A huge number of studies have shown how fish oil helps to keep a dog's mind and body in top shape. Fish oil can be added to your pet's diet either through natural foods, or in supplement form – pills, capsules or liquid. Some fish oil for dogs supplements are more effective than others, and this is what we'll discuss in this article.
Table of Contents
- The Best Fish Oil for Dogs Supplements
Why Fish Oil for Dogs Is Vet Recommended?
Studies found that nations with the highest consumption of fish and fish oil are some of the healthiest in the world, have lowest rates of obesity, inflammation and heart problems. These benefits are not exclusive to humans and also extend to dogs.
More research on the benefits of fish oil for dogs have also found the following:
- Fish oil improves dog's skin and coat (Ziener et al. 2014)
- Fish oil helps dogs with canine atopic dermatitis (Saevik et al. 2004)
The main component of fish oil responsible for the many benefits are omega-3 essential fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids (n-3) are made out of two long-chain acid forms called EPA and DHA, which are responsible for most of the health benefits and improvements in dog's brain function, aiding their eye health and a lot more.
For example, DHA is one of the building blocks for the of tissues in the brain and the retina of the eye, but there's a lot more to it. Here are several more papers on the benefits of fish oil and omega-3 for dogs:
- Fish oil benefits dog's brain (Bauer et al. 2007)
- Fish oil benefits dog's heart (Freeman et al. 1998)
- Fish oil benefits dog's kidneys (Brown et al. 1998; Brown et al. 2000)
- Fish oil benefits dog's immune system (Betiati et al. 2013)
- It helps the dog to recover from cancer (Ogilvie et al. 2000)
- It helps with canine arthritis (Boe et al. 2015; Roush et al. 2010)
- It assists with recovering from joint problems (Roush et al. 2010)
Most dogs can use additional omega-3 fatty acids in their diet, but some diets provide plenty of them. For example, some homemade dog food recipes tend to include a lot of omega-3's, and some commercial dog food diets contain omega-3s in their formula.
There are several ways to give fish oil to dogs. The most common option is buying fish oil capsules for dogs, or a bottle of liquid fish oil. When using liquid fish oil for dogs, always check the bottle for the correct dosage. Below are some of the best fish oil for dogs supplements in different forms that we liked the most.
|Grizzly Salmon Plus Omega Fatty Acids Food...||3,123 Reviews||$45.95||Buy on Amazon|
|Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Pet Oil Supplement,...||974 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Pure Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil for Dogs & Cats -...||12,095 Reviews||$34.97||Buy on Amazon|
|NuLife Natural Pet Health Pure Wild Alaskan Salmon...||345 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|Welactin Omega-3 Skin and Coat Support, 120...||1,398 Reviews||$15.99||Buy on Amazon|
How Much Fish Oil for Dogs is Safe?
While there are many benefits of fish oil for dogs, including too much of omega-3 fatty acids in a dog's diet is counterproductive, and can be detrimental to their health. Before giving any fish oil to your dog, check with your veterinarian to see if this supplement is appropriate in your pet's diet.
The National Research Council has established the right fish oil dosage for dogs based on how much EPA and DHA is safe for canines to handle. This is how much fish oil for dogs is best to give in one dosage:
20-55 mg of EPA/DHA (combined) per 1 lb of dog's body weight
For example, if your dog weighs approximately 30 lbs, then you should give them a single dosage of 1,000 mg of fish oil, which should contain approximately 300 mg of EPA/DHA (combined). If your dog is suffering from a serious disease, dosage may need to be raised or lowered, which is something that your veterinarian will decide for you.
Further details about how much fish oil for dogs is to be given will also be included on the package of the supplement that you purchase under the “fish oil dosage for dogs.” Make sure to read the instructions and follow them, unless otherwise specified by your vet.
Fish Oil Capsules for Dogs vs Liquid Fish Oil for Dogs
Some pet owners are confused which one is better – fish oil capsules for dogs or liquid fish oil for dogs supplements like Grizzly Salmon Oil. The truth is neither is superior or inferior to the other: they all contain the same thing.
Your choice will mostly depend on convenience and price. Usually, liquid fish oil is easier to give to dogs because you can simply sprinkle some of it over your pet's meal, or easily add it into a homemade dog food dish. Fish oil capsules for dogs may sometimes be more difficult to give, but using pill pockets will make the process easier.
Additionally, there is an argument that the absorption of liquid fish oil for dogs is better or quicker when compared to fish oil capsules for dogs which are made with coating. However, the difference is likely to be minuscule and there's no reason to worry about it. The important thing is to give fish oil for dogs in any form if you believe it may benefit your pet; what form you use should not be a determining factor.
The Best Fish Oil for Dogs Supplements
1Salmon Oil for Dogs (All-Natural Supplement)
by Grizzly Pet Products
This is currently the most popular dog fish oil brand on Amazon available in liquid form. This pet food supplement from Grizzly Pet Products is produced only from wild Alaskan salmon, which is considered a more superior source of omega-3 essential fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals than farmed fish.
These essential nutrients have been scientifically shown to help develop a strong immune system in dogs to fight against skin conditions, brain dysfunction, chronic heart and joint disorders. The Grizzly fish oil for dogs supplement comes in four bottle sizes including 8-ounce, 16-ounce, 32-ounce and 64-ounce bottles. Chewy usually have it much cheaper than Amazon.
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The right dose of Grizzly Salmon Oil provides 500-2500 mg of omega 3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA, combined) and 50-300 mg of omega 6 fatty acid (LA, linoleic acid). The high-tech extraction method is a more reliable way to ensure a high quality fish oil product. On the anecdotal evidence side, majority of pet owners claim that it has relieved their dogs of skin problems and has turned a lackluster coat into radiant and shiny fur.
