Many dog owners care as much (if not more) about what’s in their dog’s food than they do what’s on their own plates. If you are a dog food label-reader, rest assured that finding nutrition-rich palm oil on the ingredients list is a good thing.

Dog owners have a history of feeding nutritious edible oils, including fish oil and coconut oil, to their furkids. In people, research shows consuming palm oil, extracted from the pulp of the fruit much like olive oil, supports heart health, brain health, liver health and even skin health. 

But what about dogs? Here’s what several dog-friendly brands have to say on the subject:   

“In the proportions that are used, (palm oil) is highly beneficial to heart health, brain health and helps to keep the coat shiny and soft, while also helping with dry or flaking skin. Palm Fruit Oil also has antioxidants that protect against arthritis,” write the pet-savvy folks at Chewy.com

“Clean, pure palm fruit oil is good for your dog,” agrees supplement supplier SimplyCB, adding that its palm fruit oil is certified as sustainably produced. “We would never make a supplement that we would not give to our furry friends.”

Well-known dog food supplier Purina explains, “Palm oil is extracted from the pulp of the fruit. As a high-quality source of fat, it fuels your pet with a healthy energy level.”

Zesty Paws, creators of functional pet supplements, is also a fan of sustainably produced palm oil. “When consumed in moderation, palm fruit oil has been proven to be significantly more digestible than Sunflower oil, Sesame Oil and Corn oil,” they write. “In fact, it’s so healthy that Harvard Health has described Palm Fruit Oil as having better fatty acid composition than Coconut Oil!” 

Writing in favor of using pure palm oil in its products, online pet nutrition supplier Valerio Paws reassures pet parents that, “We can’t tell you everything with palm fruit oil out there is safe because we don’t know the level of purity. But, we can tell you there’s nothing to worry about with our products.”

While palm fruit oil is wonderfully nutritious, the kernel or seed oil can also be pet-friendly. Writes True Pet Care, “All True Pet Products are made with bio-renewable, cruelty free resources. If you look hard enough, it seems nature can always provide an alternative to harsh, man-made cleaners. After much searching and testing, we have found that alternative in palm kernel oil. True Pet Care Shampoos replace the harsh sulfates found in most shampoos with a natural alternative made from kernels of the Oil Palm Tree. Palm kernel oil leaves your pet’s coat clean and soft without drying it out or leaving a greasy residue like some natural shampoos. All oil used is harvested responsibly and sustainably so that this resource can continue to grow and be of use for years to come.”

Before purchasing a doggie product that contains palm oil, consider writing to the manufacturer to confirm that the oil is sustainably sourced. That way, you know your purchase is supporting the welfare of animals in the wild as well as your four-legged family members. 

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