Fat gets a bad rap so let's look at good fats, bad fats and where they are. The bad won't make him drop dead on the spot but lead him down the path to many inflammatory conditions including arthritis. They can also contribute to cancer.
If you think fat is fat, it's just bad conditioning from commercials and all those companies who put out low-fat products so you'll consume more of there stuff. (By the way they usually replace the fat with sugar.)
We live (in the United States at least) in a world of processed foods full of bad fat where people and dogs are overweight. Then we're taught to 'cut the fat' to lose weight.
Talk about bad information. Did you know the brain is made of 60% fat? It must have good fat to function. Bad fat causes sluggishness and lack of attention. If you've ever dined on fast food for lunch and then wondered why your brain wouldn't work in the afternoon, now you know why.
And you can pretty much bet the fat content in all the dog foods on the grocery store and mass market pet food stores work similarly for your dog.
So what about good fats? Yes! Good fats do the opposite. They feed the brain. Your dog won't just pay more attention while you train him, he'll actually be smarter, more alert and feel happier. And there's more. But for right now let's talk fat.
So how many kinds of fat are there? Let's keep it simple:
But inside the polyunsaturated fat category lie some special fats that have become buzzwords. Perhaps you didn't even know they were fat, but the initials EFA stand for essential fatty acids. See? Fat!
- short chain omega 6
- short chain omega 3
- long chain omega 3 (EPA + DHA)
Omega 6 none of us have trouble getting but that illusive Omega 3 is the 'in' fat which you can buy in capsules, bottles and it's even added to dog foods. Why? When balanced at about 6 to 1 (for omega 6 and omega 3) this wonderful, glorious fat makes every cell of your dog's body healthier and even improves the skin and coat while it powers the brain and lengthens attention span.
Our dogs do need some saturated fat like that in muscle meat of beef, chicken or whatever we feed them. The problem is the more it gets cooked the less nutritional value it has for our dogs. (And now you know why I feed raw and include organ meat to get all the good stuff.)
How can good fats like Omega 3's become bad fats? Good fats are tender and spoil easily so if you happen to buy, say, a dog kibble that boasts Omega 3 EFA, look out. By the time your dog eats it, the good effects if there were any, are long gone and may actually be rancid. Rancid fats are spoiled fats and cause illness.
What would I suggest? First, do not buy foods touting added Omega 3 or fish oils. Even if the nutrition isn't cooked out if it during processing, guess what? The minute you open the bag, the air begins to slowly turn any good ingredients rancid. Whoever would have thought?
So what would I suggest?
Fish oil when fresh and kept refrigerated can be an awesome boost of Omega 3 essential fatty acids but here's what you need to know.
If you see something labeled "fish oil" run the other way. It's such a generic term it could come from any fish, anywhere. Including sick, unhealthy fish raised in disgusting conditions.Yuck.
Here are some options.
Of course you could buy Super Omega 3 ( Stock # 1515-7) through me because I'd love the business but you have other options as well. All I ask is you never buy any supplement without a little research.
Either find a good clean wild caught salmon oil and keep it in the fridge; or try this simple idea when you're buying your weekly groceries. Pick up a can of wild caught sardines in water! At least you know they are human grade. Plus you get the whole fish which has other nutrients and you can add it a few times a week to your dog's meal. Easy huh?
P.S. If you have an overweight dog, cut the carbohydrates, not the fats and get both your behinds out for some exercise.
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