Treat summer eczema/sweet itch individually
Document your experiences and observations!
Your horse has an allergy, that could sometimes change. Maybe there was a food change, a fungus in the hay, a sensitivity against an insect repellent ... there can be many different influences.
Be aware of changes and write down whatever you observe during the treatment of the summer eczema. It could be interesting if there is a change in the herd, a new pasture, weather conditions, intensity of insect flights and other influences on your horse.
Sharpen your perception and learn about the needs of your horse. Your notes will help you to keep an overview.
Take pictures, so you can compare and judge correct. Was it better last year or worse? And it keeps you motivated, if you realize, that it´s getting better.
How to start, what is really important for your horse, how can you reach your aims?
From many horse owners we hear, that they get to their limits quite fast. The pasture is wet, there is a wood next to it or a little lake. You are bound to a certain schedule in the stable, that you cannot change. You also cannot change the stable, or you don´t want to. Too expensive, not possible, too complicated ... so you have to look for a good compromise. But what does that mean to my horse?
Sometimes you have to learn how to deal right with the scratching behaviour of your horse. You might even support the problems by rubbing on the problem zones.
We exchange experiences during the hole summer. Some customers we guide through the summer since years and we always enjoy to hear that we found a good way together. (take a look at the foto reports from our customers)
You can expect some more..... don´t just use our products, use our experience for you and your horse. (contact us)
We would also like to hear, that your horse is coming along much better!
Best regards, your Ute Reher and team
Summer eczema, sweet itch.....what to do?
Once the diagnosis summer eczema or sweet itch is assured, one is worried about his horse, and the question is how can I get hold of this problem the best way. There are many different therapies and there is a great variety of offers how to get along with it.... so, where to begin? How can this number of proposals, treatments, home remedies ..... now solve the problems right for your own horse?
Sumer eczema ?! That´s what you can do!
Almost everyone who owns a horse with eczema, is familiar with the typical signs: mostly in the months from April to October, the horse rubbs its head, mane and belly. Scratches itself with everything that can be found. For some horses, this means "only" the loss of long hair, or bald spots on the belly seam and the croup. Others have open wounds, somtimes even badly inflamed (see our photo reports). Some horses are not rideable during the summer months . . . some end up at the slaughterhouse.
Meanwhile, there is scientific evidence that the summer eczema is an allergic reaction of type I, i.e. a hypersensitivity to constituents of mosquito saliva. Other factors, such as farming, nursing, home, food, metabolism, mineral balance etc. can also affect the course.
Years ago, the summer eczema was primarily associated with the Nordic breeds and ponies here. Today there is hardly a race that is not affected by the summer eczema. Warm-blooded horses, which were previously often kept in stables, are now kept in paddocks, get all-day grazing and get more contact with stinging insects. These horses are getting more sensitive and do have to suffer with the effects of the summer eczema quite often.
Assure the diagnosis
Not every horse with itchy, scaly skin, bald spots, etc. must have a summer eczema. Other causes, with the same results for the herd could be for example mite infestations, fungal infections, worm infestation, lice and other parasites. That can be diagnosed by the vet and treated. If the symptoms continue, the suspicion is that there is a summer eczema.
From our point of view, it also makes sense to ask the vet for a blood test for other diseases, like disorders of the organs and metabolism problems. A check of the mineral metabolism should be done in this context also (eg zinc, copper, manganese, selenium) and to therapy this.
Find out everything about the disease, the reasons and treatment options.
General recommendations are:
Meager, dry pasture
Open pastures, without trees, where it is windy
No standing waters, lakes or rivers near the stable or the pasture
Almost closed stable that should be clean (no insects)
The horse should have the possibility to get into the stable itself in the morning between 4 and 9 a.m. and in the evening between 4 and 10 pm.
Additional help against insects with insect repellents and spreads
- A lot of exercise to activate the metabolism
Exact feeding based on the correct needs
But you might find out very fast, that there are many different opinions. There is not just one way, that will lead to success for everyone and the conditions are always different. Sometimes it´s real detective work, to find out the right way with the possibilities you have.
We are competent and would like to support you. Call us. Together we will talk about what you can do so you and your horse get through the sweet itch season much easier. This service is free for you, just contact us (contact).