Doubts that linger around cannabidiol in dogs involve the continuing confusion and conflation of CBD with THC, as well as the cannabis plant’s legal status. To reiterate, CBD does not get anyone high, neither human nor dog, since the chemical is non-toxic and non-psychoactive. You may be aware that, in 2015, there was some controversy, as the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to CBD dog treat manufacturer Canna-Pet. The substance of this warning was that Canna-Pet’s site announced claims on their website, touting the medical benefits and medicinal uses of their dog treats.
Comprehensive research shows that CBD products have a low side-effect profile. However, the one notable concern is CBD's interaction with enzymes in the liver that metabolize the majority of pharmaceuticals. In most cases, studies have shown that this interaction is uncommon, but it can occur. By delaying the rate a pharmaceutical is metabolized, you potentially raise its potency and its side effects. This could be one of the reasons, CBD is able to lower the use of other pharmaceuticals.
The fears that aren't so adorable are fireworks, thunderstorms, windstorms, and power outages. A couple of years ago we had a terrible windstorm – our power was out for a week. On the day of the storm, the fence that surrounds the dogs' yard came down, and while Sydney and Scout ran into the house, Rodrigo ran out of their yard, and Zoey followed (always his shadow). Since losing Blue, J has developed this uncanny sense of “I better go check on the dogs” and left work early. So Rodrigo and Zoey weren't out in the storm for long, but since that day Rodrigo has been terrified whenever the wind blows hard or the power goes out.
However, there are veterinarians that support THC-free hemp supplements for animals. Miami-based veterinarian Dr. Patricia Khuly, VMD, has recommended hemp supplements to her patients, and has even made homemade versions using hemp oil for her pets. “I find they can be somewhat effective as part of a well rounded chronic pain protocol,” she tells Leafly—though she has never used them for pet anxiety or improving fur and skin. “Hemp oil sounds interesting for use in the same way fish oil would be implemented for these other indications,” she adds, “especially for my vegan clients who prefer to source non-animal based products for their pets.” She would like to see more research first, though.