Saddle sore/ sweat scald
I feel a bit like a bad mum!
Took prin out hunting yesterday, great day. Then when I unsaddled after 5 hours of fairly hard riding there was a nasty saddle sore.
It was only on one side so obviously need to call a saddle fitter pronto! Hasn't been fit for a couple of years looks the padding worm on one side.
The knowledgeable friend I agist with thinks what's happened is that she's had a bit of sweat scald hidden under her saddle patch and the rides just rubbed off the hair.
This year is my first dealing with such heavy work and a clipped horse.
I do rub her down with betadine after most rides, the have been one or two times where it was just with water, after shorter rides when I'd run out of betadine.
I admit I made a boo boo.
What is the best way to treat the sore? She also has a small one by her girth
Obviously she won't be ridden for a while. We have a sj lesson next Saturday which my friend thinks she should be ok for. I'll be riding her mare and leading mine to maintain fitness instead of the other way around.
Last night it was late and dark and I was exhausted as after 5 hours hunting, 2 other horses got out when we got home. I put equiskin on it and rugged her up. Heading out today to wash her in vetadine, an antibacterial wash.
How can I help my poorly pony?
I know feeling guilty wont do it!
Is it a just swollen spot? Or is it actually an open wound? I don't know of anything to be done about swollen spots other than to rest the horse and they should heal on their own. I would be careful not to ride her though until it's nice and healed or else it may turn into an actual wound. I sort of think of it like a blister.....the skin has a bubble of fluid under it and you would like it to heal without the skin actually breaking or you will have an actual sore.
I have had swollen spots before on one of my geldings before I got a properly fitting saddle and they have always healed if I gave him a little time off. Thank goodness I have never had an actual saddle sore like you see sometimes in books, where the skin has sloughed off. For that I would think you would need a good ointment and a lot more time off. :-(
The main thing to do now is get that saddle fixed or get a new one. Especially since is rubbing on one side. I would have your saddle fitter make sure the tree is still sound. If you can possibly switch saddles you will be light years ahead than riding again in a saddle that may irritate the same area all over again. If the only thing wrong was fit, you would have symetrical sores on both sides, but because it is on one side, something is pretty wrong with the saddle....or you lean badly to one side, but folks that have been riding a while normally feel that and correct it so I'm betting it's the saddle.
Best of luck.....and don't feel bad, just correct the problem and you guys will be fine. :-)
PS. I am in Arizona and have never heard of sweat scald (and believe me, we all sweat a bunch here!) What exactly is that? Is it kind of like a fungus like rain scald? Or is it purely from sweating? As a human, I will sometimes get what a call a heat rash, but I haven't had that happen to any of my horses that I am aware of.
I never take any extra care of my horse's back after a ride even if they sweat a lot (and we also do some 5 hour rides). Mostly I just brush them and turn them back to their pen. Maybe if it super hot I will hose them down, but that's about it. Just curious what sweat scald is?
Oh, I just re-read your post and saw that you said the hair rubbed off. Hmm. I have never actually had that happen before. I have had swellings and maybe a little friction where the hair is rubbed shorter than the rest, but I have never had the hair actually come off completely. So is it more like a rash? Pics would probably help, but I don't want you to take them on my account. But if you are going out there anyway, it might get some responses from other people too.
Does the horse have a full body clip, or a hunter clip?
All of our hunters get a saddle patch left, known as a hunter clip (see pictures) to help prevent any rubbing from the saddle that the clipped hair might exacerbate.
THR, around here, a sweat scald or a "scalded spot" as I call them, is basically an area of pressure where the saddle doesn't fit well. When it heals up, the hair grows back in white.
I'm not sure if it means the same thing to the OP though.
Now, back to the OP. I don't suppose you can get anything like Bickmore's down there, can you? I've found that is the absolute best stuff for any kind of saddle sore or cinch gall (providing that you correct the root cause of the sore like ill-fitting tack or dirty cinches). The best part of using it? They actually advise that you keep working the horse as the salve will protect the sore and speed healing so that you don't have to lose riding/training time.
I've used that for years and it actually seems to make the sores heal faster if you continue to work the horse rather than just treat and let them sit.
Definitely from a poorly fitting saddle!
She has a hunter clip and the saddle fitter is coming out August 1st. Until then she gets a holiday.
I had a look at the saddle and one side of the padding definately feels more compressed. So I'm getting the impression that over time it's gotten more uneven putting my hip out in the process.
Essentially it looks like a burn, no swelling, no heat fine to touch after a few days.
It can be caused by an ill fitting saddle or from just sweat.
A saddle and a rider decreases the circulation on the back. Usually the girth is tighter than normal which increases the pressure. Ads and numbats will not stop it.
In the old days, after several hours hard riding, the rider would dismount and lead the horse the last mile to two home. Now we ride back to our transport, unsaddle and load the horse. This allows the blood to rush back through the compressed area causing problems.
I have found that leading the horse for 5-10 minutes with the girth tight, loosening the girth and travelling the horse home wearing the saddle slows the resumption of the circulation.
I would rub an aloe Vera gel into the area to help heal.
Foxhunter, can you please explain what the blood rushing does?
Aloe veras a brilliant idea! Thanks
It is rather like having pins and needles. Any time circulation is restricted there is a risk of damage. By allowing the circulation to be returned slowly, less harm is caused.
An example of this is should a tourniquet need to be applied then it should be slackened periodically or permanent damage is done. Look at what happens when lambs tails are ringed, the circulation is stopped and after a few weeks the tail drops off!
With a scald on a horses back it can be because a saddle does not fit correctly, the rider sitting heavy or the saddle not having a large enough weight bearing area.
Correction to the above post should read pads and numbats! Darned auto correct!
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