Thursday, 16 February 2012


Coconut oil for dogs and cats health

Coconut oil can be used as a supplement and topical treatment to support your dog, puppy cat and kitten's health.

Most of the saturated fats in coconut oil come from Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs). The MCTs are the source of most of the benefits of coconut oil. One of the MCTs is lauric acid.
Lauric acid is antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal. A dog and cat's digestive system efficiently metabolizes MCTs, providing an immediate source of energy, gently raising metabolism. In-turn supporting physical performance and supporting weight loss in overweight dogs and dogs suffering from thyroid issues. Coconut oil also improves a dog’s skin and coat, aids digestion and reduces the severity of allergic reactions.

Heath Benefits of Coconut Oil Include:

Aids Digestion

Digestion/absorption of nutrients
Healing of digestive problems (i.e. inflammation of the bowls)
Help reduce bad breath
Helps eliminate hair balls and related coughing

Bones, Immune System, Metabolism
  • Anti-bacterial
  • Anti-fungal
  • Anti-viral
    …three important attributes in the fight against infection, cancer and other diseases;
  • Antioxidant
  • Balances, regulates insulin
  • Helps reduce weight
    …diabetes prevention and control
  • Increases energy
  • Aids in health of ligaments
  • Helps with arthritis relief
  • Improves brain energy metabolism
  • Reduces risk of brain lesions in older dogs
Coconut Oil and Turmeric - Golden Paste Recipe
Golden paste is a potent, natural anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antibacterial, antiseptic, and anti-carcinogenic – it is also rich in antioxidants.

Golden paste recipe with coconut oil, here
Natural Insect Repelling Balm

Skip the toxins and carcinogens found in many insect repellents and make our own insect repellent balm for dogs, puppies, cats, and kittens. 
For the recipe go here.

Skin and Fur Conditions

Helps to clear-up:
  • Eczema
  • Flea allergies
  • Dermatitis
  • Itchy Skin
  • Ringworm (a fungal infection)
 Improves health and appearance of:
  • Skin
  • Fur
  • and deodorizes
  • Prevents and treats topical yeast and fungal infections
  • Disinfects cuts and supports healing of wounds

Oral/Dental Health
  • Coconut Oil can be used to support oral health.
  • Coconut oil, natural toothpaste recipes go here.
  • Coconut oil and herb toothpaste recipe here 

Wound Treatment
Supports the healing of:
  • Cuts
  • Dry skin
  • Hot spots
  • Insect bites
  • Insect stings
  • Wounds

How to Select A Good Quality Coconut Oil
Purchase unrefined, cold-pressed organic Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) or Extra Virgin Coconut Oil (EVCO). Despite what manufacturers and people may say the difference between VCO and EVCO is simply a marketing campaign borrowed from the olive oil manufacturing community - there is no real difference between the two (EVO and EVCO).

Different brands of coconut oil have different tastes - some faint, very subtle coconut taste to others that will have a much stronger taste of coconut. Remember the one sense we humans have that is stronger than our dog’s senses is taste. Your dog has about 1700 taste buds, while we have about 9000. Don’t worry about the taste - concentrate instead on the quality of the product. 

Coconut Oil Daily Dosage

The recommended maximum dosage is:
  • ¼ teaspoon for every 10 lbs of body weight twice daily, or 
  • ½ teaspoon for every 10 lbs of body weight once daily.
Tips and Cautions
When first introducing coconut oil to your dog’s and cat's diet it is best to use a lesser amount that the maximum dosage indicated above. The dosages above represent a typical maintenance dosage. Introductory dosages should be in the range of ¼ tsp per day for small dogs, cats, puppies and kittens and 1 tsp per day for large dogs. If you know that your dog has a sensitive digestive system then start off with a few drops of coconut oil a day. You can then gradually increase the amount of coconut oil over several weeks.

Large amounts of coconut oil given to a dog or cat can cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting or greasy stools while his/her body adjusts to the change in diet. Start with small amounts, such as ¼ teaspoon per day for small dogs or puppies and 1 teaspoon for large dogs, or even just a dab if your dog's or cat's constitution is sensitive. If your dog seems tired or uncomfortable or has diarrhea, just cut back the amount temporarily. Gradually increase the amount every few days.

The reason for this phased-in approach is because coconut oil kills bacteria, viruses, parasites, yeasts, and fungi, your dog or cat may respond negatively to the detox aspect of coconut oil. Signs of detoxing too rapidly may include lethargy, headaches, flu-like symptoms, fatigue, and diarrhea. If your dog does have any such reaction, just temporarily cut the daily amount back to allow your dog’s and cat's system to gently adjust. This is another reason why dividing your dog’s intake of coconut oil between two feedings a day is a good approach.

