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Can Coconut Oil Improve My Dog’s Health

by Lorna Ladd 14 Comments

manAndDog

We hear a lot about the benefits of coconut oil from the human holistic community. They share tips like: a tablespoon of coconut oil ingested regularly (or rubbed into our skin or hair) bring a variety of benefits; everything from healthy, supple skin and glowing hair to raising the natural insulin levels of diabetics and improving overall metabolism.

But can coconut oil have the same effects for our dogs? Many holistic veterinarians are studying the human research and saying “yes” to recommending coconut oil for our pets.

Coconut oil is almost exclusively (more than 90%) saturated fat and is one of the few foods that can be classified as a “superfood”. A medium chain triglyceride (MCT), coconut oil consists of a series of fatty acid molecule chains that are easily digested and absorbed, without causing the pancreas to go into overdrive producing digestive enzymes that absorb saturated oils.

This is of particular importance to dogs suffering from digestive disorders (Irritable Bowel Disease, Pancreatitis) and metabolic disorders (Diabetes Mellitus, Cushing’s Disease) as it puts less strain on the animal’s digestive system.

Additionally, coconut oil gently elevates the metabolism, provides a higher level of energy and vitality, protects your dog from illness, and speeds healing. As a bonus, coconut oil can improve dog’s skin and coat, improves digestion, and reduces allergic reactions

Giving coconut to your dog is easy! You can either buy dried coconut and sprinkle it on your dog’s food. They might not even know it’s there. Alternatively, DOGSBUTTER, an all natural peanut butter for dogs, is infused with coconut oil which makes it really easy. Not all dogs love coconut but most dogs adore peanut butter!

Some of the other benefits of giving your pup coconut oil with a meal include

SK-Peanutbutter-Jar-propped-225x300

For healthy skin and coat:

  • Clears up eczema.
  • Aids flea allergies, contact dermatitis and itchy skin.
  • Minimizes doggy odor.
  • Reduces allergic reactions.
  • Creates sleek and glossy coats
  • Prevents and treats yeast and fungal infections.
  • When applied topically, coconut oil promotes wound healing.
  • Also can help with hot spots, dry skin and hair, bites and stings.

To improve digestion:

  • Improves digestion.
  • Increases nutrient absorption.
  • Helps with colitis and inflammatory bowl syndrome.
  • Reduces or eliminates bad breath.
  • Helps with coughing.

“Superfood” benefits:

  • Assists with weight loss.
  • Provides powerful antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal agents.
  • Balances insulin and promotes normal thyroid function.
  • Helps prevent or control diabetes.
  • Aids arthritis and ligament problems.
  • Helps prevent infection and disease.
  • Increases energy.

Veterinarian Karen Becker, known for her holistic wellness veterinary practice, recommends administering ¼ tsp. of coconut oil for every 10 lbs. of body weight twice a day for optimal effect.

Coconut Oil is Good for Dogs, But What About Coconuts?

by Kristen Duvall 0 Comments
Coconut Oil is Good for Dogs, But What About Coconuts?

Dog Coconut

We’ve all know that coconut oil is good for dogs and humans, but what about regular, straight up coconut? Can dogs eat coconut? And if so, what are the benefits of eating coconut for our canine companions?

The answer to that first question is YES! The oil isn’t the only part of the coconut that’s beneficial and healthy for our canine friends. And I’ve discovered recently that my dog simply loves the taste of coconut oil, so why not branch out with other treats containing this superfood?

And to answer the second question, what are the benefits of dogs eating coconut? Here are just a few benefits to treating your pup to some good, old-fashioned coconut every now and then.

1.  Coconut is made up of Lauric acid. This substance helps fight against viruses, which in turn helps boost their immune systems.

2.  Coconut also contains albumin which helps in the formation of red blood cells.

3.  It can clear up skin conditions including flea allergies and itchy skin.

4. It can help with bad breath.

5.  It’s even believed to help speed the healing of cuts, wounds, hot spots and more.

So yes, it’s safe. It’s yummy. And it could potentially help your dog in many different ways. The next question is, how should you give it to them?

Some owners apparently like to give their dog a whole coconut to chew on like a toy. That’s safe and could save your slippers, but don’t let them actually eat the shell or swallow any of the little hairs on the outside, as these can get lodged in your dog’s throat or digestive tract. After your best friend is done playing with the coconut, you can open it up and feed them the pulp from the inside.

If you’d prefer not to deal with the mess of a whole coconut, you can also mix in coconut chips with their dog food or give it to them as a treat. Or you can use coconut paste to make your dog a special treat, perhaps mixing it with some DOGSBUTTER and freezing it. And of course, you can always give your dog coconut oil, either by the spoonful or by dipping a treat in it.

Also, you may not have thought about coconut milk or coconut water, but both can be added to dog treats and food recipes.

