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Wound Products Blu-Kote and Red-Kote: What's the Difference?

A can that shows one-half of blu-kote and the other half shows red-kote.

Dr. Naylor's Blu-Kote and Red-Kote are two distinct wound products with specific applications in animal care. While both are popular in wound treatment and protection, they exhibit differences in their composition and recommended uses.

Blu-Kote, as the name suggests, is a deep blue anti-bacterial and anti-fungicidal spray that aids in wound healing and prevents infection. Its active ingredient is gentian violet, recognized for its antifungal and antibacterial properties. Fast-drying Blu-Kote is primarily used to treat surface wounds, cuts, abrasions, and skin irritations on various animals, including livestock and pets. Blu-Kote penetrates quickly to reduce pus formation, dries up secretions of pox-like lesions and treats ringworm. Its vivid blue color not only helps to shield wounds from flies and insects but also serves as a visual indicator of application, ensuring thorough coverage. Blu-Kote stains whether it is wet or dry.

On the other hand, Red-Kote is characterized by its red color and is formulated as a wound dressing for slow-healing wounds. It is an ideal treatment for surface cuts, lacerations, rope burns, and wire cuts. It forms a protective, flexible coating over the wound site, shielding it from contaminants while promoting healing. Red-Kote contains ingredients like scarlet red oil, which contribute to its antiseptic and soothing properties. These components lend the product its signature reddish hue while supporting tissue recovery and discouraging scar tissue formation.

In summary, the key contrast between Dr. Naylor's Blu-Kote and Red-Kote lies in their formulations and intended uses. Blu-Kote emphasizes dry (astringent) antiseptic protection for surface wounds, thrush and foot rot while utilizing gentian violet as its primary ingredient. Meanwhile, Red-Kote specializes in wet wound dressing, incorporating scarlet red oil in a soothing, softening vegetable oil base to provide a protective barrier and aid in the healing process. Dr. Naylor’s Blu-Kote and Red-Kote can be used on many animals including horses, cattle, pigs, goats, deer and llamas. Both products reflect Dr. Naylor's commitment to effective veterinary care for a variety of animal injuries.


The pictures below are of an injury to a horse’s hoof/coronet. Horse owner Erika shared these pictures with us to show how the injuries healed with the aid of Dr. Naylor’s Blu-Kote:

Erika G. wrote: “I am sooo happy and so grateful for the amazing healing and results from Blu-Kote! I wanted to make sure I contacted you to let you know how well the product worked on such a serious injury! I always use Blu-Kote with the dauber, for everything from fungus to wounds, to heel bulb thrush, but this is the first time I’ve used it on such a serious injury. I’m so grateful I did! Thank you so much!”


The images below show how a significant neck wound from a mountain lion was treated with Dr. Naylor's Red-Kote.

Jim C. wrote: “My thoroughbred horse was attacked by a mountain lion. As you can see by the first photo this was a serious wound. There was nothing to suture to, so the only option was to treat the open wound. Many possible problems could have arisen, infection, flystrike, severed blood vessels, salivary glands, tendons etc. I immediately put him on a treatment of twice daily antibiotics and your product Dr. Naylor Red-Kote Scarlet Oil. Not only did this help the wound to heal but also was a very effective barrier to insects. As you can see by the second photo (day 3) he made a miraculous recovery. The cat did sever a salivary gland at the back of his jaw, through the use of your product we were able to seal that as well. The final photo is the end of the second week, just a very small mark now with great active skin growth. We expect a full recovery and very little scarring. Thank you for an excellent product.”

If you have a story to share about how Blu-Kote or Red-Kote helped

heal your animal's wounds, please send it along. We enjoy sharing helpful stories with our visitors.

Since 1926, Dr. Naylor products have been serving the topical health care needs for dairy cows, beef cattle, horses, sheep, goats, dogs and chickens. Based out of rural upstate New York, our global customers have come to rely on Dr. Naylor's Dehorning Paste, Hoof 'N' Heel, Blu-Kote, Red Kote, Udder Balm, and Teat Dilator products for nearly 100 years.


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