July 18, 2020 10 min read

CBD oils may be beneficial for dogs with cancer in that it may help your furry best friend feel more comfortable during treatment. CBD also offers lots of therapeutic benefits that should be considered by pet parents.

In this blog, we’ll discuss why you should consult with your vet to discuss the benefits of CBD to ease pain, anxiety, insomnia, and to increase appetite for pets with cancer. You’ll also need to discuss if your dog can take CBD while on other pet meds?

High-quality  CBD pet products for dogs may be beneficial for pets with cancer and cancer pain. It’s estimated that around 60 percent of Golden Retrievers will be affected with some form of cancer of which hemangiosarcoma (HSA) and lymphoma are the most common.

According to a recent 2019 study “Cannabidiol (CBD), one of the two major active principles present in Cannabis sativa is gaining great interest among the scientific community for its pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and cosmetic applications,” via PubMed.

All dogs that undergo cancer treatment will need supportive care. As a pet parent, you’ll need to recognize the signs of pain and give your dog the prescribed medications and supplements that are prescribed by your veterinarian.

Understanding and educating yourself about the genetic diseases that your dog breed may be prone to can help you to identify them early, and get the necessary veterinary treatment in time.

If you have a breed that is prone to cancer, regular veterinary visits for check-ups are top priority! That said, cannabinoid use in the fight against canine cancer is still in its early research stages, although there are several studies indicating that cannabinoids (no THC) do seem to inhibit tumor growth of several types of tumor cells.

However, research has also demonstrated that certain CBD doses and types of CBD may actually suppress the immune system, allowing tumors to grow. Pet parents need to educate themselves with the latest research, FDA updates, and work together with their veterinary oncologist throughout cancer treatment. That said, alternative treatments like CBD oil for pain have fewer side effects than opioids or corticosteroids.

A combination of traditional veterinary treatment with pain meds together with a high-qualityCBD oil in the right dosage may be beneficial in getting your furry best friend through this awful period. Dealing with a dog that has cancer is incredibly hard on every family member, but with the right CBD natural supplement, a high-quality diet, and good veterinary care, you’ll be providing your dog with the best support that is critical to recovery and well-being. CBD has been demonstrated to reduce cancer pain and anxiety and to help with insomnia stemming from pain.

CBD Oil as a Complementary Therapy for Canine Cancer


All dog breeds are susceptible to cancer, and pet parents need to be aware of what symptoms to look out for. Certain dog breeds like the Boxer are prone to brain cancer, of which symptoms may include difficulty walking, impaired vision, and facial paralysis. Today, one in four dogs will develop neoplasia, with over 50% of dogs over the age of ten developing cancer.

Symptoms of Neoplasia in Dogs

The American Veterinary Association (AVMA) lists the following as signs to watch for:

  • Abdominal swelling
  • Bleeding from the mouth, nose or other body openings
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty eating
  • Lumps, bumps or discolored skin
  • Non-healing wounds
  • Persistent diarrhea or vomiting
  • Sudden changes in weight
  • Unexplained swelling, heat, pain or lameness
  • Visible mass/tumor

All dogs can develop neoplasia which can affect any organ or tissue in their body. According to the  American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) treatment, response will depend on the severity and the type of neoplasia, as well as the availability and effectiveness of the therapy. The earlier neoplasia is treated, the better chances of a good outcome.

“Despite a lack of metastasis, benign tumors can sometimes have damaging effects on the patient; for example, brain tumors are often benign but the pressure they create on the surrounding brain tissue can be life-threatening. Although some neoplasms (especially the more aggressive cancers) cannot be cured, treatment can prolong your pet’s life and improve their quality of life,” via AVMA.

Medication for Canine Cancer

Although CBD oils are beneficial when dealing with pain, pet parents need to keep in mind that veterinarians may suggest an array of pain medications that are part of a cancer treatment program. These pain medications will include the following:

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Corticosteroids (anti-inflammatory) like cortisone as the second type of pain reliever
  • Opioids include morphine and codeine for advanced cancers with prolonged and severe pain.

As with all medications given in higher doses, there may be side effects.

Cannabidiol (CBD) Oil for Cancer Pain

Hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) oil with no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) for dogs with cancer may be beneficial by helping to relieve the symptoms that go hand –in- hand with cancer treatment, that results in loss of appetite, pain, and nausea. Cancer most times causes pain due to inflammation, nerve injury, and pressure on the internal organs.

CB2 Receptors

Cannabidiol (CBD) helps with cancer pain in dogs by acting indirectly on the CB2 receptors. This differs from how THC acts on CB1 receptors, in that THC may be more beneficial in helping ease pain caused by nerve damage in dogs. As usual, consult with your veterinary oncologist for advice.

