The Benefits of Epsom Salt for Dogs

by Kimberly DeCosta
    Your dog will find an Epsom salt soak comforting.

    Your dog will find an Epsom salt soak comforting.

    Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images

    Did you know that Epsom salts can benefit your dog? Whether he is suffering from allergies, skin discomfort or an open wound, a salt soak can bring relief. Do not let your dog drink water with Epsom salt, as it has a laxative effect and can disrupt digestion. Contact your veterinarian if you are unsure whether your dog's particular ailment can benefit from Epsom salt.

    Epsom salt gently cleanses wounds and aids in drawing out infection in the case of an abscess. Mix approximately 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt with 2 cups of warm water and immerse the area of the wound. If the wound is on the dog's body, a clean washcloth can be soaked in the salt solution and applied gently as a compress. Rinse the wound site with fresh warm water after the soak, or wipe with a clean, damp towel.

    Soaking your dog's paws in Epsom salt mixed with warm water can relieve itchy, dry or inflamed paws due to environmental factors, stress or allergies. For dogs who lick their paws excessively during winter months, an Epsom salt soak once daily can replenish moisture naturally and relieve itching. Let your dog's feet soak in a tub for five to 10 minutes, and gently wipe his paws with a clean, soft towel. You can soak your dog's feet daily until symptoms clear up.

    Dry skin can be a particularly uncomfortable and a recurring ailment for your dog. An Epsom salt soak or warm compress can relieve inflammation and itchiness naturally. Check the irritated area for other possible causes of discomfort, such as fleas or injury, before applying Epsom salt. If the skin is red, dry, cracked or inflamed, place a clean cloth or towel soaked in Epsom salt and warm water directly over the irritated skin, once daily, to relieve symptoms.

    Splinters can be difficult to remove and painful for a dog. They can also lead to infection if the entire splinter is not removed. Dissolve 1 cup of Epsom salt in 2 gallons of warm water and soak the affected area for 10 minutes. This will help loosen and expel splinter fragments that may remain as well as help draw out any possible infection that may be brewing as a result. You may use Epsom salt daily until the splinter site has closed.

    References

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    • Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Kimberly DeCosta is an accomplished equestrian and entrepreneur. She has written for numerous equestrian publications and authored marketing packages for large companies and sports teams.

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