Olive oil is a gift from nature. It is loaded with good fats and it can give you tremendous health benefits. Among them, it can protect you against diabetes, it helps relieve inflammation, and it reduces the risk of any type of cancer.
You may use it as a health supplement, as a cooking ingredient, and even part of your beauty regimen. Olive oil is undoubtedly safe for human consumption. But is it also non-toxic to dogs?
Many pet owners are concerned about this matter mainly because the foods we give our dogs are sometimes cooked using olive oil. We often use it as finishing drizzle on salads and pasta dishes. It also makes grilled chicken taste better.
Can dogs eat olive oil? If yes, how much is safe for them?
Before we answer all this, let’s first see the benefits of olive oil for canines.
The Health Benefits of Olive Oil for Dogs
This oil is as useful to animals as it is for humans. Here are some of the advantages of giving your pet olive oil:
1. It could improve his energy. Struggling to help keep dog moving. Olive oil might save the day!
2.Olive oil can help your pet have a shinier and healthier-looking coat. Olive oil is a natural remedy for dog skin problems such as a dry, flaky, and itchy coat. The omega-3 fatty acids in olive oil help moisturize your pet’s coat.
3.It can make your pet smarter. Olive is one of the best foods for the brain. When you have a senior dog, you may offer olive oil to him once a day to keep his brain sharper.
4.It is known to improve gallbladder health. Olive oil is good for overall immune health because of its high antioxidant content.
5.live oil can help your pup ward off diseases. It is rich in antioxidants such as vitamin E and polyphenol that can serve as your pet’s deterrent against free radicals.
6.It reduces a dog’s risk of having cancer. Canines become more prone to cancer when they reach the age of 10. Olive oil contains oleic acid that is known to prevent all types of cancer.
7.Olive oil can help your pet get rid of the extra weight. It is one of the natural oils that have the capability to make you feel full.
The Recommended Amount of Olive Oil for Pets
Holistic veterinarian Judy Morgan and dermatologist Christopher Reeder both recommend giving a maximum of one teaspoon for a dog weighing 20 pounds. You may add it to his meals daily. Large dogs may have up to two tablespoons.
Extra large dogs may have up to three tablespoons of olive oil. You can also give it straight, if your pet likes it. In case you are planning to regularly give olive oil to your pet, make sure that he is involved in physical activities. This way, the additional fats from the olive oil will not be stored in his body.
Other Uses of Olive Oil for Dogs
Olive oil is not just a healthy addition to any dog’s diet, it can also be used externally. Here are the surprising uses of olive oil:
- Natural remedy for skin problems
Is your pooch suffering from dry and itchy skin? This is a normal condition for dogs living in countries with winter season. Your veterinarian will likely recommend antibiotics to treat the itching but if your only concern is the dryness that keeps reappearing you may try olive oil. All you need to do is pour a tablespoon of olive oil on the affected area three times a week. If your dog has flea bites, moisten a washcloth using olive oil and gently massage it on the bitten area.
- Diluter for essential oils
Aromatherapy is safe for your pet as long as it is done right. It is done by letting your pet sniff a bottle of the essential oil. You can choose from the safe essential oils for canines. Put a maximum of five drops of your chosen essential oil and dilute it with a carrier oil. It can be given to canines with skin irritations, flea infestation, and even anxiety.
When giving essential oils to canines, it’s a must that they are diluted first with carrier oils so they will not irritate the animal’s skin. Olive oil is a type of carrier oil that can go together with safe essential oils like lavender, sweet marjoram, and helichrysum.
- Topical for burns
In case your pet’s nose got sunburned, you may drab a bit of olive oil on the affected area. Or if your pup just walked on a hot surface, you may apply some olive oil on his paws to soothe them. Warm olive oil is best for massaging your pet’s paws after they were exposed to heat.
- Massage oil for pets
Like us humans, our pets also need some loving and you can show it in your own ways. One of the best ways to do this with pets is to offer a massage!
Mix the olive oil with crushed calendula flowers and you’ll create the perfect massage oil for your pet. If you haven’t tried massaging your pet, start by gently petting him. Touch areas of his body just to clam him. Let him relax first and be in a comfortable position before you start with the massage. With dogs, it is important to be as gentle as possible because he might flinch when you add a pressure.
- Ear cleaner
Ear infections are common to dogs, especially to those with floppy ears like the Dachshund, Beagle, and Bloodhound breeds. You may treat mild infections at home using olive oil. You can simply put it in the canal or you can also mix it with tea tree essential oil to effectively flush out any bacteria. For severe infections that cannot be treated with olive oil, it is best to take him to his vet who will prescribe the accurate treatment.
Safety of Giving Olive Oil to Canines
Keep the bottles out of your pet’s reach. The only thing you should watch out for is to not get your pet into a bottle of olive oil. What will happen if the dog drank all the oil? Fortunately, your dog will not be poisoned but you should keep an eye on him for signs of pancreatitis. Here are the symptoms of pancreatitis in canines:
- not eating and drinking
- repeated vomiting
- lack of energy
- pain in the abdomen
If these clinical signs are present, it’s best to consult your pet doctor about it. The vet will do lab exams and ultrasounds to diagnose pancreatitis.
Pancreatitis is often caused by fatty meals. It is a life-threatening issue that should be treated immediately.
More importantly, don’t give olive oil to your dog when he is already suffering from diarrhea. Doing so could worsen his stomach upset and might affect his gastrointestinal tract.
Olive Oil Buying Guide
Not all olive oils are created equal. When going to the local supermarket for your supply of olive oil, keep these things in mind:
1.Use an extra virgin olive oil. It has the highest quality out there. Compared to the regular olive oil, extra virgin oil has a fresher taste because it has a lower acidity level. It was not refined so it retains all the anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants. While virgin olive oil will give you the exact benefits as the extra-virgin, it’s worth noting that they did not go through the same strict process as the latter. So if you are more of a health buff, this “extra” in the label means a lot to you. Remember, you only have two best options: extra-virgin and virgin olive oil. Don’t buy the regular ones in clear bottles.
2.Avoid those olive oils in clear plastic bottles. Oil is quite sensitive to heat and light. Once exposed to these, the oil’s compounds break down and it loses its health benefits.
3.Opt for oils in dark bottles. There’s a science behind those olive oils manufactured in dark containers, especially when you are buying an extra virgin one. They tend to have an unpleasant taste when exposed to heat and light. If you cannot find the oil in a dark glass bottle, just settle for those packed in metal tins.
4.Look for the production date on the label. Olive oil can be stored for a year after the “Harvest Date” as long as they have not developed any rancid taste. Just make sure that they are kept in a dry and cool place.
Olive oil is safe for dogs both internally and externally. It is beneficial for your dog’s general health, from his brain to his skin and even to his immune system. When giving it straight, prepare it accordingly and follow your vet’s recommended intake. Avoid giving your dog too much oil because it might cause pancreatitis.