How Much CBD is Right for Your Dog?

How Much CBD is Right for Your Dog?

As a maker of CBD pet supplements, we are frequently asked the question, “How much CBD is right for my dog?” It’s important to look at the pharmacokinetics and science of CBD Oil absorption in dogs to search for some answers.

Dog sitting on a woman's lap sniffing a painting.

The first aspect to consider is the absorption rate. CBD absorbs rapidly into the bloodstream, with blood levels peaking after roughly 30 minutes of intake. These levels slowly begin to decline from there and around 12 hours after the initial dose, they typically hit a level where an additional serving is recommended. But as we’ll cover in just a bit, the size and breed of your dog will ultimately dictate the right dosage and how often to use them.

Another aspect to consider when adding a CBD supplement to your dog’s diet, or any supplement for that matter, it’s important to stay consistent so the active ingredients remain in the system. As with the vitamins that humans consume, the benefits aren’t necessarily instant, but will tend to compound over time. And no, rapidly increasing the dosage will not speed up the long term advantages, so be careful with trying to reach that destination goal too soon.

Recommended CBD by Size and Breed

Generally, CBD dosing recommendations for dogs are made by size/weight, but it’s also good to know the characteristics of your breed’s temperament before adding it to their diet. Then it’s wise to introduce the supplement in small amounts at first, with gradual increases over a steady time frame. There have been notable cbd benefits for dogs in lower doses, as well as higher levels up to 2.5mg twice a day for medium breeds. And as much as two 5mg doses on a daily basis for larger dogs like Mastiffs.

Please note, the suggestions below are based on the general weight and size of the various dog breeds mentioned and are only an estimate. Therefore, it’s extremely important to determine the specific CBD dosing schedule for your dog according to their exact weight and we recommend starting with a lower amount to stay on the safe side. Towards that end, when you’re just starting a daily CBD regimen for your dog, a half dose is recommended for the first week or two.

Small Dogs

With smaller breeds (25 lbs and under), we strongly advise taking the “start low and go slow” approach when adding a CBD supplement to their daily routine. This method allows you to gauge where the benefits begin without jumping to a high dose too soon. You can break down your dog’s favorite supplements into smaller pieces for half or quarter doses during this introductory phase.

Small dog with it's tongue hanging out.

Now let’s take a look at a couple of small dog breeds and how CBD can benefit them.

Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terriers are highly energetic dogs that love to be active. In some cases though, that energy can result in anxious/nervous behavior. Giving a calming CBD chew just ahead of their daily feeding schedule may provide stress relief and prevent nervousness. Options with L-tryptophan, organic chamomile, and valerian root are also a healthy way to offer natural relaxation.

Even if your Terrier doesn’t suffer from anxiety, as they get older their joints wear out from years of constant activity. Pain from the patella (knee cap) moving out of place is common, but may possibly lessen from including cbd as part of their regular diet. And for those considering a full preventative plan, a complete CBD supplement set offers a range of benefits.

Chinese Crested Dog

Hairless breeds that are prone to dry skin, such as the Chinese Crested can benefit from CBD as it reduces inflammation. Environmental factors can also lead to doggy dandruff or flaky skin, which causes itching. This worsens the problem due to excessive scratching, which can then lead to raw skin called hotspots.

But weather is not the only contributor to canine skin issues. They may be suffering from allergies, often caused by flavoring ingredients such as low quality chicken or beef. So be cautious of that dog food on “Super Sale” at your local pet store. On the other hand, products that contain novel protein sources such as cricket protein may be beneficial for dogs that have a food allergy.

Medium Dogs

For the mid-range dog breeds (25 - 60lbs), you can start with a higher dose but should stick to the “steadily increase over time” technique. This way you’re able to more effectively monitor the effect of cbd and easily raise or taper back the serving as needed. Remember, consistency is key to ensure the active ingredients remain in their system and gaining the full desired effects.

Close up of a dog's nose and face.

What ailments can CBD aid in medium sized dog breeds?

Labrador Retriever

One of the most loyal breeds there is, Labrador Retrievers are known to suffer from separation anxiety. Quite frankly, they just love humans and can’t stand being apart. But this nervous behavior can manifest into excessive paw licking or even non-stop barking when left alone.

If your medium-sized dog is experiencing some extreme anxiety/panicking, it should be fine to start at full dose levels. You shouldn’t be concerned that beginning with 2.5mg or 5mg will be too much, as it’s rare for dogs to experience sedation even from the higher range of dosing (over 5mg).


Dalmatian standing on a bridge with paws on the railing.

Everyone’s favorite firehouse mascot, Dalmatians are known for their sharp minds and high endurance levels. Unfortunately, hip dysplasia is also common in the breed, which may lead to arthritis. Luckily, there are supplements with cbd to help their hips and joints stay mobile.

In fact, research on Osteoarthritis in dogs indicates that levels up to 2.5mg twice daily have shown benefit in many cases. For a breed with commonly known issues later in life, it’s good to incorporate cbd in their diet from a young age as a preventative measure.

Large Dogs

As the breed of dog gets larger and heavier (60lbs+), the amount of CBD they require increases to match their body mass. Considering the rapid growth of large breeds, it’s beneficial to start a uniform routine from a young age. This gives time for the supplements to effectively contribute to their overall wellness as they grow.

How can large dogs prosper from a consistent cbd schedule?


Larger dogs are at risk for dysplasia in the elbow and hips, and Mastiffs are unfortunately not an exception. It may be brought on by hormonal or environmental factors, but genetics tend to be the most common reason for this. As a result, stiffness in their joints could become a problem as they mature. Adding a dog supplement with healthy ingredients earlier in life is the best way to mitigate potential future issues.

If you’re just discovering cbd for an older canine that is dealing with chronic pain, you can feel comfortable starting with a higher dose (5mg+). But remember to always monitor and track the effects to learn what works best for your dog.

Great Dane

Great Dane standing in a grass field with water in the background.

An interesting fact is that shorter hair dogs tend to suffer from skin conditions more than their hairy cousins. For instance, larger breeds like the Great Dane are susceptible to pododermatitis, a skin inflammation on their paw and pads. We strongly recommend you contact your veterinarian for further advice on the subject, as secondary infections can develop if left untreated.

As a protective option, hemp protein adds essentially fatty acids to their diet that reduce irritation. And CBD has shown to also reduce inflammation in skin conditions, and may perhaps affect cannabinoid receptors that increase in inflamed skin. This can provide relief along with any recommendations from your vet.

Choosing the Best CBD for Your Dog

Now that you know the proper cbd dosing for your dog, what is the best option for their needs?

The Green Gruff CBD Supplement line up includes unique formulas developed for specific ailments.

EASE Plus chews enhance the function of joints, hips, and connective tissue for improved mobility and also to help slow down joint degeneration.

RELAX Plus calming chews are a daily supplement that aim to help anxiety and nervousness in dogs when surprised or out of their routine.

SOOTHE Plus Skin & Coat chews help with itchy, dry skin and promote a healthier, shinier coat.

If your dog suffers from two or more, consider our Healthy Supplement Pack which features our complete CBD supplement set to get your dog started with a daily regimen.

If you need additional information on dialing in the right amount of cbd for your dog, you can howl at our team by clicking the button for our online form below. We’ll gladly answer questions you have!

Contact Green Gruff