Can You Apply Polysporin on a Dog

Every time your dog comes home with a scratch or cut, your first instinct is to offer first aid and make your dog feel better. Yet the dilemma of whether or not to treat your dog with Polysporin may arise periodically.

Humans benefit greatly from this treatment, but what about our dogs?

Some vets believe dogs can safely take Polysporin, while others disagree. Bacitracin and Polymyxin B, the two primary chemicals, have been deemed safe for dogs, but they can sometimes worsen things. However, you might also see many alternatives that most vets suggest.

In this blog, you will learn when to take your pet to the vet, when to use Polysporin, and how to treat minor wounds. Moreover, you will also find alternatives to offer the best treatment to your dog. Let’s start!

What Exactly is Polysporin?

This drug comes in the form of an ointment and is typically used by humans to treat bacterial or fungal infections of the skin caused by minor scrapes, cuts, wounds, and burns. Polysporin is a double antibiotic ointment that contains:

1. Bacitracin

2. Polymyxin B

It is commonly available at most drug stores. 

Polysporin On Dogs

Hyper and playful dogs are highly susceptible to getting hurt or scratched by a stick or sharp rock while playing outdoors. Obviously, you will quickly try to help your canine buddy in any way you can. Well, as humans, we will directly reach out to antibiotics for the wound, such as Polysporin. But can you use it on your buddy?

As discussed above, there are two major components in this topical medicine, and there has been a debate over how safe they are for your dogs. So before you reach out to polysporin for your dog again, learn more about its safe usage.

This video has everything you want to know about an open wound on your dog!

Is Polysporin Safe For Dogs?

Polysporin is generally safe for dogs but not for the ones who have allergies. So before using it for your dog, it is best to check your pup for allergies and consult a vet for professional advice. 

Most vets will prescribe Polysporin to your dog if your buddy is not allergic to it. However, many veterinarians still argue that the antibiotic ointment is designed for humans and is not safe for dogs. Vets suggest avoiding this medicine as it may bring on allergic responses to the already dire situation. 

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On the other hand, some vets believe it’s okay to use Polysporin in small amounts, on minor cuts or scrapes, and in places where the dog can’t lick it. If you can keep your dog from swallowing the antibiotic, they may still be able to use polysporin and benefit from it without having a reaction. But for others, it can make an existing wound worse. 

What Does the Vet Say 

Are you still determining whether or not your dog is allergic to the chemicals in the ointment? In that case, you must seek the advice of your veterinarian before administering any form of treatment.

Here are some reasons why it’s essential to ask your vet about the medicine you’re giving your dog, even if it’s just a short talk over the phone.

The focus will be on the parts of the medicine to which most dogs are allergic. These include the main components of polysporin. Find out if your dog is allergic to any. 

If your dog seems to be developing an allergy and you want to know how to prevent or treat it, you should consult a veterinarian.

Precautions To Keep In Mind

Whether you are storing the medicine or applying the ointment to your dog’s skin, several safety measures must be taken into consideration.

● The only method to apply the ointment is by rubbing it directly onto the affected area. It should never be digested or utilized in any other way.

● Never use Polysporin around the eyes, ears, and mouth. You must ensure your dog doesn’t lick or ingest the medicine or get it in his ears or eyes. This will likely make your dog very sick and could cause him a lot of irritation.

● If your dog inadvertently ingests any, you should first call your veterinarian for guidance and read the instructions.

● Put the Polysporin in a high cabinet that neither your dog nor your children can reach. 

● Wrapping the region where you applied the ointment may prevent other foreign substances from adhering to the skin.

● After applying the ointment, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly so that you don’t end up putting it on your or your dog’s food. If you think your dog could be allergic to polysporin, the best way is to do a patch test on a tiny area of their body and see how their immune system reacts.

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Natural antibiotics for your dog and when to use them. Find out!

Things To Avoid While Medicating Your Dog With Polysporin

If your dog doesn’t show any adverse reaction to the medicine, make sure you also avoid the following: 

Giving any other medicine to your dog alongside polysporin. The combination of medicine may not work for all dogs. 

If you miss a dose, wait until the next round instead of doubling it up. 

Also, you should avoid mixing up Polysporin with Neosporin. The compounds used in this medicine can be fatal for your dog. 

Simple Alternatives To Polysporin

Polysporin wasn’t made to be used on animals, so it’s not surprising that many dog owners don’t use it on their pets. 

So if you’re planning to steer clear of polysporin for your dog, you must look for other ways to treat a small cut, scrape, or wound on your dog. Here’s what you should know:


After a minor cut or scrape has been well-cleansed and dried, you may apply a vaseline (petroleum jelly) to the area. Because it functions as a barrier, Vaseline prevents the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms in the place where it is applied. However, the wound has to be sanitized and thoroughly dried before you use it.

Warm Soapy Water

Or it is best to bathe the area with warm soapy water, let it dry completely, and then have your veterinarian look at it. If the wound is severe, it may need stitches.

There are situations when the wound will heal without any intervention. However, this is contingent on the location as well as the severity of the problem. You should take your dog to the veterinarian as soon as possible after discovering any cut or wound on him, regardless of how minor it may seem. 


Polysporin is considered safe for dogs to treat skin infections and other skin-related conditions if your dog has used it before. 

Of course, you should always check with your vet to see if it is safe for your dog. This is important since your vet will know your dog’s medical history and can tell you if your dog has ever had an allergic reaction to any medications. It’s best to get it prescribed by a vet to avoid confusion or problems. 

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Susan Dorling

I am a pet expert with years of experience working with a variety of animals. From dogs and cats to birds and exotics, I have a deep understanding of their unique needs and behaviors. I am dedicated to helping pet owners provide the best care for their furry friend.