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You might be well aware of the incredible benefits of coconut oil for humans, but do you know coconut oil is equally beneficial for dogs?
Coconut oil is considered a “superfood” that has several positive effects not only on humans’ health but also for our dogs. Superfoods come loaded with several essential nutrients good for our overall health and well-being.
Coconut oil has a unique combination of fatty acids and healthy saturated fats, which are valuable for boosting fat loss, heart health, and brain function. It can be a great addition to your pet’s life; you can give it to your dog in small safe quantities easily!
Coconut oil can be added to dog food as a supplement, or it can be applied to the skin as well, and you will be amazed at the results.
So, let’s find out how you can use this wonderful supplement to take care of the health of your fur buddy and in what quantity should you use it.
In What Quantity Coconut Oil Can Be Added to a Dog’s Diet Safely
Generally, coconut oil is safe if added to your dog’s diet, but it is highly recommended that you introduce it gradually into their diet. If you start giving them coconut oil very often and that too in large quantities, it may upset your pet’s stomach, resulting in stomach discomfort, lethargy, or diarrhea, which is something you would never want.
Therefore, it is best to start giving coconut oil in small quantities, gradually increasing the dose to reach the optimum level. Please note that you should check for signs of an allergic reaction whenever you introduce something new to your dog’s diet.
It has been suggested by experts to give coconut oil once or twice daily to your dog. According to PetMed, the safe dose of coconut oil to start with for small dogs is ¼ teaspoon daily which can be slowly increased up to 1 teaspoon, and for big dogs, you can go up to 1 tablespoon daily. However, if you have an overweight dog, you should not give coconut oil more than once daily as it has high-fat content and may cause further weight gain.
What Makes Coconut Oil Good for Dogs?
Coconut oil is made by extracting oil from mature coconuts. It is high in fatty acids, saturated fats such as medium-chain triglycerides, all of which are considered beneficial for health.
Medium-chain triglycerides being healthy fats, are particularly useful for the immune system, digestive system, skin, and even cognitive functions.
Good fats are not only easy to digest, but at the same time, they are used by the body efficiently to convert them into a good source of fuel and energy for the body.
Coconut oil also contains another good fat known as lauric acid, which benefits the immune system and has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti viral properties.
The Best Coconut Oil for Dogs
Virgin or unrefined coconut oil is best for your dog, especially cold-pressed oil, which is made with the help of the method that extracts oil quickly from harvested coconuts to preserve their nutrients.
Apart from the type of oil, its smell and taste are also play an important role, especially if you are using it as a food supplement.
Some oils have a strong coconut smell and taste, while some are completely tasteless. Some oils have a buttery texture, while others have a nutty feel.
To find out what suits your dog most, you can do a little bit of experimenting.
Our personal favorite is Nutiva brand, available on Amazon. It has a great flavor that we all enjoy, and since the coconut taste and smell is more mild, I can use it in our cooking and baking. Roxy & Rico happily eat it up!
What are the Benefits of Coconut Oil for Dogs
Coconut oil has a long list of advantages for dogs, some of which are discussed below:
Helps Fight Weight Gain
One of the most common health issues faced by dogs is obesity which has many adverse effects on the health of your dog. The excessive weight of a dog puts stress on its body and leads to other problems such as:
· High blood pressure
· Osteoarthritis or joint problems
· Diabetes or insulin resistance
· Difficulty breathing
· Liver dysfunction
Coconut oil has medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), which help with weight gain and help in reducing the fat deposits within the dog’s body. MCFAs can be very easily digested by the dog and give an immediate boost of energy required to enhance their athletic performance. Stamina also increases with the increase in an energy boost.
Comes With Anti Bacterial, Anti Fungal, and Anti Viral Properties
Coconut oil is loaded with natural anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. It makes it a natural antibiotic and the perfect substitute for chemical-based ointments or products available in the market.
So, if your dog has cuts and wounds, then coconut oil will help heal the wounds quickly. Apart from antibacterial properties, it is a soothing agent for cracked noses and paw pads. We used it often in the freezing Alaskan winters!
Some dogs have a habit of scratching their ears and chewing paws because of their allergies, a habit that results in cracked pads and soreness. Coconut oil can help you with this problem, too, and will soothe and heal the sores. And since it is edible, you don’t need to worry if your dog licks it off.
It’s Great for the Skin and Coat of Dogs
Coconut oil has been found to hydrate the skin, increasing skin surface lipid levels. Applying it on the skin of your dog will work as a moisturizer. You can safely apply a small amount of coconut oil daily on your dog’s skin, especially if they have dry skin or have dandruff.
Coconut oil is a good moisturizer, but it also helps the dog get rid of irritating itch caused by dryness. Additionally, applying coconut oil regularly will make the dog’s coat sleek and glossy and help fight stinky dog smells.
Coconut Oil Improves Brain Function
Dog’s brain requires extra stimulation as it grows older, and that simulation can help him stay young. If you have added this superfood to your dog’s daily diet, it can help improve the cognitive function in older dogs and offer extra energy in ketones. Ketones not only promote good nerve and brain function but also prevent dementia.
Coconut Oil Improves Gut Health
Most dogs are prone to allergies causing the growth of yeast in their gut. Research shows that, among many other oils, coconut oil has the maximum impact on stopping the development of yeast in the gut of dogs with allergies.
Apart from prohibiting the growth of yeast in the gut, it helps the gut in other ways too, such as:
· Improves digestion and helps in better absorption of nutrients.
· Helps reduce inflammation.
· Helps in healing some common stomach disorders such as inflammatory bowel syndrome and colitis.
Cleans Dog’s Teeth
Are you looking for natural toothpaste for your dog?. Then this superfood is what you need. Coconut oil has tremendous antimicrobial properties, which makes it a perfect and natural tooth cleaner.
With the help of this natural toothpaste, you can kill the harmful bacteria living in your dog’s mouth. It can also be instrumental in preventing plaque formation and avoid dental problems.
Above all, it has a good taste that all dogs like, which makes your job of cleaning teeth quite easy. All you need to do is to open the mouth of your lovely pet and brush this oil on his teeth.
Looking for more ways to take care of your dog’s teeth? Here’s our guide on dental care for dogs!
Repels Fleas and Ticks
This property of coconut oil is very less known to pet owners. However, this oil can help repel insects like fleas and ticks with the added advantage of being completely non-toxic.
Just rub a small amount of oil into your dog’s coat, and the ticks and fleas to ward off fleas and ticks. Additionally, the smell of coconut oil is delightful, so that you can use it often. If you live in a tick-prone area, though, definitely look into additional ways to protect your dog from ticks.
It has also been shown to help eliminate mites that are responsible for causing mange naturally.
Is Coconut Oil Safe For Dogs?
Coconut oil is completely safe for your dog, and if it is consumed in large doses, it won’t cause serious problems. Moreover, it is very less likely that it will oxidize and become rancid instead of other fats.
If you want to cure your dog’s cough with a 100% natural supplement, you can feed them coconut oil to help soothe their throat and reduce coughing.
We suggest all pet owners add coconut oil to their pet’s diet regularly to get the most benefits, including mental and physical advantages. Your dog will also be more than happy to have this new addition to his diet.
However, do not forget to introduce this superfood slowly and experiment with different tastes and smells to see what your dog likes the most!