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Article and graphics by Karen Rosenfeld 



  1. nice opinion.. thanks for sharing...

  2. Thanks will give to my dog who suffers with skin allergies.
    Selena Brus

  3. I just now started my Chihuahua Pablo 6 pounds, on this virgin coconut oil. He has hot spots for over a year and initially the health food store helped a great deal suggesting making a tea from burdock and dandelion root (both dried and expensive), simmer five min. cool and use 1/2 teaspoon per day. The hot spots are TREMENDOUSLY bad this time and I think it may be the Privet hedge(the privet that does blossom)
    blossoms outside. It is bothering me badly too.

    1. You could also add the other following items to help alleviate this (go to the index page to find the articles on benefits, dosage etc.:
      - Organic un-pasturized apple cider vinegar;
      - 100% aloe vera juice;
      - Local un-pasturized raw honey;
      - Rooibos tea;
      - Omega 3-fatty acids

  4. Hello

    I am looking for answers. My cat is excessively licking her belly causing 2 hot spots. We brought her to the vet 3 times and told her she has OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder which is licking) There's not much we can do and they prescribe cream and it goes away for a bit but then comes back. I have been doing lots of research on this and started putting coconut oil on her hot spot. I noticed after 2 days that there's a little blue spot on one of the hot spot that looks like a small tiny bruise. Is that normal?? Does that mean it's starting to heal?? also what can I do to stop her from licking her hot spot while I take care of them.. I am assuming a cone?? lol... I would love to be able to help her stop licking herself. She seems to have a pretty good life here. Any help would be appreciate it.. thanks

    1. Yes I am familiar with OCD licking :>) Mind you this type of licking can also occur if you have used a chemical based flea treatment on your cat which then creates an adverse reaction...hence the licking.

      Add 1/4 tsp of turmeric to her food twice a day

      #2 Make some chicken stock and add 1 to 2 tbs of that to her food as well twice a day - recipe is in this article

      Make sure there are no grains in the cat food (wet or dry) that you are feeding your cat.

      #3 Add some real meat to his food every day - i.e. a bit of chicken or chicken liver, salmon.

      #4 Add 1/2 a capsule of cod liver oil to his food once a day;

      You can try applying a thin coat of raw unpasturized honey to the spots, if you can get organic it is better, but non-organic will be ok. Has to be raw unpasturized though!

      The little blue spot could be skin healing with a little dark pigment spot. It could be a small bruise - I would not be too concerned about it unless it changes in nature.

      It will take a while for the added food stuffs to help take effect (make those items part of his normal daily diet), so in between if you want to stop the licking you would have to use a cone.

      p.s. if you are using chemcial based insect preventatives on him stop! Read my series of articles on natural protection.

      Cheers, K

  5. I've tried this with my dog, after reading this blog post, and he really likes it and it seems to be helping his allergies. I am very excited because I feel like we tried everything! Thank you!

  6. I am excited to try this, My Coonhound has allergies which are creating little skin sores/bumps and itchiness and nothing has helped. My question is How does fish oil come in to play when using coconut oil? Do I stop or reduce both dosages? She still would need the Omega 3's. Thank you for you help!!

    1. Hi Beverlee,

      Coconut oil is a good source Omega-6 fatty acid, fish oil is an Omega-3 fatty acid - your girl needs both :>) so continue with the fish oil in addition to the coconut oil. Read this article to understand more about the important role of 3 and 6

      Sounds like your Coonhound has environmental allergies. Raw unpasturized honey produced within a 50 mile radius of where you live would also be beneficial for her

      As well Rooibos Tea

      Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

      100% aloe vera juice

      And a diet that is free of the many toxins and carcinogens found in most commercial dog food - read my articles on dog food - you can find a listing of the series here

      This recipe for homemade grain free dog food would help boost her immune system as well

    2. And BTW - your coonhound girl is very beautiful, love her pic in the White Mountains! I used to go there every summer to hike in the mountains with my first dog :>)

  7. Don't know where to post this re: effective, low cost, safe and natural treatment for demodectic (and sarcoptic) mange. I've helped two owners cure their demodectic dogs with diatomaceous earth. Both spent thousands of $ and the dogs got very ill and were never helped. They refused to kill their dogs. Rub d-earth (food grade)into animal as if they jumped into a vat of flour. if needed repeat. Just wait for the hair to regrow, and love your animal. The finely ground silca feels like a fine talc, but it scratches the exoskeleton of the mite (even follicular mites like demodectic) and they dehydrate. Totally non-toxic, and safe, no side effects or resistance. I have used it to control mites in my bird cages for years. Safe for cats and all animals, even to eliminate garden pests. EVERYONE, PLEASE STOP KILLING DEMODECTIC ANIMALS!

