Hemp For Horses - Yay Or Neigh?
Hemp. A misunderstood plant that’s bursting with health benefits for humans and pets alike.
And now, there’s growing interest in using hemp for horses to improve their joints, boost energy, aid digestion, support immunity and create a lusciously shiny coat.
So, are the rumours true?
Can horses eat hemp?
And what even is hemp?
Well, it’s time to saddle up, silence the hemp neighsayers and dive into the benefits and uses of hemp for horses…
What Is Hemp, Anyway?
The hemp plant is shrouded in myths and misunderstanding, so let’s start with a quick breakdown of what hemp actually is (hint: it doesn’t involve horses zenning out to Bob Marley).
When we talk about hemp, we’re talking about a non-psychoactive strain of cannabis.
Yes, hemp is closely related to marijuana (the plant that makes you high), but it’s wildly different in its effects.
That’s because marijuana contains a high concentration of the compound THC, whereas hemp contains less than 0.3% THC by dry weight – which is a minuscule amount and nowhere near enough to give you (or your horse) any psychoactive effects (and if that’s what you’re looking for, it’s time to rein it in).
So, perhaps it’s time to stop thinking of hemp as a rebellious plant, and instead think of it as a super-duper food for horses, dogs, cats and humans alike*.
The small but powerful heap seeds are packed with vitamins, minerals, good cholesterol, protein, fibre, antioxidants, all 20 amino acids and the ideal ratio of Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids. These work together to give your horse a wealth of health benefits.
*Side note: this article is touching on the health benefits of hemp seeds and hemp seed oil for horses, which is different from CBD oil or full spectrum hemp oil. To dive deeper into this topic check out our article on hemp oil vs hemp seed oil.
Benefits Of Hemp For Horses
Hemp has a growing and impressive list of benefits for horses.
Early research and anecdotal evidence show it can…
- Improve joint function and mobility
- Provide a source of energy and stamina
- Support immunity and overall well being
- Aid digestion and maintain gut health
- Promote respiratory health
- Reduce inflammation
- Ease pain associated with arthritis
- Promote a healthy, shiny coat
- Improve performance
- Reduce stress and anxiety
- Promote a calmer nature
How To Give Hemp To Your Horse
So now you know the hemp plant is incredibly nutritious. How do you actually reap the benefits of hemp for horses?
Well, there are a few ways to give hemp to your horse. And the method you choose will depend on the products you buy as well as the benefits you’re looking to achieve.
So, saddle up as we jump into the top 3 uses of hemp for horses…
Add It To Their Food
One of the best ways to let your horse reap the benefits of hemp is through their diet. Simply add a small amount of hemp seeds, hemp oil or hemp meal to their feed, and watch them chow down the goodness.
What’s more, hemp is suitable for horses of all ages, shapes, sizes and activity levels – from pleasure horses to show horses to serious athletes.
Apply It To Their Wounds Or Sore Spots
Hemp can also be applied directly to your horse’s wounds, sore spots or skin irritations (either in the form of an oil or balm). Since hemp is a natural anti-inflammatory, it works to relieve any external sore spots.
Hemp seed oil is also lick-safe (provided the hemp product you purchase isn’t mixed in with any unfavourable ingredients). Whinning!
Wash Their Skin And Coat
As a horse owner, you take great pride in your horse’s glistening coat.
But did you know that using a hemp-based shampoo can clean, replenish and moisturise their coat? The nutrients in hemp work to promote a natural shine, making it perfect for show horses, racehorses and dressage (and, well, any horse that wants to look fabulous).
Hemp For Your Horse - Yay Or Neigh?
By using hemp on your horse you can revitalise a dull coat, soothe sore spots, improve mobility and promote overall well being. What’s more, there are very few reported side effects of hemp (unlike its cousin plant) making it incredibly safe to use. How good is that?
At Hemp Collective, our hemp pet range includes…
If you have any questions about using hemp for horses, get in touch with Maxine on 0424 488 784.