Omega-3 fatty acids are found in foods, such as fish, hemp (cannabis) and flaxseed, and more commonly found in dietary supplements like fish oil, hemp oil and flaxseed oil..
Their are three main omega-3 fatty acids; alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). ALA is most common in plant oils such as flaxseed, hemp, soybean, and canola oils. DHA and EPA are found in fish and other seafood.
ALA is an essential fatty acid, meaning that your pet’s body cannot make it, it must be consumed from food or supplements. An animal’s body can convert some ALA into EPA and then to DHA in very small amounts. Therefore, getting EPA and DHA from foods (and dietary supplements if necessary) is the best way to increase levels of omega-3 fatty acids in the body.
Omega-3s are important components of the membranes that surround each cell in the body. DHA levels are especially high in retina (eye), brain, and sperm cells. Omega-3s also provide calories to give animals energy and have many functions in your heart, blood vessels, lungs, immune system, and endocrine system (the network of hormone-producing glands).