One of the horses at my barn has developed a lump on the underside of his throat. It's about the size of a golf ball and has lost all the hair on it. There was a ball of puss about the size of a grape that we drained out of the lump, but most of it is still hard.
The horse is still eating, breathing and drinking normally. Still passing urine and fecal normally, and hasn't changed one bit in personality since the lump developed.
The lump was first noticed on Sunday, when we called the vet, who said to drain it, and then soak it in Epson Salts if possible - minus 25 degrees celcius and outdoor board don't always make soaking a good idea.
There was no halter on the horse to cause rubbing, and the horse didn't have any marks the week before. But the side of the lump had a red scabby mark before we drained it ... so I'm thinking maybe a puncture wound that got infected? Although it could also be itchy which resulted on him rubbing on something.
We had Strangles in the herd starting June of last year, and the last visible symptoms were seen in September. We haven't yet had a swab done due to some financial troubles that the farm I'm at has had - it doesn't make sense to swab half the herd (can you believe it? $100-150/per horse to stick a Q-tip up his nose - multiply that by the 30 horses in the herd... **** I'm in the wrong profession!!). But because we haven't had the swab, I'm wondering if it could be strangles causing the lump.
For this reason both us and the vet don't want to treat with penicillin for fear it'll cause Rogue Strangles... which is even more costly and more deadly.
What else can cause a hard, hairless lump on the throat?