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CBD for German Shepherds

A German shepherd lays in a straw field while the sun sets behind it

The confident German Shepherd is strong, agile, and intelligent. With one of the most loyal temperaments, this breed is virtually unsurpassed in working versatility. Sensitive, and easy- to- train, the German Shepherd gains top spot for its popularity as a companion dog, police dog, guide dog, search-and-rescue dog, and guard dog.

Let’s just say that we all adore this magnificent breed! In this blog, we’re going to discuss how CBD as a daily supplement can help your German Shepherd! The ever increasing interest in CBD dog treats and all cannabidiol related products for pets and people suggest that as pet parents we’re wanting relief from pain, anxiety, and health issues like epilepsy, seizures, digestive and skin issues, joint issues, naturally with no long-term side effects.

Why is Your Dog Taking CBD?

You’re probably wondering as to how muchCBD your German Shepherd should be taking? That’s why it’s so important to consult with a holistic veterinarian to discuss your dog’s reason for taking CBD. Is your dog taking CBD for general everyday health and well-being? Or is he taking it for chronic pain relief? Perhaps separation anxiety or storm phobia?

CBD Dosage for Dogs

Today, CBD research is still ongoing as to how hemp is absorbed, distributed, stored, and excreted from a dog’s body. You have to understand that CBD for pets is not a one-size-fits-all compound. You’re going to have to start with the lowest dosage and work your way up until you find the dose that works for your dog’s condition. 

With that said, it’s important to work with a holistic veterinary expert when trying to understand the dosage for a specific health condition in dogs. Start off on a low dosage to be safe, and always get a veterinary diagnosis first if your German Shepherd has a health condition.

CBD Edibles for Dogs

Just likeCBD edibles for people, dogs can get CBD dog treats as an edible. Because intoxication is not an issue with pet CBD edibles, you’ll still have to know how much cannabinoid is safe for your German Shepherd.

Dog CBD cannabinoid edibles are safe for your German Shepherd because they’re free of THC. Not only are they convenient and easy–to-give, and to carry with you throughout the day, if you’retraveling with your dog, they’re effective as a nutraceutical to promote well-being, and allow for stress-free travel.

CBD No THC is Non- Euphoric & Safe for Dogs

For all CBD pet products to be legal, they need to have less than 0.3% THC. CBD is natural, safe, and is derived from hemp and cannabis. Most CBD dog products will use CBD from hemp. There is no “high” and dogs will not consume THC or tetrahydrocannabinol, resulting in psychoactive effects with your dog getting “high”.

CBD is a natural nutraceutical that is beneficial to both people and their pets. Cannabidiol is one of 120 compounds called cannabinoids.TheNational Center for Biotechnology adds that “CBD is a known non-psychoactive cannabinoid, and due to its low affinity for the CB1 receptor it would be expected that exploratory behavioral activity would be similar among treatment groups compared to negative side-effects associated with THC. These studies demonstrate transdermal administration of CBD has long-lasting therapeutic effects without psychoactive side-effects. Thus, use of topical CBD has the potential as effective treatment of arthritic symptomatology.

The American Kennel Club on German Shepherds

TheAmerican Kennel Club (AKC) adds that “The breed has a distinct personality marked by direct and fearless, but not hostile, expression, self-confidence and a certain aloofness that does not lend itself to immediate and indiscriminate friendships. The dog must be approachable, quietly standing its ground and showing confidence and willingness to meet overtures without itself making them. It is poised, but when the occasion demands, eager and alert; both fit and willing to serve in its capacity as companion, watchdog, blind leader, herding dog, or guardian, whichever the circumstances may demand.”

German Shepherd Health Conditions

Most German Shepherds are healthy, but as with any dog breed, there are some health concerns that you may need to watch out for or possibly treat later on. Here are a few health conditions that German Shepherds may be prone to:

  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Hip and elbow dysplasia,
  • Degenerative myelopathy,
  • Cauda equina, perianal fistules,
  • Pancreatic insufficiency,
  • Aspergillus,
  • Anxiety and more!

With a general lifespan of around 10 years, it’s important to work together with your veterinarian to ensure that your Shepherd is pain-free and living the best life possible. As a pet parent, it’s up to you to ensure the following:

  • Regular veterinary care
  • Regular dental cleanings
  • Positive dog training and socialization starting from puppyhood
  • A high-quality diet that is packed with antioxidants,supplements, and human-grade ingredients
  • Regular exercise and mental stimulation

CBD Oil for German Shepherds

You may be thinking of helping your German Shepherd with his aching, stiff joints or perhaps you need a cannabidiol pet supplement as an anti-inflammatory? 

