A Veterinarian's Testimonial of Emu Oil
I started applying the benefits of emu oil to
veterinary medicine approximately one year ago. An emu breeder informed me
of the human application, i.e., moisturizer, anti-inflamatory and transport
carrier for medicine. Considering these human applications it seemed
reasonable to apply those benefits to the animal population.
Originally I considered the human application for
anti-inflammatory properties and transport media and felt there would be
applications to management of horse wounds, especially lower leg wounds.
Although anectodal, when used in combination with other drugs. I found
accelerated wound healing and decreased tendency toward production of proud
flesh. Depending on the type of wound, I often combined emu oil with DMSO or
dexamethsasone, or gentamicin for use in the management of wounds.
On distal leg wounds where there is decreased muscle,
therefore decreased circulation and increased tendency for production of
proud flesh, I found that when emu oil was combined with dexamethasone and
an antibiotic, usually gentocin, the animal was much less likely to develop
Management of non-suturable wounds with twice daily application of emu
oil and bandage changes markedly reduced this same phenomenon.
Epithialization of these wounds treated with emu oil preparation was faster
and less scarring was noted. Likewise dehiscence of sutured wounds was less
in emu oil treated equine patients.
Although I have not yet used emu oil in lame or
arthritic horses, I am interested in combining the oil with NSAID
(non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) to control stiffness and pain in
those affected joints. Based on claims of anti-inflammatory actions and
transport carrier claims it seems logical to apply these uses to this area
of equine medicine.
I have combined preparations using emu oil in bovine
medicine also. A freguent winter lesion seen in dairy cattle is frosted teat
ends. The teat end freezes and skin around the teat sloughs. The emu oil has
accelerated healing in these lesions and made it possible to continue
milking in cow through the healing process. In this type of lesion emu oil
is used alone for reasons of milk residues. This is an area where even
bacteriostatic claims apply as well as those previously mentioned.
Similarly, in bovine practice ringworm lesions in
calves is seen commonly. When the oil was combined with fulvacin, an
anti-fungal medication, these lesions resolved and at a faster rate than
when using other conventional techniques., i.e. bleach, iodine preparations,
Even in small animal practice I have found application
for emu oil in wound management. One important area in which I have found
application is cast sore lesions. When the cast area is worn by a small
animal the cast often gets wet or causes pressure on bony prominent areas.
Dermatitis or cast sores develop. When the cast is removed there are wounds
which have to be managed. Emu oil combinations have accelerated the healing
These oil applications used in my mixed animal
veterinary practice are anectodal. However, I frequently photograph lesions
to determine the progress of healing, especially in wounds which will
require long term care. I have slides (photos) for many emu oil treated
patients. I have been satisfied with the efffects the oil provides and I
will continue to use its preparations in my practice as well as to look for
new applications of emu oil benefits.
Matthew S. Zimmer, DVM
2520 West U.S. Hwy. 20
Angola, In. 46703