Hemp seeds and hemp seed oil contain highly bioavailable compounds for our dogs. They offer a precise 3:1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids. They'll add a boost of linoleic acid to your dog's meal for a shinier, smoother coat and nourished skin.
Hemp is also high in iron, magnesium, calcium, and zinc, all of which help to strengthen the immune system. It’s no wonder why canine professionals are recommending this be added to our dog’s diet.
Are hemp seeds good for dogs?
Yes! In addition to healthier skin and coat, hemp seeds can offer several other health benefits including:
1. Joint Health
The correct ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 in a dog's diet has been linked to a reduction in joint inflammation. While too much gamma linolenic acid in omega-6 might induce inflammation, the right amount (as in hemp) can help joints. As a result, arthritis and obesity symptoms may be reduced.
2. Heart Health
Dogs, like people, are susceptible to heart disease. As a result, it's critical to take the necessary precautions to ensure your dog's health. For a range of reasons, incorporating hemp into your dog's diet can have a significant impact on heart health.
Hemp has a lot of arginine, an amino acid that helps the body produce nitric oxide, which helps to widen and relax blood vessels. Blood pressure can be lowered and the risk of heart disease reduced by consuming a healthy amount of nitric oxide.
Increased arginine consumption has also been associated to lower levels of C-reactive protein, an inflammatory marker linked to heart disease. Animal studies have shown that hemp seeds or hemp seed oil may lower blood pressure, reduce the likelihood of blood clot formation, and aid cardiac recovery after a heart attack.
3. Immune Boost
Hemp seeds are high in zinc, magnesium, iron, and calcium, among other minerals. It's an antioxidant superfood that gives your dog all of these nutrients to boost their immune system.
Hemp seeds also have a high amount of fiber, which helps to maintain a healthy digestive system. And, as we know, over 70% of the immune system is in the gut, so a healthy digestive tract is critical.
Because of the mix of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in hemp seed oil, it may have anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is a normal part of the body's response to injuries, infections, allergies, and other diseases, and your dog should experience some of it.
However, inflammation can quickly spiral out of control, necessitating the use of vital fatty acids. Omega-6 may contribute to inflammation, whereas omega-3 has the opposite effect. Hemp seed oil may assist control this equilibrium, which is necessary for a normal and balanced inflammatory response. Giving hemp seeds to your dog can assist support their inflammatory response pathways, relieve joint stiffness, and keep them active.
How to administer hemp seeds to dogs
At mealtime, add hemp seeds, hemp oil, and other oils to your dog's food. To test how your dog reacts to the hemp seed oil, start with a 1/2 dose. If he has a sensitive stomach, he should take a 1/4-dose.
If you're feeding whole hemp seeds or hemp hearts to dogs, you should grind them beforehand to aid digestion being certain to serve immediately to preserve the active compounds. And, don't forget to keep everything refrigerated.
For dogs, a standard serving of hemp oil is 1 mL per ten pounds of weight. The serving size of these hemp products will be determined by age, weight, and possibly even breed, just like any other supplement you give your dog.
Choosing the right product
Look for a hemp seed oil product that has 100 percent pure hemp seed oil, whether you're using a tincture, powder, or soft chew. For additional benefits, such as those which provide relief for painful joints, look for a product that contains other natural compounds like glucosamine or turmeric (curcumin).
Avoid hemp seed oil with artificial colors and flavors, preservatives, GMOS (genetically modified substances), refined sugar, or high salt levels.
Discuss with your veterinarian
If your dog is already taking medication for a medical problem, don't add a supplement (or stop administering the medicine) until you have had the opportunity to discuss the option with your veterinarian. You may also want to consider discussing your options with a holistic veterinarian who is more well-versed in natural remedies.
Once the supplement has been approved, observe your dog closely. Although side effects are rare, just as with any food or medicine, they are possible. Stop providing the supplement if you notice any signs of allergic reaction or unusual side effects and return to your veterinarian to discuss.
The bottom line
You want the best for your beloved dog as a pet parent, and hemp seed oil can help both small and large dogs. Providing a good amount of hemp seed oil for your dog could be extremely beneficial, whether you're looking to reduce inflammation, promote healthy skin and coat, or encourage healthy joints.