A recent study at Cornell University found that CBD works for pets with chronic pain, and demonstrated evidence that CBD did reduce inflammation and chronic pain in pets. It also found that pets on CBD did not build up a tolerance to CBD, so doses did not have to increase with time.

“Dogs received either CBD oil at 2 mg/kg every 12 hours or they received placebo oil, according to the abstract. Dogs were treated for four weeks with a two-week washout period. The dogs’ owners completed questionnaires and veterinarians conducted assessments—including physical exam, hematology, and serum chemistry—before treatment and at weeks two and four. The Canine Brief Pain Inventory score and Hudson activity score (a visual analog scale questionnaire used to assess pain and lameness in dogs),” via Dr. Sarah Wooten, DVM. Veterinary News.

Additionally, CBD has the ability to destroy certain cancer cells, and prevent the growth of blood vessels to tumors. This natural supplement also offers antioxidant properties and may help slow down tumor growth in dogs with cancer.

There is new research that shows thatCBD may be effective in improving the efficiency of chemotherapy in people with cancer. That said, it’s important to work together with your veterinarian when supplementing CBD oils, tinctures, treats, or capsules.

According to theWorld Health Organization (WHO) “CBD oil may have the potential to kill certain cancer cells and stop tumor growth in blood vessels. It also may help with chemotherapy side effects in both humans and pets. Hemp contains other natural compounds like terpenes and flavonoids. That said, limonene, which is a terpene, has been found to have anti-cancerous properties. CBD can be converted to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) under experimental conditions; however, this does not appear to occur to any significant effect in patients undergoing CBD treatment.”

So far, there have been no studies that show negative interactions between CBD and other drugs when dealing with pain management in dogs. The norms with pain management dosing for cancer pain is usually a “higher dose of CBD such as 2mg/kg to 3mg/kg twice daily,” via Animal Wellness, Volume 21, Issue 3, page 48.

It’s important to discuss treatment with your veterinarian to strike the right balance withCBD oils that will be effective with pain management for dogs with cancer. Additionally, it’s necessary to make sure that your CBD oil contains no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the component of the cannabis plant that will give your dog a “high.”

CBD OIL Dosing for Cancer

CBD OIL Potency

  • Purity Level 1 contains 125 mg of Cannabidiol and is best suited for dogs that weigh up to 25 lbs.
  • Purity Level 2 contains 250 mg of Cannabidiol and is best suited for dogs that weigh between 25-50 lbs.
  • Purity Level 3 contains 500 mg of Cannabidiol and is best suited for dogs that weigh over 50 lbs.

 CBD Oil Dosing Per Dog’s Weight

  • 40 pounds: 4 mg – 20 mg
  • 50 pounds: 5 mg – 25 mg
  • 60 pounds: 6 mg – 30 mg
  • 70 pounds: 7 mg – 35 mg
  • 80 pounds: 8 mg – 40 mg
  • 90 pounds: 9 mg – 45 mg
  • 100+ pounds: 10 mg – 50 mg

CBD Tinctures for Dogs Versus CBD Dog Treats

So you’re probably wondering which works best, and also as to the potency differences between tinctures andCBD dog treats? With all the hype about CBD, you’re going to need to be well-informed as to which CBD products are best for your pooch?

CBD tinctures have a dropper in which you have to measure the dosage, and either give your dog the CBD oil in his mouth, or in some food.

CBD oil can also be administered into your dog’s water, but in this case, you will need to be careful that other pets or small children don’t come into contact with the water.

There is no room for error since the potency is stronger than that of a CBD dog treat. You’ll also have to administer the oil rather quickly in case your dog changes his mind. That said, with so many gourmet flavors like bacon and peanut butter, your pooch will actually enjoy consuming these oils if they are flavored. You can also try adding the CBD oil to plain organic yogurt and top it with blueberries for a wholesome snack. 

The absorption time in a CBD tincture is faster than a CBD treat and begins in the dog’s mouth. CBD dog treats are first digested in the stomach, and the CBD oil is absorbed after the dog treat. With the CBD oil being organic, and of a higher-quality they may be more expensive but are definitely worth it.

CBD dog treats are great for dogs with a minimal amount of pain or suffering from anxiety or depression. If your dog is suffering from cancer, cancer pain, seizures, or other health issues, a high-quality CBD oil works best. 

