*Disclaimer: This is not meant to serve as a substitute for veterinary advice. We believe firmly in the contents of this article thanks to thorough research and our experiences with all of the dogs that we have helped through the years (including our own), but you should always defer to your veterinarian when adding anything to your dog's unique wellness routine.
CBD can be an absolute life changer for the health of many animals, yet as you dive into the realm of CBD products, it’s often difficult to know what to pick for your dog. To help clear things up, we’ll walk you through 1) the different types of CBD, 2) what the science says about each, and 3) what to look for when you buy.
Types of CBD Products on the Market for Animals
The CBD (cannabidiol) products you’ll find on the market come from the hemp plant. This plant contains hundreds of beneficial compounds, many of which are essential to make CBD work properly (particularly cannabinoids, but also other compounds such as terpenes).
There are three different categories of CBD products that you should be aware of:
- Full-spectrum CBD contains a full spectrum of cannabinoids; at a minimum, this includes CBD and THC, but superior full-spectrum CBD products, such as Dr.Hempdog, will feature other helpful cannabinoids and terpenes as well.
- Broad-spectrum CBD is similar to its full-spectrum counterpart, only with the THC removed. This type of CBD product may include other cannabinoids and terpenes, but this isn’t guaranteed.
- CBD isolate is pure CBD that lacks any other cannabinoids, terpenes, or beneficial compounds from the hemp plant.
Below, we’ll discuss each of these CBD products in more detail, and then break down some of the most relevant studies about their pros and cons.
The Pros and Cons of Different Types of CBD Products
Full-spectrum products are the most effective type of CBD product due to what’s known as the entourage effect, which refers to the fact that CBD is most potent when accompanied by other essential hemp compounds (such as the CBG, CBC, CBDV, THC, and certain terpenes in Dr.Hempdog’s tinctures).
Broad-spectrum products entirely lack THC, unlike their full-spectrum counterparts. While THC can be toxic at higher levels than 0.3%, a small amount is necessary to maximize the effectiveness of CBD. THC at this level is not psychoactive or intoxicating to dogs according to numerous safety studies.
CBD isolate can seem attractive at first glance, promising a pure product and lower prices (although it’s often masked with misleading terms such as “pure CBD,” “hemp extract,” or “CBD-enriched”). However, studies show that isolated CBD isn’t the best choice for your animal, as it misses out on the entourage effect entirely, meaning that much more of it is needed to have even the slightest effects.
Studies About Full-Spectrum vs Broad-Spectrum vs Isolate CBD:
- A safety study from 2020 found that low doses of THC, combined with CBD, caused no notable side effects in dogs, clearly demonstrating the safety of full-spectrum CBD.
- A recent study from 2019 found that the most potent full-spectrum CBD was linked to having higher proportions of other cannabinoids and terpenes.
- One 2018 study found that full-spectrum CBD in arthritic dogs alleviated inflammation and joint pain with no side effects.
- A 2018 review of full-spectrum CBD vs. CBD isolate found that full-spectrum products were the superior choice for alleviating seizures.
- Another 2017 study demonstrated that small amounts of THC enhance CBD and its ability to alleviate pain.
- A 2017 study found that isolated CBD was hardly anti-inflammatory when used on its own, whereas a full-spectrum extract displayed remarkable anti-inflammatory properties that could be attributed to an entourage effect.
If you want the best CBD product for your dog, you should undoubtedly seek out full-spectrum products. Additionally, you need to know that not all full-spectrum CBD products are equally effective. Most full-spectrum products do not contain as many helpful cannabinoids and terpenes as Dr.Hempdog’s CBD oil.
A quick and easy way to determine what cannabinoids and terpenes are in a product is to look at the company’s lab work, AKA a Certificate of Analysis (COA). If a company does not make that information easily available on their website, you should be wary.
Knowing that transparency is key, we make Dr.Hempdog’s latest lab work easily available at the bottom of our website. Our COAs show not only a high level of CBD in our product, but also a potent variety of other important cannabinoids, including, but not limited to, CBG, CBC, and CBDV in addition to a proper amount of THC to enhance the overall effectiveness of our CBD. The terpenes contained in our product further contribute to an incredible entourage effect, which translates to the most effective product you can find on the market.
We realize some people may have more questions; if so, we encourage you to reach out to our highly trained team of experts that’s ready to assist you. You can easily schedule a free 15-minute consult with us by visiting our website or texting us at (720) 773-9595 to set one up; you’re also welcome to call us at any time from 9 AM to 5 PM MT, Monday to Friday. We’ve helped thousands of animals just like yours, so we know that every dog’s needs can be unique. We’ll stay with you every step of the way to make sure you’ll be as successful as possible with our best-in-class CBD products.