Is Olive Oil Helpful or Harmful for Dogs?

Every dog owner wants to do what’s best for their dog. One of the biggest conflicts owners deal with is whether people food is good for their dog, and if so, which foods are good and how much can their dog have?

Olive oil is one of those foods that is really more of an additive than a food like a peach slice or a slab of ham. The first thing that needs to be mentioned here is that olive oil is not the same as cooking oil. When olive oil is mentioned throughout this article, do not understand it to mean any cooking oil. But whether it is virgin olive oil, extra virgin, or just plain olive oil, the information provided here is the same for all three types.

One of the most common uses of olive oil in a dog’s food is to “sweeten” it up.

But the short answer is “yes” – a dog can have any type of olive oil, and there are a number of healthy benefits that go along with it. Ask your dog; they’ll tell you. Adding the natural oil will give their dry dog food some moisture (only a tablespoon full is necessary) and has even been used to make the kinda-stale dry food more edible. From a human food perspective, think of it as having the choice of eating pancakes with or without maple syrup. You know which of the two you would prefer.

If your pooch is starting to look more like a pig than a dog, then adding olive oil to their food will help them drop a few of those extra pounds. Dogs, like people, can develop sensitivity to insulin and cause it to not act as efficiently as it should. Also, olive oil will break down fat, so instead of the cells storing the fat it will send it out and away of the body. This is one of those cases where you can learn from your dog’s dietary habits.

Did you know that cancer is responsible for the deaths of more than 50 percent of the canine population after they reach 10 years old? Olive oil contains oleic acid, which has been studied and known to prevent cancer in dogs. It also has a high concentration of monounsaturated fats (not all fats are bad for you) which ash been proven to reduce cardiovascular disease and diabetes among the dog population. Adding these two nutrients to your dog’s diet can potentially extend their life by 3 years or more.

Using olive oil as an additive to your dog’s diet will help them look younger, longer, though it is not clear that they will notice the difference. But from a “beauty is only skin deep” perspective, olive oil will act as a skin conditioner and extend it to the appearance of their furry coat. The reason is it acts to increase the moisture in the dog’s body and transfer it to the coat.

Most owners want not only a good looking dog but an intelligent one as well. When we use the phrase “dumb dog” it usually is not complimentary, so olive oil to the rescue! In fact, the smarter your dog is, the longer he will keep his smarts when you include olive oil into his diet regimen. It is what we call a brain food, helping to retain the cognitive functions of the brain in both dogs and humans.

Finally, there is the preventative medicine aspect of olive oil. The frontline of defense in a dog’s body is its immune system, and it bolsters the dog’s immune system because it contains high levels of free radical fighting antioxidants. Given daily, it also increases the blood flow in your dog, giving them an energy boost at little cost to you. If you have a dog that suffers from asthma or is prone to having trouble breathing, feeding them olive oil helps alleviate the symptoms and lets them breathe normally.

You can conclude that olive oil is not only good for your dog, depending on the breed or general health of your dog giving them olive oil will actually make their overall life better. Your home should have an abundant supply of olive oil to use for cooking and for your dog. Both of you will benefit from adding a little to your diet each day.

Is there a bad side to olive oil? Every owner needs to see how their dog responds to anything new in their dietary regimen. It may take a couple of days to notice any negative effects giving them olive oil may have. Not all dogs are the same, so if you notice any adverse effects after giving the dog olive oil, stop immediately and call the veterinarian for information and advice.

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