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Best CBD Oil for Dogs with Arthritis – Top Brands Reviews in 2021

Can CBD oil be used to relieve and prevent arthritis pain in dogs? What’s the best CBD oil for dogs? Let’s find out

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Aging isn’t kind for every dog. More often than not, it means deterioration of mobility and joint-related issues—especially when the dog lives a passive lifestyle and eats inappropriate food.

Dogs were born to hunt and move around, so it’s important to take proper care about these two aspects.

Hunting can be substituted with games that stimulate your dog’s natural instinct; diet helps deliver the right amount of nutrients to the dog’s body in order to nourish the joints and cartilage; exercising keeps the joints in good health and helps your companion maintain mobility.

Arthritis, one of the most common health problems in dogs, affects the joints with chronic inflammation, impairing mobility and causing persistent pain and flare ups in the affected areas.

A recent survey has shown that pet parents endorse CBD tinctures for pets because of noticeable improvements in a range of conditions. The respondents evaluated hemp-derived products as successful and therapeutically helpful.

But can CBD oil relieve arthritic pain in dogs? Does it help with the cause or only mitigate the symptoms?

Finally, what are the best CBD oils for dogs with arthritis?

Here we explain everything you need to know.

Let’s start with our product recommendations.

Best CBD Oil for Dogs with Arthritis: Top Online Vendors Reviewed for 2021

1. Royal CBD Pet Oil (Best Overall)


  • Organic, US-grown hemp
  • CO2-extracted
  • Full-spectrum CBD
  • 3 strengths available: 125, 250, and 500 mg
  • 3rd party tested for potency and purity
  • Delicious bacon flavour


  • A bit more expensive than other brands
  • Only one flavour option available

Why we recommend Royal CBD as the best CBD oil for dogs with arthritis:

Royal CBD is known for its award-winning CBD products for humans. Recently, the company has expanded its product line up, translating the same quality standards to products for dogs. It’s no surprise that Royal CBD is highly recommended for dogs with pain.

Royal CBD offers three concentrations of CBD oil for dogs with arthritis:

  • 125 mg
  • 250 mg
  • 500 mg

The oil has been infused with a bacon flavouring to mask the hempy taste of CBD. The available potencies make the product suitable for dogs of all sizes. These are full-spectrum extracts, so your dog is getting the entire range of cannabinoids and terpenes besides the CBD. Similar to the human collection, the entire Royal CBD pet line is tested in a third-party laboratory for potency and safety.

If your dog fusses over CBD oil, Royal CBD also has three types of dog treats; one of them contains turmeric, which is known for its remarkable anti-inflammatory properties.

2. Gold Bee CBD Oil (Runner Up)


  • Colorado-grown organic hemp
  • Full-spectrum CBD
  • Up to 40 mg of CBD/mL
  • Great for larger dogs
  • Peanut butter flavor
  • Third-party tested for potency and purity


  • No potency for smaller dogs

Why we recommend Gold Bee CBD oil for dogs with arthritis:

Gold Bee has recently introduced a collection of CBD products for pets, including CBD oil and dog treats. The company uses organic hemp from Colorado, which is then extracted with supercritical CO2 to ensure consistent potency and high purity of the end product. The Gold Bee CBD oil comes in two potency variants: 1200 mg and 2400 mg. This range is perfect for medium-sized and extra-large dogs.

The CBD oil is also suspended in hemp seed oil to boost the absorption of CBD and provide your dog with additional amino acids on top of excellent ratios of omega-3s to omega-6s.

Similar to Royal CBD, Gold Bee offers CBD pet treats for dogs that are unwilling to swallow earthy hemp oil.

How CBD Oil Works to Help Dogs with Arthritis

The first scientific records regarding the health benefits of CBD oil for dogs come from a 2017 study performed by Cornell University on osteoarthritis models. This randomized and owner-blinded-cross-over study showed that the dogs that were given 2 mg/kg of CBD oil every 12 hours showed significant improvements in their symptoms (1).

The extract used for the purpose of the study came from a high-CBD strain that contained lower concentrations of other cannabinoids and also small amounts of terpenes.

The research team concluded that CBD oil helped improve comfort and mobility in the home environment of dogs suffering from osteoarthritis. Furthermore, a veterinary assessment of pain also indicated relief thanks to the use of CBD oil.

Pain management is very important for dogs with arthritis—especially for senior and disabled dogs.