    1. One very important clarification to the comment made above...

      Diatomaceous Earth (DE) that is used (either topically or as an ingested treatment for companion animals) must be FOOD\GRADE. Agricultural - horticultural DE should NEVER be used on animals. should always be food grade I have a series of articles on natural, herbal, homeopathic insect and parasite control.

      The chemical based treatments for demodectic mange, and for other insect, parasite infestations are toxic and carcinogenic. For anyone wanting to understand more about this topic you can read this series of articles...also covered in these articles - DE (what it is, benefits, and use)...

      Flea, Tick, Heartworm, Parasite Prevention for Dogs, Cats – What You Should Know Before Putting Your Dog, Cat on Chemical, Pesticide-Based Preventatives and Treatments

      DIY Natural, Herbal Homeopathic Flea, Tick, Mite, Mosquito Repellent Sprays, Rubs, Dips for Dogs and Cats

      DIY Natural, Herbal, Homeopathic Dewormers for Dogs and Cats

      Foods That Help Your Dog, Cat Naturally Repel, Eliminate Infestations of Insects, Parasites

      Add DIY Natural Supplements to Your Dog's, Cat's Diet to Protect Against the Toxins, Carcinogens in Conventional Flea, Tick, Heartworm, Parasite Preventatives and Treatments

      Does Your Dog Really Need to Be On Heartworm Medication? The Truth about Heartworm Prevention, Conventional Preventatives, Natural Safe Alternatives

      Lemon - a Safe, Natural Mosquito Repellent for Dogs
      If you are in a zone in which you must use heartworm pills I suggest that you off-set the

      And I am in 100% agreement with the comment above, dogs that have DE are curable, and part of that cure is boosting their immune system and over-all health with a truly good diet - you can go to this page to read a wealth of information on nutrition.

  8. Hi,
    I have read with great interest your recipes, mainly for yeast infections. I breed Persian cats who seemed to be plagued with skin issues. I have used medicated shampoos for months on end, very expensive prescription medications and nothing seems to cure the infection. I was so happy to fall on your site and pleased to see recipes that I can make.
    What would you recommend as a natural shampoo for yeast/fungus skin issues

    1. I would recommend that you treat the yeast infections on two fronts - topically and through dietary changes...

      Diet is the #1 cause of yeast infections and to eradicate the problem you need to change the diet. In the meantime bathing with something more effective will help sooth their skin, but will not stop the yeast flare-ups. As you have seen all the shampoos have not stopped the condition as they do not treat the root cause - which is diet.


      If you would like guidance on changing their diet to stop the yeast infections I would be pleased to assist you. You will find my consultation rates noted at the bottom of each article.

  9. Hi Karen,
    Thank you for all of the information you post here. I have a 3-year-old mini schnauzer, and he has been dealing with an array of food and seasonal allergies for as long as I've had him. I began seeing a holistic vet earlier this year, and he believes in many of the same diet principles you've posted here.

    Anyway, my schnauzer is allergic to fish, so I have not been able to supplement him with fish oil. I also think there is some possibility he may be allergic to flax. I am trying to meet his omega needs, so I began supplementing with coconut oil (and plan to try chia). I ended up giving him more oil than I should have on the first night, and his anal glands were then leaky. He tends to have leaky glands when something he eats doesn't agree with his stomach. Do you think the coconut oil may have caused this as part of the detox process? Or, do you think he may have an issue with the oil? Thanks!

    1. Hi :>)

      Coconut oil - yes it could be his system detoxing and it might also be that he is allergic to the coconut oil.

      Have you ever given him any kind of detoxer before - such as milk thistle or licorice root - and if you did did has anal glades leak? If he did not have leakage in the past from detoxing then yes he might be sensitive to coconut oil.

      For a sensitive doggie such as your schnauzer I would recommend introducing coconut oil at about 1/8 of the full dosage - wait a few days and then re-introduce coconut oil at 1/8 dosage.

      Meat, eggs and dairy obtained from grass fed, truly organic animals is high in Omega-3. Try to fed him organic to increase his intake of Omega-3.

      If he is allergic to flax seed he will probably be allergic to chia seeds.

