Salmon oil supplement was the answer to our dog’s skin and coat problems. It started with doggie dandruff, as in whitish flakes appearing on our dog’s fur, and falling onto our rugs and sofas. Nasty!
The first thing we tried, on our vet’s recommendation, was a medicated shampoo, which helped somewhat. But every time we used it to shampoo him, it had to be left on for 10-15 minutes, and anyone who has ever tried to make a wet, soapy dog “wait” for 15 minutes knows that is not an easy thing to do! You get one miserable, wet, whining dog, stuck in the shower stall, doing the full body shake and getting suds all over the shower walls and door….Plus, we weren’t too keen on the idea of having to give him such frequent baths. So we did some research on what kind of dietary supplements might be able to help with dry, flaky skin.
We found a lot of recommendations that omega-3 fatty acids can help to combat this problem, and these acids are found naturally in fish oils. The manufacturers do make some interesting claims about their health benefits, some of which include: improving the skin and coat; anti-inflammatory benefits; improvements in heart and renal functions, immunity, and growth; and as an aid for joint problems. To our surprise, such claims were actually backed up by numerous studies and research.
For instance, studies have shown that adding omega-3 fatty acids to a dog’s diet can help with inflammation during wound healing, as well as improve atopic skin conditions. Others have verified that fish oil supplements have positive effects on abnormal heart rhythm problems in dogs.
Some fish oil supplements for pets come in capsules, just like the human version. However, in order to feed it to your pet, you have to break the capsule, then squeeze the oil out into your dog’s bowl. Or you could try to get your dog to swallow the capsule. We found that too much work! We prefer the fish oil that came in bottles-super easy to administer. Just pump and squirt the fish oil over your dog’s dry food-the amount would depend on your dog’s weight, and recommendations of the fish oil manufacturer. Our dog loves the taste so much that he will happily lick it straight up.
If you are worried about whether the fish oil will have a strong fishy odor that will stink up your kitchen or house, be sure to choose fish oil that is pharmaceutical grade. This means the oil undergoes a high filtration method that removes almost all of that fishy smell, so that it doesn’t bother all but those with very sensitive noses.
You’d also want to pay attention to how the fish oils are extracted and distilled-it should be done in such a way that all toxins and heavy metals like mercury, are removed. Fish oils don’t usually need to be refrigerated but do check the label on your bottle to make sure.
There are many brands of fish oil for pets out there, but for the above reasons, we use, and recommend, what we think is the best line of fish oils for pets on the market, those by Iceland Pure. We have gotten only positive feedback from our customers who have bought them for their pets. As a bonus, the Iceland Pure fish oils come in green, recyclable, brushed aluminum bottles. Plastic bottles can “break down” when certain liquids are stored in them, and cause chemical contamination.
Our dog is partial to the salmon oil, although the company also makes a new sardine-anchovy oil that has 30% more omega-3 fatty acids than the salmon oil.
Today, our dog is free of the flaky dog dandruff problems that used to plague him, and his coat is also super healthy and soft. Even our vet was impressed by the change. If you have a pet with skin issues, give fish oil supplements a try-you’ll be impressed by the results!