You’ve probably heard all the good stuff about coconut oil, but did you know that coconut oil is a great natural way to soothe dog skin allergies, or other conditions? Coconut oil can have incredible effects on your dog’s skin.
At some point or another in your dog’s life, he or she will develop any number of skin conditions such as hot-spots, dry skin, allergies, fleas, cuts or small wounds. It’s inevitable.
Sometimes these conditions require a trip to the vet, who will prescribe some sort of chemical treatment or antibiotic that you must administer orally. What ensues is a wrestling match with your loving dog in which you lose and end up covered in saliva. Right?
Some veterinarians suggest fish oil or salmon oil as a remedy for certain ailments but there can be cons to these treatments such as weight gain or incompatibility with your dog’s digestive system.
Fear not – there’s another natural alternative… coconut oil! Before you load your K9 pal into the car for a trip to the vet, why not give coconut oil a try?
How to help dog skin allergies
You can deliver the benefits of coconut oil to your dog in one of two ways: orally or externally.
When administering coconut oil orally to your pooch, as with any addition to your dog’s diet, you’ll want to start with small amounts and increase the amount gradually to introduce it to your dog’s digestive system, minimizing any negative reaction.*
It is suggested that you start your dog with about 1 teaspoon per day initially, then gradually increase over a week or two to the recommended amount, which is about 1 teaspoon for every 10 lbs daily, or 1 tablespoon for every 30 lbs daily.
Applying Coconut Oil Directly To Your Dog’s Skin
Raw, unrefined coconut oil can often vary in its appearance and may go back and forth between a solid and a liquid state. Coconut oil turns to a liquid at 78 degrees or above. It can sometimes appear cloudy and that’s ok.
If kept in a cooler location, it will solidify and become opaque. You can warm it in your hands or let it reach room temperature to liquify it to make application easier. Coconut oil does not need to be refrigerated and can last for a year or more.
Here’s a good video showing a rescue dog getting “spa treatment” with coconut oil after some major skin problems. You can tell this pooch loves getting her daily rub-down.
Ways Coconut Oil Can Alleviate Skin Problems In Your Dog
This is a big one. Coconut oil is a great way to kill fleas naturally and the results could be as quick as 1 minute! Massage the oil into the affected area and throughout your dog’s coat. Do this daily, or even a couple times a day and repeat until you see no more fleas.
You may want to put an old sweater or t-shirt on your pooch to keep them from licking off the oil until it’s absorbed into their skin, but if they do lick it off, it’s ok since coconut oil is safe for your dog to ingest. You can’t say that about chemical skin treatments!
Relieve Itchy Skin, Hot Spots or Yeast infections
While adding coconut oil to your dog’s food will immediately begin the positive effects, using coconut oil for dogs topically is also an excellent alternative to chemical medications.
Yeast infections are usually associated with an over-active immune system and a vet may prescribe a steroid to turn off that immune system. This prevents your dogs natural defense from doing its job in other areas. Not good. Try some non-toxic coconut oil first.
Rub coconut oil on the affected areas and put a little in their food following the suggested doses. You can also mix some in their shampoo or with some water in a spray bottle and spray the affected areas. Not only will it help improve their skin condition, but it will sooth the skin and make them smell fresh, too!
Small Wounds and Cuts
Coconut oil has natural anti-viral, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. It’s great for treating superficial wounds and if they lick it off, it’s non-toxic! If ingested, it will actually help to increase their metabolism, thereby accelerating their own natural healing process.
With complicated ear infections, coconut oil has been shown to work wonders. Of course you never want to pour or hastily put anything into your dog’s ears so when applying coconut oil to the ears to treat infection and swelling, rub some room temp, raw unrefined coconut oil GENTLY onto the affected areas 1-2 times a day as needed.
If you are also adding oil to your dog’s food as part of their diet, the results can be amazing. You probably won’t need to worry about your dog licking the oil off his or her ears… boy, if they can do that, you have one amazing dog!
Adding coconut oil to your dog’s food can diminish foul “doggy odors” and as an added bonus, it can add luster and shine to their coat.
Soothing Balm For Dog’s Pads
You can rub coconut oil on your dogs pads as a soothing balm after a long walk, especially if they’ve been on hot pavement.
Coconut oil for dogs skin is a valid alternative to chemical treatments and immune system shut downs provided by steroids. We are not suggesting that all steroids or vet administered treatments are suspect and should be dismissed. On the contrary. We simply suggest it as an alternative for superficial situations such as dry skin, fleas and the other conditions mentioned above.
A natural substitute, if used responsibly, could be effective beyond your desired results. So hit your preferred local grocery store or farmer’s market – or click here to buy coconut oil for up to 75% cheaper than at the grocery store.
*Note: some dogs, if given too much coconut oil orally, may experience loose stool or flu-like symptoms because of the strong anti-viral and antibacterial properties. As always, consult your vet with any questions or concerns.