Feeding your dog a fresh, wholesome, and balanced diet is always a top priority to the raw-feeding community. Even if you don’t currently feed a raw-dog-food diet or home-cooked dog food, you might be looking for foods and treats to boost your dog’s overall health.
Hemp Seeds for Dogs
Adding fresh, organic raw seeds and nuts to your dog’s diet is a nice way to add some needed nutrients. I’ve already talked about chia seeds for dogs and how pumpkin seeds are good for dogs, so let’s talk about hemp for dogs.
Let me ease your mind before you start to worry that you are going to feed your dog something that will get him high. The hemp plant, i.e. Cannabis sativa does not contain enough THC to cause any drug-like effect. To legally sell hemp, any THC needs to be below .3%, which is so small that you or your dog would not get high.
Hemp Boosts a Dog’s Immune System
Hemp seed hearts (hulled hemp) are packed full of nutrition. Hemp seeds provide essential fatty acids: gamma linolenic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3). High-quality fatty acids are great for boosting a dog’s immune system. Hemp seeds for dogs also provide protein, manganese, magnesium, vitamin E, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, iron, and zinc. As a matter of fact, around 25% of their calories are from high-quality protein.
Hemp is Heart-Healthy
It’s always a good idea to support your dog’s heart and other vital organs. If your beloved pet is suffering from heart disease, or the breed is prone to heart issues, heart-healthy foods and supplements are a must. Hemp seeds contain large amounts of the amino acid arginine, which produces nitric oxide in your body. Nitric oxide makes the blood vessels dilate and relax, helping to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease. Learn more.
Whole Hemp Seeds Help with Digestion and Gut Health
It’s all about the poop in my house! When did Dexter poop? What did it look like? You get the idea. Fiber plays a key role in a good poop and digestive health. Whole hemp seeds (not the hearts or hulled) provide both soluble and insoluble fiber. This could be really helpful if your dog is prone to poop issues or full anal glands.
How to Feed Your Dog Hemp Seeds or Hemp Seed Oil
First, I want to make it clear that I’m a firm believer in rotation. I rotate what I put in Dexter’s DIY raw dog food blends, what supplements he gets, what nuts, seeds, oils… You name it, it’s probably rotated into his diet at one point. This is true for feeding him either hemp seed hearts, whole hemp seeds, or hemp seed oil. I don’t feed any of these every day. Truly. So, if hemp seed sounds like a great addition to your dog’s diet, do add it, but don’t add it every day. I probably give Dexter a form of hemp once a week.
Here are some general guidelines. As always, I highly recommend speaking to your dog’s holistic veterinarian prior to changing his diet or adding supplements. This is especially true if he is on any medications or has any medical conditions.
Hemp Dose for Dogs.
Add hemp seeds, hemp oil, and other oils to your dog’s food at mealtime. Start at ½ dose to see how your dog tolerates the hemp seed oil. ¼ dose if he gets a sensitive stomach easily. If you are feeding the hemp hearts or whole hemp seeds, I would grind it prior to feeding for better digestion. Hemp seed oil needs to be refrigerated.
- Under 20 lbs. ¼ tsp
- Under 40 lbs. ½ tsp
- Over 50 lbs. 1 tsp
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