Adding CBD to Pet Food

Medically reviewed by Alexander Tabibi, MD
August 15, 2020
CBD for Pets ( Snack , Weed, Drops )
CBD for Pets ( Snack , Weed, Drops )

Benefits of adding CBD to your pets food

With the massive adoption of CBD across the United States since the federal legalization of hemp and hemp derived products in 2018 under the Farm Bill – interest in CBD products for humans has skyrocketed. At the same time the touted benefits of CBD in humans such as reduction in pain, anxiety and trouble sleeping amongst other effects has made the adoption of CBD for pets hugely popular for treating similar issues.


Our pets – also can suffer from anxiety and pain and many have found that CBD is an effective treatment for their pets. However thus far the National Grain and Feed Association has not approved CBD in pet food as below statement demonstrates:


As of April 2019, no hemp or hemp products have been approved or defined through available regulatory processes for use in animal feed or pet food. Therefore, hemp and hemp products may not be lawfully used in animal feed or pet food at this time within the United States.

CBD vs THC in pet food

To be clear, we are not advocating adding marijuana to your dog or cats food. Marijuana has psychoactive effects mainly from the THC cannabinoid which makes us high.  In this article however we are discussing the addition of hemp derived CBD products only. CBD does not have psychoactive effects and can be found in products such as  CBD flower, hemp seeds, CBD oil, or hemp flour.


There’s huge buzz about the generally healthiness and possible benefits of hemp as a natural ingredient, as well as a lot of reported benefits of hemp-derived CBD on animals, although the studies have been limited and are still ongoing for safety and efficacy in a number of conditions.

Why You Might Add Hemp to Your Pet Food

Aside from the natural flower and seed or oil benefits of hemp, offering an alternative to traditional processed flour, there may be other reasons to consider it, mostly related to the potential benefits of the hemp-derived CBD contained within it. Some of the purported benefits of CBD for pets include reports of help with:

  • Calming Anxiety
  • Improved Immunity
  • Reducing pain and inflammation
  • Increased Alertness
  • Arthritis Relief


And there’s science to back up the potential benefits. You see, dogs and cats, like all other mammals, have an endocannabinoid system, a natural biology that seeks to balance the body holistically, that responds directly to cannabinoid stimuli.


But be sure to use hemp and CBD products that do not contain THC, including broad or full spectrum CBD products. THC can be toxic to pets.


There are a number of health benefits to including natural hemp products for your pets, but it’s important to stay informed and educated. If you do consider adding hemp-derived CBD to your furbaby’s food, please be sure to consult with experts, including your veterinarian and your chosen expert in CBD, such as a naturopath or nutritionist. Not all hemp is created equal, and lack of regulation can result in the inclusion of other ingredients that may be harmful to your pet. It’s also best to start slow and be aware of the dosages you’re adding, and how they interact with any other medications or supplements your pet is taking.