Coconuts are delicious and healthy fruits to eat, but can dogs eat coconuts like humans? If you wondered about this question, then this article about coconuts will help. Last time you have read about the benefits apples to our canine buddies. Similarly, you now know why grapes are sometimes harmful to dogs. Thus, its time for you to learn about the properties of coconuts that contribute to a dog’s overall well-being. You will also learn about coconut oil, which is a popular by-product of this fruit.
Table of Contents
- The Versatile Coconut
- Essential Health Benefits
- Can Dogs Eat Coconut Daily?
- Can Dogs Drink Coconut Water?
- What Is Coconut Oil and Is It Good For Your Pet?
- Using Coconut Oil for Your Dog Meals and Medication
- How Much Coconut Oil Can Dogs Have?
- Benefits of Coconut Oil For Dogs
- Is Coconut Oil Safe For Puppies?
The Versatile Coconut
The coconut tree, along with its fruit, is a member of the Palm family of the Arecaceae kind. Coconut belongs to the Genus Cocos plant species type and it’s the only one of its kind in that genus entry. Some may say that the coconut is a nut type of fruit; however, it is actually a drupe in botanical terms.
The fruit has many varied uses ranging from food to cosmetic products. People who live the tropics and subtropics tend to have the coconut as a regular part of their everyday diet. Unlike other fruits, the coconut contains a large quantity of water inside them, and people will harvest the fruit for potable coconut water.
Additionally, mature coconut can give oil by processing its kernel, while the hard shell can be made into charcoal. The coconut’s fibrous husk is where coir comes from. Its endosperm is the edible coconut flesh while drying it turns the endosperm into copra. Finally, the leaves and husks are material for making products for decoration and furnishing.
Today, there are more than 90 countries that produce and cultivate coconuts. Indonesia, Philippines and India, are some of the top producers of coconut. All three countries provide 73% of the world’s coconut production.
Essential Health Benefits
Humans eat coconuts to gain some health benefits and can dogs eat coconut with the same results? Yes, they can and here are some of the advantages they get from the fruit:
- Bolsters the dog’s immune system. An active immune system prevents bacteria and infections from affecting the dog or at the least, lessens the effects of both.
- Keeps your dog’s coat smooth and glossy. Coconut also improves the condition of your dog’s coat and skin, keeping it shiny and healthy.
- It improves the dog’s body odor and reduces its bad breath.
- Balances and regulates the levels of insulin and thyroid in dogs. The former stops diabetes while the latter prevent hypothyroidism.
- Help produce red blood cells, which in turn prevent anemia in dogs.
- Prevents itchy skin in the dog and allergies caused by fleas. On the other hand, coconut does not remove the insects. You have to do it on your own.
- It helps heal the dog’s ligament problems and arthritis. Some dog breeds are prone to ligament problems and arthritis. Coconut can help these dog breeds mitigate or stop these two problems to their health.
- Increases the dog’s healing ability when it comes to dealing with insect bites, stings, wounds, and cuts. The quicker they heal, the better it will be. Your pets will be spared from prolonged suffering.
Can Dogs Eat Coconut Daily?
So dogs can eat coconut, but can a dog eat coconut daily? Sadly no, and there are good reasons for this. Like other foods that you give to your pets, the coconut is not something to serve daily. Moderation is an important thing here, and there’s a good reason why.
Eating coconut daily or even too much in one meal can lead to canine obesity in the long run. Coconut contains high levels of fat, which can cause obesity and it can adversely affect your dog’s health.
If you are planning on including coconuts in your pet’s diets, then you should manage their portions and monitor the frequency of feeding coconut-mixed meals.
Can Dogs Drink Coconut Water?
Coconut is good for the dogs, but can dogs drink coconut water? Yes, dogs can have coconut water. It also has various minerals that aid in maintaining your pet’s health. A lot of people will tell you that coconut water is healthy and nutritious for humans and dogs. Coconut water has enzymes, vitamins, electrolytes, minerals, magnesium, calcium, manganese, and iron for your pet’s well-being.
However, coconut water is not the same as ordinary water that both humans and dogs drink. Coconut water should not be given as a substitute drink nor be given every day. Give coconut water to your pet as a treat after meals or as a training reward. In essence, coconut water is an excellent refreshment to cool off your pooch during hot summer days.
What Is Coconut Oil and Is It Good For Your Pet?
Coconut oil or copra oil is the oil that comes from the meat or kernel of coconuts. Coconut meat is extracted, dried and processed to produce coconut oil. This particular oil has many applications and is slow to oxidize due to its high saturated fat content.
Some of the uses of coconut oil include being an ingredient in cooking, biodiesel engine fuel, and beauty product components. Additionally, it has certain health benefits to humans as well as dogs.
Moreover, are there health benefits of coconut oil for dogs? Should you give your dogs coconut oil, is it safe for them? The answer is a definite yes, but not as food! The coconut oil has various benefits for your pooch. Using it is a must if you want your pets to be healthy and vigorous.
