You may have found yourself asking questions about hemp oil for dogs lately, especially as the use of hemp oil and hemp products in general begins to become more common. The first step to helping your dog is understanding how hemp oil could be beneficial, how it’s made, and how to speak with your veterinarian about introducing hemp oil as a supplement to your dog’s diet.
So… What is Hemp Oil for Dogs?
Hemp oil for dogs is an oil derived from the seeds of the Cannabis sativa plant. Hemp oil contains minimal amounts of psychoactive substances, ensuring that hemp oil is focused on being a supplement to your dog’s diet. Hemp oil is not designed nor intended to provide your dog with a “high” of any kind.
Is Hemp Oil Psychoactive?
No, hemp oil is not psychoactive. Hemp oil is made from the seeds of the hemp plant (Sativa), which contain minimal amounts of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive compound found in marijuana. Hemp plants are specifically cultivated to have low THC levels, meaning that the resulting hemp oil does not produce any intoxicating or psychoactive effects when consumed. Instead of providing a “high”, hemp oil is valued for its potential nutritional benefits and potential therapeutic properties, offering a range of health-supporting compounds such as essential fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.
How is Hemp Oil Made?
Hemp oil is typically made through a process called cold-press extraction. Here's a brief overview of how hemp oil is made:
- Step 1 - Harvesting: Hemp seeds are harvested when they have reached maturity. The plants are carefully selected to ensure they meet stringent quality standards for oil production.
- Step 2 - Cleaning: The harvested hemp seeds are thoroughly cleaned to remove any debris or impurities, ensuring a pure end product.
- Step 3 - Grinding and Shelling: The cleaned hemp seeds undergo a grinding process to break them down into smaller pieces. This step helps expose the seed kernels for efficient oil extraction. The outer shell, or hull, of the hemp seeds is then removed through a shelling process.
- Step 4 - Cold-Press Extraction: The shelled hemp seeds, also known as hemp hearts, are subjected to a cold-press extraction method. This involves applying pressure to the seeds without the use of heat or chemicals. The pressure squeezes the oil out of the seeds, while retaining the beneficial nutrients and compounds.
- Step 5 - Filtration: Once the oil is extracted, it goes through a filtration process to remove any remaining plant material or impurities, resulting in a clean and pure hemp oil.
- Step 6 - Bottling and Packaging: The final step involves bottling the hemp oil in appropriate containers, ensuring proper storage and preservation of its quality. The oil is then labeled and prepared for distribution.
Please note that hemp oil can also refer to CBD oil derived from the flowers and leaves of the hemp plant. The extraction process for CBD oil involves additional steps, such as decarboxylation and extraction using solvents like CO2 or ethanol, to obtain the desired cannabinoid content. Sadly, hemp oil and CBD oil are often confused with one another despite the differences.
Overall, the process of making hemp oil aims to preserve the natural properties and beneficial compounds found in hemp seeds while ensuring a high-quality and safe end product, that perhaps ironically, does not produce a “high”!
Benefits of Hemp Oil for Dogs
Hemp oil offers many potential benefits for dogs which makes it a valuable addition to their wellness routine as a dietary supplement. Remember to consult your veterinarian before starting your dog on hemp oil, we always want to make sure that there are no reactions to hemp oil before fully introducing it into your dog's diet.
Some potential benefits of hemp oil for dogs include:
- Hemp oil contains natural compounds like cannabinoids and terpenes, which can help promote relaxation and a sense of calm in dogs. This makes it beneficial for managing situational anxiety, noise phobias, or separation anxiety.
- Hemp oil is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which play a vital role in supporting joint health in dogs. These essential fatty acids possess anti-inflammatory properties that can alleviate discomfort and promote mobility, especially in aging or active dogs.
- The omega fatty acids found in hemp oil have nourishing properties for your dog's skin and coat. Regular supplementation of hemp oil may help manage dryness, itchiness, and promote overall skin health, resulting in a shiny coat.
- Hemp oil contains antioxidants that support the immune system and protect against oxidative stress. By promoting overall well-being, hemp oil contributes to your dog's general health and vitality.
Uses of Hemp Oil for Dogs
Moving beyond the potential benefits for dogs, there are many ways in which you can actually use hemp oil with your dog. Please keep in mind that this is a supplement, not a medication, but regardless of this fact you should always strive to ensure that your dog receives the appropriate serving size of hemp oil based on factors like weight, breed, and temperament. Your vet is the best source of information for these considerations!
Some potential ways to use hemp oil for dogs include:
- Integrating hemp oil as a dietary supplement is more common than you’d think! You can easily incorporate it into your dog's daily meals following the recommended serving guidelines provided by the manufacturer and veterinarian.
- Hemp oil can be applied topically in an attempt to address specific skin issues such as dryness, itchiness, or hot spots. Gently massaging the affected areas with hemp oil or using it as an ingredient in homemade skin balms or salves can provide relief.
- Given its potential calming properties, hemp oil can be used as a calming aid in stressful situations. Administering hemp oil to your dog before anxiety-inducing events like thunderstorms or vet visits can help them feel more at ease.
- Hemp oil provides numerous potential benefits for dogs, such as promoting relaxation, supporting joint health, nourishing the skin and coat, and enhancing overall well-being. By understanding the advantages and uses of hemp oil, you can make informed decisions regarding its incorporation into your dog's wellness routine. Always consult with your veterinarian before introducing any new supplements, ensuring the best care for your dog.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Hemp Oil for Dogs
Q1: What are the benefits of hemp oil for dogs?
A1: Hemp oil offers several potential benefits for dogs, including promoting relaxation, supporting joint health, nourishing their skin and coat, and enhancing your dog’s overall well-being.
Q2: How can hemp oil be used for dogs?
A2: Hemp oil can be used as a dietary supplement, applied topically for skin and coat issues, or used as a calming aid in stressful situations.
Q3: Is hemp oil safe for dogs?
A3: Yes, hemp oil is generally considered safe for dogs! That being said, it's always recommended to consult with your veterinarian before introducing any new supplements to your dog's diet.