You might have heard of the skin and haircare benefits of castor oil, and wondered whether it can also be beneficial to pets. The answer is yes: castor oil is safe for pets, and it won’t hurt your dog – as long as you it safely and sensibly.
Castor oil can be used to improve skin conditions in dogs, and even relieve itching and redness from allergies. Additionally, using castor oil on your dog’s fur can prevent fungal infections and soothe inflammation. This is thanks to the oil’s moisturizing, anti-inflammatory properties.
Like most beauty oils, castor oil may be harmful to your dog if ingested. This article will discuss this in more detail.
Are Dogs Attracted to Castor Oil?
Castor oil pods produce an odor that animals, including dogs, find alluring. If your dog comes across a castor oil plant and eats the pods, the effects could be lethal. However, castor oil is much less potent, and shouldn’t have such dangerous effects if consumed.
If you’re planning to harvest your own castor oil, make sure to keep your dog well away from your castor bean plants.
How can I Safely Use Castor Oil On My Dog?
To safely use castor oil on your dog, massage a small amount of the oil gently onto your dog’s fur. You can mix the oil with olive oil or coconut oil as a homemade flea deterrent. You can also add a couple of drops of castor oil to your dog’s ear every day to treat infections.
Castor oil is completely safe to use on dogs unless (rarely) your dog is allergic to it. Additionally, it’s important not to put castor oil in a location that your dog might reach with his mouth. A couple of licks of castor oil might not cause a problem, but if your dog ingests too much castor oil, there could be unpleasant consequences.
How Much Castor Oil is Toxic To Dogs?
Castor oil isn’t classed as a toxic oil. However, if ingested in large quantities, its ricinoleic acid content may have some adverse effects.
When ricinoleic acid is absorbed by the small intestine, it can act as a laxative. If your dog consumes too much castor oil, he may experience diarrhea or vomiting.
How much castor oil is too much? To start, you should never administer castor oil orally to your dog. However, if your dog licks or ingests minute quantities of the oil, he should be fine.
One teaspoon of oil per 11 pounds of dog can usually be tolerated. Any more than this and your dog may experience some of the oil’s unpleasant ricinoleic acid side-effects.
Is Castor Oil Good For A Dog’s Coat?
Castor oil is good for a dog’s coat in many ways. First and foremost, the oil can be used as a natural flea repellent. It can also be used to manage a number of allergies and itchy skin conditions.
You can massage castor oil directly onto your dog’s coat, or make a natural canine scabies treatment by combining castor oil, cold water and olive oil. Massage this shampoo onto your dog’s fur until it suds up, then rinse away with water.
Can I Give My Dog Castor Oil For Constipation?
Castor oil’s laxative effects do mean that a very small amount of the oil may be good for dogs that have a tendency towards constipation. Simply add a couple of drops of the oil to your dog’s food or water.
The correct dose for mild constipation is no more than 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds of bodyweight. Adding the oil to your dog’s wet food will make it easiest to digest.
Consult a vet if you’re unsure about anything discussed in this article. While you can safely use castor oil on some dogs, it may not be suitable for your dog. Your vet can offer advice based on the problem you’re dealing with and let you know whether castor oil is a viable solution.