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If you’ve noticed that your dog’s skin is itchy or their coat is dull, it's possible they could benefit from a fish oil supplement. “Like humans, dogs need omega-3 fatty acids, which they get from their diet,” explains Dr. Theresa Fossum, DVM, a board-certified veterinary surgeon and CEO of Dr. Fossum’s Pet Care. “Omega-3 fatty acids are important to support your pet’s immune function, muscle recovery, and joint and heart health. If your dog has dry or flaky skin, hot spots, or a dull or poor coat, they likely would benefit from the addition of omega-3 fatty acids to their diet.”
Dr. Fossum recommends selecting a product that contains both EPA and DHA, two essential fatty acids, and uses sustainably sourced ingredients. It’s also beneficial if the product is third-party tested by an independent research firm, and of course, you should talk to your vet before starting your dog on any new supplements.
Here, the best fish oils for dogs.
Best Overall: Zesty Paws Core Elements Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil for Dogs & Cats
Good source of DHA and EPA
Sourced from wild-caught Alaskan salmon
Safe for dogs and cats
Convenient pump container
Must be refrigerated after opening
The Zesty Paws Pure Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil is a great source of DHA and EPA for dogs, and it comes in an easy-to-administer container, which is always an added bonus. The premium fish oil is made from wild-caught Alaskan salmon, and each teaspoon contains 850 mg of omega-3 fatty acids, including both DHA and EPA.
This supplement comes in a pump-top jar, allowing you to easily squirt it onto your dog’s food each day. It's our best overall in part because it doesn’t contain any artificial flavors, preservatives, or synthetic colors, and it’s made in the USA. Zesty Paws offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee on its products, and as an added bonus, this fish oil can also be given to cats.
Best Budget: Nutramax Welactin Omega-3 Skin and Coat Supplement
More affordable than other options
Calories not listed
Large dogs need several capsules per day
Fish oil supplements can be fairly expensive, especially if you have multiple pets, but the Welactin Omega-3 Supplement is a little easier on your wallet (and it still gets the seal of approval from Dr. Fossum). This supplement comes in softgel capsules that you can either feed to your dog at mealtime or puncture and drizzle over their food.
Each package contains 120 softgel capsules, and the formula is made with peppermint oil to help minimize the fishy odor. Each pill contains 300 mg of total omega-3 fatty acids. The instructions say to give one capsule daily per 20 pounds of body weight, so bigger dogs may need several capsules daily.
Best Value: Grizzly Omega Health Liquid Omega-3 Supplement for Dogs and Cats
Great value for multi-pet homes
Has NASC quality seal
Potent in omega-3s
Pump can get messy
For those with multiple pets, the Grizzly Omega Health Liquid Omega-3 Supplement comes in large 64-ounce jars that will last you for longer—and you save some money by buying in bulk! The fish oil is sustainably sourced from wild Alaskan salmon and pollock, which makes it higher in omega-3 fatty acids. It also contains 1,090 mg of omega-3 fatty acids per teaspoon, making it an extremely potent choice.
The brand recommends giving your dog 1 pump of the fish oil per 25 pounds of body weight, and the bottle has an easy-to-use top pump for convenient dispensing. The product is made in the USA and features the quality seal of the National Animal Supplement Council, and it’s safe to give cats, as well.
Best Pill: Nutri-Vet Fish Oil for Dogs
Convenient softgel form
Mess- and odor-free
Includes supplemental vitamins
Calories not listed
If you prefer to give your dog a pill instead of pumping oil onto their food, Nutri-Vet Fish Oil for Dogs comes in convenient once-daily softgel capsules. Each container contains 100 of the pills, and the directions say to give your dog one per 30 to 60 pounds of body weight.
The Nutri-Vet capsules contain 300 mg of fatty acids, and they’re also formulated with vitamins A, E, and D. The pills are mess- and odor-free to administer (ideal if you can’t stomach the smell of fish oil), and they don’t need to be refrigerated like many liquid products.
Best Liquid: Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Pet Liquid Supplement
Tested by a third party
Calories not listed
Liquid fish oil like the Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Pet Supplement is easy to give to your pooch—all you have to do is drizzle a little over their daily meal. (Just keep in mind that most liquid fish oils must be refrigerated after opening!) This particular fish oil is made using sustainable and ethical practices, and it’s formulated from fresh, wild-caught sardines, mackerel, anchovies, and herring caught in the coastal waters of Iceland.
This supplement contains no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, and it’s purified to remove 99 percent of the unpleasant fishy taste and smell. It’s bottled in an FDA-certified facility, and it’s been tested by a third-party, as well.
Best High Potency: PetHonesty Omega-3 Fish Oil Dog & Cat Supplement
High in EPA and DHA
Tested by a third party
Pump can break
If you’re looking for an extremely potent fish oil for dogs, the PetHonesty Omega-3 Fish Oil Dog & Cat Supplement contains 1,438 mg of omega-3 fatty acids per two pumps (roughly 4.6 grams). The fish oil is made from sardines, mackerel, anchovies, and herrings that were caught off the coast of Iceland.
