Medically speaking, no. You can’t give your dog too much CBD.
While there are exceptions to every rule, cannabidiol (CBD) doesn’t interact with receptors in the brainstem, or areas controlling respiration. This means that lethal overdoses from cannabis, especially CBD extracts, are statistically nil.
At the same time, dogs can only absorb so much CBD, so giving them too much will be a waste.
Even in extremely large doses, pure CBD is unlikely to cause any serious symptoms.
According to a 2018 critical review report by the World Health Organization, any negative effects from large doses of CBD are likely to top-out in extreme drowsiness, lethargy, upset stomach, and in some cases, diarrhea.
From your dog’s perspective, however, the answer is likely, yes—they do have an upper tolerance for CBD dosage.
Beyond a certain level, dogs may begin to feel sluggish, sleepy, nauseous, and generally off-color.
So while too much CBD isn’t going to hurt your pet in the same way that too many painkillers might, it’s important to start low, go slowly when increasing your dose, and work up to a CBD dosage that most benefits your pet’s quality of life.
That’s the most important piece of information in this article, so feel free to stop here!
If you’re querying the upper limits of CBD dosing, it’s likely you’ll benefit from some info on exactly how CBD functions inside the body at high concentrations, as well as advice on dosing practices according to size, breed, and intended use. So, here’s a bunch of content on both of those topics!
What happens when your dog takes (loads of) CBD?
Say your dog gets into the CBD treats while you were at work, and scoffs the whole lot at once—what would happen? Here’s how huge intakes of CBD have been known to affect the body’s biology, as well as people’s subjective experiences.
What’s the recommended dosage of CBD for dogs?
Because it’s not a pharmaceutical drug, recommended dosages of CBD mostly come from product manufacturers and anecdotal reports, rather than laboratory tests. When it comes to the safety and side effects of CBD for dogs, toxicity only begins to occur when given intravenously at extremely high levels—far more than any dog could consume at once (unless maybe they’re let loose in a CBD warehouse.)
Our dosage guide recommends basing your dog’s dosing on three factors:
1. The potency of the CBD oil, treat, or capsule
- 2. The size and weight of your dog
- 3. Which ailment or behavioral issue you plan on treating.
From there, most voices in the CBD community advise a starting amount of around 0.5 to 1 mg of CBD oil per pound of body weight. So, if your dog weighs 50 pounds, you could give them 25 mg of CBD, and the dosage can gradually increase from there if necessary.
One thing to note is that when experimenting to find the dose that works, it’s important to wait about a week before increasing the dose again, giving the body time to adjust to the new level of CBD, as well as giving you time to observe your pup for any changes.
How much CBD should I give my dog for:
In humans and dogs, scientific research has yet to pinpoint a clear limit for how much CBD counts as too much. Currently, no dosage has been identified as hazardous, meaning that it’s not possible to conclusively rule out toxicity from very high CBD dosages in dogs.
That said, CBD has now been used by large numbers of dogs for a relatively long time, without suggestions of harmful effects. As the scientific body of research tries to catch up with mainstream usage, expect to see confirmation of the safety of responsible CBD use in the very near future.