Why My Dogs and I LOVE Fish

Do you like fish?

Do you eat it because it is healthy?

I actually LOVE fish, I think part of it is because I wasn’t able to have it when I was a child.

When I was 3(ish) my mom gave me my first taste of shell fish and I had such an adverse reaction I almost died.  I had hives all over the outside and inside of my body and impaired breathing.

My mom has the same reaction to sea food, still.

So when I was growing up and my sister and father would eat shell fish, sea food, or fish I was so jealous.  Shrimp looked so good and the smell of crab dipped in butter had to be kid torture.

We always want what we can’t have!

So when I was a teenager and visiting my grandmother on the coast of WA state, and my mom said I could try it again; I jumped at the chance.

fishLooking back I am not sure why my mom gave in and let me try, if I had still been allergic I could have ended up in the hospital or worse.  But my mother knew that food allergies sometimes go in seven year cycles.

And, thankfully she was right and I got my taste of fish.  Like anything you can’t have, I think the best part was finally having the freedom to try it.  Truth be told, my sister didn’t even like it; she was sickened by the “fishy” smell and so she didn’t enjoy it as much… but I didn’t care.

I ate fish sparingly at first but then as much as I could.

My mom still didn’t cook it because she was deathly allergic to it, but I got it as often as I could when we were out.  I still do!

Fish Oil

labFish oil is good for your health; it is good for your brain, concentration and memory, for your heart, for your liver, organ function, hair growth, skin health, energy and more!

Even when I don’t eat fish I try to take fish oil supplements (TIP: if you freeze them they don’t come back and bite you after you take them)!

But did you know that fish oil, Omega 3s and vitamins are equally as important for your four legged furry friend?

Fish oil and Omega 3s can treat allergies and a number of other health conditions ranging from kidney disease, high cholesterol, and arthritis.  It also has anti-inflammatory properties that help with atopic dermatitis and allergy related skin conditions.

Years ago I was training a gigantic Black Labrador Retriever as a Service Dog.  I was the trainer that received him first straight from the shelter and into training; they lived with us at home.  But, once our dogs had reached a certain point in training we would switch our Service Dogs with another trainer so they could get use to different trainers and environments this helped them acclimate to their new disabled partners when it was time for placement.

My boy went to my boss, but he was a big sweaty, slightly smelly Lab; she got use to spraying his bed with Febreze.  And after a very short time he began to develop pustules on his belly and thighs.  I was certain it was the Febreze since he didn’t have the problem at my house, but he was sent to a Veterinary Dermatologist to be assessed and determine if he needed to be dropped from the program because of possible allergies.  I was devastated, he was such a nice dog that had come straight from a shelter and was already slotted for one of our clients for placement.

He would retrieve a dime, or a wheel chair with his mouth and was fantastic for balance and counter balance.

The vet said no more Febreze directly on his skin and he was put on a product called 3V Caps with is a supplement that was only available through your veterinarian (this may still be the case) and had fish oil, Omega 3 fatty acids, and Vitamins A, E, and D which is all good for the skin.  He was put on a high dose and soon his skin cleared up.

3vI was then addicted to the idea of 3V Caps.  3V Caps are different than human supplements because they have fairly high doses of A, E and D which are not vitamins that humans can take in large doses.  A lot of human vitamins are water soluble meaning what the body does not use or need is just washed away but some vitamins build up in the system and I both A and D can build up in the human system and cause health problems.

However your dog metabolizes these vitamins differently.  This is why I prefer this product (and although there were not comparable vitamins on the market at that time, it seems that there are now).

But whether you use human grade fish oil or veterinary supplements made for your dog (which I would suggest if your dog suffers from severe allergies or problems) it has been proven that fish oil is good for dogs.

Even Puppies Benefit from Fish Oil

A recent study showed that puppies that were given fish oil had higher anti-rabies antibodies, better vision and improved neurological development in puppies.

FYI this is not the same for how kittens metabolize fish oil, so please call your vet prior to giving any drug or supplement.

Want to Join us Fish Oil Lovers?

Call your vet and ask for a dose for your best friend and ask his or her opinion on whether pet supplements vs. human supplements are better for your dog!

I love the way the fish oil makes their skin and fur healthier and their eyes bright!

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  1. Wendy Miller says:

    Another thing to add to dogs diet is organic virgin coconut oil. It helps tremendously with skin problems. Also cleans teeth and gums for sweeter dog breath. It can be used on the skin for hot spots, rubbed through the fur for shine and dodorizing. It is a natural anitiseptic and kills many types of bacteria, including strep.

    It is truly awesome. Add 1/4 tsp for every 10 lbs your dog weighs. 2X a day. Mix into his food. I warm it over hot water ( no not microwave). Melts quickly and mixes right in.

    I swear, this is a miracle fix and so healthy for your dog, and you.



  2. kathy Nemetz says:

    I give my Japanese Chin Coconut oil every day twice a day, about a teaspoon.


  3. Gigi Flores says:

    I thank you I will try it on the fur of my Labrador 111/2 Rescue dog. He had 2times pancreatitis and his skin is peeling of also, because even with flea protection the fleas where eating him up. If you have any other recept he is getting all little bumbs and warts over his legs he is chwing constantly.
    Thank you. A reply would be helpful.


  4. Wayne Donkerbrook says:

    Dear Minette,

    Thank you for your post. FYI – 3V caps have been discontinued by the manufacturer.



