Scratching her butt? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 18 Old 02-20-2012, 10:47 AM
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This sounds like sweet itch to me!!

If its so bad she's making herself bleed, I would recommend a sweetitch rug in all honesty.

If not, then using a tea tree shampoo/oil on her before any open wounds appear and a human moisturiser cream with aloe vera- I don't know if you guys get it or if the ingredients are different but when I had my old itcher we used Avon Skin so Soft in the pink bottle- worked wonders!
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post #12 of 18 Old 02-20-2012, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you guys for all the suggestions!

I've tried a flysheet on her before and the neck hole kept getting caught behind her withers and pulling hard in the front. It was a 72" and she needs a 69 or 70 so that could have been the issue.
I wouldn't be surprised if she was scratching her butt in replacement of another spot, actually. Now that you mention it, every summer she does get a circular crusty fly-ridden spot in the very center of her belly that's EXTREMELY itchy to her (she will literally fall over if I scratch it, haha!) so maybe a flysheet with a belly band would help with that.
She's not so much scratching her tailhead as she is scratching her butt and her tailhead is sometimes side effect of that butt scratching.

I have used Avon Skin So Soft on her last summer (in a mix with other stuff including vinegar etc) but it seemed to wear off in about 20 minutes. When the flies are back I'll give it a try full strength, maybe that'll be the ticket. Then she can be an old lady horse that smells like an old lady!
There have been fly sprays that seemed to work really well at keeping the flies off long term but, in Lacey's world, long term is like an hour, I worry about all those pesticides and stuff in those heavy duty sprays, and they're SO expensive to be spraying all over her body every hours or so... It's a quandry.

I've also had better luck keeping the flies off when I was feeding her 1/4cup apple cider vinegar everyday so I plan to do that again this summer.

I'm not super keen on MTG so I probably won't try it unless I have no other choice, thanks though!

I feel bad about putting her in a flysheet all the time (btw, she LOVES rolling, whoever mentioned that :) ) in the summer, especially given that she's blanketed all winter, but if that's what helps her, I'm all for it. Once she realizes it's helping, if it does, she'll probably love it too (she ADORES her flymask for that same reason).

Does anybody have good flysheet, with belly thing, recommendations?
Also, Duffy, is a sweet itch rug the same thing as a flysheet? I assume so... :)

Tea tree oil shampoo is a great idea! I will for sure look into that.

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzan gelding

Rest peacefully, Lacey.

Last edited by Wallaby; 02-20-2012 at 03:11 PM.
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post #13 of 18 Old 02-20-2012, 03:35 PM
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I agree with Duffy, sounds like sweet itch to me. There is a lotion called "summer freedom" that a friend of mine would use, she swears by it. Some would also recommend feeding garlic. And as Duffy said, a sweet itch rug - they can be pricey but it's better than having a horse with no tail.

My friend's mare suffers horribly once the midges comes out in the evening, she can't ride past about 4pm because thats when the poor mare gets eatten by the midges.

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post #14 of 18 Old 02-20-2012, 04:04 PM
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Ive never seen a horse rub THAT hard O___O
I agree with all the above to keep her from rubbing anymore.
To keep the bugs away, use flyspray, and definently a sheet of some sort.

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post #15 of 18 Old 02-20-2012, 04:15 PM
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Is the rub where the dirt is?

If so, and if you were in the UK I'd say lice.

But from your description, I'd say sweet itch too. A good sweet itch rug is 'better' than a regular fly rug. It should cover the belly, contain fly-repellant materials, keep the horse cool. Try doing a google search on Boett rugs.

If your vet confirms sweet itch, it will be well worth investing in two rugs. You can clean one when the other is on, and if necessary do the appropriate repairs too.

I hope you find your solution.

Get up, get going, seize the day. Enjoy the sunshine, the rain, cloudy days, snowstorms, and thunder. Getting on your horse is always worth the effort.
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post #16 of 18 Old 02-21-2012, 02:42 AM
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Agree with Shropshire and Maple... this calls for more than just a normal fly rug.

Sweet itch rugs are different, and it actually looks like your horse is in a huge coat. I'm not a fan of keeping horses rugged up, but think that there are always exceptions to the case, and Lacey is one of them.. last thing you need is it to get infected.
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post #17 of 18 Old 02-21-2012, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by xXSerendipityXx View Post
Ive never seen a horse rub THAT hard O___O
I'm guessing you don't have such a sweet itch problem there as we do in the UK? It's really quite common here (sadly). It's an allergic reaction to a bite from a particular type of midge (sorry, can't remember the latin name of said midge right now) that is more common in land near water, but can happen everywhere.

A horse with bad sweet itch will rub all of it's mane, and the hair on the base of tail off, and will keep rubbing itself until it is bleeding raw in the rubbed areas. It's really distressing.

The only tried and tested solution here is to rug the horse in a good sweet itch rug, and some people will bring horsey in from dawn to dusk when there are most midges about. People also spray Deet onto the rugs (now technically banned for animal use I believe). An area that has been itched raw can be treated with Sudocrem which is bog-standard-available-at-all-good-pharmacists Nappy Cream used to treat nappy rash in babies. (sorry, I don't know what you call nappy rash). This soothes the itch, and stops the midges getting there again albeit temporarily.

To the OP, I hope your horse hasn't got Sweet Itch, I hope it's a lesser irritant thing.

Get up, get going, seize the day. Enjoy the sunshine, the rain, cloudy days, snowstorms, and thunder. Getting on your horse is always worth the effort.
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post #18 of 18 Old 02-21-2012, 02:37 PM
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Diaper rash :). And Penaten (the diaper ointment) is fantastic for things like scratches too.
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