As mentioned above, inflammation is a significant marker of arthritic pain in dogs, so lowering inflammation is essential for improving the dog’s quality of life. Veterinarians usually prescribe painkillers such as opioids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), but doubts have been raised as to their safety for dogs and their immune systems.

Several animal-based studies have found that CBD may be able to treat arthritis by reducing inflammation.

Studies on CBD and Arthritis in Animals

  • A 2011 study from Neuroscience Letters found that CBD effectively reduced acute joint inflammation in rodents by changing the way they reacted to pain stimuli (2).
  • In a 2016 study posted by the journal European Journal of Pain, the authors found that the topical application of CBD could reduce arthritis pain in animal subjects without dangerous side effects (3).
  • A 2017 study published in the journal Pain highlighted CBD as the potential remedy for osteoarthritis pain in rats. The research team also suggested that preventive supplementation with CBD may delay or stop the onset of nerve damage and joint pain (4).
  • Another study on mice found that CBD and THC are useful in the management of difficult to treat pain, including arthritis. CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties were linked to its interaction with the endocannabinoid system (5).

CBD for Psychological Symptoms of Arthritis in Dogs

Arthritis can also negatively impact your dog’s mental health. When the dog is in pain, low mood and irritation are common, which may even trigger aggressive behaviour.

Studies have shown that CBD oil might help improve your dog’s mental health. A 2019 study from the Brazillian Journal of Pain pointed to CBD as a potential anxiolytic agent that may improve the body’s response to environmental stressors (6).

Reduced anxiety means better sleep quality, lower stress levels in general, and greater mood stability.

Researchers who conducted a study on CBD and sleep—published in the journal CNS and Neurological Disorders—reported that CBD had therapeutic applications as a potential anti-anxiety and antidepressant substance (7).

In a study published in the Permanente Journal, the authors measured sleep and anxiety scores of the subjects and discovered that CBD could help reduce anxiety and block anxiety-induced sleep deprivation through its stress-relieving properties (8).

On the one hand, the above studies were conducted on humans and animals such as mice and rats, not dogs. But on the other hand, all mammals have the same endocannabinoid system, so animal studies often bring relevant results when it comes to humans.

While we’re discussing the benefits of CBD oil for dogs with arthritis, the AKC Canine Health Foundation is financing a study through the Colorado State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine to examine the efficacy in the treatment of drug-resistant epilepsy in dogs.

How Long Does It Take for CBD Oil to Improve Arthritis in Dogs?

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This question doesn’t have a straightforward answer because every dog is different. Factors affecting the time it takes for CBD oil to work include the sensitivity of the dog’s endocannabinoid system, their age, weight, metabolism, physical activity, overall health, and the severity of symptoms.

Some dogs may process CBD at a slower rate than others. This is why the effects of CBD oil for dogs with arthritis may need some time to start working. Full-spectrum CBD is the most effective option for arthritis, but the symptom relief isn’t always immediate. While some dogs will experience improvements in their symptoms after a day or few, others may need at least two weeks to notice the difference in their pain.

Consistency is of the utmost importance when it comes to giving CBD oil to dogs with arthritis. Systematic supplementation will result not only in the reduction of symptoms but also in the overall improvement of your dog’s quality of life.

How to Give Your Dog CBD Oil for Arthritis

There are three types of CBD dog owners can choose from: CBD oil, CBD dog treats, and CBD topicals.

Here’s what you need to know about each option:

  • CBD Oil: this product contains a hemp extract that is suspended in a food-grade carrier oil for better absorption. Giving CBD oil to a dog with arthritis delivers the cannabinoids to its system through tiny blood vessels in his mouth, so the effects can be experienced faster than with edible formats. Alternatively, you may mix some CBD oil into your dog’s food, but doing so will lower its bioavailability, as the CBD will need to be metabolized in the liver first.
  • CBD Pet Treats: this is a good solution for dogs with arthritis who don’t like the taste of natural CBD oil. CBD dog treats contain a fixed amount of CBD in each serving, which also makes dosing easier. While definitely more enjoyable than CBD oil, dog treats are available on the market in multiple sizes and variations. This route of administration also results in a lower bioavailability, meaning that less CBD eventually enters the bloodstream. On a positive note, the effects of CBD edibles tend to last longer, up to 10 hours.
  • CBD Topicals: topical application of CBD—in the form of a cream, balm, or gel—results in its interaction with CB2 receptors in the skin’s epidermis layer. Using that mechanism, CBD is able to reduce localized pain and inflammation, such as arthritis flare ups.

