Coconut Oil for Horses?
Coconut oil is a completely natural supplement that can help boost your horse's health.
A natural health promoter
Coconut oil has shown to be an amazing supplement for humans, raising its popularity significantly in the last few years. Even Dr. Oz has touted its amazing effect on our general physiology. It appears that coconut oil is a little miracle product, providing a seemingly endless list of health benefits. However, always looking to share good health benefits with our equines, we've got to ask – how might this wonder oil work for our horses?
Is it safe?
Based upon applied science, coconut oil is safe both internally and topically for horses. When ingested, the medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil can actually double the efficiency of available essential fatty acids (EFA) and act as a protective barrier from destructive oxidation. Coconut oil is also extremely stable (pun intended), meaning that even at very high heat it's resistant to rancidity and can be stored safely for several months.
What are the benefits?
Coconut oil holds many similar benefits for horses as it does for humans. Some of these include:
- contains many antimicrobial properties
- improves metabolism
- helps regulate blood sugar levels
- aids and supports maximum immune function
- glossier mane and tail, healthier skin and coat
- helps better utilize available energy
- acts as a natural antioxidant
- improves digestion and absorption of certain vitamins and minerals
Additionally, coconut oil can be used as a hoof conditioner, mane and tail conditioner, and as a topical ointment for cuts, scrapes, rain rot, and other bacteria and fungi. It truly is an all-around health staple!
How much do I give my horse?
Though dosage can vary case by case, the general consensus for supplementing most horses is ½ to 1 cup per day, mixing it in with your horse's daily feed. Extra virgin coconut oil (EVCO) is recommended, though the exact type and brand is entirely up to you. Most natural grocers carry it, as does Trader Joe's, but try to find a supplier where you can get it cheaper in bulk. It's typically solid at room temperature, and should be white in color while having a light, coconut scent. Stay away from anything yellow or anything that doesn't have a smell (or has an odd smell!) at all.
With all the amazing things supplementing with coconut oil can do, you and your horse can happily eat your EVCO together and enjoy similar benefits, and you can feel good about giving your equine friend one of the best natural foods out there!