This brand of fish oil is generally well tolerated by most dogs. Some dogs are even looking forward to the oil’s rich flavor mixed with their kibble or homemade dog food. We found the pump-bottle design to be more convenient and mess-free way to dispense our dog’s daily dose compared to several other bottles and dispensers.
2Omega-3 Fish Oil for Dogs
by Nordic Naturals
The second best fish oil for dogs supplement comes from another reputable company – Nordic Naturals. This one is derived from wild sardines and anchovies. Essential oils sourced from these fish not only support healthy skin, coat, heart, and joints in dogs but they also help to nourish the brain and assist in eye development. Nordic Naturals omega-3 for dogs helps to reinforce the overall health and well-being of dogs.
This product is prepared in the way used for the production of human-consumed oils, except that it is exclusively for cats and dogs. It is available in three different bottle sizes: 2 ounces, 8 ounces and 16 fluid ounces.
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We've used it last year and noticed marked improvements on our dog's skin issues, gum inflammation, and mouth woes. Other pet owners claim it helped improve their pets’ coat. Nordic Naturals dog fish oil did not interfere with several medications our dogs were using. On the drawbacks side, we found that dispensing the oil a bit inconvenient, unlike with the Grizzly bottle, and we hope that this area will be improved by the company.
Overall, this is a well-prepared fish oil formulation to supplement our dogs' needs when they're not getting enough omega-3s from their regular diet. It’s highly recommended for larger breeds of dogs which, because of their size and weight, may need more omega-3 essential fatty acids than what their existing food and supplements provide due to them being at higher risk of joint problems and arthritis.
3Pure Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil for Dogs
by Zesty Paws
Third on the list is a quickly rising company, Zesty Paws, and their take on salmon oil for dogs in liquid form. You may already know that giving fish oil capsules for dogs can be quite challenging, which is why most pet owners prefer to use liquid fish oil and why these products usually rank the highest.
Zesty's best fish oil for dogs supplement is a good source of balanced omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 essential fatty acids that dogs need to support healthy skin, coat, heart, and joints, and help develop a stronger immune system. While we haven't used it long enough to notice long-term effects, when we've asked around, a good number of pet owners declared that the product has done wonders to alleviate their pet’s chronic ailments: from excessive shedding and skin dryness, to allergies and unhealthy coat issues.
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When regularly used, Zesty Paws Pure Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil for Dogs is likely to help pets stay in better shape as well. Senior dogs with deteriorating health and dogs with joint related medical conditions have been observed to have visible improvement after taking fish oil for at least 3 weeks. Unlike some other brands, this one has no undesirable smell, and the taste is natural for dogs which appear to enjoy it.
This is a high-quality liquid fish oil for dogs with a good balance of omega-3 and omega-6. It works for dog breeds of all sizes. It's a pure formula and there are no fillers added in its preparation. It comes in a pump-bottle, but similar to the above product, the pump itself needs to be improved to make it truly mess-free. It is made in the USA by a trusted FDA-registered maker.
4Natural Premium Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil
by NuLife Natural Pet Health
- Find it on Amazon ($19.97)
- Unavailable on Chewy
If liquid fish oil for dogs is not suitable for your pooch, then fish oil capsules for dogs may be a better alternative. Premium Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil capsules are produced from wild salmon found in the icy waters of Alaska. Believed to be the best source of omega-3, Alaskan salmon contains less saturated fat, it's lower in calories, and was shown to provide boundless health benefits for dogs and cats.
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NuLife fish oil capsules contain all-natural nutrients, processed in FDA-approved facility in the U.S. These fish oil capsules for dogs from NuLife Natural Pet Health is 100% safe for dogs of all types and sizes, GMO-free, and GMP- (Good Manufacturing Practices) certified. NuLife fish oil capsules for dogs enhances healthy skin and coat, reinforces the immune system, and supports brain, heart, kidney, eyes, and joints functioning.
We have noticed significant reduction on our pup's shedding, while other pet owners saw less itching, shinier coat, less issues with joint immobility and heart-related difficulties. This fish oil is sold in soft-gel capsule form, so it might not be the best option for those who want to do away with cutting capsules or hiding capsules in dog food. However, for those who prefer an accurate dosage for their dogs and have no problem feeding capsules to their pets, NuLife Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil for Dogs is a better option.
5Welactin Fish Oil Capsules for Dogs
by Nutramax Laboratories
Last on the list of best fish oil for dogs supplements is another brand well-known among pet owners. The Nutramax Welactin 3 fish oil for dogs supplement has higher DHA and omega-3 content than its competitors. Accurate dosage is easier because this product is in capsule form. For every 20-pound weight, the correct dosage is 1 pill every day.
Each pill yields 300-mg omega-3 fatty acids, and from that 155 mg of EPA and 100 mg of DHA. The minty soft-gel capsules can be given like treats or cut and mixed with dog food. It did not cause any problem with our dogs’ digestive system, which is often a concern when introducing food or food supplements for the first time.
- RICH SOURCE OF EPA and DHA:...
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When asking around, other pet owners claim that this brand helped pups recuperating from illness or surgery and those suffering from joint pain and immobility. For us, feeding the capsules required a little ingenuity – our dog was only receptive of Nutramax Welactin 3 Softgel Caps after we coated the pills in peanut butter.
This fish oil supplement is produced from cold water natural salmon and other fish oils, with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. To get the full benefits for your dog, correct dosage must be followed. Smaller dogs (20 pounds or less) will need 1 capsule a day, but bigger dogs may require 3 or more capsules to supply the omega 3 fatty acids they require every day.