Some of you may have concerns about whether fish oil is good for dogs. To put your minds at ease, we have compiled this short guide to answer any questions you may have about fish oil's efficacy.
The answer to this question is yes, absolutely. Fish oilhas far-reaching health benefits that include cosmetic ones such as improvements to skin health and the appearance of your dog’s coat. It can also help with health conditions that are like cancer and heart problems.
Most commercial dog food is low in omega-3 fatty acid but may instead have omega-6 fatty acid, which promotes inflammation. As a result, your dog’s diet may actually be making it prone to inflammatory diseases.
Note: If your dog has a serious inflammatory condition, omega-3 fatty acids will not be able to treat it by itself; however, it will be able to enhance the effects of medications used to treat the condition.
Fish oil was originally recommended for treating canine allergies, but now is used to treat numerous conditions including arthritis and high cholesterol. The fish oil in fish oil supplements contains two essential fatty acids: eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Dogs do not synthesize these acids well. They can be found in fish like salmon, sardines and mackerel. Each of the two fatty acids has its own specific set of benefits; for example, EPA is an anti-inflammatory and helps to treat conditions that cause inflammation; DHA is important for the development of the brain and eyes in puppies.
The two fatty acids in fish oil have the ability to decrease inflammation at the cellular level. Both EPA and DHA are converted into prostaglandins that can reduce the tissues' tendency to become inflamed.
There is actually a simple formula for figuring out the right dose of fish oil to give to your dog: find out your dog's weight in pounds and multiply it by 20. The result is the right dose of EPA in milligrams. If your dog weighs 30 pounds, then the right dose is 600 mg of EPA. Look for fish oil that has a higher EPA content than DHA since it is more effective for fighting inflammation.
If your dog's diet consists largely of processed grain, then a quality fish oil supplement can ensure that they get the EPA and DHA that they need. With this one supplement, your pet can see a range of health benefits.