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Does Vitamin E Help Pets' Wounds Heal?

| Updated September 26, 2017

Vitamin E is regarded as a home remedy for skin injuries, but scientific evidence is lacking. Applying topical vitamin E to your pet's wounds can damage the wound site. Despite its reputation for boosting the body's immune response and aiding with wound care, large doses of vitamin E might suppress healing. Consult your veterinarian before using any vitamins or supplements for your pet.

Topical Vitamin E

Injured after fight with other dog
i Photoraidz/iStock/Getty Images

Treating your furry companion's skin lacerations with vitamin E oil, cream or ointment might irritate the skin instead of helping to heal the wounds. While a "Dermatologic Surgery" journal article discusses a study examining the effects of vitamin E on wounds and scars from skin cancer removal in people, definitive results for our canine counterparts are not as clear. Research results demonstrated that applying vitamin E after skin surgery was not beneficial. It either worsened the scar's appearance or had no effect. Always seek veterinary guidance about any remedies you are considering.

Vitamin E Supplements

Nutritional deficiencies can lead to impaired wound healing and a weakened immune system. Vitamin E is one of the vitamins that wound specialist Laurie Swezey, R.N. with Wound Educators in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, describes as particularly important for wound care. Vitamin E helps maintain the health of your pet's tissue and immune system. Allergies in immunosuppressed pets can cause minor sores or flea bites to develop into significant skin problems. Vitamin E's antioxidant qualities might help your pet fight off wound-related infections. Your dog’s body needs both vitamin C and vitamin E to promote wound healing, according to holistic veterinarian Carol Osborne of the Chagrin Falls (Ohio) Pet Clinic. Vitamin E can cause bleeding. Your veterinarian likely will suggest not giving it to your companion before surgery.