CBD Oil Tincture Tips

  • Begin with a lower strength tincture since tinctures are highly concentrated. (consult with your vet first)
  • Consider the strength of the tincture and your dog’s weight, health conditions, and age prior to purchasing.
  • Higher-strength tinctures are more cost-effective, yet pet parents should be cautious about using the more potent tinctures at first on their dogs. 
  • More potent tinctures offer more potency and other cannabinoids which may be beneficial for certain canine health and behavioral issues.
  • Consider all the CBD oils and only the most reputable dog brands. CBD oil is a new market that needs more transparency, and more long-standing research.
  • Most tinctures contain hemp seed oil extract that is mixed with a neutral oil like coconut or hemp seed oil. Opt for the highest-quality products for your dog.
  • Opt for the latest versions which offer CBD combined with supplements that offer numerous health benefits. Some brands have multiple CBD pet lines for different health issues.
  • As a pet parent, do your research and consult with a CBD savvy veterinarian for the best CBD oils for your dog’s specific health conditions.
  • Look for simple dosage instructions that you understand.

Natural Doggie Organic CBD Hemp Oil helps relieve pain and anxiety in pets. Utilizing only the best natural products, the difference in our oil is that is derived from the highest quality Non-GMO, organic Colorado hemp. All dogs can benefit as this product is a perfect supplement to your animal’s diet and will help keep them happy and healthy. If your animal suffers from anxiety or chronic pain, you will see a noticeable difference in your dog immediately.

Sold out

Examine the CBD mg Amount in your Tincture

Pet parents need to inspect the “total” amount of CBD “mg” oil within their pet products. Read labels, and read the ingredients list. That said, pet parents should be aware that there may be a variety of ingredients within the CBD oil, and that they need to look out for the “pure” CBD content “mg” amount. This is stated on the ingredient label as a percentage. Consumers can also contact the manufacturer to find out more about their CBD products.

As usual, your furry best friend deserves the very best, and that includes a comfortable and supportivedog bed while recovering. With CBD oils also having the ability to reduce the side effects of chemo and radiation, it’s not surprising that pet parents are opting for this natural supplement.

Full-spectrum CBD oils though should not be used on their own for cancer pain, but are best when combined with regular veterinary treatment. That said, cancer pain in dogs may be alleviated with higher doses of CBD oil (2mg/kg to 3mg/kg twice a day) CBD also helps with dogs that have a lack of appetite during chemo and radiation.

Appetite disorders are common in sick dogs or dogs that are recovering from surgery. Dogs that are anxious, depressed, or in pain may also lose their appetite. That said, side effects from cancer treatments will also affect your dog’s appetite.

Regulates Appetite Hormones 

CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system which controls endocrine processes. When it activates the receptors in the brain and body, CBD also influences the endocrine system. This system consists of a group of tissues that release hormones into the bloodstream, which in turn travel to other parts of the dog’s body. 

Some hormones will only act on a single tissue, while other hormones affect the whole body. When cannabidiol is used in dogs with reduced appetite, it triggers a “jump-start” on the endocannabinoid system and stimulates the appetite. 

Relieves Nausea from Cancer Treatments

CBD acts on the endocannabinoid receptors and affects the receptors by regulating neural transmissions. CBD oil for dogs is helpful in the treatment of numerous conditions without taking on the intoxicating effect of marijuana.

A few product lines contain Phyto-cannabinoids, terpenes, and fatty acids which support a huge range of ailments like phobias, anxiousness, joint pain, inflammation, digestive issues, mobility, seizures, and anxiety. As usual,consult with your veterinarian for the best CBD treatment plan!

Naturally-derived hemp products for pets may be effective for pets suffering from cancer, and the side-effects of chemo and radiation. When it comes to supplements like CBD, there’s no one-size-fits-all dosage. That said, when you’re looking upCBD nutraceuticals, and are just not sure as to which may be beneficial for your furry best friend, it’s important to work with your vet. Keep in mind that it’s key to take into consideration any other medications or supplements that your dog is on each and every day, to ensure there are no side-effects!


  1. https://www.morrisanimalfoundation.org/article/boxers-and-cancer
  2. https://www.avma.org/public/PetCare/Pages/Cancer-in-Pets.aspx
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31330283
  4. https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cannabidiol-cbd-what-we-know-and-what-we-dont-2018082414476
  5. 4.https://www.who.int/medicines/access/controlled-substances/5.2_CBD.pdf
  6. https://www.fda.gov
  7. https://journals.plos.org/plosone/search?q=cbd&filterJournals=PLoSONE
  8. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/02/150211140914.htm
  9. https://www.fidofriendly.com/article/category/feature

Claudia Bensimoun

Claudia Bensimoun

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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