Is Olive Oil Good For Dogs?
In a nutshell, indeed it is! Olive oil has all sorts of health benefits for pets – it’s a staple food source in every kitchen and it makes a healthy addition to your dog’s diet – Holiday’s4Dogs finds out why.
Immune system benefits.
Olive oil is great for the immune system because it is rich in polyphenols and carotenoids which can help to improve the overall function of the immune system. Any animal with a stronger immune system is better prepared to fight off infection and dogs are no different in their bodies’ ability to reap benefits from olive oil.
If your dog has dry, or flaky skin, olive oil added to his, or her, diet may well be the answer. It is rich in Vitamin E which can help repair dry, flaky, itchy skin, in a matter of a few days sometimes.
Add half a tablespoon to your dog’s diet twice a day for a few days until you see improvement in your dog’s skin – then reduce the amount to a few drops per day to prevent flakiness from returning. An added advantage is that you are bound to notice your dog’s coat begin to shine from the added moisturising properties of this oil. The polyphenols found in olive all also have anti-inflammatory properties.
Increases blood flow.
As in humans, olive oil can help increase blood flow and reduces the effects of conditions such as asthma. Therefore, breeds such as pugs, or bulldogs, with shortened faces are very likely to benefit from the addition of this to their diet.
Olive oil can also help weight loss, so if your dog is a bit on the portly side, this may help him shed a few extra pounds. Fats in the oil help to break down the fat within cells. As a result, this has the effect of speeding up the fat burning process, just as it can in people. In addition, olive oil can guard against the onset of diabetes because it helps reduce insulin sensitivity.
Even your dog’s brain power can be increased by consuming olive oil. It is a great brain food, just the same as oils found in fish, and it can help your dog to keep more focused – ideal for puppies in training, or helping senior dogs to stay sharper for longer. There are numerous positive studies on how olive oil is capable of improving cognitive function and memory.
Olive oil is a great way to liven up a dog’s dinner if Fido is a bit on the finicky side. Many dogs love the taste of olive oil and it’s a great way to spice up doggy dinners, especially if they are of the dry ‘kibble’ variety.
Some olive oils can be very expensive, but all supermarkets stock reasonably priced olive oil. It is best to add extra virgin olive oil where possible as this contains the most beneficial properties for both humans and canines. In order for your dog to receive all of the health benefits we’ve mentioned, you will need to add about a tablespoon to their diet each day. You can also massage olive oil directly to your dog’s skin or coat.
There are no known risks of adding olive oil to your dog’s diet. However, like any new food, add it gradually over a period of days.