Three of the healthiest oils for your pet

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By Dr. Becker

A lot dog diets lack healthy fats to support their health. This is especially true if they primarily consume canned or dry foods.

Why does your dog need healthy dietary fats? They provide a concentrated source of energy and constitute cell membranes. Additionally, certain fats have anti-inflammatory benefits and play a role in hormone formation.

Healthy fats are also necessary for your pet to produce bile acids that will help it digest and absorb nutrients. A simple way to significantly increase healthy fats in your dog’s diet is to add healthy, high-quality oils to his meals.

Three healthy oils for your dog

1. Krill oil

Krill oil is rich in omega-3 fats eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These anti-inflammatory fats are found naturally in seafood, but don’t expect to get significant amounts of them. animal feed based on fish mealwhich I do not recommend.

You can feed your pet water-packed sardines or wild salmon to get valuable omega-3s, or try a krill oil supplement. I recommend that all marine oils be checked from sustainable sources and toxin-free.

Omega-3s are very sensitive to oxygen and can go rancid quickly, so I prefer oils dispensed from an airless pump or in capsules that can be cut and squeezed onto food just before feeding. .

My final choice is to buy bottled liquid oils, as the risk of oxidation is much greater over time. You should also be wary of omega-3 fatty acids added to commercial pet foods, as they are likely to be inactivated, rancid, or may go rancid over time.

Omega-3 deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency I see in my practice. Symptoms I encounter on a daily basis include cats with dry skin and chronic oral inflammation, as well as dogs with recurring skin and ear infections.

Supplementing your dog’s (and cat’s) diet with non-toxic marine oils, such as krill oil, is important for the overall health of virtually all pets, but may provide particular benefits for animals with the following conditions:

Allergies

Yeast infections

Certain types of cancer

Vision problems

Heart problems

Cognitive problems

Inflammatory skin disease

Kidney disease

Osteoarthritis

How much krill oil does your pet need? If your pet is currently healthy, I recommend supplementing with krill oil as follows:

  • 250 milligrams (mg) per day for toy breeds and cats (1 to 14 pounds)
  • 500 mg daily for small dogs (15 to 29 pounds)
  • 1,000 mg daily for medium-sized dogs (30 to 49 pounds)
  • 1,500 mg mg daily for large dogs (5 to 79 pounds)
  • 2,000 mg daily for dogs 80 pounds and over

2. Coconut oil

I recommend giving a quarter teaspoon of 100% organic, cold-pressed, human-grade coconut oil per 10 pounds of body weight twice daily for dogs (and cats). This can be added at mealtime to your pet’s fresh homemade or commercial raw diet.

Coconut oil is a concentrated source of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which may benefit your dog’s cognitive function. In one study, older beagles fed a diet supplemented with MCTs showed significant improvements in brain function.1

Additionally, coconut oil is a rich source of lauric acid, a powerful antimicrobial agent. This makes coconut oil a particularly good choice for pets suffering from yeast infections Or allergies. It can also help with hairballs in cats and can be used topically for skin conditions.

Coconut oil can be beneficial orally and topically. In the video below you can see the coconut oil treatments I give my senior dog Rosco, who suffers from flaky and sometimes itchy skin.

3. Flaxseed, hemp and pumpkin seed oils

If you need to supplement your pet’s diet with omega-6 fatty acids (usually people on a homemade diet), vegetable oils like flaxseed, hempseed, and pumpkin are much preferred over sources like corn oil, safflower oil or olive oil. A lack of omega-6 fatty acids in your pet’s diet will lead to poor overall development and failure to gain weight.

An omega-6 deficiency can also compromise your pet’s immune system and cause liver and kidney degeneration. Other signs of an omega-6 deficiency include:

  • Behavioral disorders
  • Poor healing
  • Miscarriage
  • Sterility in male animals

That being said, omega-6 deficiencies are rare in dogs and cats because commercial pet foods generally provide too much of these fats rather than not enough. You may have heard that flaxseed oil is a good source of omega-3, but know that it is a plant form called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).

Dogs and cats cannot effectively convert plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids into appropriate amounts of DHA and EPA. The best option for omega-3 fatty acids is therefore to use an animal source such as krill oil or sardines.

Add healthy oils to your pet’s food at mealtimes

When giving your pet healthy oils like krill oil, flaxseed oil, or hemp oil, add them to your pet’s food at meal times. This will ensure that the oil remains fresh and is not oxidized or rancid by the time your pet consumes it (assuming it was fresh to begin with). As mentioned, I recommend using krill oil from an airless pump or in capsule form for this reason (if your pet doesn’t want to eat the whole capsule or you need a smaller amount , pierce the capsule and squeeze it onto your pet’s food).

If you feed your pet a fresh or raw homemade diet, you need to make sure that you have included the appropriate amounts of essential fatty acids. However, even if you feed a commercially prepared diet, it is likely to be lacking in beneficial omega-3s due to the heat required for processing, which is why I often recommend adding an additional source to your pet’s meals.

For a guide on how to prepare fresh, nutritionally balanced meals for your pets, refer to my Homemade Pet Food Cookbook, “Real food for healthy dogs and cats“.

The recipes in this book are not only AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) compliant, but they also meet the nutritional requirements for a healthy, biologically appropriate diet for all stages of an animal’s life, such as indicated by the National Research Council (NRC). and the ancestral diet of dogs and cats. The recipes make it easy to feed your pet the best possible diet, rich in healthy, species-appropriate fats and oils.

Sources:

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