does cbd oil work for dogs with cancer

Does cbd oil work for dogs with cancer

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CBD Oil For Dogs With Cancer – Can It Really Help?

Posted by Ian Koontz on Aug 4th 2020

While research on the effects of CBD is still in its early stages, there now exists lots of anecdotal evidence that CBD can treat- or at least mitigate the effects- of conditions like chronic pain, anxiety, arthritis, and even the side effects of cancer and its treatments. That’s well and good for humans, but does that mean it could help your precious furbabies with their pains and ills, even cancer?

An important thing to consider before diving into treating your pet’s pain through CBD oil for dogs is that there have been no formal studies on the effects of cannabidiol, the compound found in cannabis and hemp, on animals specifically. On the other hand, another thing for pet owners to note is that commercially produced CBD, such as the kind that would be marketed towards pets, lacks delta-9-tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC)- the compound that gives marijuana the psychoactive properties that it is known for.

In an article posted by the American Kennel Club (AKC), AKC’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Jerry Klein, vouches for the pain management effects CBD on dogs. Most CBD products available to the public are actually made from hemp, and not from marijuana. Because of this, hemp oil for dogs with cancer is one of the most endorsed strategies to treat chronic pain from cancer and other ailments that could befall your dog. Basically, you don’t have to worry about your dog zoning out for hours, putting on a chillout playlist, and asking to be fed bags of treats afterwards.

The next question then becomes: what is the best CBD oil for dogs with cancer?

The Best CBD Oils for Dogs with Cancer

i. Spruce Dog CBD Oil

One of the most popular CBD oils for dogs, Spruce Dog CBD Oil is a full spectrum CBD product but bottled especially for dogs- however, similar to the human lab grade manufactured by the same company. Founded in 2018 in North Carolina, all of Spruce’s cbd products are all natural and guaranteed to help manage pain symptoms in humans and dogs alike. The hemp seed oil carrier is switched out for coconut oil, which has a milder taste and is easier on your dog’s digestion. Customer reviews are consistently great, which agree that it helps with pain relief and very easy on stomachs, and allows older, even dogs with chronic pain, to run around and play without worry.

ii. Nuleaf Naturals Pet CBD Oil

Nuleaf was founded in 2014 and based in Colorado, and has been creating high quality organic cannabidiol oil products ever since. Nuleaf also has the distinction of a production lab registered with the US Food and Drug Administration and inspected by the Colorado State Department of Public Health and Environment, and is one of the first CBD companies to be certified and above and beyond safe with an ISO 8 certified lab. It’s recommended for optimizing wellness in dogs, contains no additives- which also means there are no flavors, so it may be difficult for first time users to take. Nuleaf products can help manage all sorts of pain symptoms, and even help with loss of appetite.

iii. cbdMD CBD Products for Pets

cbdMD is unique among the top products in that it offers a far more diverse range of products that includes gummies, capsules, sprays, topicals, vape oils, and of course, CBD oil for pets. They are transparent about their production process, and offers their products at competitive rates, making them widely affordable without compromising quality. cbdMD also prioritizes environmentally friendly production, and so use practices such as aquaponics and vermicomposting- the process of treating soil with compost and worms to boost quality organically- reducing their carbon footprint greatly. Their pet products are created to be at the same grade as their products intended for human consumption, so you can rest easy knowing that no expense was spared for your dog’s wellness.

How Can I Treat My Dog’s Cancer Naturally?

As a pet owner, your number one concern would be to make sure that your pets are living a comfortable life, free of any pain. Sometimes, those solutions come in organic, completely natural ways. One of the most popular ways to help pets treat pain and ills, including but not limited to cancer, is CBD oil. However, if dogs CBD is not your way, there are other methods to help your pet manage their pain.

i. Nutrition

For both humans and animals alike, diet is a huge factor in the treatment of all sickness, even cancer- holistic veterans actually endorse that pet owners improve the quality of their pets’ food with organic, pasture-fed ingredients in their meals, which can inhibit the development of tumors. Switching to pasture-fed ingredients can help your dog fight cancer, as well as improve their overall health and wellbeing. There are studies that exist that prove that carbohydrates feed cancer cells, while fats do not. As such, adding foods rich in fat like flaxseed oil and cheeses can help your dog improve their diet and manage the development of cancer cells.