      Cheers, Karen

  10. I recently came across this dog food healthy extension. I was curious how it stacked up based on your expertise. The ingredients are: Organic Chicken, Chicken Meal, Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Potatoes, Chickpeas, Chicken Fat (Naturally Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Fresh Whole Sweet Potatoes, Alfalfa Sprouts, Pumpkin, Pea Fiber, Fresh Whole Carrots, Dulse, Sea Salt, Whole Blueberries, Whole Cranberries, Potassium Chloride, Spinach, Tomato, Beets, Parsley, Chicory Root Extract, Sage, Basil, Apple Cider Vinegar, Green Tea Extract, DHA, Ginger, Primrose Oil, Glucosamine, Chondroitin, Colostrum, Blue Green Algae, Dl Methionine, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin E Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Coral Calcium, Vitamin D, Magnesium, Niacin Supplement, Choline chloride, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Biotin, Inositol, Omega 3 / Omega 6 Oils, Polysaccharide Complexes of Zinc, Iron, Manganese, Copper and Cobalt, Calcium lodate, Sodium Selenite, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Pectin, Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product Dehydrated, Lactobacillus Casei, Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product Dehydrated, B. Subtillus, Bacillus Lichenformis, Bacillus Coagulins, Aspergillus Oryzae and Aspergillus Niger
    Im just starting to look at and understand dog food labels.
    Thank you for your amazing site

    1. Hi Sarah,

      Although the food contains some nice ingredients - most of those ingredients have lost their value due to the processing required to make the food. At $30.00/10 pounds it is a waste of $.

      The add Dl Methionine, a sure sign that there was not enough meat in the recipe in the first place and that the amino acids in the meat have been severely degraded during processing. Colostrum and the bacterial strains (last 3 lines of ingredients) are non-viable. Same is true for the apple cider vinegar - which was not organic and not unpasturized so even fresh would have been useless. The Omega 3 content is very low.

      This food gets a thumbs down for being an over-priced, underachieving and misleading product.

      Cheers, K

  11. I have a female wolfdog and have got lost in google hell trying to find a good diet for her, she locked up on her first season and I am wanting the very best diet for her.. Thank you for this info and will defiantly try it..

  12. I put my St Bernard on the coconut oil and changed his food due to hot spots and ear problems. I think he is detoxing? he started with chewing his paws and now he stopped that and is chewing on his tail till its raw. if this is detoxing what can I do and how long will this last?

    1. Chewing on his tail is not because he is detoxing. He is chewing his tail becasue you still have not removed all of the items from his diet that he is allergic to and/or he has acquired an anxious habit as fall-out from the stress you have gone through dealing with his allergies.

  13. I have a 10 yr old Shih Tzu rescue dog, I have had him about 3 months. He has a skin issue that looks like dandruff. Just white, flaky patches. He does not scratch or chew, just licks & then they become inflamed. I have been feeding him coconut oil for about 3 weeks, which he loves. He has no fleas & has had no flea treatment since I got him. I have been feeding him Dick Van Pattens Duck & Potato limited ingredient food for about 2 weeks, & give him a homemade concoction of either poached beef or turkey with potatoes & carrots rather than canned food. He seems to have gotten worse as the heat here has increased. He walks around town 3 times a day & loves his walks & is very social and loveable, but his poor skin seems so miserable. Any suggestions what else I can do to help him? The vet gave him antibiotics (of course) and a shampoo with maseleb. I am not seeing improvement. I wonder if he is allergic to our cat? I don't want to keep him on antibiotics and I don't want to give him benedryl either. These are the only suggestions I seem to get from vets. Please help my poor Biscuit!

    1. For this you would require a consultation - his diet must be properly addressed and nutritionally complete, herbs and nutraceuticals are required and proper truly natural topical treatment - solvable when approached truly holistically

  14. Hi, I have a 12 yr old cat that was diagnosed with a tumor in her chest cavity 2 years ago. She has been treated by a homeopathic vet since her diagnosis and a good portion of her diet is raw. She still has symptoms altho I have not had an xray done since her diagnosis. I've been reading how beneficial coconut oil is for animals (and people) and wondering if i should add this to her diet and if you know of any other supplements/foods/spices that are known to shrink tumors. Thanks for your help!

    1. Yes there are other foods, herbs and nutraceuticals that you should be adding to your cat's diet to fight the growth of the tumor, and if possible shrink the tumor. The main food, supplements and health regimen should be carefully scrutinized and designed to work together to fight the tumor. Also, it is important to realize that just because you are feeding raw does not mean that your cat's main food is free of carcinogens. I recommend this

  15. My toy poodle has had skin problems for over a year now. Every time I took him to the vet, they wanted to give me allergy pills which never helped. Finally, I went to a vet that did skin biopsies and diagnosed him with atopic dermatitis. He gave him a steroid shot, and for about a week, it was miraculous .... all rough itchy patches gone, no chewing, etc. The vet put him on a steroid pill for about a month, and then lowered the dosage and started him on Atopica. It is not helping. He chews on his feet and legs until they bleed, and I feel terrible trying to make him stop .... when you itch, you want to scratch. I know he is miserable and I am also trying to figure out how to help. Can you help me?

