If your dog has skin allergies, you may notice redness, dandruff, itching, and licking at his skin. If he keeps scratching and licking, he’s likely to irritate his skin even further. Some parents of pooches with skin allergies recommend using coconut oil to give him some relief.
Coconut oil has been gaining in popularity as a hair and skin care product for people over the last number of years. But it isn’t just a beauty product. It’s also used for cooking and as a biofuel.
It’s made from the flesh of the coconut, and there are a few different methods of extraction. This is why there are a few different types of coconut oil, including unrefined, and refined coconut oil. It has a high melting point (76 degrees Fahrenheit), so when it’s at room temperature, it’s a solid rather than liquid oil.
The very short answer is yes, it’s perfectly safe for dogs to have coconut oil.
The longer answer is that it actually has a number of benefits that can help your dog. Many veterinarians are now recommending coconut oil for dogs with low energy, skin issues, problems with their fur, and digestion ailments. There’s also some research that suggests it may improve cognitive function, which means that it could be extremely helpful for senior dogs as well.
Coconut oil is made up of fatty acids, and most of the acids are Medium-Chain Triglycerides or MCTs. MCTs are sometimes known as miracle fatty acids because they’re different from most fatty acids because they are turned into energy almost immediately.
One of the most important acids in the MCTs in coconut oil is Lauric Acid. Lauric acid is also present in mother’s milk. It’s extremely high in nutrients and anti-bacterial properties. It’s one of the factors in building a strong immune system.
There are two ways to give your dog coconut oil - as a food, or as a topical treatment.
Topical treatment is one that you apply externally to the skin. Coconut oil can be applied directly on the skin irritation, or reaction. It can be applied as-is, or you can mix it with other oils and powders to make remedies.
As well as the many health benefits coconut oil gives, one of the other reasons why owners like it is because it is edible. It can be applied to the skin, and it won’t have any adverse effects if your dog licks himself.
Coconut oil is safe for dogs to eat. In fact, it can be used as a teeth cleaner and many people use it to encourage their dogs to take tablets and pills as it makes it easier to swallow. Having said that, every dog is different, so before you add anything to your dog’s food, check with your veterinarian.
It can be mixed in with your pooch’s food once a day. You should also start with a small dose of around 1/4 teaspoon once a day, and increase it slowly to a full teaspoon for small dogs. You can increase it to a tablespoon for large breed dogs. Keep an eye on your dog and monitor how he’s reacting to the new addition to his food.
Some owners prefer to make their own dog treats using coconut oil as a base ingredient, instead of mixing it with their food. Others simply freeze the coconut oil with some dog-safe fruit and give it as a refreshing snack during warm weather.
As coconut oil has a high saturated fat content, you will need to keep a close eye on Fido’s weight.
The simplest way to apply coconut oil is to massage it into the area. You can rub it in your hands to soften it, and then massage it into the skin. Some owners prefer to leave it on for ten to fifteen minutes, and lightly rinse it off. If there’s still oil on the hair, you can shampoo your dog using a gentle shampoo to get the excess oil off. Other owners leave the oil on without rinsing. Some owners also use coconut oil as a skin barrier against fleas, ticks, and other insect pests.
Coconut oil is not a fast-drying oil, so if you are going to leave it on, you should blot the excess off with a towel. This will make sure it doesn’t end up on your furniture, clothes or bed.
Coconut oil helps treat skin conditions like allergic reactions, eczema, dermatitis, and irritations. However, it will also improve skin health in general. As it also has antiviral, and antibacterial properties, it can help to disinfect any cuts and scratches on your dog’s skin and promote healing.
If it’s applied topically, it can ease skin irritations, and soothe cracked paws. It is also useful in treating and preventing fungal infections, and yeast infections, such as candida.
As coconut oil is full of vitamins, it can also increase the health and shine of your dog’s coat. It can be given as a supplement or added to your dog’s regular shampoo. The Lauric acid also has properties that allow it to penetrate the strands of hair more easily, and this allows the other nutrients to get into the hair as well.
It also moisturizes the skin, which can reduce dry skin and dandruff. This can also help reduce the ‘dog smell’, which can be unpleasant.
Coconut oil can give a number of endocrinological and metabolic benefits as well. It can help to keep your dog’s insulin levels balanced, which can help prevent diabetes, or control it if your dog is diabetic. It can also help to promote normal thyroid function.
Coconut oil has anti-inflammatory properties and can help in building strong bones and muscles. These anti-inflammatory properties can be very beneficial in easing the discomfort caused by arthritis, joint pains, and other musculoskeletal conditions.
As already mentioned, coconut oil can reduce the dog smell by treating the skin conditions that can increase the smells. However, it can also be used to treat bad breath. Some dog parents give their pets a little coconut oil to freshen their breath and clean their teeth.
Stinging and biting insects often have no preference for where their victims come from. Some will bite or sting humans, and canines without any distinction between them. The anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, and soothing properties of coconut oil can help ease the pain and discomfort.
Coconut oil is available right here on SitStay.com!
Our recommended brand is Natural Doggies 100% all-natural cold-pressed coconut oil for dogs. This coconut oil is used by every dog in the office and we stand behind its quality.
The answer is simple. Yes. As well as helping to treat, ease and prevent your dog’s skin allergies, coconut oil has many other benefits. It’s a miracle superfood, and there are so many reasons why your dog should be trying coconut oil.
An award-winning writer for SitStay with a passion for pets and especially dogs! Grant loves writing about furry little goofballs and aims to educate pet parents about anything and everything regarding their dogs.