ii. Antioxidant Supplements

Antioxidants are naturally occurring substances that protect cells from damage and inhibit the development of tumors, found in foods like carrots, nuts, wheat germ, liver, egg yolks, grains, and leafy vegetables. It’s important to feed your pets all-natural antioxidants, as synthetic vitamins can actually contribute to certain illnesses instead of prevent them. Be careful and take care to study your herbal supplements before feeding them to your dog, and for best results, utilize the antioxidants that naturally occur in food, rather than synthetic vitamins and products.

iii. Chinese Herbs & Acupuncture

Chinese medicinal practices have been reported as beneficial by human cancer patients and survivors alike, although no real scientific link has been established between recovery and Chinese treatment methods. Since the biology of cancer in humans and dogs have a close resemblance, it makes sense to assume that the treatments that help humans manage pain should work for dogs too. This mode of treatment, exclusive to Chinese veterinary medicinal perspective, benefits pets with cancer by supporting the strength of the immune system, reducing pain, increasing appetites diminished by medicine, pain or treatment, and helping dogs regain lost energy.

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Will CBD Oil Help My Dog With Cancer?

Since CBD and medical marijuana are legitimate ways to manage pain from cancer and related illnesses, CBD oil for pets have also become a popular solution to chronic pain relief for dogs with cancer. Some studies conducted have concluded that since canine cancers closely parallel the biology of human cancer, the treatment of pain symptoms should be relatively similar.

According to most anecdotal records from pet owners that have used CBD oil on pets with chronic pain or cancer, CBD oil for dogs really does affect their quality of life for the better. CBD is popular among pet owners for its anti-inflammatory properties, anti-nausea effects, cardiac health benefits, appetite simulation, and anti-anxiety benefits- all of which may be suffered by a dog with chronic pain or cancer. From this, we can gather that CBD for dogs, even if not yet scientifically proven, really does positively affect their quality of life. CBD may help with pain management, to even mitigating the daily pain of cancer in dogs. While CBD oil may not shrink cancer cells, as no studies prove or disprove this yet, dogs with pain may feel relief from side effects through regular use of CBD products.

Before committing to any treatment style outside of pharmaceutical, especially when dealing with cancer cells or cancer in dogs, make sure to do your research on any and all side effects it may have on your precious pets. Use CBD for dogs, but also do so with care!

Can CBD Oil Help Dogs With Cancer?

Receiving a cancer diagnosis from your veterinarian is every dog owners’ nightmare. If you find yourself in this terrible situation, it is natural to search for ways you can help them to fight this battle and enjoy life as much as possible.

Unfortunately, there is no known natural cure for cancer in dogs. Aggressive treatment options such as radiotherapy and chemotherapy are currently the only ways to fight this illness with a chance of success.

But don’t give up hope just yet. There has been much research in recent years into the benefits of CBD for dogs with cancer, and the results have been very promising. Giving your pooch CBD during their cancer treatment can help to reduce their discomfort and may even enhance their chances of survival.

In this article, we take a closer look at CBD and how it can help your dog to enjoy a higher quality of life when facing cancer.

What is CBD?

‘CBD’ is an acronym for ‘cannabidiol’ – a type of cannabinoid found in plants of the cannabis Sativa and cannabis Indica species. Marijuana is the dried flower of female cannabis plant, either species, and hemp is only a member of cannabis Sativa family.

While many people automatically associate CBD with marijuana, the majority of CBD products are derived from the hemp plant. CBD doesn’t have a psychoactive effect – in other words, it cannot make you ‘high’.

The psychoactive effects of recreational cannabis use are the result of a separate compound known as ‘tetrahydrocannabinol’ or ‘THC’. Both marijuana and hemp plants contain a combination of CBD and THC, but hemp has a much higher percentage of CBD and a much lower percentage of psychoactive THC than marijuana.

A Farm Bill legalized the sale and production of hemp and hemp extracts in 2018, but all CBD products must contain less than 0.3% THC. CBD products are readily available across most of the United States without the need for a prescription.

How Does CBD Work?

Scientists are not sure exactly how CBD works, but it is believed to interact with a complex cell-signaling system present in all mammals – known as the ‘endocannabinoid system’ or ‘ECS’. This system is made up of a combination of enzymes, cannabinoid receptors, and endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids).

