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Omega oils are essential fatty acids (EFAs) that are especially vital to your dog’s health. Not only do they act as a crucial source of energy, they also contribute to your dog’s overall immune system and supports their skin and coat health. A lack of or inadequate amount of omega-3 and -6 in dogs can result in the disruption of critical body functions.
Omega-3 and Omega-6
Both omega-3 and -6 are important additions to your dog’s diet, but it’s critical to strike the right balance between them. Here’s why: omega-3 and -6 work in an antagonistic manner. Omega-6 produces hormones that promote cell growth, blood clotting and increase inflammation (an immune response). Omega-3 works opposingly to decrease inflammation and support the immune system. A good balance of both is imperative.
Omega-6 is present in a variety of products - meat, eggs, grains, vegetable oil, nuts, and seed. In fact, it’s so readily available that your dog’s diet might have too much of it - in which case, it’s recommended to amp up the omega-3 in their diet. Remember, strike a balance for a healthy immune system.
Omega-3 is a little harder to find since it mainly comes from fish - specifically cold water fish. Most dogs are omega-3 deficient and require complementary supplementation to their current diet. You could either go for a liquid fish oil (like Zeal’s) for easy addition into meals or opt for those in soft gel capsules (we likeDom & Cleo!) that prohibit oxidation.
The health benefits of Omega-3
1. Reduces Inflammation
Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids work together in harmony to manage inflammation - O-6 increases while O-3 decreases, this is only possible if there’s a right balance of both. O-3 is especially helpful for dogs suffering from inflammatory conditions such as allergies and arthritis.
Omega-3 provides joint support through its anti-inflammatory properties by maintaining the health of collagen and cartilages - giving your dog’s joints the extra boost that they need.
Studies have shown that the consumption of omega-3 fatty acids have helped to improve brain health of dogs. It boosts cognitive functions in senior dogs and aid in the mental development of puppies.
Consistent supplementation of omega-3 can help to lower their blood cholesterol levels and maintain a healthy blood pressure. This decreases the chances of developing a heart disease. It also promotes weight loss in overweight dogs, the benefits of which carries over to overall cardiovascular health.
Omega-3 supports the skin and coat health which helps to relieve dry and itchy skins. The immune-boosting properties of O-3 assist in your dog’s natural skin defences. It also reduces instances of skin allergies, yeast infections and hotspots.
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