As a natural supplement, the cannabidiol may be beneficial in easing anxiety, calming thunder and storm phobia, relieving joint pain, combatting skin allergies and hot spots, reducing seizure activity, and more! CBD may be beneficial for the following health conditions in German Shepherds:

  • Pain reliever
  • May help with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  • May act as a receptor suppression or activation.
  • May help with canine depression resulting from pain 
  • May provide relief from cancer side effects like chemotherapy and radiation
  • Promotes healthy skin and coat by preventing sebaceous gland cells from secreting too much sebum
  • May provide benefits to dogs with neurological disorders
  • Helps decrease inflammation in dogs
  • May help prevent cognitive decline
  • May be beneficial for cardiac health
  • CBD may be beneficial in preventing tumor growth 
  • CBG helps with diabetes prevention by reducing diabetes up to 56%, and reducing associated inflammation in diabetic dogs.
  • Digestive issues
  • Blood disorders
  • Fights off free radicals, and may prevent the development of cancer
  • May be beneficial for glaucoma
  • May help with Huntington’s Disease by providing neuron protection
  • May act as an antibacterial
  • May help with bladder contractions

CBD studies show that CBD can be beneficial for all dogs. Cannabidiol can help German Shepherds with plenty of conditions. Keep in mind that it’s best to work with your veterinarian to get a proper diagnosis and treatment first. If your German Shepherd has any of the following health conditions, consult with your holistic veterinarian to get the best advice about pet CBD for your German Shepherd.

That said, there still needs to be more research done on the benefits of CBG as an effective treatment for the above-mentioned health conditions. Oil CBD pet tinctures may be beneficial for German Shepherds in that they can also be ingested like a treat, but this time you add the CBD tincture to your dog’s kibble. While tinctures can be taken sublingually, CBD oils for dogs are extremely versatile just like a treat or capsule. 

You can add CBD dog tinctures to the following:

  • Plain organic yogurt 
  • A few blueberries for snack time
  • Dog food
  • Your dog’s favorite treats

Keep in mind, that just as for pet parents, CBD oils should be consumed with fatty foods which help to up the bioavailability.

The Best CBD Pet Study Out

Cornell CBD 2018 research about canine arthritis and CBD at Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine by Dr. Joe Wakshlag tested to see whether pain from osteoarthritis and multi-joint pain could be eliminated with CBD oil.

The CBD oil was made from industrial hemp or placebo hemp and dogs received every 12 hours for 4 weeks. Cornell worked together with ElleVet Sciences that created soft CBD ElleVet Mobility chews, which are hemp-based. The chews also contained chondroitin and glucosamine which are two natural compounds that help with movement in arthritic dogs.

The results of this study demonstrated that over 80% of the participating dogs that used the chews had significant improvement in mobility. The product was referred to by veterinarians in the study as “a game-changer that will change the face of veterinary medicine,” via Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.

What is the Entourage Effect?

The way all cannabis compounds work together is known as the “entourage effect”. Though not all products work this way, it’s best to understand which ones do, so that you’ll purchase the best CBG, CBD products for your furry best friend. The use of CBD, CBG, and other hemp-based products for pets may result in the enhancement of CBD. 

Pet products with added terpenes together with CBD and CBG may further enhance the potential health benefits. The interactive synergy between CBD compounds is called the “entourage effect.” That said, consult with your veterinarian prior to purchasing a CBG or CBD product for your dog.

How is CBG different from CBD and THC?

CBG is found in much lower concentrations than CBD and THC. It also has no psychoactive properties, meaning that your pooch will not get ‘high”. CBG does not change the effect of THC in the body. It binds with CB2 receptors (found in the body, but not in the brain and nervous system), and can stop other compounds from binding with CB1 receptors. (found in the nervous system and brain)

When exposed to light or heat, CBG is broken down in the cannabis plant. CBG and CBD are both not addictive and have few side effects if any. Long term research still needs to be done on the use of both CBD and CBG.

Fido Friendly magazine adds that “The CBD movement is fast becoming a lifestyle offering an array of holistic treatments to boost health and wellness, help with inflammation, seizures, arthritis, anxiety and more! With millions of pet parents wanting a more natural lifestyle for themselves and their pets, CBD pet companies are rapidly expanding their product lines, offering non-psychoactive, full-spectrum hemp CBD pet products by way of treats, tinctures, capsules, lotions, shampoos, and even transdermal patches.”

