Salmon oil for dogs has seen an increased interest in the past few years. I have found it to be one of the healthiest supplements one can give to their dog. If you choose well, this oil is more natural and pure than any other supplement. As you know, dog treats, chews, and additional supplements may include fillers and non-essential ingredients.
After helping thousands of pet owners over the years, the main benefit I found in salmon oil for dogs is allergy support. We will discuss its other benefits below.
Benefits of salmon oil for dogs
Most people might only know about a fish oil supplement's two or three health benefits. However, if you consider buying this oil, you should know that there are at least nine proven salmon oil health benefits.
Allergies affect as much as 20% of dogs in the United States. Allergies come in many forms, like itching, scratching, and hot spots. Since it is often difficult to find the allergy cause, salmon oil supplements allow pet owners to relieve their pets of allergies. After starting giving salmon oil to your dog, allow two to three weeks to notice an improvement in your dog's allergies.
Whether your dog has a food allergy or is allergic to dust, pollen, or grass, salmon oil will benefit him.
Fish oil is rich in omega fatty acids. Omega 3 fatty acids come in the forms of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and have anti-inflammatory properties. For this reason, fish oil helps combat inflamed and painful joints, itchy skin, and gastritis.
Improves cognitive function
Veterinarians agree that DHA supports dogs' cognitive health. Since salmon oil comes with high DHA levels, it can support dogs' brains and puppies' brain development.
On top of that, Omega-3s support dogs' vision and retinal health.
Rejuvenates soft and shiny coats
If you spend some time reading reviews about a particular fish oil supplement, you might find a few mention the skin & coat benefits. Adding fish oil to your dog's diet will rejuvenate their skin and coat. Like allergies, you should expect to see an improvement within two to three weeks after starting daily supplementation. Remember that healthy skin starts from the inside out.
It supports the immune system
Allergies often stem from a weakened immune system. Knowing this, you might want to add salmon oil to your dog's diet as it boosts dogs' immune systems. A dog with a healthy immune system can fight off allergies before developing. Not only that, your dog will be more active. Fish oil significantly improves dogs' overall health.
There has been little official research on EPA and DHA supplementation in dogs with cancer. However, the literature is quite extensive for humans, and the sum of both human and animal literature suggests that Omega-3s are beneficial in fighting cancer. It is particularly true when the dog's diet is currently low in these fatty acids.
Supports heart health
Dogs need healthy fatty acids like Omega-3 to maintain a healthy heart. Omega-3s also help lower high blood pressure and decrease the risk of heart disease.
Improves organ function
Salmon oil supports several organs in pets, such as the liver and many organs that make up the digestive system. If your dog has kidney disease or problems, this oil could benefit your pup.
Improves overall health
Salmon oil improves pets' overall health thanks to the combined health benefits. Our furry friends can maximize their life expectancy and play more with more robust immune systems, cognitive function, heart health, brain function, and organ function. Always keep an eye on ingredients to ensure the product you find is as pure as possible.
What are the fatty acids found in fish oil?
Fish oil typically contains three fatty acids: omega-3s, 6s, and 9s. Let's take a deeper look at each one and what it brings to pets.
Omega-3s are behind most of the benefits we listed above. They support the immune systems and many organs. They consist of EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).
Linoleic acid is an Omega-6 fatty acid and is considered one of the most important ones—omega-6s support dogs' skin health by maintaining the skin's outermost water barrier.
Omega-9s are considered non-essential to your pet's diet since dogs can synthesize Omega 9 fatty acids. However, Omega-9s still bring a health benefit as they support immune systems.
Benefits of pollock oil for dogs
While researching fish oil, you might find that two popular options are salmon and pollock. Pollock is rich in EPA and DHA with slightly lower levels than salmon. However, pollock has a great benefit that many pet owners underestimate: it has a more pleasant scent than salmon. For this reason, I tend to recommend a mix of Salmon & Pollock oil to pet owners as they might find the overall smell more pleasant while maintaining high fatty acids levels.
The best salmon oil for dogs reviewed
You might be wondering which salmon supplement to give your pet. While searching for these supplements, you will find many different options. I wanted to break down the other factors you want to look at when choosing a high-quality product. Of course, you can always consult your veterinarian and discuss which product might be most beneficial to your pet.
Highest quality: wild-caught
You might have noticed that some oils advertise Wild-caught salmon or pollock. As you know, salmon is mainly farmed and contains high levels of antibiotics. Wild salmon is healthier.