Using Coconut Oil for Your Dog Meals and Medication
So, can dogs have coconut oil as food? No, but it can be given to your canine in other means. Coconut oil is not food, but rather, it an ingredient to meals. You can add the oil to your dog’s meal every time you feed it, but it must be in moderation. The oil is also usable as a base for dog treats and doggie snacks. You might want to limit your dog’s intake of coconut oil if they are already on the chunky side. Coconut oil is a healthy addition to your dog’s diet, but too much of it can be bad.
In some cases, coconut oil for dogs does not need an internal application. External application of coconut oil to a dog’s skin also works. The oil can be used to address almost any skin problem. It is an all-natural topical remedy and you can save a lot of money from buying expensive skin treatments for your dog.
How Much Coconut Oil Can Dogs Have?
Some dog owners tend to give coconut oil for dogs liberally, but keeping things in proper portions is essential. Here are some suggestions on the amount of coconut oil you can give to your pet:
- For puppies and small dogs, provide them with a ¼ tablespoon of coconut oil every day. You can use this method as a way to introduce coconut oil to puppies and small dogs.
- If a dog’s constitution is sensitive, give it a 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. This method applies to large dogs, as well.
- Hand out one teaspoon of coconut oil per 10 pounds of your dog’s body weight daily. Alternatively, you can give one tablespoon of coconut oil per 30 pounds the dog’s body weight.
- Since coconut oil is an excellent addition to meals, you can give your dog coconut oil 1 or 2 times a day in its meals.
The info above is an internal application of coconut oil. You can apply coconut oil externally too. All you need to do is put a small amount of coconut oil onto your hands and pat your dog’s coat. Then you run your fingers all over the dog’s fur and do a little massage down into the skin.
Keep in mind to moderate the use of the oil for meals since there are also negative side effects to your pooch. For dogs with weight problems, too much coconut oil will increase their weight more due to the high-fat content of the oil. More so, too much coconut oil intake may also cause canine pancreatitis and diarrhea.
Benefits of Coconut Oil For Dogs
Coconut oil for dogs bestows many health benefits for your pet’s well-being. Assuming that you are giving them adequate amounts of coconut oil, you can expect its health benefits to come through eventually. Here is a list of those various benefits:
- The oil slows down the onset of cognitive dysfunction. This effect is due to the fatty acids of coconut oil.
- Improves and maintains the health of the dog’s skin and coat. The coat becomes sleek and glossy due to this effect.
- It Increases the energy levels of dogs — a very valuable benefit for dog breeds that is very active in nature.
- Medium-chain triglycerides or MCT improves the digestive process, immune system and metabolic function of your dog’s body. MCT is a healthy fat found in coconut oil.
- Helps the dog in dealing with inflammatory bowel syndrome and colitis
- Eliminates or reduces bad breath common in dogs.
- Aids or mitigates ligament problems and arthritis. Dog breeds that suffer from arthritis and ligament problems will find coconut to be a boon to their health issues.
- Reduces the chances of canine cancers. Likewise, it maintains the thyroid’s function at normal levels and balances insulin concentrations in the dog.
- Prevents infection and disease. Coconut oil can also be a powerful anti-fungal, antibacterial and antiviral agent for your dog. The oil can promote faster wound healing in dogs.
- It can be used as a treatment for itchy skin, contact dermatitis, and flea allergies.
You can give coconut oil to your pet via internal or external means. Using coconut oil for dog skin problems is one of its many external uses. Put just enough coconut oil in your hands and apply it to the dog’s skin and coat. The best part of using this oil on the dog’s body is that it is not toxic to your dog. Dogs will often lick themselves and coconut oil poses no danger when ingested.
Is Coconut Oil Safe For Puppies?
Indeed it is. Coconut in moderate amounts is safe for puppies, so you need not worry about it having adverse effects on your pet. It’s only when you overdo your servings of coconut oil to puppies that it becomes harmful to their health.
Puppies may not like coconut oil at first, so you will have to introduce it to them slowly. ¼ tablespoon of coconut oil per day is the best way to give it to a puppy. Gradually the puppy will like the taste of coconut oil. By the time the puppy matures, coconut oil has become a normal part of their diets and you can increase its amount on the food you serve.
Just make sure that the puppy is past its weaning period and is starting to eat solid foods. Your pup might experience loose stool upon giving them coconut oil. However, a loose stool is not the same as diarrhea. Once your puppy gets used to having coconut oil in its diet, its loose stool problem will just go away.
There you have it. We just provided you with all that you need to know about coconut and coconut oil, including its importance on your dog’s overall well-being. If you currently don’t give your pooch coconut or coconut oil, now is the best time for you to start. Coconut, along with its oil has fantastic health benefits for dogs; therefore, make sure you include it in your pooch diet.