The PetHonest Fish Oil comes in liquid form, and its container has a convenient pump that makes it easy to dispense onto your dog’s food. The fish oil is purified to remove the fishy odor, and the brand uses a third-party tester to ensure the potency and purity of the product.
Best with Omega-6: American Journey Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil Liquid Supplement
Contains omega-6 and -9 fatty acids
No-mess squeeze bottle
Taste is appealing to pets
Large serving size for big dogs
Many fish oils for dogs solely contain omega-3 fatty acids, but the American Journey Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil Supplement contains omega-6 and -9 fatty acids, too—there are 90 mg and 540 mg of each per teaspoon, respectively.
This supplement comes in a convenient no-mess squeeze bottle, and it's made from a 51/49 percent blend of oils from wild-caught Alaskan salmon and pollock. This liquid formula has a rich flavor that your pets are sure to love, and the instructions are to feed 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds of body weight daily.
Best with Vitamins: Virbac Allerderm Omegaderm EZ-Dose Packets
Includes vitamins A and E
Contains omega-6 fatty acids
Virbac is a well-regarded brand in the pet pharmacetural world, and its Allerderm Omegaderm EZ-Dose Packets are a great choice for owners who want to give their dog a supplement with both fatty acids and beneficial vitamins. Each of the pre-portioned liquid packets contains a 5:1 ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 essential fatty acids, as well as vitamins A and E to soothe itching and dry skin.
The Allerderm Omegaderm EZ-Dose Packets come in a pack of 28, and they’re made with cold sea fish oil, sunflower seed oil, and other beneficial ingredients. The packets are perfectly portioned for dogs over 20 pounds, but the brand does have a similar product for smaller dogs, too.
Best for Skin and Coat: EicosaDerm Omega 3 Liquid Dog & Cat Nutritional Supplement
Includes vitamin E
Safe for dogs and cats
Made in the USA
Calories not listed
Bottle can leak
The EicosaDerm Omega 3 Supplement is a good choice for owners hoping to improve their pet’s skin and coat. It contains both DHA and EPA, as well as vitamin E, all of which can help relieve dry, itchy skin, and add shine to an animal’s coat.
This liquid supplement is sourced from small, cold water ocean fish, and it’s made in the USA and certified to be free from pesticides. It’s easy to administer via the pump top container, and it’s safe to give to both dogs and cats.
The Zesty Paws Pure Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil (view at Amazon) is our top pick of fish oil supplement for dogs of all sizes. It’s a good source of both DHA and EPA, and it’s sourced from wild Alaskan salmon. If you prefer a pill, consider Nutri-Vet Fish Oil for Dogs (view on Amazon), which comes in softgel capsules and is formulated with vitamins A, E, and D.
What to Look for in Fish Oil for Dogs
As with any food for your pet, it’s important to look at the ingredients in a fish oil supplement. In particular, you’ll want to look for the presence of omega-3 fatty acids. “There are lots of good products out there but you should be sure to find a product that contains EPA and DHA. These are two of the most important omega-3 fatty acids,” says Dr. Fossum.
Fish oil supplements come in both pill and liquid form, and you’ll want to choose one depending on your dog’s preferences. Pills often have less odor and are less messy to administer, but not all dogs are willing to eat pills. Alternatively, a liquid supplement can simply be mixed into your dog’s food, which some dogs may eat more readily.
Because the FDA doesn’t regulate pet foods as closely as human foods, it’s beneficial to select a product that’s been independently tested for purity. “Be sure that the product is third-party tested by an independent research firm, and look for a money-back guarantee,” says Dr. Fossum. The NASC Quality Seal is another good thing to look for, as it’s only available to brands that meet strict quality requirements.
Do you need a prescription for fish oil for dogs?
Fish oil supplements for dogs are an over-the-counter product, and they do not require a prescription to buy.
How much fish oil should you give a dog?
“Fish oil may be dangerous to dogs that are diabetic, have low blood pressure, heart arrhythmias, or have conditions that cause them to bleed,” explains Dr. Fossum. “Ask your veterinarian for advice on how to supplement fish oil in your pet given its age, breed, and size. Don’t just go by the dose recommended on the label.”
Is it safe to give fish oil for humans to dogs?
“Before giving fish oil to your pet, talk to your veterinarian,” says Dr. Fossum. “Your veterinarian may recommend a brand that they have confidence in and they can assist you in determining how much to give.”
“Some of the human fish oil products have a product that they market for pets. Many times there is no difference in the product that they sell for people and those they sell for pets other than the concentration or amount of fish oil in the product.”
Why Trust The Spruce Pets?
This article was written by Camryn Rabideau, a freelance writer for The Spruce Pets and lifelong dog owner. For information about the benefits of fish oil for dogs and how to use it properly, she spoke with Dr. Theresa Fossum, DVM, a board-certified veterinary surgeon and CEO of Dr. Fossum’s Pet Care.
While selecting products for this list, she considered the amount of omega-3 fatty acids in each supplement, as well as any additional nutrients. She also looked at factors such as the serving size, oil source, third party testing, and brand reputation to select the best products for a wide range of dogs (and owners!).