One question that often comes up regarding coconuts and coconut oil is about the high level of saturated fat. Yes, it’s true that coconuts are high in saturated fat and typically, you do want to avoid saturated fat with your dog. But the fat in coconut is a bit different and is considered safe, in moderation, for your dog. Of course, you don’t want to give your dog too much. Too much of anything can be a bad thing, and coconut is no different.

When it comes to the oil, a good rule of thumb is 1 teaspoon for every 10 pounds of body weight or 1 tablespoon per 30 pounds. But you don’t want to start with these amounts. It’s best to introduce coconut and coconut oil to your dog gradually as it can cause runny poop.

In case you’re wondering, dogs love coconut so it shouldn’t be any problem to get them to eat it. It’s just another yummy human food you can delightfully (and safely) share with your best friend. The options are pretty much limitless. So why not find a recipe for some coconut milk ice cream and share a cool treat with them today? And don’t forget to throw in some delicious DOGSBUTTER while you’re at it! They’ll absolutely love it!

Coconut Oil: Is It An Effective Treatment Against Giardia?

by Lorna Ladd 0 Comments

None of us like it when our canine friends get sick. Yet, it’s inevitable that at some point in your pet’s life, they will catch something and get sick. And of all the things your dog can catch, intestinal parasites are one of the most common and easily spread infections. Giardia is a common one, especially in puppies.

But don’t freak out if your dog has a parasite. Often times, it comes with the territory of owning a pet, especially if your dog visits the park or other places where they can come into contact with infected dogs.

Itchy dog scratching

Giardia, or rather Giardiasis, is a parasitic infection caused by Giardia Lamblia. These little critters often contaminate water and can be spread that way, or through the soil, other animals, and even direct human contact. The parasite has a hard shell, which allows them to survive for long periods of time in water, soil, and yes, even in your dog’s intestine. Because of how tough these little guys are, it’s important to treat any dog suspected of having the infection.

Giardia treatment in dogs is usually done under the supervision of a vet, and if you suspect your dog is sick with anything at all, please don’t hesitate to visit your veterinarian. Giardia can often be mistaken for other types of parasites and infections if you’re just basing it on the symptoms you can see with your own two eyes. Usually, your vet will have to run tests to figure out the culprit before prescribing treatment. If left untreated, Giardia can cause severe diarrhea, weight loss, and even death, so it’s not something you will want to mess around with.

That being said, there may be a way to prevent a Giardia infection in your dog. Of course, the first step would be the make sure your dog doesn’t come into contact with feces and that they have access to clean drinking water. Prevention is key. But you can also up your dog’s defenses to the nasty bug with some simple items you may already have in your cupboard.

coconut oil on dogs

Savvy owners in the know are raving about using coconut oil on dogs these days. And yes, coconut oil has a lot of nifty uses, including moisturizing their skin and coat. But did you know that coconut oil contains Caprylic Acid, which is a short chain fatty acid that stops the growth of bacteria and parasites? Well now you do! Coconut oil also contains lauric acid which the parasites consume, and it literally causes them to explode and die. Bye-bye parasites!

So in addition to using coconut oil for your dog’s skin, now you can consider it a handy tool in preventing – and maybe even treating – Giardia and other parasites as well. Of course, if your dog is heavily infected already, it may take too long for the effects to help, and you may still need to consider conventional medicine. In severe cases of Giardia, as we mentioned above, severe weight loss and malnutrition can cause serious problems and would need to be treated as soon as possible. Additional medicine may also be needed to stop the diarrhea so your dog feels better while fighting off their parasitic hitchhikers.

A Cure in Your Cabinet: Apple Cider Vinegar on Dogs

by Lorna Ladd 0 Comments

It’s been an ongoing joke in my house that I’ve become obsessed with apple cider vinegar. And it’s true. Recently, I discovered that it helps with a number of ailments – not just for me personally, but also for my pets.

And honestly, it’s no laughing matter. While I’m not one to throw around words like “miracle cure,” because it sounds a little hokey – not to mention that it sounds like the claims of a snake oil salesman – I’m pleased with how apple cider vinegar has helped me, mainly with my skin condition and itchy ears.

apple-ciderBecause of this, I’ve done extensive research on using apple cider vinegar on dogs, and needless to say, there are a lot of potential uses for this common household product. As I mentioned above, it cured my own itchy ears, and it’s commonly used as a natural remedy for dog ear infections.

You may be asking why apple cider vinegar works for dogs? And what it can help treat? If those are questions on your mind, you’ve come to the right place.

A few common maladies that apple cider vinegar can help with include:

Ear infections

As mentioned above, a tiny bit of apple cider vinegar in the ears can help with itchy ears and even ear infections in dogs. Floppy eared dogs tend to get a lot of ear infections, and you may not even realize it until they start having severe issues such as bleeding, usually because of excessive scratching or shaking their head too much.

Apple cider on dog ear infectionsBut you don’t have to wait until medical attention is necessary. Apple cider vinegar is both harmless and helpful in preventing, and yes, even curing ear infections in dogs.