The ECS is believed to play a vital role in the regulation of many metabolic processes and crucial functions, such as immune response, sleep, motor control, appetite and digestion, nerve function, liver function, mood, learning, and memory – among many others.

Researchers believe that CBD works with the body to prevent vital endocannabinoids from being broken down, thus helping the ECS to work as effectively as possible.

In recent years, the health benefits of CBD have become more well-known. Many people take this compound for various ailments on a daily basis. It is most often taken as an oil, but it is also available in the form of creams, gels or capsules.

Benefits of CBD for Dogs With Cancer

CBD has shown clinically proven benefits when used to fight both the symptoms of cancer and the troublesome side-effects of traditional cancer treatment.

As more people recognize the benefits of CBD for human health, the use of CBD for our pets is becoming more popular.

Here are the main benefits of giving CBD to a dog with cancer:

1. Reduces Pain

If your pup is fighting cancer, managing pain and inflammation will be a top priority to keep them comfortable. Pain may be caused by cancer itself, or as a side effect of the treatment they are receiving.

Unfortunately, many pain-relieving drugs come with troublesome side effects of their own. Opioid based drugs can lead to dependency issues, while the long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, or ‘NSAIDs’, can result in damage to the liver and kidneys.

While you shouldn’t shun the use of traditional pain medications entirely, research has shown that CBD is an effective treatment for chronic pain and inflammation – without unwanted side-effects.

Additionally, studies have shown that, even with regular use, the human body doesn’t build up a tolerance to CBD. This means that, unlike some other medications, you may not have to increase your dog’s dose over time to achieve the same results.

2. Helps Fight Tumor Growth

The use of CBD for pain is well-documented, but can CBD oil shrink tumors in dogs?

It may sound surprising, but research has indeed shown that CBD has anti-tumor effects by triggering cell-suicide in diseased cells – especially when used in combination with radiotherapy and chemotherapy. One study, in particular, noted a threefold increase in the survival rates of rats who were treated with CBD alongside chemotherapy when compared to chemotherapy alone.

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Not only does CBD show potential to enhance the effectiveness of cancer treatment for your dog, but it could also make it possible to reduce traditional treatment doses while achieving the same results.

Chemotherapy and radiotherapy are known to have troublesome side effects, which in many cases can be severe. By combining the use of CBD with these treatments, you may be able to reduce the side effects suffered by your pooch.

3. Aids Sleep

Adequate rest is essential to help your dog fight against cancer, as well as enjoy a happy life during their treatment. While CBD can improve sleep by reducing pain, some studies suggest that it can help your pooch get a good night’s kip in other ways, too.

Cancer and cancer treatments often lead to lethargy and a disturbed sleep cycle.

CBD acts as a ‘wake agent’, which stimulates your dog into a more wakeful state.

This may sound counterproductive at first, but increasing the amount of time your pooch is alert during the day may help them to sleep better during the night.

Due to its stimulating properties, working out the best time to give your dog CBD to promote sleep will likely require some trial and error before you find the perfect treatment schedule that works for them and their daily habits.

4. Improves Appetite

Perhaps one of the most commonly suffered side effects of cancer treatment in dogs is nausea and a lack of appetite – which often leads to extreme weight loss and further weakness.

CBD has been shown to reduce the intensity of nausea, as well as improve the appetite, thus helping your dog to maintain weight (and feel better, too!)

Are There Any Risks?

So long as it is sourced and used responsibly, CBD poses minimal risk to your dog.

THC is dangerous for dogs, so it is essential to check the quantities of THC in any CBD product before purchasing. Many products marketed to humans contain trace amounts of THC, even if they are not strong enough to create a psychoactive effect.

It is best to stick to CBD products manufactured from hemp, as these will have naturally low levels of THC than those made from marijuana.

How Much CBD Oil Should I Give My Dog for Cancer

While CBD is an all-natural product which can be easily purchased without a prescription, we advise you to discuss its use with your vet before proceeding.

If your dog is receiving other treatments and medications for cancer, there is a risk that CBD may interact with these.

This doesn’t mean that you cannot give CBD to your dog, but your vet may advise some changes to their treatment plan to accommodate its use.

