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Essential Fatty Acids: Why Your Pets Need This

By Dr. Andrew Jones

What are essential fatty acids?

Essential fatty acids are dietary fats (or lipids) considered as macronutrients that primarily help provide energy and other health benefits to your pets. There are several kinds of lipids including phospholipids, cholesterol, fats, oils but what you should consider supplementing is Omega 3 fatty acid. These essential fatty acids are commonly found in fish oil, krill oil, flaxseed oil, hemp oil and algal oil (algae).

Essential Fatty Acids Benefits

The main role of essential fatty acid to your cats and dogs is to help their bodies produce energy but they can get so much more benefits from it.

One of the benefits of essential fatty acid is that I can reduce excessive shedding, promote healthy growth of the undercoat and prevent dry skin and dandruff.

Essential fatty acid also have anti-inflammatory effects that could help ease chronic inflammation like arthritis in your pets as well as inflammation caused by allergies.

There are also studies where they found out that it can help prevent and alleviate autoimmune disorder symptoms, diabetic neuropathy, idiopathic seizures, and cardio-vascular and kidney diseases.

Adding Omega 3 to your pet’s diet is also a great remedy for constipation and intestinal parasitism.

So, why do pets need essential fatty acid supplements?

Cats and dogs require additional essential fatty acid supplements in their diets because they cannot produce Omega 3 and Omega 6 on their own. It has also been recently found out that commercial diets contain very low essential fatty acids. If you’re considering giving supplements after reading the benefits, it is very important to choose a high quality supplement. There have been issues of toxin exposure with heavy metals like mercury in fish oils so be sure to get it from a reputable company or you may opt for other alternatives like krill oil or plant based source like flaxseed.

You can learn more about Omega 3 supplements in this video.


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Dr. Andrew Jones, DVM