For a global skin & coat health
Wanting healthy skin and a shiny coat for your dog is more than just a matter of aesthetics. It comes with many benefits: less itching, less irritation, and less hair for you to pick up!
Some external factors over which we have no control (seasonal changes, home heating, allergies, aging, etc.) have a direct impact on your pet’s skin and coat quality. However, it’s interesting to know that the one thing that influences skin health the most is one that we can control: food quality. Therefore, let's make sure we choose a well formulated high-quality food, so our dogs can benefit from all the minerals, proteins, vitamins, and lipids their skin needs. That said, what nutrient should we be looking for? Omega-3 and 6, skin health all-time champions!
High-performance lipids: omega-3 & 6
Omega-3 and 6 are essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (lipids). Since mammals cannot produce them naturally, it is imperative they find sufficient fatty acids in their diet. They are needed for proper growth, fertility, healing, hair shine, skin impermeability, etc. A deficiency can cause important growth or development abnormalities and lead to harmful consequences on the immune system, renal and cardiac functions, or skin.
Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids are categorized under 2 main families: omega-3 and omega-6.
The "key" fatty acids of the omega-3 family are alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
Where do we find them in the dog's diet? Mostly in cold water fatty fish (salmon, menhaden, mackerel, etc.), fish oil and certain plants (flaxseed).
The "key" fatty acids of the omega-6 family are linoleic acid (LA) and arachidonic acid (AA).
Where do we find them in the dog's diet? Mostly in vegetable oils (sunflower, soybean).
Benefits of omega-3-6 fatty acids (EPA, DHA and LA) by life stage
PUPPY life stage | Check out the recommended formula
- Brain and visual development
- Immune development
- Optimize learning and problem solving
ADULT life stage | Check out toy & small breed formula or medium & large breed formula
- Skin and coat health
- Joint health
- Healing aid
- Reproductive function
SENIOR life stage - Check out the recommended formula
- Cardiovascular and renal function
- Strengthening of the natural defenses of the immune system
- Joint health
- Maintenance of normal vision and prevention of age-related degeneration
- Supports mental acuity and reduces the risk of dementia
The importance of an optimal ratio of omega-3 & 6
To obtain maximum results on skin and coat health and organ function, an ideal balance of omega-3 and omega-6 content must be respected. Too much omega-6 can interfere with omega-3 absorption and thus reduce benefits. The optimal ratio is 4 times more omega-6 than omega-3. Our animal nutrition specialists make sure that all 1st Choice dog foods respect this balance.
Omega-3 & 6 in 1st Choice Nutrition formulas
All dog formulas from our MAINTENANCE line, SKIN AND COAT line, SPECIALIZED CARE line contain omega-3 and 6. However, the dosage is specific to each product line or formula, according to life stage or function. For example, puppy formulas are enriched with docosahexaenoic acids (DHA), found primarily in fish oil and fish meal, to promote optimal brain and visual development, build a strong immune system and optimize learning and problem-solving skills.
How do we know if our dog has an essential fatty acids deficiency?
When dogs are deficient in essential fatty acids (omega-3 and omega-6), the following problems can be observed:
- Oily skin of dry skin
- Dull coat
- Matted hair
- Discolored hair
1st Choice Nutrition formulas take care of your pet's skin and preserve its health throughout its life. Let us do the math and have faith! We’ll make sure your animal gets all the nutrients he needs and deserves.
1st Choice, how dogs live longer, healthier lives!