Comprised of more than 90% saturated fats, coconut oil also contains traces of monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids.
Lauric acid found in coconut oil has antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal qualities. Medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil act as an immediate source of fuel and energy. It works to enhance athletic performance and help with weight loss. In dogs, the MCTs in coconut oil work to balance the thyroid. This helps overweight dogs lose weight and helping lethargic dogs feel more energetic.
Certified nutritionist and naturopathic doctor Dr. Bruce Fife says that coconut oil gently elevates the metabolism, and it provides a heightened level of energy and vitality. He says it also protects the body from illness and speeds healing.
Coconut oil also improves the skin and coat of the dog, while improving digestion and reducing allergic reactions. When fed regularly to pets, coconut oil has the ability to clear up skin conditions like eczema, flea allergies, contact dermatitis and itchy skin. It works to reduce allergic reactions and improve the health of their skin. The dog’s coat becomes sleek and glossy and the dog’s odor is minimized. You can even add coconut oil to their shampoo.
Coconut oil can also be used to prevent and treat yeast and fungal infections, including candida. It has antiviral agents that help dogs to recover quickly from kennel cough. It also disinfects cuts and promotes the healing of wounds. When coconut oil is applied topically, it helps cuts, wounds, hot spots, dry skin and hair as well as bites and stings to heal more effectively.
Dr. Karen Becker says that coconut oil helps to reduce flaking and improves the integrity of the skin. She says is supports the skin’s natural lipid barrier which makes the skin healthier and more resistant to pathogens. She suggests giving your dog a coconut oil treatment before shampooing them. Begin by scooping the oil from the container and applying it to your pet like a mask. Cover every inch of the skin and nails with the coconut oil and let it absorb into the skin for 5 minutes or so. Finish with a light shampoo and rinse.
Coconut oil is also beneficial to a dog’s digestion. It improves nutrient absorption and even aids the healing of digestive disorders such as inflammatory bowel syndrome and colitis. It also reduces or eliminates bad breath in dogs. It also aids in the elimination of hairballs and coughing.
Also helpful for a dog’s immune system, coconut oil has powerful antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal agents that help to prevent an infection and disease. It works to regulate and balance insulin production and it promotes normal thyroid function. It can also be used to prevent or control diabetes. It helps to reduce weight while increasing energy. It can be used to aid in arthritis and ligament problems.
Dr. Karen Becker, Integrative Veterinarian and Naturopathic Doctor says, “Medium-chain triglycerides have been shown to improve brain energy metabolism and decrease the amyloid protein buildup that results in brain lesions in older dogs. Coconut oil is a rich source of MCTs. I recommend ¼ teaspoon for every 10 pounds of body weight twice daily.”