Coconut oil is generally good for dogs. Many holistic veterinarians recommend implementing a small amount of coconut oil to both your dog’s skin and diet. It has many health-boosting properties such as saturated fat and medium-chain triglycerides which help manage your dog’s weight and improve cognitive functions.
Benefits of Coconut Oil for Dog
• Fight off Viruses. Coconut oil has anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties and it also contains lauric acid that helps to fight off viruses.
• Alleviates cough and helps reduce hairballs. If you brush your dog’s coat with a little bit of coconut oil, it helps make brushing easier and smoother. The dog’s coat will also look glossy, shiny, and sleek. If your dog’s coat has a doggy odor, the neutralizing properties in coconut oil help to eliminate the odor.
• Metabolism and weight loss. Adding a bit of virgin coconut oil to your dog’s meal helps to balance out the thyroid and aid overweight dogs to lose weight or improve a sedentary dog’s energy. That’s because the coconut oil has medium-chain fatty acid or MCFA in which the oil gets directly absorbed into the GI tract and goes straight to the liver. Once in the liver, it metabolizes into energy and helps prevent physical issues.
• Heal Digestive Disorders. If your dog has digestive disorders, using a bit of coconut oil helps with digestion because the coconut oil contains Medium Chain Triglycerides or MCTs. MCTs also improves cognitive functions in older dogs.
• Improves skin conditions. Coconut oil has topical benefits that help hot spots, bites, stings, dry, and itchy skin. If your canine has any of these skin conditions, it is a good idea to also choose dog shampoos with coconut oil to help improve damaged skin.
To learn more about dog shampoos that help with dry itchy skin or dog shampoos that help combat fleas and ticks, visit Dog Leash Pro. If your dogs have dry paws, rubbing a bit of coconut oil onto their paws can help.
Coconut oil also has antimicrobial properties that will help prevent your dog from being infected by ticks, fleas, and mange mites. Because coconut oil has these antimicrobial properties, it can help to suppress bacterial growth which aids in healing bite wounds in dogs.
If you’re walking through the woods with your dog, apply a bit of coconut oil onto the dog’s skin. It is a great non-chemical way to repel fleas and ticks and prevent these pests from latching onto your dog’s skin.
How to Use Coconut Oil on Your Dog
If this is your dog’s first time taking the coconut oil orally, it’s a good idea to start with a small amount and gradually build up the dosage. This way, you can monitor how your dog reacts to it. If you have small dogs, start with ¼ teaspoon of coconut oil daily.
For larger dogs, you can give them 1 tablespoon or 15 mL daily. Check your dog’s reaction for about two weeks. After 2 weeks, if your dogs tolerate it well, you can increase the dose to 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds of body weight or 5 mL per 4.5 kg.
If you notice signs of digestion distress like diarrhea or allergic reactions, stop giving it to your dog immediately. Instead supplement their diet with salmon oil or flaxseed oil since these oils contain omega 3 fatty acids, which have the same benefits as coconut oil.
Try mixing the coconut oil with your dog’s regular meal once or twice a day. Mixing the coconut oil into your dog’s regular food will provide a nutrient rich diet and improve nutrient absorption. If your dog is overweight or has obesity, use it in their meal just once a day.
Coconut oil also reduces inflammation in the body. However, try not to give your dog a large dose of coconut oil or you’ll see greasy diarrhea or greasy poop and that is not good.
If you like to make your own dog treat, use coconut oil as a base. Try mixing the coconut oil with spices that also have health-boosting and anti-inflammatory properties such as turmeric. Not only will your dog enjoy the flavor, but also it will keep him free from illness.
Winter months are a good time to apply coconut oil onto your dog’s skin. Coconut oil is great at hydrating and increasing lipid levels on the skin’s surface so it keeps your canine’s skin moisturized and smooth.
To do so, rub a small amount onto your hands. Then, pat your dog’s coat. Run your fingers through the fur and massage it into the skin. Apply it just once a week. After applying the coconut oil, let it be absorbed into their skin for a few minutes. Wait for about five minutes before rinsing your dog.
Don’t be surprised if your dog starts to lick herself more frequently. Try not to apply too much coconut oil on the skin. You’ll notice excessively grease or oily skin when you’re rinsing your dog and that is not good either. If your dog’s skin is too greasy, try using a light shampoo to wash off the excessive grease. If you prefer, select a shampoo that is made with organic coconut oil.
How to Choose Coconut Oil for Your Dog
Unrefined coconut oil or virgin coconut oil is the best choice for your dog. If you can find cold-pressed coconut oil, that is even better. Cold-pressed oil is when the oil is processed quickly after the coconuts are harvested in order to preserve the nutrients.
Different methods of processing coconut oil will affect the way it smells and tastes. You’ll notice that some coconut oil tastes bold, other coconut oil tastes bland, some are smooth and buttery, while others are nutty. Try buying a few coconut oil options and letting your dog taste them. Based on your dog’s reaction, you’ll know which one your canine prefers.
Speak with your veterinarian to see how much coconut oil you can give to your dog. Remember coconut oil is a great supplement to your dog’s life, but be careful with the amount you give them, both orally and on their skin.