Horses and skin fungus
We’ve all been there. You go out to see your horse…and what the heck! Your buddy is looking crusty and missing hair! Horse skin conditions are a common frustration of horse owners. They can be caused by a variety of things including fungi,bacteria,and insect bites. They can be difficult to diagnose but the good news is that most common fungal,bacterial,and insect related conditions often respond to topical treatment which is great because oral systemic treatments can be extremely costly.
One type of common fungal condition is commonly mistaken as a parasitic infection due to its deceiving name. Despite its common name,Ringworm is actually a fungus which can affect multiple horses in a herd. Fungi are primitive plants which reproduce by sending out spores in moist environments. They love warm,humid areas and wet seasons.
Ringworm in horses is very easily transmitted between animals by sharing equipment such as tack,brushes,or blankets. Often the lesions will be found in the saddle area or girth area. Ringworm is one cause of the condition commonly referred to as “girth itch". This is when the lesions appear in the girth area causing irritated; sore skin. Girth itch can progress to cause very large sores making it impossible to ride until the area is healed. Ringworm in horses usually appears as a crusted circular shaped lesion. The skin will appear dry and flaky and the hair will often fall out revealing a ring of baldness,hence the lovely name Ringworm. Other times the reaction will look similar to hives. Ringworm can most effectively be avoided by carefully disinfecting,or simply not sharing tack and equipment between horses.When a lesion is noticed,topical treatments can be effective.
A second type of common skin condition is called Rain Rot,also known as rain scold or dermatophilosis. This skin disease is actually caused by bacteria called Dermatophilus congolesis which does well in wet conditions and enters through damaged skin. Rain Rot is usually most prominent over the horse’s top line. So you may notice it along your horse’s neck,back,and tail area. The affected area usually appears as raised crusty clumps of hair which usually fall out leaving bald patches. Rain Rot is very contagious so be careful to not cross contaminate your herd. Disinfect equipment or strictly avoid sharing between horses. Rain Rot often affects horses with compromised immune systems as well so if your horse appears to be affected by Rain Rot it is always a good idea to check in with your vet.
Scratches is another common skin condition related to moist conditions. It usually affects the area under your horse’s fetlock and appears as a moist,gooey,crusty scabs and hair loss. Breaks in the skin due to irritants such as allergic reactions,mites,or other irritating exposures allow bacterial or fungi to enter the compromised area. If your horse spends a lot of time in a moist or muddy environment this can lead to secondary bacterial or fungal infections. This condition is also known as greasy heel. Horses with feathered legs such as draft breeds seem to be more susceptible. Try to keep your horse in a clean,dry environment to avoid this condition. If you do suspect that your horse has Scratches clean and dry the area thoroughly. Often clipping the area can greatly speed up the healing process by allowing the area to stay drier.
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Horse skin issues2008-10-13 17:55:48 by horse0329
What you are describing could be a number of things... allergic reaction to something ...yes but it also could be a fungus infection..sometimes called rain rot ...but no matter what it is to help with the symptoms I would bath in a medicated iodine wash for horses found in tack shops or tractor supply also carries it. Take advantage of the nice weather and bath in medicated shampoo and good luck
My journey to a fog free brain: Cutting out yeast and sugar — Yahoo! Lifestyle UK
On one visit I was diagnosed with a fungal skin rash, a fungal nail infection and thrush again only to have my theory of a "fungal" common thread dismissed.
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