Rain Rot -- how long do you treat? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 41 Old 03-02-2012, 12:02 PM Thread Starter
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Rain Rot -- how long do you treat?

Hi there, We have been battling rain rot this winter with my daughter's older pony mare and my appaloosa mare -- we've been using MTG and think we have finally got it under control. My question is how long do you have to keep using the MTG -- the scabs are fallen off and most areas have started to grow back hair -- can I discontinue use or should I keep on until the hair is completely grown out??
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post #2 of 41 Old 03-02-2012, 12:09 PM
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Welcome to the forum.

It doesn't hurt to continue using the MTG but you can stop now that all the scabs are gone and the healing has started.

I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.

It's not always what you say but what they hear.
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post #3 of 41 Old 03-02-2012, 12:12 PM
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Oh I HATE rain rot!!!

Remember that it is a bacteria that causes this nastyness. So make sure that you wash all grooming items or it will just come back later.

I have had to deal with rain rot twice, both times I used betidine (spelled that WRONG but I haven't had any coffee yet). I liberally applied it to the whole area of infection plus two inches around. It made my mostly white gelding look like some sort of sickened monster... But it only took that one application - it took about three days for the color to leave his coat.

I don't know if this helped or not... but good luck!!!
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post #4 of 41 Old 03-02-2012, 12:15 PM
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Dermatophilus congolensis as its more properly called can be an absolute pig to get rid of. For that reason you're probably best advised to err on the side of caution.

The protocol to be adopted is rigourous and demanding and whilst some horses may get away with a short acute episode for a lot of horses it becomes a chronic condition and in the main because its so hard to treat properly and effectively.

You have to ensure that the organism is eradicated and the only way you can be certain of that is to have the vet take a skin scrape swab and grow cultures.

If you're fairly confident it's gone and want to save from doing that then you might want to switch to an astringent antimicrobial product for a little while longer to be safe.

Last edited by hoopla; 03-02-2012 at 12:20 PM.
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post #5 of 41 Old 03-03-2012, 11:09 AM
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You're going to be fighting it until your pastures come back in. There is a dietary reason that you've been dealing with it now. Green grass and freshly cut hay is loaded with Vit A. As hay ages, the Vit A content declines dramatically. When the pastures go dormant, the Vit A is nonexistant. The horse will store Vit A in the liver and draw on it throughout the winter. When the level is low, you start to see deficiencies such as RR and goopy eyes. Most of your RR will start around the first of the year for this reason.

The simply solution is to add some VitA to the diet. Go buy one tub of Mare Plus (or a similar supplement you want at least 1,000,000 IU/Kg). Hoffman's makes a nice product. Double up the portion for each horse until it's gone. Try for about 100,000 IU/day. Problem should be done. Even if you're feeding a fortified concentrate, the older mare isn't going to be as efficient with her food so she needs extra.

Next winter, get both of them on the Hoffman's or other product by the end of September. I would actually have both of them on it year round.
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post #6 of 41 Old 03-03-2012, 11:15 AM
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What makes you think that Dermatophilus congolensis is used by lack of vitamin A or that feeding it as a supplement kills or stops the organism?
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post #7 of 41 Old 03-03-2012, 11:36 AM
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It does stop the rain rot. I couldn't find any vitamin A supplement here so I used a multivitamin for mares and foals that was really high in vitamin a. It worked. Some get an oral dose sold for cattle but I'm not in a high cow area.

I was given a horse that had her whole top half covered in it. Big bald swatches and scabby lumps all over. Treated it with iodine and fed her the vitamins and it disappeared rather quickly. I couldn't bathe her completely because it was freezing out but I worked the iodine down onto her skin with my fingers. I couldn't possibly get it all with the iodine without freezing the horse. It started healing within a week of the vitamins and was growing hair within 2 weeks.
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post #8 of 41 Old 03-03-2012, 02:11 PM
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I have never heard of it being a vitamin deficiency before. I do know that the iodine will kill it - the same way the betadine that I used did as iodine is the main ingredient of betadine. Iodine builds up in the bloodstream, making the whole horse slightly inhospitiable to bacteria. It would be best to cover the whole area, but even having it in the tissues in the area whole help.

I woudl suggest more reasearch on it being a deficiency. I also hightly suggest washing EVERYTHING with an antibacterial - like iodine!

Last edited by yadlim; 03-03-2012 at 02:13 PM. Reason: forgot somethign
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post #9 of 41 Old 03-03-2012, 03:07 PM
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Actually I agree with the deficiency. Copper and Vit A both help.
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post #10 of 41 Old 03-03-2012, 04:42 PM
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Originally Posted by hoopla View Post
What makes you think that Dermatophilus congolensis is used by lack of vitamin A or that feeding it as a supplement kills or stops the organism?
I'm not addressing whatever invading organism is causing the problem. I'm after the integrity of the skin. If the skin is healthy it will provide a sufficient barrier to the fungi, bacterial and other infecting agents. Quality protein, Vits B, A and D was well as balanced minerals are important for the skin and hair. Vit A is what tends to fluctuate seasonally in the horse's diet. If the liver can store about a 3 month supply of Vit A, sounds reasonable that in about January you will start to see the results of any difficiencies. When do you see the lion's share of RR problems? Certainly not in the summer months when most people's weather (in the US) is hot and humid with the required thunderstorm in the evening. Conditions that are perfect for fungi and bacteria to grow. We tend to see most between January and April.

We can treat the horse all winterlong with topicals but as soon as we quit, we're right back where we started. We're spending alot of time and money trying to fix this when it doesn't have to.
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