    1. Yes I can help you. The steroids, the atopica will only serve to deteriorate his health. I can address this for you via a custom designed holistic diet nutrition wellness plan - feel free to email me if you are serious about having my help.

  16. Hi Karen, I have an 11 year old mini daschund with alot of food allergies. Is it possible for her to be allergic to turmeric, coconut oil, apple cider vineger or DE even though she has never had any of these before? She has had a splenectomy, liver infection and now numerous (14 at last count) fatty deposits in the last year, with no known causes for any of these. She has been on Flovent (4 puffs per day) to help control her bronchial allergies, for the last 10 years, and her diet is better than the rest of the family's, fresh steamed vegetables and beef or salmon at each meal. I have started her on the turmeric and coconut oil for the past week, but it seems that her allergies have increased...I am having her liver enzymes retested tomorrow, as well as rerunnung her blood panel for an updated list of food allergies, but I fear she is not doing well. What recommendations do you have for us, I am feeling somewhat desperate...thanks! Ck

    1. Hi Cassandra - for a dog that is dealing with multiple inflammatory conditions such as your dog is - a properly designed holistic approach is required. This is not what you are currently doing. You just added four powerful detoxers to your dog's diet all at the same time. You should be doing this

  17. I have a 4 yr old German Shepherd with either a food allergy or auto-immune disorder (the biospy results could not tell for sure) causing a large ulcer in the roof of her mouth. I am being told long term steroid treatment (as auto-immune is the more likely cause) is what is in the future. I am not a fan of this plan, so I am looking to see if there a natural or alternative treatment possibly out there?

    1. No steroid treatment is required, and in fact would be health deteriorating for her. Yes this can be dealt with naturally - properly designed diet c/w with herbs, nutraceuticals and alternative medicines

  18. Last year my Newfie/ Lab/ German Shepherd mix developed a fatty cell on his side ,could coconut oil be a bad idea for him because of its high fat count? the vet recommends surgery to remove it because of were it is on him but wasn't concerned he had one. I don't have a job right now so I cant afford surgery.

    1. Recommended reading for you

  19. Hi! I've come across your blog and have been avidly reading all your posts in hopes of an answer for my pup! My 4.5month old Chihuahua puppy is now on her second round of Panacur for Giardia. She's so small that I would hate to have to constantly bring her in for medication and was looking into natural alternatives. Do you think that coconut oil and turmeric would aid in getting rid of this parasite?

    1. If you want to get her off of synthetic-chemical drugs, and treat the Giardia naturally a consultation is recommended. You can give her coconut and turmeric, both are good for her, but doing so will not eradicate Giardia


Important Note

1.0 Use of Foods, Herbs, Alternative Medicines:

Safe use of items and protocols in the article above, is your sole responsibility.

Foods, herbs and alternative medicines have health issue, condition and conventional drug interactions. Safe use of all substances and protocol are your responsibility.

Before you use any substance or protocol do your research. Check for cautions, contradictions, interactions and side effects. Do not use substances or protocols not suitable to your animal's individual circumstances.

If your animal has an underlying condition substances and protocols may conflict.

2.0 Definition of Holistic…

Food, herbs, alternative medicines are NOT ‘holistic’ they are a substance and MAY, or may NOT be ‘NATURAL’.

If you use a ‘natural’ substance (ie. an herb) you are using a natural substance, not a holistic substance.

Holistic is not defined by use of one or several substances. Holistic is an approach.

Definition of “holistic” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press


"relating to the whole of something or to the total system instead of just to its parts"

"Holistic medicine attempts to treat the whole person, including mind and body, not just the injury or disease."

Holistic is a way of approaching life, and within that health, and well-being.

3.0 Expectation a natural substance remedies a health or behavioral situation.

A natural substance used to treat symptoms. But, if factors causing the underlying issue remain you do not have a remedy.

Remedy requires a comprehensive approach. It is necessary to identify root cause. Remove items that trigger, cause or otherwise contribute to issues. Holistic approach includes design, implementation to treat, remedy and maintain long-term health.

4.0 Leave a Comment

I review all comments and publish those deemed appropriate for this site.

I answer questions deemed appropriate when I have time to do so.

Wishing your dog and cat the best of health!

Karen Rosenfeld
Holistic Diet Nutrition Wellness Practitioner – Dogs and Cats
Holistic Behaviorist - Dogs
Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer