Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids that help dogs with allergies, arthritis and skin problems. Omega-3, a polyunsaturated fat, reduces cell inflammation and helps damaged cells heal. The two primary omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
Omega-3 fish oil naturally occurs in fish such as salmon, herring and sardines. Fish oil is extracted for edible capsules, chewable tablets and liquid products.
Omega-3 fish oil is given up to 20 mg/lb as a daily dose. As a dietary supplement, label recommendations are basic guidelines and may be significantly increased by veterinarian advice. A 22.7kg. dog typically can ingest 1,000 mg of EPA daily for therapeutic treatment.
Omega-3 has a calming effect on some nervous dogs. It reduces joint inflammation and the body's reaction to allergic irritants. Omega-3 inhibits growth of some cancer cells and kidney disease.
Omega-3 fish oil helps antihistamines and glucosteroids work more effectively. This cooperative effect means the dog can take lower doses of these medicines.
Some dogs get no apparent benefit from omega-3 fish oil. Others develop oily hair and yellow skin flakes. Dogs with bleeding disorders should not take omega-3 fish oil without veterinarian approval.