per KG Bodyweight (1.81mg Per Lb) daily for Six Months, followed by a 4-week washout period. This is to our knowledge the longest study to date.

The study contained 40 Dogs. 17 Labradors, 8 Beagles, and 15 Norwich Terriers.

The Researchers tested the Urine, Blood, and Feces. They took Blood Samples at weeks 2, 4, 10, 18, and 26 Weeks and at weeks 2 and 4 of the washout period. The Dogs underwent a blinded veterinarian examination every two weeks.

Results

All Dogs completed the trial, and there were no issues administering the CBD.

Both the Placebo and the CBD groups Blood Panels largely remained within the reference range for the study period, except for Protein, and Calcium which fell below the reference range, but given there were no associated clinical signs, the researchers do not deem these to be concerning.

Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) was above the range for the CBD Dogs starting at week 4. This was correlated with CBD plasma Concentrations.

The ALP returned to normal at week 4 of the washout period. The researchers anticipating that ALP would be elevated and that ALP alone isn’t indicative of impaired liver function, also measured other liver markers. These were not significantly different than the placebo dogs.

The Researchers current hypothesis for the elevated ALP is that an increase in Osteoblastic activity partly caused it. Given that there was no increase in Osteoclastic Activity, the researchers leave open the possibility that CBD could play a role in supporting Bone health for dogs.

The urinalysis conducted during the study did not have any significant differences during the study.

They measured the CBD in Blood, Urine, and Feces during the study. Only a few dogs had CBD in their urine, while more was found in the feces. The urinalysis was otherwise unremarkable.

 Plasma
2 Week28-165 ng/ml
4 Weeks33-157 ng/ml
10 Week31-167 ng/ml
18 Weeks23-234 ng/ml
26 Weeks28-188 ng/ml

There were breed differences in the Plasma CBD, with the Norfolk terriers having lower levels with the Labradors having higher concentration levels. The sample size does not have a strong enough power to draw proper inferences. However, this is also consistent with other studies where they found individual and breed differences in absorption and metabolism, which has been seen in other medications.

Conclusion

This is an essential step toward developing a No Adverse Effect Level (NOAEL) for CBD. Despite the length of time and size of the CBD Pet Market, there has been very little research.

This is also important as the dosing instructions across CBD products vary greatly.

There have only been a few studies looking at drug interactions, meaning there is still a considerable amount of research that needs to be done, but only a few CBD companies are actually funding research. As evidenced by the fact that Mars Petcare had to be the one to fund this study, which is something that should have been researched years ago by one of the countless CBD companies.

Bradley S, Young S, Bakke AM, Holcombe L, Waller D, Hunt A, Pinfold K, Watson P and Logan DW (2022) Long-term daily feeding of cannabidiol is well-tolerated by healthy dogs. Front. Vet. Sci. 9:977457. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2022.977457

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