I recommend getting Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil or Wild Alaskan Pollock Oil as they have lower Mercury levels than 95% of other fish sources. For instance, our Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil Formula has less than half the usual Mercury level detected in Fresh (farmed) salmon. Therefore, it is healthier than any other common Omega-3 source like sardines or regular salmon fillets. As an added benefit, Wild Alaskan Fish is caught in clean USA waters instead of other sources like Norway and Iceland.
If your pet store doesn't offer wild-caught fish oil or the price is essential to you, you may look at regular salmon oils. Keep in mind that this option is not as healthy. In doubt, you can take a picture of the ingredients and supplement panel and show it to your vet. This oil might not be produced in the USA.
Other fish oils
Many products on the market will read "Omega 3 oil" or "fish oil," which often means there is no salmon in them, wild or farmed. Since salmon is expensive, these oils use cheaper alternatives that may not bring the same potency and health benefits. You can read the reviews to get an idea of the quality. I would look at what other buyers say about the light or strong smell the product has since this can influence whether your pup likes it.
How do I choose a good fish oil for my dog?
To choose a good fish oil for your dog, consider the following criteria:
- Fish source: wild or farmed? Domestic or foreign?
- Ingredients: just salmon, pollock, or other ingredients like sardines and anchovies?
- Omega-3s: is it at least 800mg per serving?
- Dispenser: does it come with a pump dispenser or nothing, or in capsules?
- Supply: is it a good supply, like 32 ounces, or a smaller bottle?
- Vitamin E: is Vitamin E listed in the ingredients or not?
I bolded what you should look for to choose a good fish oil for your dog.
You may also choose a product to start with, and if your dog has reactions to it, change for a better outcome. Many dog owner reviews suggest that they began with cheaper, low-quality oil and then decided to upgrade. A healthy immune system and healthy skin need high-quality omega fatty acids.
How much salmon oil can you give a dog?
Dosage should be adjusted based on your dog's body needs. For example, bottles with a pump dispenser will usually advise serving "1 pump per 10 lbs of body weight."
What happens if I give my dog too much salmon oil?
If you accidentally add more than the recommended dosage to your dog's food, this could result in the following side effects:
- Delayed wound healing
- Weight gain
- Altered immune function
You should start supplementing your dog's diet with half the recommended dosage and slowly increase it if your dog reacts well. If you notice the side effects listed above, consult your veterinarian.
Can I give my dog salmon oil every day?
It is a daily supplement.
How do I give my dog salmon oil?
Salmon oil usually comes in a bottle with a pump dispenser. In that case, pump the oil over your dog's food and mix.
What if my dog is a picky eater?
Salmon oil is great for picky eaters as most dogs love the flavor. However, if that's not the case, you can read my method to feed picky eaters.
Other tips for dogs with skin allergies
If your dog has allergies, it may stem from the food he eats. Please read my article on the 11 most common food allergens.
Is salmon oil good for dogs?
As we saw above, salmon oil is highly beneficial to dogs and supports their coat and skin allergies.
Is salmon oil good for cats?
Salmon oil is delicious for cats. However, since cats are smaller than most dogs, you might need to give them a smaller amount. In general, supplements made for dogs are also made for cats. If you have any doubt, ask your veterinarian.
Are Omega-3s essential for my dog?
Omega-3s can't be synthesized and need to be consumed from food. However, they are essential to support your dog's health. When showing signs of inflammation, your vet might recommend this type of supplement.
What age can I give my puppy salmon oil?
Puppies also benefit from this oil and should be fed according to the product's recommended dosage. I always recommend starting with half dosage and slowly increasing.
What are the side effects of salmon oil on dogs?
Common side effects of salmon oil are diarrhea and vomiting.
Care and storage of salmon oil
Dog salmon oil is extremely easy to keep fresh, as it doesn't need to be held in your refrigerator. Reviews mention that it can be kept refrigerated or not. After that, it's up to you. Data shows that refrigerating it could slightly extend its shelf life from 2 to 3 years. At any rate, you should always smell the oil before serving it to make sure it is not rancid.
Are fish oil and salmon oil for dogs the same?
Fish oil and salmon oil share common benefits but can be different. Fish oil can be made from sardines, anchovies, and other fish. Read reviews, watch videos and check the data to ensure the oil you are buying is ideally Wild Alaskan Salmon or Pollock Oil.
What about omega treats?
Omega treats may seem convenient to add Omega-3s to your dog's diet. However, they also contain non-essential fillers. Most reviews and videos agree that it is better to feed pure fish oil instead.