CBD is well tolerated in dogs, according to new study from NASC and Nutrasource

Hemp cannabidiol (CBD) is growing more popular in the pet market. But do we know how safe CBD is for animals? A brand-new study is shedding more light. The study, which has been submitted for peer review, was a collaboration between the National Animal Supplement Council (NASC) and contract research organization Nutrasource (Guelph, ON, Canada).

In a nutshell, the findings were positive: the study showed tolerability of broad-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD with cannabigerol (CBG), and broad-spectrum CBD with cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) in healthy male and female dogs who were given a daily dose for 90 consecutive days, the organizations report.

The randomized, non-blinded, negative-controlled, parallel-design, repeat-dose study was conducted in 32 healthy male and female dogs at least 6 months of age using either a placebo or a dose of 5 mg of total cannabinoids/kg of body weight/day, for 90 days. The subjects were randomized into four groups and given either: 1) a medium-chain triglyceride oil as a control, 2) broad-spectrum CBD, 3) broad-spectrum CBD plus CBG, or 4) broad-spectrum CBD plus CBDA. Subjects underwent daily observation and weekly clinical examinations.

According to both organizations, “Results showed that cannabinoids were well tolerated when healthy male and female dogs were dosed for 90 consecutive days. Upon completion, all animals were reported to have no serious adverse events during the study. Postmarket-surveillance data for hemp-derived supplement products sold for use in dogs from 2010 to April 2023 shows that the rate per 1 million administrations sold is 2.19 and 0.01 for adverse events and serious adverse events, respectively. Based on the data available, it was the conclusion of the authors that these substances do not pose significant risk to dogs in long-term use.”

In the press release, Bill Bookout, NASC’s president, said this study stands out because it included data from NASC’s Adverse Event Reporting System (NAERS). NASC members use the system to enter information on their products, including ingredients and usage instructions. “These collective data are processed by algorithms in the system, and adverse events, both serious and non-serious, can be compared and analyzed per million administrations,” he explained.

Of the study’s potential impact on the CBD and pet supplements industries, Margitta Dziwenka, DVM, DABT, Nutrasource’s director of preclinical and companion animal services, added, “This research is a game-changer for pet health, offering an expanded horizon for veterinarians, industry, and pet owners alike. These findings grant us a renewed sense of confidence in exploring CBD product development for use in companion animals so that industry can confidently answer the call and growing demand for natural and alternative products.”

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