Coconut oil has long been praised as a superfood for humans but did you know that your cat can benefit from it just as much? Read on for the benefits this super oil can have for your cat.
Coconut oil is one of the most popular superfoods thanks to its many health benefits, so it’s no surprise that our furry feline friends can also reap some of its benefits.
Here are five ways your cat can benefit from coconut oil.
Note: Before you start incorporating coconut oil into your cat’s diet, introduce it to them by applying a small amount to your finger and letting your cat lick it off. If they seems to enjoy it and after 2-3 hours show no signs of an allergic reaction, then you can safely add it to their food or coat one of their toys with it to be licked off and enjoyed.
1. Clear up skin issues
Some cats may experience a variety of skin concerns over their lifetime and some may need actual veterinary attention, but in the case of dry skin or psoriasis, coconut oil can help alleviate any irritation. To use as a moisturizer for your cat’s skin issues, rub a small amount on the affected area once a day. Even if your cat isn’t having these skin issues, you can use it to keep her skin and coat moisturized and healthy.
2. Soothe tummy troubles
Is your cat having trouble passing stool? Coconut oil may help with that. The medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) in coconut oil make it a natural laxative and anti inflammatory substance which can help your cat with its constipation, painful stools or bacterial gut infection.
3. Alleviate inflammation
As cats age, they become more susceptible to inflammatory health issues like arthritis and painful swollen joints. Coconut oil can help alleviate these symptoms, thanks to the anti-inflammatory properties of lauric acid found in the oil.
4. Relieve discomforts caused by hairballs
Hairballs are no fun to deal with for both cat and owner, but adding a bit of coconut oil to their diet can help reduce inflammation in the respiratory tract that can occur when your cat regurgitates hairballs. It also helps your cat pass more easily by adding moisture and bulk to the hairballs.
5. Improve brain health
Is your cat basking in the glory of her golden girl years? Adding coconut oil to her diet may help improve brain function thanks to the medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) found in coconut oil. These MCTs have been clinically shown to improve brain health, thus will help your cat maintain cognitive function. Add 1/4 teaspoon per ten pounds of body weight twice a day for basic MCT support.
Remember, coconut oil is high in fat and calories, so if you’re planning on introducing it into your cat’s diet, do so in moderation. If you notice rapid weight gain, avoid giving them coconut oil every day and make sure they have enough physical activity in their day-to-day lives so they stay healthy. Although allergic reactions are rare to coconut oil, you should still take the possibility into consideration. Discontinue use immediately if your cat vomits, has trouble breathing, stops eating or has a more serious digestive reaction.