Now that you’re familiar with the basic forms of CBD for dogs with arthritis, let’s take a look at how to use it properly for the greatest benefit.

CBD Dosage for Dogs with Arthritis

As with every health supplement that you introduce to your dog, we recommend starting at low doses and slowly increasing them until the symptoms become manageable. Veterinarians generally suggest starting with 0.5 mg for every pound of the dog’s body weight.

For example, if your dog weighs 10 pounds, a dose of 5 mg should be a good starting point. You can test this dosage for one week and observe your dog’s behaviour. If the symptoms don’t get better, increase the dose by another 5 mg—and reassess the effects.

When you see your dog in a better mood, running faster and jumping higher, you’ll know you’ve found the correct dose.

Once again, remember that every dog is different, so even smaller dogs may require higher doses if their symptoms are severe. Always consult with a qualified veterinarian about the use of CBD oil.

CBD Oil for the Prevention of Arthritis

Aging is inevitable for everyone. At some point, whether it’s a human or pet, the time will catch up with them. For many people, it’s difficult to get the same level of performance as they did a few years ago. Dogs are faced with exactly the same problem.

The good news is that you can go ahead of the curve and prevent arthritis in your dog. Don’t wait for the condition to develop and get out of control. If you start seeing alarming symptoms of pain in your dog, seek natural remedies to support their immune system and reduce inflammation.

Full-spectrum CBD oil can do more than just ease arthritis pain in your dog. It also has a range of other benefits, such as support for cognitive function, cardiovascular health, digestive functions, and overall regeneration.

How to Choose the Best CBD Oil for Dogs with Arthritis

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There are three types of CBD extracts that you can give a dog with arthritis: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and CBD isolate.

The full-spectrum CBD contains all phytonutrients from hemp, including the trace cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids on top of the CBD. These compounds help your body process CBD more efficiently, contributing to the entourage effect, or the whole-plant synergy. Full-spectrum CBD also carries trace amounts of THC (up to 0.3%).

Broad-spectrum CBD is similar to full-spectrum CBD; it comes with all the cannabinoids and terpenes naturally found in cannabis—but without any traces of THC.

CBD isolate is exactly what it sounds like; pure, isolated CBD. It boasts the highest concentration of CBD per serving and doesn’t have any odour or flavour. The only minus to using CBD isolate is lower efficacy compared to broad-spectrum and full-spectrum CBD.

Aside from the product format, you’ll need to consider the following parameters:

  • The source of hemp: only purchase CBD oils for dogs that have been extracted from organic, non-GMO hemp. Don’t buy anything that uses mass-produced hemp, as the product may be contaminated with pesticides or heavy metals.
  • Opt for CO2-extracted CBD: CO2 extraction doesn’t require additional heat or solvents. It uses atmospheric carbon dioxide that is put in a supercritical state, meaning it acts as a gas and liquid at the same time. As a result, it can effectively strip the beneficial compounds from the plant, leaving behind a pure and concentrated extract.
  • Look for Certificates of Analysis (COAs): the lab reports from an independent laboratory can tell you everything about the product, from its potency to the purity of the source material to its safety. If there are any inconsistencies in the quality of the product throughout the batches, the lab analysis will show it. Reputable companies post the certificates of analysis from these laboratories to prove their products’ potency and purity.
  • Choose CBD Oil over other formats: CBD oil is the best product type for dogs with arthritis because it combines a relatively fast-acting time with dosage precision and long duration of effects. 

Keeping the above in mind, you can do your own research on the best CBD oils for dogs with arthritis or use our recommendations if you’re in a rush. 

The Pros & Cons of Using CBD Oil for Dogs with Arthritis


  • CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system to balance essential processes in dogs, such as immune response, inflammation, and pain signaling
  • Human and animal studies have found that CBD offers health benefits that could help dogs with arthritis or associated symptoms, such as anxiety and depression, difficulty sleeping, fatigue, and results in positive changes in behaviour.
  • CBD oil is easy to use, especially if you know a veterinarian who’s experienced in treating dogs with CBD.
  • Hemp-derived CBD oil is legal in many countries across the world. You can find it in pharmacies, veterinarian clinics, pet boutiques, and local health stores.
  • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t received reports about dangerous cases related to animals taking CBD. However, the side effects of accidental consumption of cannabis products other than from hemp are well documented by studies.


