From Fish Oil to Coconut Oil
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Discover the benefits of these supplements.

Fish Oil has DHA (omega-3 fatty acid) and EPA (polyunsaturated fatty acid) that helps regulate the immune system, reduce inflammation, supports the brain and nervous system, and contributes to skin, coat, heart, kidney and joint health such as arthritis.

Like many fat supplements, most dogs and cats can benefit from fish oil. It eases inflammation due to allergies and reduces itchy skin and dandruff, which can some times be an effective way to decrease hot spots on your pet. It promotes a shiny healthy coat and reduces shedding. For cats, this may also mean fewer hairballs, since your cat won’t pick up as many loose hairs while grooming.

 

Healthy dogs and cats do well with a little bit of fish oil daily. You can increase the amount of fish oil if your dog or cat has allergies, arthritis, kidney disease, heart disease, cancer or other inflammatory or immune-medicated conditions. 

Fish oil won’t become toxic if too much is taken, but a dosage too large could result in uncomfortable side effects such as diarrhea. If you start to see such a problem, start reducing the amount of oil you are giving your pet. Plus, do not use fish oil supplements if you are giving you pet any blood thinning or anti-inflammatory medications without first consulting your vet. 

One of the more popular supplemental oils in recent years has been Coconut Oil. Owners who have given their dogs, cats or horses coconut oil report shiny coats, healthy skin and less odor.

Coconut Oil is compromised of saturated fats. They are a good source of fuel for the body, aid in absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and used to build cell membranes. These are different from omega fatty acids, which are polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats found in fish. Saturated fats are solid at room temperature, coconut oil will become liquid at 76 degrees and good quality coconut oil is colorless when liquid and white when solid.  This oil does not normally go rancid, even when exposed to summer heat, making it a good thing for horse ranches. 

Dogs and cats with fat intolerance might more easily digest coconut oil. Dogs and cats that eat low fat diets because of problems with fat digestion might benefit from the addition of small amounts of coconut oil, which can help them feel satisfied and avoid deficiencies of fat-soluble vitamins.

If you decide to add coconut oil to pet’s diet start with small amounts and gradually increase them every few days. If you see problems such as diarrhea, lethargy or discomfort, reduce the amount you give. The maximum recommended dose for a dog or a cat is 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds of body weight daily, with ? a teaspoon being the average daily amount. 

You can feed coconut oil directly, mix it in food or apply it topically to disinfect and promote healing or sores, bites, stings, cracked paw pads and wounds. Coconut Oil comes in fresh and dried form. 

For horses, Coconut Oil is an excellent alternative for vegetable oils. It’s been known to assist with ulcers, helps treat mud fever and is an excellent essential fatty acid to help with allergy prone horses. It does wonders with dry cracked hooves and can be used as a coat, mane and tail conditioner. It can also entice picky eaters. Many horses seem to love the taste so it is a great way to hide less palatable supplements and medication. 

When adding coconut oils to you feeding program it’s important to introduce it gradually and adjust to your horse’s needs. The recommended dosage is to start with 1/8 to 1/2 of a cup per day and stir or mash it into your horse’s daily bucket. If you are unsure how much to use, consult your vet, since every horse’s dietary needs are unique. 

As with any supplement, dosage is important. Start small, work you way up to the correct dosage for your pet and read product labels carefully. Most dosage information provided on product labels are just a general guideline, consult your veterinarian if you are not sure about the correct dosage.

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