Extra virgin coconut oil seems to be all the rage in foodie circles and healthy cookbooks. So, I did a little homework and researched the benefits of coconut oil for dogs. It didn’t take much to convince me to add it to our pet’s dog food and diet.
The Benefits of Coconut Oil for Dogs
Coconut oil aids digestion. If you have a dog with a sensitive tummy, a natural probiotic combined with coconut oil may help by soothing your dog’s digestive system while increasing nutrient absorption.
Coconut oil provides an energy boost and helps dogs lose weight. Extra weight compromises a dog’s health, while increasing joint pain and making movement difficult. Coconut oil promotes a healthy metabolism, while increasing a dog’s energy and promoting healthy joints.
Coconut oil improves a dog’s breath. If brushing your dog’s teeth isn’t your favorite task, try brushing their teeth with coconut oil. It will improve their breath and the teeth brushing experience, because dogs love the taste of coconut oil.
Coconut oil is excellent for a dog’s skin and coat health. Not only does coconut oil offer relief to dry, itchy skin, it improves the look and feel of a dog’s coat when fed regularly. You can also apply coconut oil topically, improving the look, feel and smell of your dog’s coat. It can also help sooth dry paws.
Coconut oil is naturally antibacterial. Winter is just around the corner and with it comes dry, cracked paws. Rub coconut oil on your dog’s paws thoroughly (because they will lick the yummy taste) before your dog turns in for the night and you’ll be amazed by their improved condition. Coconut oil can also be applied to minor cuts and sores to promote fast healing.
How Much Coconut Oil Should You Give a Dog?
Dr. Karen Becker recommends 1/4 teaspoon per every 10 pounds of body weight. Every dog is different and it’s appropriate to adjust the amount for what works best for your dog. Keep in mind that too much of a yummy thing isn’t good for humans or dogs, so it’s best to be conservative when adding coconut oil to your dog’s diet.
Applied topically or ingested, extra virgin coconut oil has many health benefits for dogs and your pups will love the taste. And if you’re looking to take a break from the fishy smell of salmon and Pollock oil, consider adding coconut oil to your dog’s rotation.
Image: joannawnuk via Shutterstock
Kimberly Gauthier writes about raw feeding for Keep the Tail Wagging while raising four gorgeous dogs in the Pacific Northwest.