Homemade diets

Coconut Oil for Dogs

Olivia Grisham
By Olivia Grisham, Journalist specialized in animal care. Updated: September 12, 2019
Coconut Oil for Dogs

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The benefits and properties of coconut oil for dogs are diverse, for that reason it is not strange to find this ingredient in a great quantity of products or as an extra ingredient in certain homemade recipes. While it is true that most people use it to improve the appearance of a dog's skin and hair, there are other advantages that can be very interesting, especially in elderly dogs.

Did you ever wonder if you could give coconut oil to your dogs? Well you can, and AnimalWised will list all the benefits and uses of coconut oil for dogs so you can start to include it in your daily or occasional recipes. You'll be surprised!

You may also be interested in: Can Dogs Eat Coconut?
  1. Benefits of coconut oil for dogs
  2. Side effects of coconut oil in dogs
  3. Can dogs eat coconut?
  4. Where to buy coconut oil?
  5. Coconut oil for cats?

Benefits of coconut oil for dogs

Coconut oil, is obtained by pressing the pulp of coconut meat. It is a totally natural, plant-based product. The result is a fatty extract, high in saturated acids (lauric acid), vitamins E and K and some minerals, it has iron in abundance.

Coconut butter is white in color and soft in texture but can become liquid upon contact with heat. In addition, it does not rust easily, so we can keep it at room temperature for up to 6 months.

Is there "dog" coconut oil?

The coconut oil we can buy on the market, even if it is labeled as a pet product, is the same one used for human consumption. There is no specific product for dogs.

15 properties of coconut oil:

  1. It is a good remedy to improve the healing of cuts and different types of wounds.
  2. Helps moisturize the dog's skin in case of dryness, but can also help treat mastitis, for example.
  3. It can be a good support tool in case of allergy or hypersensitivity to improve the appearance of the skin and damage produced. Of course, you should consult with the vet always before application.
  4. It improves the appearance of the dog's fur, which becomes much brighter and silky.
  5. Mixed with the shampoo and applied during the bath, it helps to prevent the appearance of yeast, fungi and external parasites, although we also recommend the use of pipettes or anti-flea collars to ensure total protection against fleas, ticks, lice, mosquitoes and mites.
  6. We can use a diluted solution of coconut oil and water to sanitize the genitals, anus, legs or ears as it helps to deep clean.
  7. Ingested, it prevents different health problems due to its antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal effects.
  8. Improves digestion and absorption of nutrients.
  9. It is an excellent tool to treat bad breath.
  10. It improves the quality of life of dogs suffering from arthritis and osteoarthritis. [1]
  11. Provides energy.
  12. It balances the insulin and the correct function of the thyroid, so it is advisable to use it when the dog has diabetes. Always consult the veterinarian.
  13. MCTs found in coconut oil improve brain metabolism, helping to prevent and improve the mental state of elderly dogs suffering from cognitive dysfunction syndrome.
  14. It accelerates the metabolism thanks to the fatty acids of easy absorption, that yes, must be offered during the morning or noon. Avoid giving this product before bedtime.
  15. It strengthens the immune system thanks to the aforementioned lauric acid, which is present in breast milk and activates the defenses of the puppies.

Is it necessary for it to be extra virgin coconut oil?

To be able to enjoy all the benefits of coconut oil it will be essential to bet on a high quality product, preferably organic, to avoid synthetic components that can provoke a reaction of the dermis or intestinal problems.

Dose of coconut oil for dogs

In the case of offering this product within your dog's diet, we recommend adding a tablespoon of coconut oil once a week at the most, to avoid the side effects that we will mention below.

If you use it topically we recommend to heat the coconut oil or to acquire a liquid solution. Simply rub the oil in your hands and apply directly to the affected points, although we can also use a spray bottle to spread the mixture throughout their coat without weighing it down.

Coconut Oil for Dogs - Benefits of coconut oil for dogs

Side effects of coconut oil in dogs

Although coconut oil has many benefits for dogs, it is also important to highlight some of the contraindications of this food product.

We can highlight two studies in dogs on the consumption of semi-synthetic diets that included 16% hydrogenated coconut oil for 12-14 months. The results were worrisome: this feeding led to the accumulation of fat in the coronary and cerebral arteries.[2]

Regarding human consumption, WHO and other organizations have warned about the high levels of saturated fat contained in coconut oil, which can lead to risk of cardiovascular disease, increased body weight or metabolic disorders. Although these side effects have been detected in humans, it cannot be ruled out that they are the same as dogs may suffer. So, moderate consumption of coconut oil is recommended.

Can dogs eat coconut?

Coconut is one of the fruits recommended for dogs, because of its high content of water, minerals (calcium, iron, phosphorus, iodine, magnesium...), trace elements and vitamins.

Coconut properties for dogs

Apart from providing energy, it is also an antioxidant fruit, remineralizing and moisturizing, and even helps improve blood pressure. We can offer this food to our dog occasionally as a reward or include it in home diets.

Coconut Oil for Dogs - Can dogs eat coconut?

Where to buy coconut oil?

We can find coconut oil in a variety of shops, including online stores, and we can even find it in our local supermarket. The best thing to do is to go to a herbal store, ecological store or traditional pharmacy. In addition, we recommend you to review the composition of the product to ensure that it is a quality product.

Coconut oil for cats?

Do you have cats? Then you should know that coconut oil is also good for cats. They can also benefit from this product, either internally or externally, although they do not usually accept it as well as dogs when we offer it as food. It is best to mix it with moist food or include it during the preparation of a homemade recipe.

In addition, coconut oil helps eliminate hair balls, a great advantage, as they can become a serious health problem if they are not removed.

Coconut Oil for Dogs - Coconut oil for cats?

If you want to read similar articles to Coconut Oil for Dogs, we recommend you visit our Homemade diets category.


1. RW Mahley, TL Innerarity, KH Weisgraber, DL Fry - Canine hyperlipoproteinemia and atherosclerosis. Accumulation of lipid by aortic medial cells in vivo and in vitro - Am J Pathol, April 1977

2. KG McCullagh, A. Ehrhart, A.Butkus - Experimental canine atherosclerosis and its prevention. The dietary induction of severe coronary, cerebral, aortic, and iliac atherosclerosis and its prevention by safflower oil - Laboratory Investigation, a Journal of Technical Methods and Pathology, April 1976

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1 comment
Edith (babe) Larson
I've been giving coconut oil mixed into their morning food for a year and a half now. The results weren't immediate. After starting them in Sept. by the time summer rolled around I didn't have to use any kind of flea killer on them until the mid august and then only fleas, it stopped tick dead in their tracks. They are not shedding as much and their hair is beautiful. I highly recommend it. By the way, at the moment I have 17 dogs on the property, 10 in the house and 7 in kennels. I have been rescuing dogs in this county for 30 years now.
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Coconut Oil for Dogs