Muzzle Skin Issue
I’m wondering if anyone from the Discussion Forum might have experienced anything similar with their horses to some of the symptoms my horse is exhibiting below. My vet is coming to look at him tomorrow to check him out and potentially biopsy or draw blood. But in the mean time, any and all suggestions on what this might be are welcome. There are a couple pictures attached.
Two days ago my 19 y.o. Dark bay gelding began exhibiting very thick, rough, scabby, and raw skin nearly completely covering his muzzle, around his lips, and around the outer portions of his nostrils. It flared up over night, and was noticed the next morning. My vet thinks it may be an allergic reaction to some stimulus in his environment. We’ve been treating him with Bute to help allay any discomfort and help with the swelling until she’s able to come out to view the issue and suggest a treatment plan(tomorrow). To me, it almost looks like a chemical burn because of the degree of scabbing and rawness in various places. It doesn’t seem to be getting any worse—just staying about the same. He’s a more lethargic than normal, but he’s eating all his hay and grain at a normal pace. The issue seems to be contained mostly to his muzzle, with the thickest part of the scabbing occurring on his chin. He doesn’t have a temperature, all other vital signs are normal.
In terms of allergens in his environment, I can’t seem to think of any. His paddock is free of dangerous plants (I double checked), his tack hasn’t changed, same brushes are always used, no new bits, no change in supplements, he hasn’t had his deworming meds as of yet this month, same hay and shavings for over a month now, he isn’t feed any treats, water source is the same, and none of the other horses he is turned out are exhibiting the same condition (although we’ve quarantined him for the time being until we figure out what is going on). It’s cold in New England, so there are no flies to contend with.. It doesn’t look like other cases of mud fever that I’ve seen. His environment is relatively clean and mud-free as we’ve had quite a dry winter so far. It also doesn’t look like the cases of Pemphigus foliaceous that I’ve seen, but I can’t really be sure.
Anyone seen anything like this before? I’m sure my vet will have recommendations, but I’m curious to hear what other horse owners have experienced with potentially similar skin issues.