    Minette Reply:

    Oh no!!! I did see them online, but I guess that shows how long I’ve been out of the vet world lol


  5. This is great. Thanks for sharing this information. Here in Fla. we have alot of skin issues with our dogs. Something to due with dew on grass in mornings when they go out to potty cause pet to lick and chew at paws and backs to be rubbed raw.. Will try this as I have cocoonut oil on hand as well as fish oil. Good tip about freezing fish oil to keep from burping it. That is why I went to krill oil.


    Minette Reply:

    You can also wipe your dog down with a baby wipe when they come in from outside to reduce allergens


    Catherine Boxdorfer Reply:

    What kind of wipes do you suggest? My miniture schnauzer has what looks like bites on her belly and inner back legs. I will also cut out the dryer sheets when drying her bedding. What do you suggest I use to cut down on static cling when drying her bedding?


    Minette Reply:

    Use fragrance free wipes and use soaps and detergents that are made for allergies (people) or use something natural like vinegar

  6. Catherine Boxdorfer says:

    I have a miniture schnauzer and she get what looks likes bites on her belly and inner back legs. She licks them alot which turns to sores. I have her on a breakfast diet of scrambled eggs and oatmeal for breakfast and for lunch and dinner I feed her brown rice, boiled chicken, and green beans. I cut out the butter when cooking the eggs and the omega oil on the chicken to see if that helps. It seems to have helped alot. I do use dryer sheets when drying her bedding. Maybe I should cut that out too. As far as the baby wipes, what kind do you suggest?


    Minette Reply:

    If she has sores she needs to see her vet, for antibiotics.

    If you had pustules all over your belly and back legs you would want antibiotics and possibly steroid spray to help alleviate the pain and itchiness


    Louise Height Reply:

    FYI : the most common food allergen according to my vet is chicken so you might want to try another protein instead. My pom mix is allergic to chicken, fish, corn, and rice. Any of these will result in the same skin conditions that you mention happening to your miniture schnauzer.


  7. Wendy says:

    It’s interesting what pet owners will feed to their dogs,,most dried dog food contains wheat,this can cause skin allergy problems in some breeds,so check out what the dried food contains,as wheat may be the problem,my dog is a Scottish Terrier ,I feed him on rice and chicken dried food and his skin and fur is in excellent condition.


  8. Deanne says:

    We have two yellow labs we adopted from a Lab Rescue. They are wonderful dogs and we love them very much. Each weighs about 75 lbs, one is almost 3 and the other is 3-1/2 years old now. Adopting included a face to face interview with a Lab foster mom. She brought her own pet to see how he reacted to us and vice versa during our interview. Her dog had the softest and nicest coat! I asked her what she did to give her dog this amazingly soft coat. She told us about feeding a good dog food but also add fish oil and flaxseed oil caplets. We now give our dogs both supplements twice a day. No administering, just put it in their food. They eat them willingly. We buy the supplements from the grocery store or at the big warehouse stores (vitamin section) in bulk to save some money.

    When we go to the vet, the vet comments on how beautiful our dogs coats and skin are and that he has never seen such nice coats on Labs before. He has Labs of his own, too. (We live in the Houston, Texas area.)

    Please know, the change in the coat does not happen overnight. It may take months or even a year before you see a real difference. The old hair has to have time to grow out and be replaced by new growth.

    Ask your vet how much you can give your pet.


  9. Helen says:

    My dog (Male) has been scratching himself since he was a puppy, he’s now 4 years old and still at it. I have give him a flea collar and checked his skin for fleas but there are not any there. I watch his food not too high in potein as I was told maybe his food was rich in protein and no chemicals used on his floor or bedding area. He does tend to love sitting right in front of the fire alot even when it is roasting then he moves away and comes back again. But I’m not sure if this is the problem as when he’s outside he scratches himself. But if he’s out walking or playing he is fine or just sitting outside, I notice if I stroke him anywhere on his body he starts scratching or chewimg crazy on his paws. Can any suggest what may be causing this. The vet told me it could cost me a lot of money if I was to do tests on him. Thanks P.S I also wash him in just plain water no shampoo, and slso he does not have dry or cracked skin.


    Minette Reply:

    If you have a dog that is miserable it is worth the investment to take him to the vet or dermatologist to have him diagnosed and given medicine he may need.

    He may need antibiotics or other treatments to help clear the immediate problem and then you can go from there


  10. Cheryl says:

    My German Shepherd dog itches constantly. I had the vet perform an allergy test….. Here she is allergic to ALL fish. I’ve been giving her fish oil pills since I got her a year ago. I like the advise on using coconut oil. I’ll certainly give it a try.


  11. cindy says:

    My poodle mix gets balckheads on his back. I use a wire brush on him daily, give hime baths every month or so and keep his coat short. If I give him omegas, won’t that cause himeto have even oilier skin? I asked my horse vet about it and she said a lot of poodles get that and gave me a name for it but no cure.


    Minette Reply:

    So go to your dog vet and have him diagnosed. I can’t do it from here!


  12. Marcia says:

    I have alab mix he has a bad body orde what can I gave him?


    Minette Reply:

    he may have allergies. First thing I would do would be to take him to the vet.

    Next would be more baths! You can also use baby wipes


  13. Gayle says:

    I have a 6 month old sharpei x staffy who keeps scratching until she has broken her skin and and lost the fur in the itchy areas. After reading your article i started her on fish oil but the coconut oil rubbed into her coat and skin stopped the scratching straight away. I do have to rub it into her coat about every 3 days but its worth it. I would love to try the 3v caps but they dont have them here in Australia. Thanks for all your articles, they are interesting and helpfull


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