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  #1  
Old 07-13-2005, 12:41 AM
sammydawg
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Default fish oil ?

if my dog food says it contains Omega 3 + 6 essential fats do I need to supplement with fish oil? In what form and how much? I've read that too mch can be harmful. What about cod liver oil?
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Old 07-13-2005, 06:44 AM
Athe Athe is offline
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If your feeding kibble don't give any fish liver oils...give fish body oils. What I do is give Sardines (canned) a few times a week with kibble, or Salmon (canned wild) with the food. I also throw in flax oil, hemp oil or crused flax seeds a few times a week. With fish liver oils the Vitamin A content is high added to the high vitamin A content of kibble can be in toxic levels. The Hemp seed oil has the perfect ratio of Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids...many people try to get more omega 3 fatty acids in the dogs diet and end up unbalancing the omega 6 and 9 fatty acids. I perfer to give my dogs their fatty acids in whole food forms rather than a pill.

Here is an article to read:
http://www.peteducation.com/article....&articleid=666

Last edited by Athe; 07-13-2005 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 07-13-2005, 07:29 AM
Athe Athe is offline
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I may be a little off on my caution of too much Vitamin A. According to Dr. Fosters and Dr Smith toxicity is rare and almost impossible unless mega doses are given over a long period of time (months or years).
Here is the article.
http://www.peteducation.com/article....&articleid=710
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Old 07-13-2005, 06:24 PM
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fish body oil is a good idea, even if the kibble you feed contains omega fatty acids already. the important omega 3 fatty acids are EPA and DHA, which only come from marine sources. the amounts you'll find in a kibble product are rather low and a good quality fish or salmon oil product is one of the few supplements i really do recommend. sadly not everything on the market is of good quality, so if you want to use a product especially made for pets, stick to grizzly salmon oil or seapet.com fish oil. capsules sold for human consumption are ok too, just make sure they do not have any vitamin A or D added. a good maintenance dose is about 1000mg of fish oil per 20-25 lbs of body weight, which can be increased to 1000mg per 10 lbs if you need a threapeutic effect, such as for arthritis, skin problems and allergies.

i also have to address the myth of "balanced" omega fatty acids, since i often see people obsessing about this. they may be balanced in the bottle of product you are looking at, but you have no way of knowing what the ratio ends up being once you take the entire diet of an individual dog into consideration - including any treats and extras you feed.

example: the claim that hemp oil has balanced omega 3s,6s and 9s. they might be balanced if you feed your dog nothing but hemp oil, since in this situation no outside influence would change the ratios, but as soon as you bring other foods into the mix, the ratios will change inevitably.

in addition to that, ratios and requirements are not fixed. some individuals have different requirements than others. case in point: dog food X contains a ratio of 10:1omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids. one dog does perfectly well on it, but the next has dry, itchy skin and a brittle coat. excess omega 6 fatty acids are not beneficial to the body, on the contrary - if they are present in high amounts, they increase inflammation and allergic responses. if you balance out the high amount of omega 6s in said food by adding only omega 3s, and thus decrease the ratio to maybe 5:1 or less, the itchy dog with dull coat will most likely show a drastic improvement, since the body utilizes omega 3s before the omega 6s for its specific needs.

i'm not sure if i have explained it well enough, if not please let me know and i'll try to be more specific, but the goal with omega fatty acid supplementation is not to maintain a certain ratio, it is to adjust the ratio in the overall diet according to the individual animal's needs - which in turn depends on what you are feeding to begin with.

so please ignore any claims to "balanced omega fatty acids", they are just as flawed as the claims that any dog food is "complete and balanced".

some extra info:
http://www.mordanna.com/dogfood/index.php?page=efas
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Old 07-14-2005, 06:12 AM
Athe Athe is offline
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Mordy, just to let you know regarding the myth of the balance of Omega 3,6 and 9 fatty acids...my holistic vet was the person who advised me to give the Hemp seed oil. He is not selling it, just gave me some good advise...I will discuss this with him on my next appointment and get the advise down in writing as I did not have a pen and paper with me and I don't retain much mentally He mentioned something about trying to get oils with omega 6 in them as well as omega 3...he didn't go on about a good healthy balance...he just recommended Hemp seed oil as having the best ratio's in it. From what I understood, he indicated balanced for that oil for the fact that it does contain all 3 of the nessessary oils.
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Old 07-14-2005, 04:04 PM
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don't get me wrong, hemp oil is a great supplement, for people as well as animals.

it is important that the body gets enough of all the essential oils, but how exactly they are brought into the diet depends on what you feed to begin with.

the omega 6 fatty acids linoleic acid (LA) and arachidonic acid (AA) are plentiful in whole grains, body fat of chicken, duck and turkey and various other food ingredients commonly found in commercial kibble, so usually there isn't much (if any) need to supply extra. in fact, AA is the fatty acid most responsible for aggravating inflammation and allergic reactions if present in excess amounts. this is where omega 3 fatty acids are important to balance out the ratio.

another thing with hemp oil and also flax oil is that they are considered "inactive" sources of omega 3 fatty acids - dogs who lack certain enzymes can not activate them and are not able to utilize them. the efa's in fish oil are active and can be used directly by the body. even a dog who lacks these enzymes will still be able to benefit from supplementation in other ways (increase of fat in any form has usually a positive effect on skin and coat for example), but with the fish oil you can be sure that it's fully usable and contains the EPA and DHA that only come from marine sources.

i hope i'm not babblibg incoherently, it's a bit crazy here at the office today and i can't concentrate well on posting, so if you need clarification on anything, please let me know.
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Old 07-14-2005, 04:35 PM
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Silly question, but what's the best place to find fish oil?
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Old 07-14-2005, 05:10 PM
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Quote:
just make sure they do not have any vitamin A or D added.
What about capsules/liquids containing fatty acids that help a dogs coat. Should they have any vitamin A, D, or C in it ?
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Old 07-14-2005, 10:14 PM
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Fran27 - the best available fish oil product (in my opinion ) is sold through the seapet.com website. they have multiple outstanding bottled products. the company that produces grizzly salmon oil has recently switched from farmed to wild salmon and stopped using certain additives, so i can recommend their product now as well (i didn't use to). grizzly salmon oil is available in many pet stores and from many sources online.

there is a wide variety of human grade capsule products as well, but you need to look very closely at their fatty acid content and whether anything else but fish oil is used. the best quality test for capsules is to take one out of the bottle and freeze it for 24 hours. if it contains quality fish oil, it will not freeze completely hard. if it does, the oil is diluted and you are getting ripped off.


ohmai - the same goes for any form of product, regardless if dry/powdered, liquid or capsules. if you feed a commercial food (dry or canned), it is formulated to contain adequate levels of vitamin A and D already and you don't want to add enough to overdose your dog. to get an idea of daily requirements of adult dogs, you can look here. calculation instructions are on the page.
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Old 07-14-2005, 10:25 PM
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I take a fish oil tablet once a day.... Chip gets one too .
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