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DMSO For Pets


Dimethyl Sulfoxide, also known as DMSO. It's a liquid or gel pain reliever and skin emulsifier used for conditions like cancer, musculoskeletal conditions, cystitis, and cranial pressure. Like MSM, DMSO is an organosulfur compound. It was discovered in the early 19th century and it's derived mostly from Dimethyl sulfide originating from wood and paper making where it's synthesized and turned into Dimethyl Sulfoxide.

There are different grades of DMSO. Industrial, commercial (25%), veterinary, and pharmaceutical grade (99% pure). Never use industrial grade or commercial grade DMSO with animals. 

In essence, DMSO is a solvent with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. DMSO's effects are almost instant, quickly traveling through mucus membranes and your dog's skin layers. It's an emulsifier so whatever is dissolved into DMSO goes into the body with it. Inside the body, DMSO is metabolized by the liver and excreted through the elimination channel of the kidneys, large intestine, lungs, and skin.

Benefits of DMSO

Common uses for DMSO include;
  • Burns
  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Fungal infections
  • Head injuries
  • Interstitial cystitis
  • Muscle tightness
  • Musculoskeletal conditions
  • Musculoskeletal acute injuries
  • Neuropathy
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Scar tissue / Growth tissue

When To Use DMSO

Veterinarians use DMSO to circumvent the stomach when applying pain control methods as DMSO is applied to the area of pain. It's advised to use DMSO under the care of a veterinarian or person skilled in its use. Usually, therapy with DMSO is limited to two to three weeks and shouldn't exceed 15 -20 grams daily.

Is DMSO Safe For Pets?

Yes and no. DMSO is not totally a safe substance and can potentially cause harm because it brings anything soluble along with it directly into the body. For this reason, it's important to work with your holistic vet as animals are sensitive to DMSO, and factors such as the ailment you're treating, the age of your pet, weight and any underlying health condition, medications, etc. need to be taken into account when administering DMSO.

It can be safe to use with pets if you know what you're doing, remember what can heal can also cause harm if given incorrectly, so proceed with caution and preferably under the supervision of a practitioner.

  • Use with distilled water only (not tap water) as any contaminates will be carried directly into the body
  • Don't allow your dog to lick DMSO. Internal use can cause diarrhea, dizziness, low appetite, nausea, and vomiting
  • Avoid if your dog is pregnant
  • Only use in a well-ventilated area when applying DMSO
  • Make sure everything is clean and free of contaminants before applying DMSO as it will absorb and allow contaminants entry into your dog's skin and body.
  • DMSO interacts with the drug Sulindac so avoid use when combined.
  • Avoid before surgery, with blood thinners, heart medications, pain medicines, and steroids
  • Don't use DMSO if your dog has asthma, diabetes, compromised kidneys, or liver disease.

Side Effects

Side Effects of DMSO and Toxicity. Usually, the concentration, dosage, and how you administer DMSO can play a major part in its side effects. However, dogs are individuals so any dosage could cause sensitivities.

Possible DMSO Side Effects

  • Localized rash
  • Stomach upset
  • Itching
  • Nasal congestion
  • Excess intestinal gas
  • Shortness of breath (rare)

DMSO can negatively affect liver and kidney values if used regularly or long-term. There have also been reports of it causing vision changes at high dosages. According to the University of Idaho, " DMSO can cause refractive index changes leading to cataracts with long term use". It is highly recommended you work with your veterinarian for administration, routine blood work, and eye exams if you use DMSO consistently.

How to Apply DMSO

DMSO causes a heating sensation but is usually not uncomfortable. It's rapidly distributed to your dog's tissues with a direct effect on the central and peripheral nervous system blocking pain receptors. It's important to do a small test patch before applying it to a large area in case it makes your dog uncomfortable as every dog is different. 

The daily maximum dose for a large dog is 20 grams applied externally.

It's important not to get DMSO on your hands as it immediately penetrates your skin and you'll taste a garlic-like substance in your mouth. Your dog's mouth might smell as well but this isn't always the case. Dogs shouldn't lick DMSO so make sure they are wearing a cone while it absorbs.

Because DMSO is a solvent, Cornell University suggests using latex gloves for quick usage or butyl rubber gloves for extended use. In Amandha Dawn Vollmer's book, Healing with DMSO she suggests applying "2 ml of pure DMSO in 2 ml of distilled water (making a 50 % solution) and applying it on areas where there is less fur".

According to DMSO expert, Amandha Dawn Vollmer, you can use DMSO internally but this should only be considered under the care of a skilled professional or experienced veterinarian. She makes a point of saying, "DMSO is a substance that every person should keep in the home, every parent should have in a first aid kit, and every doctor's office and hospital should have on hand." 

DMSO is a viable option for arthritis, pain, cancer, and many other chronic health conditions but it must be used with care and expertise. It is very useful applied externally but use an expert as your guide if considering it long-term or internally for your pet.

This article is not meant for diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your holistic veterinarian for proper diagnosis and your pet's individual treatment plan.

NOW, we'd love to hear your feedback so LEAVE A COMMENT and feel free to share this with people you think will love it.

Natural lifestyle, naturally health, naturally thriving!!

Vollmer, Amandha Dawn, Healing with DMSO, 2020

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Saturday, August 13 2022

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website and articles are based on the opinions of the people at Authentica. The information contained within is not intended to replace that of your qualified vets or intended as medical advice. We are sharing knowledge and information but in no way should this pertain you from seeking proper professional medical/veterinary advice. We encourage you to do your own research and make your own decisions on your pet's health in conjunction with your vet. Neither we nor any third parties provide any warranty or guarantee as to the accuracy of information. You acknowledge that such information and materials may contain inaccuracies or errors. Your use of any information or materials on this website is entirely at your own risk, for which we shall not be liable. It shall be your own responsibility to ensure that any products, services or information available through this website meet your specific requirements and those of your pet. If you become aware of any material on the website that you believe infringes your or any other person's copyright, please report this by email to info@authenticapets.com so we can immediately rectify the issue.


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