  • The effects of CBD oil for arthritis in dogs haven’t been extensively studied. Most evidence comes from studies on humans and other animals such as rodents and mice.
  • The FDA doesn’t approve cannabis for animals. The agency even warns pet owners against using CBD oil in pets and recommends consulting a veterinarian about other possible treatment options. It’s quite bizarre, given that they haven’t received any reports about negative side effects from pet owners giving CBD to their dogs.
  • Only California allows veterinarians to discuss cannabis use with their clients.
  • CBD may interact with medications prescribed by a veterinarian.

There are fewer product options for pets than for humans

Is CBD Oil Safe for Dogs with Arthritis?

CBD is generally well-tolerated by dogs. It doesn’t cause toxicity even in high doses, but there are a few mild side effects that large amounts of CBD can cause to dogs, including:

  • Dry mouth
  • Sedation
  • Changes in appetite
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Diarrhea

A properly measured dose of CBD shouldn’t trigger any of these reactions, so make sure to follow your vet’s recommendations and observe the symptoms of arthritis in your dog after every dose.

Key Takeaways on the Best CBD Oils for Dogs with Arthritis

CBD oil is a versatile supplement for general health support in dogs. Recent studies also indicate that it can be an effective treatment for arthritis. CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, supporting the proper functioning of joints and cartilages—and improving mobility as a result.

Not only that, but CBD also has remarkable anti-inflammatory properties; it can reduce inflammation and change the way pain signals are transmitted to the dog’s brain. 

Arthritis has no established cure, but CBD can help your dog manage its pesky symptoms, such as inflammatory pain, anxiety, sleep difficulty, mobility issues, lack of energy, and behavioural problems.

Most studies covered in this article were conducted on humans or animals like mice and rats. The majority of evidence on the effectiveness of CBD for dogs with arthritis comes from anecdotal reports of dog parents. However, since all mammals have the same endocannabinoid system, it’s no wonder why people are so enthusiastic about supplementing CBD in their canine companions.

A consultation with a holistic veterinarian should provide you with a detailed insight into the potential benefits of CBD oil for arthritis. Doing so will also help you establish the right dosage routine and avoid potential interactions with medications—if your dog takes any.



  1. Gamble, L. J., Boesch, J. M., Frye, C. W., Schwark, W. S., Mann, S., Wolfe, L., Brown, H., Berthelsen, E. S., & Wakshlag, J. J. (2018). Pharmacokinetics, Safety, and Clinical Efficacy of Cannabidiol Treatment in Osteoarthritic Dogs. Frontiers in veterinary science, 5, 165.
  2. Schuelert, N., & McDougall, J. J. (2011). The abnormal cannabidiol analogue O-1602 reduces nociception in a rat model of acute arthritis via the putative cannabinoid receptor GPR55. Neuroscience letters, 500(1), 72–76.
  3. Hammell, D. C., Zhang, L. P., Ma, F., Abshire, S. M., McIlwrath, S. L., Stinchcomb, A. L., & Westlund, K. N. (2016). Transdermal cannabidiol reduces inflammation and pain-related behaviours in a rat model of arthritis. European journal of pain (London, England), 20(6), 936–948.
  4. Philpott, H. T., O'Brien, M., & McDougall, J. J. (2017). Attenuation of early phase inflammation by cannabidiol prevents pain and nerve damage in rat osteoarthritis. Pain, 158(12), 2442–2451.
  5. Russo E. B. (2008). Cannabinoids in the management of difficult to treat pain. Therapeutics and clinical risk management, 4(1), 245–259.
  6. Linares, I. M., Zuardi, A. W., Pereira, L. C., Queiroz, R. H., Mechoulam, R., Guimarães, F. S., & Crippa, J. A. (2019). Cannabidiol presents an inverted U-shaped dose-response curve in a simulated public speaking test. Revista brasileira de psiquiatria (Sao Paulo, Brazil : 1999), 41(1), 9–14.
  7. de Mello Schier, A. R., de Oliveira Ribeiro, N. P., Coutinho, D. S., Machado, S., Arias-Carrión, O., Crippa, J. A., Zuardi, A. W., Nardi, A. E., & Silva, A. C. (2014). Antidepressant-like and anxiolytic-like effects of cannabidiol: a chemical compound of Cannabis sativa. CNS & neurological disorders drug targets, 13(6), 953–960.
  8. Shannon, S., Lewis, N., Lee, H., & Hughes, S. (2019). Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series. The Permanente journal, 23, 18–041.


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