You may have heard about people feeding olive oil to their dog. And you probably wondered, “Olive oil for dogs? Is that even safe?”
Well, the answer isn’t just yes… it’s a RESOUNDING yes.
Because olive oil can have truly wonderful effects on your dog.
Olive oil is composed of healthy fatty acids, which is why we tend to choose it for our own diet over other vegetable oils. Here are five reasons why olive oil for dogs is a great idea:
1. It’s Wonderful For Their Skin
Just like us, dogs also suffer from dry, flaky skin. A much cheaper alternative to expensive conditioners is olive oil.
Because olive oil is rich in phytonutrients, vitamin E, and omega-3 fatty acids — so it can moisturize your pup’s dry skin (and add shine to a dull coat) from the inside out.
Try adding 5-10 drops of olive oil to your pup’s food, twice a day, for several days. Once you see an improvement, you can continue to feed your dog a few drops a day to help keep their skin and coat looking good. Avoid giving more than 1/2 tbsp of olive oil at once, as your dog may develop diarrhea.1 Continue reading below for proper feeding ratios for your dog.
While applying olive oil directly to your dog’s skin may seem like a good idea, it can increase their urge to lick this now delicious area, which could further aggravate dry skin.
And, choose extra-virgin olive oil, as it has a lower acidic content and a fresher taste.
2. It’s Food For Their Brains
Olive oil is rich in antioxidants. Eating plenty of antioxidants has been shown to be effective in fighting free radical damage that can cause certain illnesses, including dementia.
The vitamin E found in olive oil plays a big part in brain health, as it protects cell membranes from free radical damage. Vitamin E may be the most important antioxidant for dogs.2
Several human studies have also determined such a link. One such study found that the consumption of extra-virgin olive oil, or olive oil, appeared to protect memory and learning ability, and reduce the formation of plaques involved in dementia.3
Given these results, it would appear that olive oil might help to protect your dog’s brain from mental decline. Adding a bit of olive oil to your pup’s daily diet could prove beneficial for brain health, especially if your dog is getting on in age.
3. It May Help To Boost Their Immune System
Speaking of all those wonderful antioxidants, olive oil contains very special carotenoid antioxidants, which can help to improve the immune system.
Just like humans, dogs battle colds, especially around the change of a season. So consuming a few drops of olive oil with their meal might help your dog fight off nasty bugs.
4. It Can Aid In Better Digestion
When your dog is constipated, it’s hard to feel useful. But one of the most effective remedies for doggie constipation is olive oil!
Adding a little olive oil to your dog’s diet can help lubricate their digestive system and get things moving quickly. As a “laxative,” olive oil for dogs stimulates normal digestive movement. However, remember that too much olive oil for dogs can cause diarrhea, so you don’t want to overdo it.5
5. It Tastes Great!
Adding olive oil to your dog’s food can help them to enjoy it more – especially dry kibble. If they’re a picky eater, they might enjoy a new flavor, especially one that they associate with the mouth-watering smell of cooking something good in the kitchen.
What Is The Right Amount Of Olive Oil To Feed My Dog?
Whatever your reason for adding olive oil to your dog’s meal, just be sure you give them no more than one teaspoon per 20 lbs of body weight. Just mix it in with your pup’s wet or dry food.6
Who knew that good ol’ olive oil could be as healthy for your dog as it is for you? Is there anything that olive oil can’t do?!
Just remember: more of a good thing is not better in this case. Stick to the recommended dosage for the best results. If the olive oil doesn’t seem to help your dog, it’s time for a trip to your vet. Flaky skin and constipation can also be signs of more serious conditions.
Want to know more about other foods to feed (and avoid feeding) your dog? Read on:
Human Food For Dogs: Can Dogs Eat Pineapple?
7 Surprisingly Bad Foods for Dogs (They are Toxic!)
Human Food for Dogs: Can Dogs Eat Popcorn?