For example, they may suggest reducing some of their pain medications if you are using CBD, or advise a particular time of day to use it so that it doesn’t interfere with other prescribed drugs.

The Bottom Line on CBD For Dogs With Cancer

If your pup is fighting cancer, it’s understandable that you’ll want to do all you can to make their life more comfortable.

This awful disease is bad enough in itself, yet traditional treatments such as strong painkillers, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy all come with their own troublesome side effects, leaving your dog feeling sick, tired and uninterested in food.

While CBD isn’t a cure-all for cancer, it shows great promise as a complementary treatment to help your pooch manage their symptoms and enhance the effectiveness of traditional cancer therapies.

So long as you purchase high-quality products with a minimal level of THC, and discuss its use with your vet first, giving your dog CBD can bring a wealth of benefits that will help your pooch live life to the fullest.


World Health Organization. “CANNABIDIOL (CBD) Pre-Review Report”,, 11/10/2017

Mateus Machado Bergamaschi “Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol, a Cannabis sativa Constituent”,, 10/10/2011

Kelly Rowett is an animal lover and experienced full-time writer who’s passionate about creating high-quality content. When she’s not typing away at her laptop, you’ll find her hiking the coast path or playing endless seaside fetch with a pair of energetic Spaniels.

CBD Oil for Dogs With Cancer: Should You Try It? Does It Work?

The American Veterinary Medicine Association (AVMA) has found that half of all dogs over the age of 10 eventually get some sort of cancer.

The good news is that thanks to advances in technology that makes possible early cancer detection, diagnosis, and thus early treatment, today’s pets have a better chance of being successfully treated than those of even a few years ago.

It all depends on the type of cancer, the stage to which it has progressed before being discovered, and whether it has spread (metastasized) to other parts of the body.

As in humans, not all cancer can be cured in dogs, but excellent veterinary treatment can prolong their lives and improve their quality of life.

Ready to try CBD for your dog? We recommend Diamond CBD for pets.

Dogs Living With Cancer

Dogs get several forms of cancer including bone cancer, mammary gland cancer, canine lymphoma, mast cell tumors, and hemangiosarcoma.

And even though treatment allows them to live, they live with pain, anxiety, nausea, inflammation, and in some cases seizures.

Pet owners, although they are grateful that their dogs are alive, find it painful to watch.

Many hear about how CBD oil has helped other dogs decide to try it for their dogs.

What does CBD do for dogs with cancer?

It should be noted that a cure for cancer has yet to be discovered.

However, research has shown that taking a multi-faceted approach like administering CBD oil to a dog with cancer along with conventional treatments can not only improve his day-by-day quality of life, it can help him better tolerate the effects of chemotherapy and radiation.

And in some cases, it can even add to the efficacy of the treatment.

And then, there’s the matter that cannabis is known for its appetite-stimulating properties, so it can go a long way in combating the anorexia that can accompany treatment.

Does CBD help with dog’s cancer pain?

Yes, pet owner have reported noticing that giving a dog CBD oil or treats does seem to relieve some of the pain associated with canine cancer.

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If your dog has cancer and seems to be in pain, then you should try some CBD to give your pup some pain relief.

Ready to try CBD for your dog? We recommend Diamond CBD for pets.

How CBD Oil Works

All mammals have an endocannabinoid system, a network of receptors, transmitters, and enzymes that runs through the body and has the ability to modulate pain, nausea, and anxiety.

That the body has its own naturally occurring cannabinoids may surprise you, but yes, the brain manufactures its own marijuana-like molecules that fight pain by acting on these receptors in the brain and nervous system.

CBD oil supplements these effects since being a cannabinoid itself, it recognizes the dog’s cannabinoid system and interacts with it, mimicking its beneficial effects.

CBD oil, however, should not be confused with medical marijuana which has levels of THC that are toxic to dogs.

THC stands for 9-delta tetrahydrocannabinol, the naturally occurring psychoactive compound in the cannabis plant.

In choosing CBD oil to combat the effects of cancer on your dog, it is important that you choose a brand that contains no more than 0.3%THC

The Difference Between CBD and THC

The Psychoactive Effects

Despite sharing similar chemical building blocks, CBD does not have as potent a psychoactive effect as THC.

And while both THC and CBD oil reduce pain, anxiety, and seizures, CBD doesn’t produce the same high or euphoric feeling.

