BENEFITS OF COCONUT OIL FOR CATS AND DOGS
Due to an epidemic of side effects from eating poor quality food in combination with environmental toxins and drinking water with heavy metals, companion animals are experiencing many physical symptoms of poor health.
Beginning with food quality, many animals suffer from dry skin and dry coats. Most would have people believe that this is “normal”. It is not. When we examine the ingredients of the food that we are feeding our animal companions, we can begin to see what the issue is. When we examine kibble, for example, we can note that it is dehydrated food. What does this mean? It means that in order for the animal’s digestive system to pass the dehydrated food through his system, water must be sucked from every vital organ around (including eyes and mouth) in order to facilitate smooth digestion. We often find that in aging animals, a dry coat and skin is accompanied by redness of whites of eyes. This is a clear sign of dehydration. And it can be treated with coconut oil.
Additionally, when we look closely at the ingredients of both kibble and processed wet food, we will often find evidence of carcinogens, toxins and non-food items. With prolonged exposure to ingestion of these items, there are many possible health concerns. Coconut oil has been known to aid in the “flushing out” of muscles, joints, digestive tract and all other areas where toxins can build up over time.
Coconut oil is high in omegas 3 and 6. Omega fatty acids allow for the body to absorb moisture more readily. They help with healthy cell development. Omegas have been studied and shown to prevent tumour formation in animals.
Coconut oil is a known lubricator of joints. In aging animals (just like aging people), the joints become dryer and lesser mobile. This is because the joint fluid becomes depleted; which can also most often be associated with dehydration. When joint lubrication is compromised, symptoms include lower joint mobility and eventually arthritis. Though arthritis can also be congenital, by adding coconut oil into an animal’s diet, the symptoms of arthritis will be lowered due to the additional joint lubrication that the oil provides.
For many cats and some dogs, regular water does not provide enough moisture for a healthy body. In cats, this is due to the origin of species as desert animals. Genetically, cats originated in areas of the world with scarce amounts of water. Their water drinking habits are learned behaviour. Though they have adapted behaviour to domestication, sometimes their bodies have not. This is to say that water often passes right through them without absorption. And, often they do not drink enough water at all to facilitate healthy kidney function. By adding a small amount of coconut oil to their food routine, they will be able to retain moisture within their skin, coat, eyes, mouth and digestive systems, allowing for a more healthful life experience.
Coconut oil has been found to lower symptoms of depression which can aid with animals who are anxious and/or depressed. Omegas can also help with increasing cognitive function which is especially important in kittens and puppies who have been weaned too early or those who have been “found” in the middle of nowhere at extremely young ages. These kittens and puppies have been weaned too early as well and their brains and digestive systems have not had enough nutrition from their mother to develop properly and fully.
Other benefits of coconut oil for cats and dogs include:
-Aids in digestion
-Aids in healing insect bites and stings; applied topically
-Clears eczema and other rashes; applied topically OR ingested orally
-Eliminates bad breath
-Helps control diabetes
-Helps with “hot spots”
-Immediate source of fuel and energy
-Immune system support (for those who have read my previous articles on chronic allergies, this is for you!)
-Improves metabolic function
-Minimizes poor odor
-Moisturizes dry skin & coat
-Promotes wound healing; topically or orally
Be mindful that coconut oil is high in fat and should be used in moderation. As with any new food or supplement, begin by adding a very small amount. Monitor cat or dog’s behaviour and bowels. Because this supplement is oil, runny stools are possible if too much oil is given at once. Begin with a half teaspoon for larger breed dogs and a quarter teaspoon for cats and smaller dogs. If the dosage has no adverse affects on stool, increase incrementally as needed. It is not necessary to administer coconut oil every day. Three times per week is a healthy start.
If your animal has pre-existing weight issues, keep the dosage on the lower end as the oil can cause fat increase. Be sure to provide adequate exercise for your animals at all times based on the individual needs (caloric intake, breed specific etc) for optimal wellness.
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