CBD Dog Treats vs. CBD Oils: Which is Best for Your Dog?

Table of contents

  • Intro
  • What is the difference between CBD dog treats and CBD oil for dogs?
  • Making the decision: CBD oil for dogs of CBD dog treats?
  • Can I just give my dog more CBD dog treats if he/she won’t take the oil?
  • Tricks to giving CBD oil for dogs

Article at a glance

  • Some dogs are difficult to give CBD Oil to
  • CBD Oil may have better bioavailability than treats in dogs
  • Better bioavailability doesn’t always mean better effectiveness
  • What your dog will take willingly will help you make your decision about CBD Dog Treats and CBD Oil for Dogs
  • If you want to try CBD Oil for Dogs, there are some tricks you can try at home


When CBD dog treats hit the market, pet owners everywhere breathed a sigh of relief. Finally, there was another option for dogs who had trouble with CBD oil. With that relief, however, came the question of which product was better: CBD dog treats of CBD oil for dogs. What was lost, if anything, from converting to treats from oil?

The answer to this question is still up for debate. Research on CBD oil for dogs is only just emerging, and that means the data on CBD in treat form is even further behind. CBD oil has been used with positive results on the human side of medicine, and it was the first go-to for researchers on the veterinary side.

Anyone who has had to give a dog medication, supplements, or anything beyond normal food and treats knows how difficult it can be, and CBD oil was no exception.

While some dogs accepted oil doses directly into their mouths or on top of their food, others would turn their noses up, and the battle between dog and owner would begin.

What is the difference between CBD dog treats and CBD oil for dogs?

What we know of CBD oil and CBD in a treat form comes from the human side of medicine where oil is used over edibles because it has better bioavailability. This means the body absorbs it more efficiently and at a fairly even rate.

Research suggests CBD in the form of edibles can have erratic bioavailability. That does not mean it won’t be effective or that it won’t hit the bloodstream eventually; it just means the product is less predictable.

In some cases, longer absorption rates with CBD treats for dogs may be desirable, compared to CBD oil for dogs that can start taking effect in as little as 30 minutes. 

Human laboratory results should be applied to veterinary medicine with caution, however. While there are many medicines and treatment methods that can be used in both worlds, there are just as many that can’t. Every species has its own metabolism and biological process, and some things that are good for one species could cause severe harm to another.

This has been seen in many veterinary poisoning cases where pet owners think they can give their dog the same medicine they have been taking for a similar problem. Medication cross over is always risky, and this point is proven by the fact dogs and people sometimes can’t even eat the same foods. You may love onions, but they are extremely toxic for your dog.

CBD oil for dogs and CBD dog treats have both been proven safe for use in pets, but how they work and what dosages are the most effective are still being determined. That doesn’t mean human CBD should ever be given to pets. What matters is to do your research, and understand what works best for you and your pet’s situation between oil and treats.

Making the decision: CBD oil for dogs or CBD dog treats

When making the decision between CBD oil for dogs and CBD dog treats, the most important factor is what makes sense for you and your dog.

If your dog will take oil over CBD treats easily and willingly, your answer is simple. CBD oil for dogs is likely more bioavailable to canines just as it is in humans, so going for this option first makes a lot of sense. 

Any CBD is better than none, however, so if you have to fight with your dog about oil, CBD dog treats are the way to go. Remember, part of the benefit of CBD is its calming effect on your pet. The last thing you want to do is go through an epic battle to get your dog to consume it. Both of your heart rates will be elevated, and you may end up making the situation more stressful.

The best CBD dog treats will be those that have simple, wholesome ingredients and are considered palatable to your dog. Kitsie brand is particularly well known for its natural ingredients and high level of flavor in every treat.

Can I just give my dog more CBD dog treats if he/she won’t take oil?

One of the first thoughts that come to mind whenever a product does “less” than another product is: Can’t I just use more of whatever is not as potent?

The answer to this is: no. 

Do not double down on the CBD dog treats if your dog won’t take CBD oil. Just because something is absorbed into the body slower doesn’t mean it isn’t absorbed at full effect. You won’t speed up the process by using more.

Even though CBD oil for dogs and CBD dog treats have had very positive safety margins for use in dogs, those margins have not yet been clearly defined. It is possible to overdose on safe products, just like the saying “too much of a good thing.”

Believe it or not, you can even drink too much water and have it negatively affect your health. This is a word of wisdom for pet owners – never make assumptions about giving things to your pet!

When I doubt, talk to your veterinarian. CBD dog treats and CBD oil for dogs are often very successful on their own, but for your pet’s specific needs, they may work best in conjunction with other products. The good news is, Pet CBD is an all-natural product therefore is often safe to be used with other medications. Double checking is always best, your pet may have health conditions or may already be on medications that make CBD products an unreasonable option. 

Tricks to giving CBD oil for dogs

When it comes to bioavailability, the chances are good that CBD oil for dogs is a bit better than CBD dog treats, so start there. The easiest and best way is usually to lift your dog’s cheek, and pump recommended amounts directly into their mouth accordingly. The Kitsie bottles were designed to avoid saliva contamination of regular tinctures. If your dog is a little less agreeable and you are really determined to use these products for your pet, here are some great ways to sneak in some dosages without having to battle with your canine companion.

Mix the oil in food. Perhaps the easiest form of administration aside from direct dosing, mixing CBD oil in your dog’s food or in a very appealing treat can often be an easy way to give the dose. Be grateful if your dog is one of those that will take oil in this way; not all dogs are so easy. 

Use a pill pocket. Similar to the food trick, pill pockets are a commercial product that provides a treat with a “pocket” inside where pills and other medications can be hidden and then enclosed. Pill pockets are intended to be eaten like a treat, and they offer owners a more handy system than trying to hide oil in a folded piece of turkey. Pill pockets are also chewy, making it difficult for your dog to spit them out once he or she has started chewing. Consider this a way of making your own CBD dog treats at home.

Mix the CBD oil with liquid. Unlike food, it is very difficult for a dog to spit out liquid. Consider mixing CBD oil for dogs in a small portion of flavored liquid, like the juice from a can of dog food. Avoid putting CBD oil in your dog’s water unless he or she is the only pet in the household and you know this will not decrease the amount of water your pet takes in. The last thing you want is for your dog to become dehydrated because the CBD oil makes the drinking water unappealing.

Use a dosing syringe. Less than ideal when compared to a treat your dogs wants to eat on its own, the use of a dosing syringe may be your last resort. Used in the veterinary world for years, dosing syringes allow you to mix CBD oil for dogs with a savory liquid and administer that liquid toward the back of your dog’s mouth where is will be difficult to spit out.

Remember, sometimes the fight is not worth it. If your dog is very resistant to CBD oil for dogs and you end up both stressed out with CBD oil all over the floor, it may be time to explore other options. CBD dog treats are an ideal alternative, and can help make dosing time a positive experience for all parties involved.

Written by Mead Johnston

Mead is an experienced dog trainer, writer, and lover of animals. She has always been surrounded by animals and had a passion for learning more about them every day. This passion grew tremendously when Mead brought home a Great Pyrenees x Golden Retriever named Mac in 2018. Mead has continued to learn more about dogs whenever possible and wherever possible, while also helping so many wonderful clients. Her goal is help her clients and their dogs become confident in their daily lives. As a dog trainer, she often helps clients who are starting off with a puppy or they might have an older dog that is presenting challenging behaviours. Mead believes in the all-natural uses of Pet CBD to help our furry loved ones live longer, happier and healthier lives.

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