Coconut oil: beneficial for babies and dogs
Over the past decade, coconut oil has gained popularity in the mainstream market as a health supplement. Abundant in MCTs and lauric acid, coconut oil is a versatile remedy that can be used for several issues ranging from skincare to cognitive health. Although humans have been using coconut oil for health for quite a while, it recently became a new trend in holistic pet medicine to use coconut oil to improve your dog's health.
What Makes Coconut Oil Healthy?
Coconut oil is mostly composed of medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) and lauric acid. Both of these essential "healthy fats" are what gives coconut oil its healing properties. MCTs help to boost energy, aid digestion and promote healthy brain function while lauric acid gives coconut oil its anti-fungal and antiviral properties.
How Do I Use Coconut Oil for Dogs?
Coconut oil can help your pup with various ailments and improve their overall health. Here are five ways you can use coconut oil for dogs:
Immune System Support. The anti-fungal, antiviral, and antibacterial properties of coconut oil can help your dog to ward off sickness and fight infections.
Healthy Brain Function. MCTs in coconut oil can be broken down by the liver and are converted into ketones. Ketones are an alternative energy source for the brain and can help slow deterioration of the brain; all while promoting healthy cognitive function.
Eye & Ear Health. Coconut oil can be used as drops for both eyes and ears to help treat infections.
Skincare, Haircare, & Fleas. Coconut oil can be used to soothe and hydrate your dog's skin if they are suffering from rashes that resulted from eczema, yeast infections, and flea bites. Additionally, coconut oil can keep your dog's coat looking glossy and healthy!
Digestive Health. In addition to being an excellent treatment for parasites (i.e., intestinal worms), coconut oil can be used to help treat inflammation caused by inflammatory bowel syndrome and help with the absorption of nutrients!
Choosing Coconut Oil For Your Pup
When shopping for coconut oil, you should look for organic unrefined cold-pressed coconut oil, ideally in a glass jar. It is best to avoid refined, bleached coconut oil since it is highly processed and contains fewer nutrients.
How Much Coconut Oil Is Too Much?
If given the proper amount, coconut oil can work dreams for your dog's health. However, if the dosage isn't right for your pup, they can end up with loose stools. It is recommended that you start off by incorporating one tsp. per 10 lbs. of body weight in your pet's diet. When you're first starting out, however, it is best to start with 1/4-tsp and gradually increase the dosage until it is the appropriate amount for your dog.
As an excellent source of MCTs and lauric acid, coconut oil is great as a supplement for humans and dogs alike. Although it is always best to consult your veterinarian about incorporating new items into your pet's diet, it is safe to say that coconut oil is a fantastic natural alternative for treating infections and improving the overall health of your dog.
Vanessa Chung is a senior at Cal State Fullerton studying Business Administration with a concentration in Entertainment and Hospitality Management. In addition to writing for SimpleWag, she loves to photograph everything from plants to food. You can follow her food adventures on Instagram @adventurouseats and her daily life adventures @nessiequik