A crossover feeding trial was performed with 9 horses suffering from recurrent airway obstruction (RAO). The study aimed to determine whether ingestion of sunflower oil (SFO), rich in linoleic acid, or seal blubber oil (SBO), a source of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC n-3 PUFAs), changes the fatty acid (FA) ratios in plasma and leukocyte membrane phospholipids (PLs) or the leukocyte numbers or proportions of cell types in the airways. We also investigated diet-related changes in respiratory rate, maximum change in pleural pressure (deltaPpl(max)), dynamic compliance (C(dyn)), and pulmonary resistance (RL). Each animal was fed hay and oats supplemented with 320 mg/kg body weight (BW) of either SFO or SBO for 10 wk. Before and after the feeding periods, we performed FA analyses, cytologic testing of the pulmonary epithelial lining fluid (PELF), clinical scoring, and pulmonary function testing. The results demonstrated that supplementary FAs were readily ingested and incorporated into leukocyte cell membranes. The n-6:n-3 FA ratios in plasma and leukocyte PLs were reduced after SBO supplementation, as were the PELF leukocyte counts (P < 0.05). On the other hand, pulmonary function and clinical signs were not markedly changed by the different dietary FAs. These results indicate a possible influence of dietary n-3 PUFAs on the pulmonary inflammation of horses with RAO. Further studies are warranted to address effects on inflammatory mediators and clinical outcome.