With CBD-rich pet nutraceuticals soaring in popularity, offering organic, non-GMO, THC-free, plant-based CBD supplements, CBD has become a valued health option among pet parents and health experts. Today, cannabidiol sales have skyrocketed, backed by countless positive testimonials and research. Past research has not only demonstrated cannabidiol’s positive impact on pet health but its synergistic effect in treating a broader range of conditions. But, let’s face it, it’s hard making a choice between CBD brands,” via Claudia Bensimon.

Microdosing for Well-Being in Dogs

If you’re wanting to use CBD as a daily canine supplement for your German Shepherd, think about microdosing for optimal health. Low doses of pet CBD (free of THC) can be used for preventative care like for treating inflammation and aches and pains, general everyday health, and well-being. CBD pet dosing differs when used just for well-being purposes in dogs, and that’s why it’s important to consult with your holistic vet for the correct CBD microdose.

CBD for Neuroprotective Purposes & Anti-Inflammatory Purposes in German Shepherds

If you use small doses of cannabinoid for your German Shepherd for anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective purposes, you’ll probably need to microdose. Basically, this means establishing the right dosage for your German Shepherd’s condition. 

Daily dosing with CBD for pets allows for you to find the best CBD dose for your German Shepherd by starting off on the lowest dose. 

By administering cannabidiol tinctures or treats consistently at regular times, you’ll also be increasing its effectiveness. Just remember that more doesn’t always mean better. It can lead to adverse effects. To determine the right CBD dosage for your German Shepherd, you’ll have to do the following:

  • Study the manufacturer’s pet CBD dosing charts
  • Use the pet CBD dosing calculator
  • Calculate your dog’s weight in pounds
  • Opt for the potency that you want. (best to discuss with a CBD expert of the holistic vet)

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Things to Consider

  • Opt for canine dietary supplementation with fish oils containing Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA, and DHA; which are anti-inflammatory, and help to promote joint health by reducing inflammation.
  • Look for supplements with added chondroitin, glucosamine, & MSM for optimal results.
  • Choose supplements with CBD hemp oil that is free of THC. This has been shown to reduce inflammation and pain via numerous studies.
  • Your role as a pet parent is to choose the right combination of ingredients in your CBD supplements so that they’re effective from the get-go.
  • Avoid artificial additives and flavoring
  • Look out for inaccurate CBD content labeling from low-quality pet products
  • Look at plant growing conditions, contaminants, pesticides, and heavy metals that may be present.
  • Consider the extraction process. Poorly done extractions will result in a low-quality CBD pet product that may have toxic solvent residuals.
  • Refrain from purchasing CBD pet products from China.
  • Look at all the ingredients that are in your CBD pet product & understand their health benefits.
  • See how much actual CBD is in the final product
  • See where it was grown. US is good.

Learning how to use natural hempCBD pet supplements for dogs is key when using nutraceuticals for pets. A good and safe strategy for choosing a high-quality CBD pet product should be to consult with your vet first, especially if your German Shepherd has an existing condition or is taking other pet meds. See if there are any drug interactions between the pet meds and cannabidiol. Understand that there is always the potential of a drug interaction.

Keep in mind that CBD lowers blood pressure in people and dogs, and although it’s a safe and natural antioxidant that is often used to combat neurodegenerative diseases in dogs, you’re going to have to always do your research to ensure the accuracy of the product’s therapeutic effects. Read up on current research, and always check out the reviews! CBD is an effective anti-inflammatory that works well for senior pets. The great news is that CBD pet product lines are expanding so fast that you can now find CBD pet shampoos for skin irritations and hot spots, topical CBD lotions for skin allergies, topical CBD sprays, salves, butter, treats, biscuits, capsules, and tinctures.

Just as you would Google a natural supplement for yourself, you should do the same with your German Shepherd’s CBD pet products, to ensure safety and optimal therapeutic benefits via that specific product.

Meet The Author 

Claudia Bensimoun

Canine Specialist & Writer

Claudia Bensimoun is a freelance journalist and author, and specializes in veterinary content, and eBooks. She's a long-time feature writer for Animal Wellness magazine, Fido Friendly magazine, and the United States Dog Agility Association. In addition, Bensimoun has written for numerous pet websites, magazines, newspapers and online publications. Her interests include wildlife conservation, animal welfare, disaster/ humanitarian relief, veterinary research, and veganism.

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