Coconut oil is one of the many natural things that you should always find in our small-dog household. I normally look for organic and unrefined coconut oil as these have the best aroma and flavor, not to mention the better healthy goodness profile (in terms of lauric acid and anti oxidants, among others).

For the humans at home, I use coconut oil to ‘healthify’ recipes in baking, and cooking. I also tried using it (and still do) as moisturizer for both skin and hair… and it was then I saw how our small dogs - Yana and Butch go loco over coco. The little furballs just wouldn’t stop licking off the coconut oil on us!

5 excellent uses of coconut oil for small dogs 

And so began my experiment with coconut oil and our small dogs --- here are some of their favorite ways: 

5 Quick and Easy Uses of Coconut oil in a small-dog-life

  1. Tear stain rub with coconut oil

Chihuahuas tear a lot because of their big eyes. Normally the tear marks are below their lower eyelids. Yana - our small Chihuahua has this. Butch - our big Chihuahua has this as well, however, his more prominent tear marks are the ones sliding down the side of his nose and towards his whiskers. The vet told us to put some olive oil on this to prevent infection. I tried coconut oil thinking he will resist the exercise less if he gets a bit of tasting in between… how right I was!          

  1. Quick paw butter with coconut oil

Dry paws is something all of us pet parents have experienced. I use a home made doggie paw butter, however, I usually keep it in the bedroom for our nighttime paw rub routine. One afternoon, torn between wanting to do something about Butch’s dry paws and not disturbing his doggie nap on my lap, I reached for the coconut oil, which happened to be nearby. (We used it for a tearstain rub earlier in the day.) Needless to say, his nap (and Yana’s too) was interrupted by the mouth-watering coconut smell and lead to another one of those non-stop paw-licking intermissions. Since then, daytime paw rubs are with coconut oil.
5 excellent uses of coconut oil for small dogs
  1. Toothpaste replacement with coconut oil

Brushing small dog teeth is always a drama with Yana and involves a lot of wrestling with Butch. I am certain at these times, I have become ‘evil’ in the eyes of our small dogs and they probably hate me for a minute after.

I have yet to find chemical free dog toothpaste that I like. In my desperation of finding an alternative that can help our doggies tolerate brushing time longer, I tried - you guessed - coconut oil again!

My strategy was:

    • let the dogs lick a bit of the coconut oil on the toothbrush (as a treat)
    • try to do a bit of brushing
    • stop brushing and let the furbabies lick just coconut oil again
    • continue brushing and repeat
I feel I managed to get a slightly longer brushing time, but then again, it could just be me. I continue to try =)
  1.  Coconut oil as drinking water additive 

Part of my home remedies to alleviate bad doggie breath (aside from regular tooth brushing of course) is to add a drop of peppermint essential oil into a 750ml of drinking water. Pure and unadulterated peppermint essential oil is quite potent in smell and taste even with only a drop. Worried about the peppermint flavor being too strong, I turned to coconut oil to make the taste more palatable for our small dogs. It actually worked - when given the choice of plain water vs. the peppermint coconut flavored one, they even chose the latter!
  1. Coconut oil as food and treat ingredient

Knowing by now how our small dogs love coconut oil, adding it to my dog treat recipes was inevitable. I know from experience that the coco-nutty taste complements almost anything sweet very nicely. So the sweet treats were the next to get experimented on. I tried adding coconut oil to baked and frozen treats based on apple, carrots, banana, sweet potato, yogurt or peanut butter (as replacement for another oil or simply an addition) and they all turned out great!
I cook my small dogs’ dinners on weekends, too. It’s a simple mixture of meat or fish, veggies, with a bit of fruit on top. Sometimes, I add coconut oil when I use chicken or turkey. I don’t do it when it’s beef on the menu as it’s already very fatty on its own.
5 excellent uses of coconut oil for small dogs

Dogs like humans are unique and special. What works for our small dogs may not necessarily work for yours. What our small dogs like, yours may not. What our small dogs can have lots of, yours may be allergic to – so please always consult your vet before trying anything new.

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