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Among the many nutrients vital for your furry friend’s health, omega 3 fatty acids stand out as a powerhouse. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the world of omega 3 for dogs, exploring what it is, why it’s essential, its sources, and benefits of omega 3 for dogs.

What are omega 3 fatty acids for dogs?

The AKC says that there are four types of dietary fats: trans fats, saturated fats, monounsaturated fats, and polyunsaturated fats. Omega 3 fatty acids for dogs are a group of polyunsaturated fats known for their remarkable health benefits in both humans and animals and known as one of the “good fats”. However, dogs are unable to produce omega 3 on their own, so they must receive them via their diet. 

There are three main types of omega 3 fatty acids:

Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)

This essential fatty acid is primarily found in plant-based sources like flaxseed, chia seeds, and walnuts.

Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)

EPA is commonly found in marine sources, particularly fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines.

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)

Like EPA, DHA is also found in marine sources and is critical for brain and eye development.

What are the omega 3 benefits for dogs?

If you’re wondering “what does omega 3 do for dogs”, there are several things! Omega 3 for dogs play a pivotal role in maintaining your pup’s overall health and well-being. There are many omega 3 for dogs benefits, including:

Joint health

Omega 3 for dogs possesses potent anti-inflammatory properties that can help alleviate joint pain and stiffness in our furry friends, particularly in older dogs or those with arthritis.

Heart health

These fatty acids have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease in dogs by decreasing inflammation, lowering blood pressure, and improving cholesterol levels.

Skin and coat health

Omega 3 for dogs contributes to a lustrous, healthy coat and can alleviate skin conditions like itching and dryness. They can be added momentarily (during dry, cold months) or long-term (in pets who experience skin conditions due to allergies).

Cognitive function

DHA supports brain health and can improve cognitive function in dogs, including memory and learning.

Girl feeding dog

Eye health

DHA is essential for maintaining good vision and preventing eye conditions in dogs.

Immune system support

Omega 3 for dogs helps boost your pup’s immune system, making them more resilient to infections and illnesses.

Pregnancy and puppy development

DHA is crucial during pregnancy and lactation as it aids in the development of the puppy’s brain and nervous system.

Balance out omega 6

Dogs Naturally says that most dogs eat too much meat or processed food that supplies excess omega 6, which can lead to inflammation and other ailments. When your pup consumes omega 3s, it helps to balance this ratio and reduce the harmful impacts of excess omega 6 consumption.

Sources of omega 3 fatty acids for dogs

Cold water fish are the most common source of Omega 3s, but they can also be found in plant, nut and seed oils. 

Let’s explore some typical sources you can include in your dog’s diet:

Fatty fish

Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines, and trout are rich sources of EPA and DHA. Feeding your dog cooked, boneless fish can be a delicious and nutritious treat.

Flaxseed oil

Flaxseed oil is a plant-based source of ALA and can be a suitable option for dogs with allergies to fish. It’s important to note that dogs cannot efficiently convert ALA into EPA and DHA, so consider fish sources for these omega 3 oils for dogs.

Green Beef Tripe

Green beef tripe is the nutrient-rich stomach lining of a cow, and while it may not sound appetizing to us, it offers numerous health benefits for our canine companions. Not only does it make a flavourful addition to a dog’s diet but is also a natural source of omega 3s, making it an excellent choice for pet owners looking to enhance their furry friend’s nutrition.

Fish oil supplements

Fish oil is an omega 3 supplement for dogs and is readily available, providing a convenient way to ensure your pet receives a consistent dose of omega 3s. We recommend Bold by Nature+ Wild Salmon and Ocean Fish supplements. Most pets will readily consume omega 3 supplements for dogs via capsules or liquid form due to their high palatability.

Puppy eating kong with peanut butter in it.

Does fish oil have any benefits for dogs?

Omega 3 supplements for dogs like fish oil stand out as a highly sought-after pet supplement, making it an excellent dietary inclusion for your canine companion. Beyond simply satisfying your dog’s palate with its appealing taste and distinctive fishy aroma, these omega 3 supplements for dogs deliver a myriad of significant health advantages.

A happy and healthy heart

Fish oils, such as those found in salmon, play a pivotal role in promoting robust cardiovascular health. These omega 3 supplements for dogs are particularly advantageous for canines grappling with various cardiovascular conditions or heart-related ailments.

The omega 3 fatty acids in fish oil can facilitate a more consistent cardiac rhythm in dogs, thereby diminishing the risk of atrial fibrillation, characterized by irregular heartbeats.

In addition to these benefits, larger canine companions can benefit from fish oil supplements in managing triglyceride levels, which are produced by the body when excess calories remain unused. Given that fish oils, notably those from salmon, possess anti-coagulant and natural anti-inflammatory properties, they prove invaluable in aiding dogs with heart conditions and maintaining optimal cholesterol levels.

Skin and coat management

When dogs’ allergies flare up, their skin can get irritated, resulting in some scratching and itching. One of fish oils’ best benefits is that it can help reduce cytokines, which are the stimulators of inflammation.

A joy for the joints.

Fish oil plays a pivotal role in enhancing the mobility and comfort of our furry companions who are grappling with pain. It achieves this by effectively slowing down the production of prostaglandins, which exacerbate joint discomfort. Moreover, the anti-inflammatory attributes present in salmon and other fish oils contribute to enabling your dog to move more gracefully, expanding its range of motion.

Specifically, the EPA content in fish oil plays a crucial role in alleviating inflammation by inhibiting the release of hormones known to trigger inflammation and, consequently, the pain associated with conditions like arthritis or joint issues.

A boost for the brain.

Dogs are just as smart as they are cute, so let’s keep it that way! The DHA found in fish oils can help to aid in the brain development of growing puppies and can help to improve cognitive function in aging dogs.

How much omega 3 for dogs is a good amount?

If you’re using our Bold by Nature+ Wild Salmon and Ocean Fish supplement, we recommend giving it to your dog once a day, but the exact amount will depend on their weight. This supplement comes with an easy-to-use pump, so you can dish out the perfect dose of omega 3 every time. Use this handy guide for help:

  • 15 pounds or less = 1 pump
  • 16 to 25 pounds = 2 pumps
  • 25 to 50 pounds = 4 pumps
  • 50 to 100 pounds = 6 pumps
  • Over 100 pounds = 8 pumps

Does Bold by Nature offer any other supplements?

Yes, Bold by Nature, one of Canada’s top raw dog food brands, offers several supplements that your pet can benefit from, like psyllium husk for dogs and pumpkin powder. Each of these supplements plays a role in benefiting different facets of your pet’s life, from skin health to digestive assistance.

White bottle with cat and dog, pink label. Salmon & Wild Ocean Fish, Bold by Nature+ Supplements

Where can I get Bold by Nature supplements?

Now that you understand the benefits of omega 3 for dogs, it’s time to add it to your pup’s diet! You can purchase Bold by Nature raw pet food, prebiotics for dogs, and other supplements and treats either online or at a local retailer that carries Bold by Nature products.

If you’re unsure of local retailers and wondering where to buy raw pet food, you can use our location finder!