The Side Effects

While THC has been known to temporarily speed up the heart rate, interfere with coordination, and decrease reaction times, such disruptive side effects are absent in CBD.

However, like THC, it can improve the appetite which is a desirable effect.

The Matter of Legality

Although the laws regarding cannabis possession continue to evolve, with over 33 states having already made cannabis legal when used medicinally, and others have made marijuana a bona fide recreational substance.

CBD is technically classified as a Schedule I drug as far as the Federal government is concerned.

However, the authorities usually don’t bother with CBD oil that contains the aforementioned 0.3 % or less of THC.

The Types of CBD Oil for Dogs

Although CBD is available in several forms such as capsules, biscuits, honey, and topical ointments, CBD oil is the most convenient way to administer it to dogs with cancer since it can be given directly into a dog’s mouth using a dropper; put on a treat; rubbed into the skin; or even used as ear drops.

When it comes to purchasing CBD oil, there are three categories to choose from: full-spectrum, CBD isolate, and broad-spectrum.

All are beneficial, but some are particularly suitable in certain situations.

  • Full-spectrum CBD oil is the best choice for dogs who have retained a healthy appetite throughout their treatment because it contains cannabinoids, terpenes, and other species of beneficial plants that bolster CBD oil’s effectiveness. However, it has a strong herbal taste which may not appeal to dogs with nausea.
  • Broad Spectrum CBD Oil for Dogs is more refined in that it contains less plant matter, so it has a milder taste which some dogs prefer.
  • CBD Isolate for Dogs is pure CBD and the most refined type of CBD oil, meaning that unlike the above two varieties, it contains no plant matter. Thus, it has no taste making it good for picky eaters.

The three differ in the amount of or lack of THC.

Broad and full-spectrum CBD contain 0.3% or less while CBD Isolate contains none at all.

The important thing, no matter which you choose is that you purchase CBD oil for dogs from a reputable business that has no qualms about sharing lab results should you ask to see them.

You also want to make sure it contains 0.3% THC or less, and that it contains no pesticides or heavy metals.

Ready to try CBD for your dog? We recommend Diamond CBD for pets.

Benefits of CBD Oil for Dog Cancer

To understand the benefits of CBD oil for dog cancer, you first need to understand how CBD works.

CBD is one of the many compounds present in the hemp plant.

It plays a role in the dog’s endocannabinoid system and has no psychoactive effects, unlike THC.

The endocannabinoid system is a biological system on the nervous system that affects mood, appetite, memory, and sleep.

It consists of endocannabinoids, enzymes, and receptors.

The receptors help to break down CBD molecules in the body. There are two types of receptors for cannabidiol; CB1 and CB2.

CB1 receptors are in the central nervous system. They are responsible for regulating pain, coordination, mood, memory, and appetite.

On the other hand, CB2 receptors are in the peripheral nervous system, influencing inflammation and pain.

CBD acts on CB1 receptors to calm the neurons and reduce activity. Therefore, there is a low risk of using CBD for dog cancer because it is natural.

Apart from helping with cancer symptom relief, CBD oil also helps to relieve the following conditions in dogs :

  • Anxiety and stress
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Arthritis and joint pain
  • Moderate to severe pain
  • Nausea
  • Digestion problems
  • Seizures
  • Inability to settle or relax
  • Lack of energy

How Much CBD Oil Should You Give Your Dog?

You will get the best results from giving your dog CBD oil consistently.

The recommended dosage is 1.5 mg per 10 lbs of body weight, given twice a day 12 hours apart.

However, this is not hard and fast.

In some situations, you may find you need to give less or take a trial and error approach.

Ready to try CBD for your dog? We recommend Diamond CBD for pets.

Veterinarians On The Topic of CBD Oil for Dogs With Cancer

If you’re curious about whether you can get CBD oil from your veterinarian, the answer is no.

Other than in California, veterinarians are not even allowed to initiate a conversation about CBD oil and cancer.

And while there are some veterinarians who are not receptive to what research has found, if you bring up with an integrative or holistic vet the possibility of supplementing your dog’s cancer treatment with CBD oil, he or she will most likely be open to the topic.

Hopefully, the laws will soon loosen up, allowing more veterinarians to discuss the benefits of CBD oil for dogs with cancer should they choose to.