What foods help with a healthy, shiny coat for dogs?

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A dog’s coat says a lot about the health of your canine. Allergies, poor nutrition and even using the wrong shampoo can make the fur dry and dull.

One of the fastest ways to improve your dog’s coat is with good nutrition—and that’s as much about adding the right foods as it is with avoiding the wrong ones.

First, a balanced diet is a must and should contain the proper ratio of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein and other nutrients. Please see our article on the most essential nutrients for a dog.

As a general rule, always consult with your veterinarian before adding any ingredient.

ADD:

• Foods with omega 3 fatty acids. This essential fatty acid (EFA) is critical to your dog’s health decrease inflammation, especially with respect to cardiac disease—AND omega 3 is key in skin and coat health.

Omega 3 fatty acids are found in fish oil, flax, canola, soybeans and walnuts. Dog foods that include fish as one of the protein sources are also providing high quality Omega 3 fatty acids. Most dogs like the flavor of dog foods with fish as a main ingredient, and many do not mind fish oil added to their dog food.

You can also add it as a supplement; ask your vet for suggestions.

• Olive oil: Add a teaspoon of olive oil to your dog’s food to increase the health and shine of the dog’s fur.
• Protein: A healthy canine diet is high in protein, and a healthy diet will increase the shine and health of your dog’s coat. All dog food labels contain nutritional information; choosing a dog food that is high in protein will add to the health and shine of your dog’s coat. Be sure to read labels thoroughly and please ask if there is something you don’t understand.

AVOID:
• Corn products, because they are a known allergen.
• Wheat or corn gluten
• Wheat flour

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