Treating Cat Skin Conditions with Coconut Oil

Cat skin contains natural oils that keep the coat shiny and healthy and prevent dry, itchy skin. However, if your cat develops a skin condition, coconut oil is a natural remedy that can be applied topically or given orally to improve skin and coat.

Uses of Coconut Oil

Coconut oil can be used to improve a variety of conditions, including thyroid, digestion, fatigue and diabetes. It is made of medium-chain fatty acids, which are known to increase metabolism and promote weight loss, a big change from many other oils. They absorb easily in the digestive tract, which can help soothe constipation and irritable bowel syndrome and help cats more easily absorb commercial cat food.

Coconut oil also improves the quality of your cat's coat, which reduces hairballs and even soothes throats that get scratchy from grooming the coat. It has also been effective at eliminating fleas. Dipping your flea comb in coconut oil helps flea eggs bind to the comb, increasing your odds at removing those that aren't repelled.

Coconut oil has also been used successfully to treat ear mites, which, like mange, die in the oily conditions.

Coconut Oil for Skin

Coconut oil was recognized for its effect on the skin when it was shown to kill mange, which don't survive well in oily environments. Without any other veterinary-prescribed medicine, cat owners saw mange and flea symptoms completely eliminated. When applied directly to the skin, coconut oil reduces symptoms of any dry, itchy skin.

It can be applied directly to sores, flea bites and allergic reactions as well. Coconut oil has antioxidant properties, which help soothe the damage skin. The fatty acids also help remove the layers of dead skin causing the dryness and itching and strengthen the connective tissues that make up the skin layers.

Coconut oil is safe to use on the skin because it won't do any damage if ingested by your cat. Though cats seem indifferent to the taste—unlike dogs, who seem to really enjoy it—they still lick their skin during grooming and will ingest whatever is being used to treat skin infections.

If your cat likes the taste, you must supervise your cat for at least an hour after application to make sure he doesn't lick it off his skin. An Elizabethan collar can also prevent this.

However, if he does like it, add a small spoonful to his food, which can improve skin conditions internally by adding antioxidants to the body that will promote healthy skin and coat.

The benefits of coconut oil are being widely studied for both humans and their pets, and the results are astounding. Coconut oil is much healthier than vegetable and animal oils and has been shown to reduce symptoms of many diseases. If your cat is suffering from skin problems, or if you just want to prevent future problems, use coconut oil either topically or orally.