Can Dogs Have Flaxseed Oil?

Let’s face it; flaxseed oil stands out with its anti-inflammatory omega-3s. 

While our canine friends don’t suffer from the same chronic inflammation that we do, you cannot help but wonder if the same benefits that we experience from flaxseed oil would be seen in our dogs.

We are here to set the record straight and lay bare everything that you need to know about flaxseed oil and your dog.

Can dogs have flaxseed oil?

Yes, Flaxseed oil is an excellent source of omega-3 and omega- 6 fatty acids for your fido.

Omega-3 fatty acids ar help to reduce inflammation throughout the body while omega-6 fatty acids are important for maintaining healthy skin and a lustrous coat.

Flaxseed oil is also a good source of fiber that helps to regulate digestion and keep the gastrointestinal tract healthy.

This article gives you in-depth information about everything you need to know about feeding dogs flaxseed oil.

By the end of this article, you’ll learn how to feed it to your dog per the recommended dosage.

Can Dogs Have Flaxseed Oil

What nutrients in flaxseed oil are beneficial to dogs?

Flaxseed oil contains various minerals and essential vitamins that dogs need to support several bodily systems.

These include:

Magnesium: Aids in the formation of healthy bones.

Phosphorus: Helps in maintaining bones and tissues.

Vitamin B1: Boosts metabolism and supports nerve functions.

Choline: Ensures that the liver and brain are healthy and function well.

Manganese: Facilities absorption of nutrients and antioxidant processes.

These nutrients are also beneficial to puppies and senior dogs.

While they help puppies grow and develop, these nutrients ensure that old dogs maintain good health as they age.

What are the health benefits of flaxseed oil to dogs?

Flaxseed oil offers several health benefits to dogs.

These include:

Healthy digestion: Flaxseed contains fiber, enabling your dog’s digestive system to function correctly. Flaxseed oil helps curb constipation and loose stool, especially if your dog has digestive issues. 

Boosts immunity: Flaxseed helps in improving your dog’s immune system. It contains lignan, an antioxidant that supports your dog’s boosts your dog’s immune system to help it fight diseases.

Formation of healthy hips and joints: Flaxseed oil possesses anti-inflammatory properties which can help your dog develop healthy hips and joints, especially if it suffers from canine arthritis. If you regularly feed your dog flaxseed oil, it will get relief in case of minor and occasional hip and joint issues.

Healthy skin and coat: The fatty acids in flaxseed oil improve the skin and texture of a dog’s coat, making it full and healthy. An unhealthy, full coat shows underlying immunity issues in dogs. Since flaxseed makes the coat healthy, it also improves your dog’s health.

Are there risks associated with feeding flaxseed oil to dogs?

Digs should consume flaxseed oil as per the recommended dosage.

Excessive consumption comes with some risks.

These include:

Constipation: Flaxseed oil contains fiber which is beneficial to dogs if they consume the required amount. Too much flaxseed oil means high-fiber content. Excessive consumption of fiber leads to constipation in dogs.

Flax poisoning: Flax contains small amounts of cyanide. Your dog may require a lot of flaxseed oil to get flax poisoning. A small dog’s reactions will be adverse and less severe than a bigger breed. The symptoms of flax poisoning that you should look out for include fast heart rate, high blood pressure, and loose stools. 

Gastrointestinal upsets: Your dog may develop gastrointestinal issues if its system isn’t used to flaxseed oil. When introducing it into your dog’s diet, start with small amounts and observe for any reaction. These gastrointestinal issues can be in the form of diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. 

What’s the recommended dosage of flaxseed oil for dogs?

To feed flaxseed oil to dogs, you need to add it to its food.

The dosage depends on the weight and type of dog.

Bigger breeds will need more flaxseed oil than smaller ones.

The recommended dosage of flaxseed for dogs is two tablespoons per 20-pounds body weight.

You can split it into a dog’s meal or administer it as one dosage.

If you add flaxseed oil to a dog’s meal, use liquid or semi-solid food and not dry meals.

There are cases where a dog develops an oily, dandruff-filled coat after consuming flaxseed oil.

If this happens, stop the dose and seek help from a veterinarian.

What should you do if your dog consumes excess flaxseed oil?

The common symptoms of excessive consumption of flaxseed oil in dogs are diarrhea and vomiting.

Although these symptoms are likely to disappear without medical intervention, keep a close watch on your dog for 24 hours.

In case of prolonged diarrhea and vomiting, seek medical attention to avoid exposing your dog to dehydration, which can be fatal.

If your dog experiences other symptoms like seizures, difficulty breathing, and paralysis, visit a veterinarian immediately.

Once you notice symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting, feed your dog plenty of water to prevent dehydration.

Don’t induce vomiting because you may worsen the situation by exposing your dog to aspiration pneumonia. 


How often should you feed flaxseed oil to a dog?

According to vets, you should feed your dog flaxseed oil daily to ensure it reaps all its health benefits.

All you need to do is use the proper dosage according to your dog’s weight.

Can excessive consumption of flaxseed oil kill dogs?

Although rare, too much consumption of flaxseed oil causes flax poisoning, which can kill dogs.

It’s unlikely that your dog will consume enough flaxseed oil to cause poisoning because the amount of cyanide is minimum.

Does flaxseed oil help to minimize shedding?

Yes, feeding your dog flaxseed oil helps to minimize shedding.

If your dog sheds from itching due to severe allergies and fleas, flaxseed oil contains omega-3, which improves its skin and reduces shedding.


Flaxseed oil can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet.

It contains minerals and nutrients essential for the healthy functioning of various body organs in dogs.

However, if your dog consumes flaxseed oil in excess amounts, it can cause poisoning and stomach issues.

If this happens, consult a veterinarian to prevent the symptoms from worsening. 

Before introducing flaxseed oil to your dog’s diet, consult a veterinarian so that you can determine the correct dosage according to your dog’s weight.

This way, your dog will reap the health benefits while avoiding the adverse side effects of overdosing.

Megan Turner
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