Look into your dog’s ears. Are they caked with dirt or a brown sludge? If so, it’s a good chance they have yeast in their ears. Simply getting water in their ears can lead to this, and for many dogs who enjoy swimming, ear infections are super common, especially during the summer months. But they don’t have to be!

Dilute the apple cider vinegar with some water, just a small capfull to about twice as much water, and pour directly into the ear. Try to let it sit for as long as your dog will allow, scratching and rubbing the ear to help it get deep down into the ear canal. Your dog will probably want to shake his head to get the water out, and that’s fine. It’ll help get the gunk out now that you’ve loosened it up. You may also want to dry the inside of the ear with a cotton swab, but don’t get too deep into the ear. Just clean the outside part you can see.

apple-cider-dilutionThis should help stop itching almost instantly, but you will want to keep it up for a few days, at least, to make sure any sign of infection is killed off once and for all. You can also regularly clean your dog’s ears with this solution even when no sign of irritation is present. It’ll help keep the bacteria at bay.

 

Allergies and tear stains

It’s so pitiful to look at your pooch and see what looks like tears coming from their eyes. They look so sad, and chances are, they’re miserable too. As miserable as you would if your allergies were acting up at least.

apple cider on tearstainsThe good news is that apple cider vinegar also helps get rid of those sad eye stains as it helps cure their allergies as well. It’s incredibly simple. Just apply a tiny bit of apple cider vinegar to their food or water – a capfull will usually suffice. It will work from the inside out to help with all the common signs of allergies including tear stains, itchy skin, and hair loss.

 

Fleas and ticks

Who likes to apply nasty chemicals to their dog’s skin monthly? If you’re looking for a more natural way to control fleas and ticks, the solution might be as simple as apple cider vinegar applied to the skin after a weekly bath. Just dilute the apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle with some water (about a cap full again), and spray directly onto your dog after bath time. Applied weekly, it might also help with skin conditions like hot spots, pimples, thinning hair, all while deterring pests.

apple cider on dog fleasWho knew that a simple solution to so many common problems was a product most of us keep around the house for salad dressings and the like? There are also people who swear that apple cider vinegar helps aid digestion and weight loss, and as we mentioned above, it’s absolutely harmless, so it’s always worth a try. Especially if you’ve tried everything else and can’t figure out a solution. Who knows, ACV might be the “miracle” cure you’re looking for.

But as with all things, please talk to your veterinarian before starting any sort of medical regimen, holistic or otherwise, just in case your pet has special needs. After all, no two canines are alike, and while apple cider vinegar may be safe for most dogs, it’s always best to check with your vet just to be on the safe side.

 

 

 

 

No Wheat Dog Food: Why Pet Owners Spend Big

by Lorna Ladd 0 Comments
No Wheat Dog Food: Why Pet Owners Spend Big

 

Man’s best friend is getting a crack at the good stuff now that their companions have shown an interest in all natural, no wheat dog food, and companies are more than happy to comply.

Good Food and Good Will

Online stores like DOG for DOG are feeding canines the good stuff and are giving plenty of goodwill as a side dish. DOG for DOG also donates a bag of dog food to a rescue organization for every bag of dog food purchased. While it is their mission to help dogs in need, they aren’t alone in offering no wheat dog food. Many are clamoring to sell similar fare to a growing customer base that is increasingly health conscious not only for themselves, but for every member of their families. And that includes

Better Ingredients for a Better Life

But why are customers shelling out extra bucks to ensure their dogs are getting all natural, no wheat dog food? According to a recent article featured on the Christian Science Monitor, it has to do with a tendency to humanize pets. In the wake of studies linking human health to diet, and ill health to pesticides and processed foods, people are also more conscious of what they Considering the ingredient list in many conventional dog foods, it’s not hard to see why they’d choose a healthier product for their loved ones. Animal by-products like hooves, guts and other possibly diseased parts, agricultural leftovers consisting of grains unfit for human consumption, and plenty of other unsavory bits are routine fare in dog food.

While research has shown that eating a diet rich in nutrients can stave off illnesses and cancers, the same could be true for canines, who share a similar diet to humans and who also suffer a host of ailments that could possibly be improved or prevented by eating right, from arthritis to

Grain Free Dog Food

For example, DOG for DOG corn, soy, and wheat free dog food contains items that sound familiar and even appetizing to people. An Ocean Fish/Salmon combo called DOGSFOOD is a grain- free blend consisting of  fish, and fruits and veggies like blueberries, apples, beets and spinach. It even boasts of flax seeds, which contain omega fatty acids, as well as probiotics (good bacteria that aids in digestion). By doling out the bucks now, consumers might actually be saving money on vet visits later if the hype about all natural, wheat free dog food is true. And a healthier, happier Fido is reason enough for many pet owners.

It appears that the emphasis on well-being by way of nutrition that’s sweeping the nation of consumers is now being extended to the animal kingdom. When it comes to healthy eating, man’s best friend may be the leader of the pack.

 

 

 

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