It was one of those moments in life that I will always remember. There I was, exhibiting at my first trade show with my new line of dog treats. I was excited at the possibilities of my new business, one that I had given up a lot for, and spent a lot of money to get started. As executive after executive walked up to our booth and looked at our products, I was getting nervous. Here I was, making products for dogs because I wanted life to be better and more enjoyable for them. Somewhere in my mind I had expected that everyone in the pet industry felt the same. Or…at least they loved dogs. Otherwise, why would they be in the business? I was in for a very rude awakening.
As I tried to make conversation, I often asked these executives about their own pets at home. The most common response? That they did not have time for a pet. I soon got the hint halfway before day one’s end at this trade show. I was in the minority in this industry. I had dogs. I had pets that I considered family. And my family’s health for many years had rested on confidence in these executives who represented companies I thought cared. Sure, I knew that these same large companies had to make money. But the magnitude of what I was learning floored me. This truly was a business. This wasn’t just any business though. They had literal lives in their hands. And I wasn’t about to trust them any longer. Not with my boys’ health. No. Way.
But even beyond that realization, it occurred to me that others, even our fanbase on social media and readers of our blog, needed help to see this as well. I no longer make pet products, but I now find it to be my mission to tell others what we have learned from not only inside the industry, but outside as well, being dog parents.
So when a new segment of the pet industry began to emerge, CBD products for dogs and cats, we were interested. Interested in the benefits, but also interested on who we could trust that were making these products. Being unfamiliar with CBD, I did know one thing. I was ready to learn about it. Because I truly believe that products considered alternative by some standards in the industry are often the most basic and ones that work the best. Some don’t blink an eye when they read ingredients on a label they can’t pronounce, or see colorings or dyes added. So why do some of us close our minds to looking at the most basic and organic ways of helping our pets, like CBD? I had to learn more. Not just for our sake, but for yours as well. But first on my agenda in this research was who could I trust that offered CBD products? Did they have pets? Why did they start the company in the first place? Who and what was their motivation? That’s when we met the people at Pet Releaf.
I listened to their story and although I was more than impressed, it also mattered if their products were the best in the CBD segment. Because as I learned, many companies are using CBD in their products or product lines. Why does it matter who you purchase your CBD products from? As Pet Releaf’s website states, “here at Pet Releaf, we consider our pets equal members of our family. For that reason, we believe that the products they consume should also be of the highest possible quality.From the food that they eat to the medications or supplements you give them, you should feel confident.” We could not agree more. YOU deserve that. Your pets deserve that. When did this become lost in an industry that could have been so much better?
As we did the research, we learned what we should look for when purchasing CBD products.
Not all CBD hemp oil products are the same.
Pet Releaf’s website breaks it down for you as follows. What do you need to look for?
1. Source of Hemp and CBD
Pet Releaf products are made from hemp oil that is extracted from the largest USDA certified organic hemp farm in the country. Many alternative products being offered use Chinese (and sometimes Russian) hemp because it is far cheaper. The problem here is the Chinese and Russian hemp are NOT organic and are often grown in toxic soil in an attempt to “clean” the soil.
2. Method of Extraction
Pet Releaf uses ONLY super critical CO2 extraction to safely and completely bring the healthy and essential oils out of the plant. Almost all other CBD products on the market utilize toxic solvents to extract the oils – such as butane (yes, lighter fluid) or heavy alcohols. The problem with those methods is that the toxic solvents often remain present in the CBD oil. Another significant issue is that these toxic solvents destroy the health benefits of the hemp oils being extracted. Just think what butane or isopropyl alcohol does to sensitive living plant material. Would you ever drown your broccoli in lighter fluid and then serve it to your family after it supposedly evaporated??
3. Whole Hemp Plant or Hemp Seeds Only
Pet Releaf uses the whole hemp plant AND the hemp seeds to make their CBD products and CBD oil. Some companies only use hemp seeds (again much cheaper) in their products. Hemp seeds do NOT contain any CBD at all. Hemp seeds are an excellent source of protein and Omega 3, 6 and 9 but don’t hold the multitude of healthy cannabinoids found in the plant itself.
4. Suspension or Mixing Agents With CBD Hemp Oil
CBD hemp oil by itself is very concentrated and has a consistency similar to molasses so it must be mixed with something in order to be used as an oil. Pet Releaf CBD hemp oil is ONLY mixed with organic coconut oil to preserve the health benefits of the hemp oil. The majority of CBD oils on the market are mixed with ethanol or propylene glycol and often contain flavoring such as peppermint – all of which are potential health hazards for our pets. Those are much cheaper but actually significantly reduce and even destroy the living and active cannabinoids present in CBD hemp oil.
For pet parents considering CBD to help their pets, consider why we personally believe that Pet Releaf is the only company to purchase from. Simply put? You can go right to their website and read all of their testing reports. Their products are organic and made in the USA. Everything is transparent, you can ask them any questions with a personal response, and there is something else. We have used the products from Pet Releaf. We have witnessed the change in Brickle’s travel anxiety, Digby’s mobility and their overall mental health has improved.
I won’t tell you that I think this is cure all for every ailment or for every dog or cat. No, I won’t make promises to you like other companies. But what I will do is let you know you owe it to your pet to do the research. That’s where we should all start. No, I don’t want you to take my word for it. But I do want you to know that their products work for us. We trust them as a company. And that is saying it all. You know that our boys mean the world to us. They have inspired us to try and change the world for other animals. And we need them with us for a very long time. We will have Pet Releaf with us for the long haul.
I have often wondered since my first trade show if I should have even tried to enter this pet industry with alternative pet products. Because the truth is, they failed. I lost a lot of money, I was simply hurt, and I felt defeated. I still believe in what we tried to start with our cook for your dog mixes. But I know the industry does not believe in us. And maybe, just maybe, that is ok. Because sometimes, in supposed failure, you find another path to the same place. And if we can help other pet parents think for themselves and inspire you to go the extra mile for your pet, you will have many more miles to walk together. And with companies we find like Pet Releaf, it inspires us and shows us that there are still people that care and that actually have pets in their own families! And that says it all.
Although we received compensation for this post, all opinions and views are our own.