Olive oil is a staple ingredient in many households and tastes delicious as an addition to salad dressings or marinades. But while we enjoy eating olive oil, does the same apply to our furry best friends too? Can dogs eat olive oil, or is olive oil toxic to dogs?
Can dogs eat olive oil?
While many cooking oils are not particularly healthy for dogs, olive oil is the exception. When fed in moderate amounts, olive oil has some fantastic health benefits for your canine friend!
When served to your dog correctly and safely, olive oil can be a healthy and nutritious addition to your dog’s diet.
What are the health benefits of olive oil?
When fed to dogs in moderation, olive oil has some fantastic health benefits. Olive oil is often considered to be a superfood, and good-quality olive oil is rich in phytonutrients, vitamin E, and omega-3 fatty acids.
Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant and can help prevent cellular aging and death. This reduces the risk of age-related health problems such as dementia and certain types of cancer.
The omega-3 fatty acids in olive oil will help to keep your dog’s coat and skin in good health. The skin will be supple and more moisturized, with added shine and softness to the coat.
Most dogs enjoy the flavor of olive oil, and it can be used to make food more palatable. So, if your dog has a poor appetite, a drizzle of olive oil can help tempt your dog to eat. Olive oil has a mild laxative effect and can help to ease constipation.
What should I be aware of when offering olive oil to my dog?
The main concern when feeding olive oil to dogs is its high-fat content. This is a very energy-dense food source and can lead to weight gain if fed in excessive amounts.
If your dog is overweight or suffers from diabetes or pancreatitis, never add high-fat foods such as olive oil to the diet.
The best olive oil to give to dogs is extra-virgin olive oil. Avoid giving your dog foods that have been cooked in olive oil, as this will not have the same health benefits.
Finally, the laxative effect of olive oil can cause an upset stomach or diarrhea. Ensure that olive oil is introduced to the diet gradually and only ever given in limited amounts. For a medium-sized dog, a teaspoon of olive oil two or three times per week should be sufficient.
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