A balanced diet is essential for your pet’s health and wellbeing. Omega fatty acids such as Omega 3, 6, and 9 are all essential components that need to be included in your pet’s daily diet. These fatty acids can help reduce inflammation, improve heart health, support cognitive function and vision, assist metabolism and energy production, as well as act as powerful antioxidants in your pet’s body. In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of balancing these omega fatty acids for optimal health of your beloved pet!
What is Omega-3, Omega-6, and Omega-9?
Omega-3 and omega-6 are essential fats that your dog’s body cannot produce on its own. As polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), they are important for an energy balance in their diet, meaning it is of utmost importance to pay attention to the quality and ratio of these nutrients in their food consumption. By doing so, you will ensure optimal health benefits for them!
Types of Omega-6 Fatty Acids Include:
- Linoleic acid
- Arachidonic acid
Incorporating natural foods like lean meat, egg yolks and some fish oils into your dog’s diet is a great way to give them the arachidonic acid they need. Meanwhile, linoleic acid aids in having healthy skin and coat. Poultry products as well as safflower oil, sunflower oil and canola oil are all excellent sources of this essential nutrient for their diet.
Types of Omega-3 Fatty Acids Include:
- Eicosatetraenoic acid (EPA)
- Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
- Alpha-linolenic acid
Pets need omega-3 rich foods to help maintain their health, and this is especially true for canines. Alpha-linolenic acid can be found in several sources such as flaxseed oil and canola oil. EPA from cold water fish or phytoplankton are the most commonly available options of omega-3 fatty acids that also aids in keeping depression at bay. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) which helps with brain and eye development is present not just in cold water fishes but other marine plants too like algae and phytoplankton.
(Cold Water Fish high in Omega-3’s include: cod, salmon, herring, krill, sardines and tilapia.)
Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are not only essential for the development of your best friend’s brain, but they also have a critical role in regulating blood pressure as well as ensuring that their immune system functions optimally. Moreover, one type of these fatty acids stimulates hormones in the body which promote inflammation within the immune system while its counterpart nurtures anti-inflammatory hormones throughout. In short, providing an adequate amount of both types is paramount to your pet’s health.
Finally, Omega-9 fatty acid is considered a non-essential fatty acid, because your pet produces it on it’s own. Omega-9 are non-essential but still play an important role in your pet’s health by acting as an anti-inflammatory and a source of energy.
Who’s Responsible for What?
Omega-6 fatty acids spark an inflammatory response in the body that is pivotal to your pup. Don’t be fooled by its daunting title, for it serves as a vital element of their immunization process! By inciting this reaction, heat, puffiness, pain or reduced mobility will alert the body of any viruses and bacteria attempting to infiltrate it – prompting white blood cells into action. Ultimately aiding them against such infectious threats!
Not only do Omega-6 fatty acids provide many benefits for our canine companions, but they also:
- Improves the body’s ability to promote and repair skeletal and muscular tissue
- Growth and Health of skin and coat
- Good Bone Health
- Metabolic regulation
If your pup isn’t receiving enough omega-6, this can cause a range of issues such as itchy and flaky skin due to an inhibited ability for the skin to heal. Furthermore, inadequate levels of this essential fatty acid may also lead to reproductive difficulties in addition to other health problems.
Omega-3 fatty acids play a key role in reducing inflammation and working with omega-6 to fight it. Across their entire lives, these anti-inflammatory hormones have been proven to help dogs stay healthier and live longer.
The many advantages of omega-3 fatty acids for dogs are plentiful and include:
- Reduce inflammation
- Treats heart disease, chronic kidney disease and arthritis
- Improved brain function
- Slows down canine cognitive dysfunction in older dogs
What’s A Healthy Omega-3 to Omega-6 Ratio?
Achieving a balance between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids is essential for your pet’s well being. Having too much or not enough of either could cause the body to send incorrect signals, resulting in health complications. To maintain optimum health, it’s ideal to keep the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 at 5:1 with nothing more than 10:1.
Furthermore, highly processed dog food removes vital fatty acids during the kibbling process due to extreme heat. Thus, manufacturers must add synthetic and artificial vitamins and minerals at the conclusion of production in order to re-establish balanced nutrition levels.
Correcting The Imbalance
Adding omega-3 rich fresh ingredients such as fish like sardine, mackerel, anchovy, and wild caught salmon to your dog’s diet daily can help bring back much needed balance.
At Braxton’s we really like Grizzly Pet Products Oil Supplements to help correct imbalances. One to two pumps a day can make a world of difference in your pet’s overall health. We carry their joint specific oil and their skin and coat remedy. They like two use two major species of fish in these formulas.
Wild Pollock oil boasts a very high content of the Omega-3 fatty acid EPA and a very low Omega-6 content—making it ideal to support a healthy skin and coat.
Wild Alaskan Salmon oils have the highest levels of EPA & DHA to support your pet’s heart, organs, nerve-based functions including cognition and vision, immune system, fertility, and a healthy skin and coat.
To conclude, it is evident that the proper balance of omega fatty acids can be key for the healthy and happy lives of our beloved pets. Talk to your vet about adding omega-rich foods to your pet’s diet, and make sure to monitor their health if any supplements are taken. Remember that a balanced diet together with regular exercise is the best thing you can do for your pet’s health and wellbeing.
Grizzly Pet Products: https://grizzlypetproducts.com/understanding-omegas/
Healthy Pets: Mercola: Fail to Give Omega-3 Fats to Your Pets and You are Asking for Trouble
Advances In Nutrition: The Science of Fatty Acids and Inflammation
Dogs Naturally: Omega 3 For Dogs: The Ultimate Guide
Healthy Pets: Mercola: Ignore the Bad Rap… This Helps Heal Many Pet Disorders