When we had our beloved Chelsey – a Chesapeake Bay Retriever – we were constantly seeing “tumbleweeds” on our floors. While we didn’t mind them so much, we did care when we had guests come by unannounced. We tried everything to help her with dog shedding like bathing her more, using special brushes to get the hair off of her before it hits the floor, and even putting a dog-shedding shirt on her. Each attempt wasn’t exactly what we were hoping for, but fish oil made a difference.
Does Fish Oil Help with Dog Shedding?
Yes, fish oil does help with shedding. The fatty acids (omega-3 and omega-6) improve the health of a dog’s skin and coat. The healthier a dog’s skin and coat, the less a dog sheds. Shedding comes from broken hair due to being brittle and damaged, along with the natural cycle of hair growth and shedding.
About Fish Oil and Dogs
Fish oil comes from oily fish. It is rich in fatty acids like omega-3 and omega-6. The most important omega-fatty acid is omega-3, which is the one that is the hardest to get with commercial dog food.
Omega 3 fatty acids promote healthy growth and development. It can reduce inflammation in dogs and improve the health of the dog’s skin and coat. That’s how it can help reduce your dog’s shedding.
The healthier your dog’s skin, the better the coat health is for your dog. That means your dog’s fur is strong and long-lasting. Just like when you feed your dog healthy food the chances of your pup living longer are higher, the same goes for your dog’s coat.
What Type of Fish Oil Can Help Dogs with Shedding
The best omega-3 foods for dogs are:
- Brussel Sprouts
- Chia Seeds
- Flaxseed Oil
- Salmon (Salmon Oil)
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Rapeseed Oil
- Olive Oil
A healthy diet is key to reducing heavy shedding. Consider your dog’s diet when trying to decide if you need to add more.
Fish Oil Supplements to Help with Shedding
The best form of fish oil is from food, but it can be difficult to get the necessary essential fatty acids into your dog’s diet. In that case, fish oil supplements can help.
The best supplements for fish oil are those that are made from:
- Natural Triglyceride Oil
- Easiest to absorb, but may contain contaminants, according to American Kennel Club.
- Ethyl Ester Oil
- Concentrated and distilled, so it doesn’t have the contaminant concerns natural triglyceride oil has, but it’s only semi-natural.
- Synthetic Triglyceride Oil
- Since it’s not natural, it doesn’t absorb easily, which means it may not be as effective as the other two types.
TerraMax Pro Premium Liquid Omega-3 Fish Oil for Dogs
How Much Fish Oil to Stop Dogs from Shedding
The amount of fish oil to give your dog depends on body weight. Since every fish oil supplement is different, always read the instructions on the bottle when giving your dog fish oil supplements.
Also, please reach out to your veterinarian whenever you start a new supplement on your dog. It’s important to know if the supplement won’t interact with any medications or medical issues.
Additional Tips for Reducing Dog Shedding
Overall health matters when it comes to dog shedding, so focus on your dog’s food as mentioned above.
It’s also important to take care of any skin conditions, which can cause dry skin, irritation, redness, etc. All of these skin-related issues can compromise the integrity of the dog hairs, which can lead them to either fall out or break leading to excess shedding.
Dogs with itchy skin may scratch so much they are pulling hair out or breaking it with their claws. Resolving the itchy skin with Aquaphor, Vitamin E, or CBD for dogs can help keep hair where it should be – on your dog.
It’s also important to keep in mind that there are many reasons for hair loss that may need to be considered.
Stress can be very demanding on a dog’s body leading to poor fur health. Reducing stressors or helping your dog cope with anxiety with either CBD or limited exposure to stressors can help.
Regular Brushing and Bathing
Pet owners are like everyone else – they are busy. Grooming can sometimes fall to the wayside, which can then lead to excess shedding. It’s important to remove dead hair and loose hair from your dog’s coat with weekly brushing and monthly bathing to help with shedding. While this may take some time, especially for double-coated dogs, it can save time when it comes to cleaning the house.
Summary: Does Fish Oil Stop Dogs from Shedding
Now you know that fish oil doesn’t stop dogs from shedding completely, but it can reduce the amount of shedding by promoting healthy skin and coat health. Your dog’s coat is just as important as your dog’s eyes, ears, etc., so it needs to be treated with just as much care.
While dogs with thick coats often shed throughout the year, if you notice an increase in dog hair around your home, start with a call to your veterinarian to ensure there isn’t a medical issue causing the loose hair. If everything checks out with the vet, you can start taking better care of your dog’s coat.
Remove dead hair by regularly brushing and bathing. Improve your dog’s health by adding omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids to your dog’s diet or supplementing with fish oil.
You’re doing great as a pet owner. Embrace your heavy shedder and start implementing some of the suggestions above to help with excessive shedding. You’ll be noticing a difference soon.