How to Know if Your Dog's Diet Contains Enough Fatty Acid

How to Know if Your Dog's Diet Contains Enough Fatty Acid

Do your pet's skin and coat look shiny and healthy, or is your dog's fur lacking the silky appearance you prefer? Could this indicate the need for more fatty acids in your dog's diet?

A dog's diet affects all aspects of his body including the skin and coat. If your dog's diet contains adequate amounts of fatty acids, his coat and skin should appear healthy. Fatty acids in your dog's diet will prevent trouble with dry skin and dandruff, for example. A dull coat may indicate a need for supplements of fatty acids in your dog's diet.

Studies indicate that essential fatty acids, called EFAs, contribute to healthy skin and coat, as well as general health. Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, for instance, can play a critical role in your dog's overall well-being. 

Do not assume that adding fatty acid supplements to your dog's diet is always a good idea. If your dog's coat is in good condition, adding more EFAs will not automatically improve health. The fatty acid supplements, such as omega 3 and 6, are only for dogs with diagnosed skin problems. Always consult your veterinarian before adding a supplement to your dog's diet. Your vet will be happy to discuss with you the best form of EFAs and the appropriate dose to add to your dog's diet.

Fatty acids are not produced by your dog's body. For this reason,

You must provide EFAs to your pet through your dog's diet. If your vet recommends additional supplements of fatty acids, you may want to ask about linseed or sunflower oil.   

Within as little as four weeks, you should notice an improvement in your dog's coat and skin. Watch the wonder of fatty acids at work in your dog's diet. By the time seven weeks have passed, you will notice a dramatic change in your pet's health.

High levels of omega 3 fatty acids are thought to ward off some forms of cancer. Cardiovascular health and joint health will improve, as well, with higher levels of omega 3 in your dog's diet.      

Typically, omega 6 fatty acids are present in manufactured dog food at adequate levels. Supplementing omega 3 will help to improve the ratio and make a difference for your pet. Fish and flaxseed are excellent sources of omega 3 fatty acids. Again, be cautious and ask your vet before supplementing. Some forms of fish may not be safe as part of your dog's diet.

Supplementing your dog's diet may or may not be necessary. The only sure way to decide if your dog's diet needs extra essential fatty acids is to schedule an appointment with your vet to talk about your pet's health. Never medicate your dog without advice from a professional because your dog's diet must contain the proper balance of nutrients. Sources of EFAs include flaxseed, linseed, and sunflower oil. Higher doses of essential fatty acids can improve skin and coat issues within several weeks. Your dog's diet is the first step in providing your overall health and happy life with your pet for years to come.  

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