Mineral oil can be given to dogs for use as a mild laxative. As a general rule, mineral oil for dogs is safe and easy to administer. There are just a few simple rules to follow. Some people recommend giving plain mineral oil directly to a dog if he will not eat the oil with his food. This should not be done because when mineral oil is put directly into a dog's mouth, it can get into his respiratory system and possibly cause pneumonia.
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Adding mineral oil for dogs to food
Be certain to use the correct measurement when giving mineral oil to your dog. The amount ingested should be calculated by weight. Add 1 teaspoon of mineral oil for every 10 pounds of your dog's weight. For example, a smaller dog weighing 20 pounds should be given 2 teaspoons of mineral oil. Always mix the mineral oil with food; do not give it as a stand-alone treatment.
Before serving food to your dog, carefully mix the correct dosage of mineral oil. Whether the dog food is canned or dry doesn't matter but be sure to mix the oil into the food thoroughly. If you are using dry food, make sure the kibble is evenly coated with the oil. Once you are satisfied that you've mixed the correct amount of oil with the food, go ahead and serve it to your dog in the usual manner.
Select food your dog will eat quickly to make sure he gets the mineral oil into his system. If you select food that the dog picks at, it will take longer for him to get the right amount of mineral oil into his system.
Dogs who refuse to eat
If your dog is refusing to eat his regular food or the food with oil mixed in, you can get a little creative. Hand-feeding your pooch instead of putting the food in a bowl may actually help a dog with a poor appetite become interested in food again. She will smell your scent on her food and may feel better about eating because you are engaging in the activity together. Just be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after feeding her.
You may need to get some raw meat or a special treat that you know your dog loves and add it to the food and mineral oil mix. Sometimes, a little canned food as a topper helps. There are also ready-made food toppers available at most pet supply retailers formulated for picky eaters. Just be sure the ingredients don't worsen any constipation or create new digestive issues. Small amounts are always best when introducing something new into a pooch's system.
Other ways to help your dog's constipation
As a last resort if other methods fail, your veterinarian can prepare an enema for the dog, serving up the mineral oil from the other end. Do not administer an enema to the dog yourself. A dog is apt to react to this situation, and this could put you and your pup in danger.
Other treatments for dog constipation can include feeding your dog canned pumpkin, adding wheat bran or psyllium to his food, or feeding him a high-fiber diet. Be sure to add new foods or dietary supplements slowly and in small quantities and always under the advice of a veterinarian.