Coconut oil isn’t just good for human skin, hair and digestive system. The `miracle oil’ apparently has many beneficial properties that can help your dog too.
A lot of pet-owners are using pure, organic, food-grade coconut oil as part of their dog’s diet and many vets have concurred that the oil can improve skin, digestive and immune systems, metabolic function, and even bone and brain health in canines.
If you are thinking about giving coconut oil to your dog, it is a good idea to check in with your vet, who is familiar with your dog’s health and medical history, and get an opinion first. It is also wise to introduce coconut oil incrementally, and see how your dog responds to trace amounts in his/her food first.
That said, if you’re not entirely sure about jumping off the deep end with coconut oil, you can still use it topically to treat a number of your dog’s health-related issues.
Here are 6 ways that coconut oil can benefit your pet:
• Coconut oil helps soothe itchy ears and reduce impact of ear mites and other ear-related infections. If your pet is scratching his/her ears chronically, and the insides of the ear look sore and gunky, coconut oil is a first-aid treatment that brings relief to your dog before you can get to a vet. Do not pour coconut oil down into the ear though, and don’t use earbuds. Soak a cotton ball with the oil instead and gently wipe the inner folds of the ear at least once or twice a day.
• If your dog is tearing excessively or showing symptoms of reddened, itchy eyes, use coconut oil to swab the area. The oil will soothe, and reduce discomfort and inflammation.
• Coconut oil can help clear up eczema, flea allergies, contact dermatitis and itchy skin. It prevents and treats yeast and fungal infections, including candida, and can be used to heal minor cuts, hot spots, flea bites and stings. If your dog has a dry nose with signs of peeling skin, apply coconut oil twice or thrice daily.
Add some to the dog’s bathwater for a sleek, shiny coat. For long-haired dogs, coconut oil can be used as a detangler-cum-hair tonic as well.
• Including coconut oil in your dog’s diet can help to build bone strength. It also eases discomfort due to arthritis and other joint issues.
#5: DIGESTIVE SYSTEM
• Coconut oil makes nutrient absorption more efficient in dogs, kills parasites and aids in healing digestive disorders like IBS and colitis. Adding coconut oil to your dog’s diet can reduce bad breath and doggie body odor as well.
Some dogs can get excessive loose motions when coconut oil is added to their food. For this reason, it is a good idea to introduce the oil gradually and watch your pet’s bowel movements before you attempt a larger dose.
What is the correct dosage?
The recommended dose is 1 teaspoon of coconut oil per 10 lbs of dog. Or 1 tablespoon per 30 lbs. Start with about 1/4 of the recommended dosage and build up to the maximum amount over 3-4 weeks to give your dog time to adjust, and also to see that he/she is responding well to ingesting the oil.
• Coconut oil promotes good nerve and brain function and prevents dementia.
IS COCONUT OIL SAFE FOR DOGS?
• Research suggests that coconut oil is extremely safe for all kinds of animals, from dogs and cats to birds, rabbits, guinea pigs, cows and horses. Caution: if your dog has a health condition, please check in with your vet before adding coconut oil to your dog’s lifestyle. Always good to err on the side of safety.