Neosporin on Dogs - Yes or No?

Neosporin on Dogs - Yes or No?

Author WDF Staff


Dogs, especially puppies, are prone to injuries. Their mindless playing and zoomies will give us plenty of laughs, but they will also give us some pretty bad scares. Puppies don’t tend to be very careful, which often ends up with different scrapes, cuts, and bruises. That is nothing out of the ordinary, and experienced dog owners are used to it. Treating these cuts and scrapes usually doesn’t require veterinary intervention. There are plenty of things like Neosporin that we could use to help our dogs.

However, what do you actually know about the usage of Neosporin on dogs? Our logic was - if it’s safe for us, it has to be safe for dogs, right? Well, not necessarily. Before you start treating your dog’s cuts, scratches, bruises, and scrapes with Neosporin, we would advise you to look at this whole article and talk to your vet.

What is Neosporin?

Neosporin is a common topical antibacterial ointment. More precise, Neosporin is a brand name, and the maker is Johnson&Johnson. This antibacterial ointment consists of neomycin, polysporin, and bacitracin, which are commonly used to treat cuts and prevent bacterial infections. Neosporin is an over-the-counter, or OTC, drug, which means it doesn’t require a vet’s or doctor’s prescription.

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Can you use Neosporin on dogs?

Our first impulse after we, or someone from our family, sustains a cut or scrape is to get Neosporin. That is why it was our first impulse to get for our dog. We know the general rule that says it is best not to use human medication on dogs without checking it with your vet.

Even Neosporin’s website says they cannot recommend using their products on animals. While it might be safe for really minor cuts and bruises, you should avoid using it on your dog without talking to your vet. This is a triple antibiotic, and one of them has some connections to hearing loss in dogs. There are far better and more dog-friendly products for wound treatment than Neosporin.

If you checked with your vet, and they gave you the green-light, there are a few rules you should follow before you start freely applying Neosporin on your dog.

How to safely use Neosporin on dogs?

As we said before, the first thing you should do is talk to your vet. Minor scrapes and scratches are usually safe to treat with Neosporin. Still, severe puncture wounds, deep cuts, or dog bites should be examined by the vet as soon as possible. Remember to follow these rules if you are going to use Neosporin on dogs;

Clean the dog wound

When treating dog abrasions or minor wounds, the first thing you need to do is to clean and flush the wound with water and soap. Rinse it thoroughly, and dry it.

Allergy check

While Neosporin is safe for humans, dog’s skin might not tolerate it as well as ours. Before you use it on the actual wound, try a tiny bit of cream or gel on the dog’s healthy skin. Check for any allergic reactions, and only then can you apply it to the affected area.

Keep the amounts small

When applying Neosporin on dogs, remember to keep the amounts small and strictly on the affected area. The critical thing is to watch your dog closely after applying the medication because ingesting it is not healthy for them. Dogs that lick or eat Neosporin can end up with diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.

Topical use only

This is not a safe drug for dogs in terms of ingesting it. It is strictly forbidden for dogs to ingest, and that rule is the same for internal use. If the wound is deep or on sensitive places like the eyes or ears, the use of Neosporin on dogs is not highly recommended.

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How to care for dog wounds?

As a dog owner, you need to be aware that accidents happen. Dogs, especially puppies, are reckless, and they are not known for thinking things through. They love playing and running, and they can find trouble in places you can’t imagine. If that does happen to your dog, don’t jump to use Neosporin on your dog immediately. Here is how you should treat dog wounds;

  • If the wound is serious and severe bleeding is involved, apply direct pressure to the wound to stop it from bleeding.
  • Check your dog’s body. Make sure that is the only wound they have sustained.
  • The next step would be cleaning the wound with water or saline solution. Make sure you remove all debris and foreign bodies that can be lodged in the wound. When you clean the wound, it will be a lot easier to assess the situation. If you notice the wound is severe, call your vet before the next step.
  • The next step is cleaning the wound. Dog first aid kits contain things like chlorhexidine diacetate or povidone-iodine. Both can be used, and both are effective. They should be watered down, which shouldn’t be a problem; there are instructions on the package. After that, use gauze to blot the area.

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  • You should keep a close eye on your dog for the next few days. Make sure the wound isn’t getting infected and that it is healing. You can take photos of it each day to monitor the improvement. If you start noticing complications like swelling or the wound isn’t healing fast enough, call your vet and notify them about the problem. They will most likely ask you to bring your dog in as soon as possible.

Using human medications on dogs is generally not a good idea. Some dogs might have underlying problems we don’t know about, or the medication can contain toxic things to dogs. Make sure you check with your vet before you give any human medications to your dog.

World Dog Finder team

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