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can dogs eat coconut oil

Coconut oil has some impressive health benefits for human beings but can dogs eat coconut oil?

Yes, dogs can eat coconut oil, a wholesome oil that is extracted from the kernel of mature coconuts has so many benefits in store for your little pet that can help in maintaining a healthy and comfortable lifestyle, rich in fats and vitamins, helpful for digestion of your pup as well as provide healthy skin and shiny coat. 

 However, the thing that you need to keep in mind is that just like human beings are different from another, so are dogs. Although, coconut oil is considered to be non-toxic for most of the dogs, yet some dogs may be allergic to it. That is why, when you add coconut oil to your pet’s diet, observe your dog closely enough for the next 24 hours.

You can add coconut oil in homemade dog treats that you may use while training your dog and even many dog owners use this oil to deal with fleas and ticks

What Makes Coconut Oil a Superfood for Your Dog?

There is a reason why coconut oil is considered to be a superfood and essentially good for your little friend.

  • Good fats: Although most saturated fats are labelled as unhealthy fats but the saturated fats present in coconut oil are considered to be healthy and good fats. It is precisely because of the fact that the fats present in coconut oil are composed of medium chain triglycerides (MCT) which are immediately broken down by the body for use instead of storage. The good thing about the saturated fat is that, it breaks easily within the body. Neither it stores nor it creates any havoc.
  • Vitamin E: Coconut oil is rich in Vitamin E that not only saves human beings from various diseases but also provides your dog with enough strength to fight against life threatening diseases like hardening of arteries, high blood pressure, heart diseases or cancer. Let’s say that your dog feels low all the time. The regular consumption of vitamin E will make sure that it is high in spirits and rejuvenated.
  • Lauric and Caprylic acid: These two acids play a remarkable role in enhancing the immune system, digestive system, a shiny and healthy coat and much more. They are present in abundance in this superfood and contribute a lot in maintaining a healthy lifestyle for your dog. Once these acids are present in your dog’s body then it will keep having the shiny coat for years to come.

What are the Benefits of Coconut Oil for Dogs?

The good thing about coconut oil is that in most of the cases, it has proven to be a life savior for dogs. Whether applied topically or ingested, coconut oil has played the role of silver lining in the lives of most of the dogs.

  • Healthy skin and coat: The first and foremost benefit of coconut oil is a shiny and smooth skin and coat. From clearing up eczema to minimizing dog odor, from getting rid of skin allergies and conditions like dermatitis to creating sleek coats, from preventing yeast and fungal infections to moisturizing the dry skin, coconut oil harbors a large number of skin benefits.
  • Improves digestion: Another important benefit of coconut oil is its aiding in the proper functioning of your dog’s digestive system. It helps in increasing the nutrient absorption and improving the metabolic activity of your precious little friend. Also, it also helps with colitis and inflammatory bowel syndrome. If your dog has difficulty keeping up with stable digestion then coconut oil will be very beneficial in this regard.
  • Gets rid of bad breath: Coconut oil also acts as a mouthwash for your pet and helps in cleansing its mouth from the unwanted smell. The ingredients that are present in this oil will make sure that your dog’s mouth smells nice all the time.
  • Development of cognitive abilities: With each passing day, your dog’s brain ages. You do not want that for a dog and keep its cognitive abilities in proper shape. Coconut oil is highly beneficial in this regard and keeps your dog sane for a long period of time. For-aged dog’s coconut oil is exceptional.
  • Maintenance of weight: Coconut oil effectively aids in losing weight. Your dog obviously needs to have a balanced diet and exercise regularly in order to achieve the goal but coconut oil fastens the process. Also because coconut oil aids in digestion, so it will stay in good shape throughout.
  • Boosting the immune system: Lauric and Caprylic acids present in the coconut oil are excellent immune system boosters and fighters against certain bacterial and fungal infections. Adding coconut oil to your dog’s diet will most certainly strengthen its immune system.
  • Treats diabetes: Another amazing benefit of this superfood is that it regulates and balances the insulin in the body. Dogs who suffer from diabetes find coconut oil quite helpful in this matter. There have been situations when the simple consumption of coconut oil has aided the dogs all over the world to get rid of diabetes.

How Much Coconut Oil is Considered Safe for dogs?

Just like in most of the cases related to diet and nutrition of dogs, moderation is the key. Too much of something, even if it’s a super food like coconut oil, will make your dog vulnerable to a number of health issues. In order to keep everything in order, you have to follow certain steps.

  • Feed in small amounts: In the beginning, start by feeding your little pup or dog with small amount of coconut oil. If it is allergic to this oil, you will see the reaction within the first 24 hours. If not, then it is good to go. For small pups, ¼ teaspoon per day is enough. For large dogs, 1 teaspoon is enough.
  • After they adjust to this new addition in their diet: When your dog has adjusted itself to the coconut oil and no allergic reaction has taken place, then you can give it the optimal dose of coconut oil that is generally acceptable. 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds is the adequate amount or 1 tablespoon per 30 pounds.

What kind of Coconut Oil is Good for Dogs?

When it comes to the kind of coconut oil that will make your dog’s life a heaven on this earth, unrefined, virgin organic coconut oil is the best choice. It is because refined coconut oil goes through very little processing and is extracted from fresh coconuts. On the other hand, refined coconut oil is not extracted from fresh coconuts and also goes through a long procedure of processing.

Possible Disadvantages

Although coconut oil comes with a long list of benefits for your dog, yet nothing in this world is 100% perfect and same is the case with this superfood. There are some problems that even coconut oil can cause when ingested by your furry friend. It usually happens in two circumstances:

  1. When you start feeding your dog coconut oil from the very beginning in large amounts.
  2. When you exceed the optimal limit and do not follow the rule of moderation.

Following are some of the disadvantages that coconut oil has in store for your pet when given in abundance.

  • High cholesterol: When fed in abundance, coconut oil can increase the cholesterol levels of your dog and can cause fatty plaques to set their roots in the arteries. High level of cholesterol is not good for your dog because it can impact the heart.
  • Weight gain: Too much coconut oil can lead to weight gain which can further cause issues related to obesity. Make sure you are always giving coconut oil to a dog in moderation, so it doesn’t get into obesity or heart diseases.
  • Diarrhea: Your dog’s stomach may not be able to accept too much oil which will eventually disturb the proper working of its digestion. This may lead to vomiting and loose motions.
  • Reduce sense detecting abilities: Other than the above mentioned disadvantages, too much saturated fat can destroy the sense detecting abilities of your little pet. As coconut oil is rich in saturated fats, you must be careful.

What to Do if Your Dog has Eaten Excess of Coconut Oil?

In the worst case scenario, your dog will suffer from diarrhea if it accidentally ingests too much coconut oil. It is because its body is not used to accepting too much of oil. The best thing that you can do in this situation is feed your dog with a lot of water as diarrhea may cause dehydration. If your dog does not get better within the first 24 hours, then take him to the vet.

What are the possible symptoms to know that dog has consumed coconut oil in abundance?

Your dog is like to steal a pinch of coconut oil if you are not looking. Vomiting and diarrhoea are the two symptoms for you to know that your dog has consumed coconut oil in abundance.

Hydration is the key in this regard. And in worst cases you can always take it to the vet.

Conclusion

Coconut oil has lots of benefits and acts as a good food supplement for your dog’s daily intake. However, you must not exceed the optimal dosage and stay within the boundaries of moderation. If you keep it this way, your dog will be able to live a happy and healthy life.

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