If you’ve taken your leashed pup on a stroll through a pet store recently, you’ll notice that the treat and supplement aisles prominently display a lot of hemp or cannabis products. While hemp and cannabis derivatives are undoubtedly trendy at the moment, their trendy status isn’t a result of happenstance.
A lot of people use and love hemp products, going so far as to incorporate them into their daily wellness routines. Devoted pet owners want their animals to experience the same benefits, and hemp or CBD-infused chews and treats seem to offer the same benefits to pups as they do to humans.
Not all hemp-infused dog treats are created equal. Some of them may not even contain any CBD. Reading the label and understanding what certain ingredients can or cannot do will help you choose the best wellness treat for your dog.
Are Hemp Chews Good for Dogs?
Whether or not a hemp chew is good (or safe) for dogs largely depends on the ingredients of the chew. Hemp chews that don’t contain CBD may not offer many benefits if they offer any benefits at all. CBD-infused hemp chews will provide benefits depending on the dosage.
What Can CBD Do for Dogs?
CBD can be used as a wellness supplement for your dog. Most dog owners lean on CBD at times when their dogs are feeling restless. Environmental factors like loud noises from thunderstorms or festive fireworks are a lot less tolerable to a pup than they are to a person. A human can rationalize where those noises are coming from, and a dog has no idea.
CBD provides soothing and relaxing benefits to dogs who may be nervous or distressed due to circumstances that owners cannot control. CBD is a safe and natural pacifier that works to comfort a tense dog, in conjunction with lots of love and support from the caring humans in his life.
Another popular use of CBD supplements is to improve mobility and support joint health in older dogs. Older dogs still have fire in their bellies. They want to go for walks, smell flowers, and play with their pup friends. Discomfort can keep them on the couch when they’d rather be outside exploring the world. CBD can provide support to dogs who need a little extra help moving about.
Picking the Best CBD for Pets: Read the Packaging Carefully
CBD is treated as a supplement, and supplements are only regulated as food products.
Hemp is treated as a food product, and pet food is highly regulated.
What does this all mean? It means that CBD isn’t quite regulated like your dog’s antibiotic medication, so it’s up to you to be a little more vigilant when you’re shopping for which CBD you’re going to order for Fido.
Be mindful of what the ingredients and claims on the package are — you want to see ingredients you can actually recognize and understand, like hemp extract and MCT oil. Look for labeling that talks about third party lab testing, which can help ensure purity and quality, as well as designations that the CBD was formulated especially for pets.
Check the Ingredients
Not all hemp chews contain CBD, which is what most pet owners are looking for when they’re purchasing hemp chews for their pets. They may be made with hemp seed oil, which does not contain any cannabinoids naturally.
Hemp treats without CBD aren’t entirely useless, but their benefits to your dog are limited. Hemp is very high in fatty acids that can keep your dog’s coat smooth and shiny. Outside of that, your dog won’t experience noticeable benefits.
With CBD-infused hemp chews, you should check the ingredients to make sure the treats aren’t high in sugars from added sources or plant sources. If you’re going to be giving your dog these treats on a regular basis, you need to make sure that they can easily be incorporated as a part of a healthy diet.
Look for the amount of CBD per chew listed on the back of the package. This will help you determine how many treats are an appropriate dose for your dog. If it’s more than two treats for a daily dose, you may be better off using a CBD extract (i.e. CBD in an oil form) instead of pre-prepared hemp chews.
Considering the Claims
Hemp dog chews that contain CBD can help your dog relax. They can also support gastrointestinal health, nervous system health, joint health, and overall mobility. That’s the extent of what they’re officially recognized to do in pets. Be wary of hemp chews that make medical or curative claims beyond this.
Many hemp dog treats make some outlandish claims. They might claim that they can help to cure or treat cancer in dogs, and there is absolutely zero evidence that this is true. Although many people and animals with cancer may include hemp-derived CBD in their wellness routines, the sole benefit of using CBD is to promote relaxation and soothe the mind and body during a tough time. There is absolutely no benefit to using CBD as a substitution for traditional treatment.
Some hemp treats claim to be antiparasitic or in some way imply that they help to treat intestinal worms. This is a claim that should be taken with a grain of salt. In the distant past, cannabis-derived compounds have been used as a holistic treatment for intestinal worms, but its effectiveness was never substantial enough to justify that claim. If you believe your dog may have worms, they need to go to the vet.
The Best Way To Give Your Dog Hemp
If you’re looking to use hemp-derived CBD as a wellness supplement for your dog, making your own hemp treats will yield the best results. You can hand-select high-quality hemp and control the dosage, as well as the ingredients in the final snack.
VETCBD Hemp’s organic American-grown hemp-derived CBD is formulated for your pets and is third-party lab tested to assure its quality and purity. The best way to give your dog CBD is to use our safe plastic syringe to administer the appropriate dose.
Many people call their dogs their fur babies because dogs and children have a lot in common. Both are quick to run and hide when something that looks like medicine is headed their way, but will promptly return at the promise of a treat. If you’re looking for chews because your dog won’t cooperate with the syringe, you can make your own hemp treats very easily.
Mix a cup of cooked quinoa with two mashed bananas and half a cup of unsweetened, unsalted peanut butter — be sure to double check that xylitol, a common artificial sweetener, is not on the ingredients list of the peanut butter. Roll the mixture into balls and place them in a refrigerator-safe container. When it comes time to give your dog their CBD, use the syringe to inject the dose into the center of the peanut butter banana quinoa ball.
Fun fact: if you don’t like the taste of your own CBD tincture, you can use yours the same way. The yummy fruits, legumes, and grains cover up the taste while providing you with a perfectly balanced little treat — you may want to sweeten yours, though!
The end result is a treat that’s completely safe for your dog. They’ll love eating it, and they’ll get their daily dose of CBD without you having to follow them around and coaxing out from under the bed when they see a bottle that looks like medicine.
You win, your dog wins, and everyone is happy.