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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited by Moderator)
Hello Fellow horse lovers!!
So there is a horse at the barn I work at (the situation is odd but I’ll sum it up). It’s a very small barn (not very public) so it’s the barn owner and me who takes care of them so we know each other, the (one of three)horse that is having issues is the horse that is going to be mine once I can afford him but for now she is keeping him.

He scratches a lot and basically cuts himself all up, the pictures I have are after I applied some ointment so it’s oily looking. He gets these scabs that are sometimes infected looking on his backbone above his tail, his chest, face, neck area, and belly. He has also rubbed out his tail some and a lot of his mane.

They get better and worse and I’ve tried so many things that I’m at a loss. She won’t call out a vet and unfortunately I don’t have the money to get out a vet and I’m not sure if she would let me get a vet out if I could.

These are the things I have tried: fly sheets, antibacterial shampoo baths, anti fungal shampoo baths, topical fungicide, equiderma been shampoo, and Benadryl (I thought it could be allergies) he has also been de wormed. If anyone could tell me what this could be that he has that would be amazing! Or if I should keep trying to get a vet out.

There are a total of 8 horses there (all hers) and only 3 of them have this, one of them just looks patchy and the other one constantly has bad scrapes and scabs.

Any help is greatly appreciated as I’m sure he dosent feel good always being itchy 😞 here are the pictures(sorry about the blur he was trying to eat his hay lol, right now he is doing very good and not as bad as usual so he only has them on his face mostly and neck. He also had some under his face but I wasn’t able to get a picture of them (this has been going on for probably about a year now and I haven’t found a solution and he has ups and downs)
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I found some better photos from about a week ago as well and then some older photos of what his chest looked like when it was really bad and what his scratched spots usually look like with the infection look
 

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At first I thought this might be lice, hard to see from the pictures, but places he is rubbing are not normally the site lice go to normsweet itch.

I would say that this might be an allergic reaction to something.

What I would do is get some Neem Oil, I wouldmalso uses it as a stronger solution to what I normally recommend. 4 tablespoons Neem, 4 tablespoons of liquid soap to a gallon of hot water. Wash him all over with this solution and let it dry.

If it is a mite infestation then it will kill the mites/lice and also relieve the irritation. I would do this weekly for 4 weeks then leave to see if he gets it back.

(I have edited your first post to put in paragraphs to make it easier to read. A block of solid text is hard to read especially for old eyes like mine!)

Welcome to the forum

Whilst editing I now realise that there are more with this condition which I would say is certainly a mite infestation.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
At first I thought this might be lice, hard to see from the pictures, but places he is rubbing are not normally the site lice go to normsweet itch.

I would say that this might be an allergic reaction to something.

What I would do is get some Neem Oil, I wouldmalso uses it as a stronger solution to what I normally recommend. 4 tablespoons Neem, 4 tablespoons of liquid soap to a gallon of hot water. Wash him all over with this solution and let it dry.

If it is a mite infestation then it will kill the mites/lice and also relieve the irritation. I would do this weekly for 4 weeks then leave to see if he gets it back.

(I have edited your first post to put in paragraphs to make it easier to read. A block of solid text is hard to read especially for old eyes like mine!)

Welcome to the forum

Whilst editing I now realise that there are more with this condition which I would say is certainly a mite infestation.
Okay, thank you so much! I will definitely have to try that. Could the mites be from on the property? The barn they are currently in is a rented barn and isn’t well kept up (it’s a wood barn).
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
At first I thought this might be lice, hard to see from the pictures, but places he is rubbing are not normally the site lice go to normsweet itch.

I would say that this might be an allergic reaction to something.

What I would do is get some Neem Oil, I wouldmalso uses it as a stronger solution to what I normally recommend. 4 tablespoons Neem, 4 tablespoons of liquid soap to a gallon of hot water. Wash him all over with this solution and let it dry.

If it is a mite infestation then it will kill the mites/lice and also relieve the irritation. I would do this weekly for 4 weeks then leave to see if he gets it back.

(I have edited your first post to put in paragraphs to make it easier to read. A block of solid text is hard to read especially for old eyes like mine!)

Welcome to the forum

Whilst editing I now realise that there are more with this condition which I would say is certainly a mite infestation.
Also is there a certain soap I should use? Like dawn dish soap or mane n tail?
 

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Aren't lice on horses bird lice, AKA chicken lice?
I deontology know about that - never had a bird with lice! I do know birds can pass mites.

Any soap will be fine.

Neem will solidify in cold weather so heat it in the water before measuring it out.
 

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Is it still bug season? My horse was scratching himself raw all of spring and the first half of summer. He’d be bleeding and continued to scratch. Once the flies died down he’s almost not itchy at all. I tried a few things but nothing really worked for long. Could be allergies to bites.
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Is it still bug season? My horse was scratching himself raw all of spring and the first half of summer. He’d be bleeding and continued to scratch. Once the flies died down he’s almost not itchy at all. I tried a few things but nothing really worked for long. Could be allergies to bites.
I’m in Fl so the bugs are almost always out errr. I had tried putting fly sheets on him and fly spray every day but it didn’t seem to work even though bugs rarely got on him, so I’m not sure if that’s what it is. Last winter he was still quite itchy as well. Could definitely still be a possibility though
 

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Before I used the All In All Out method of chicken management my chickens had every parasite and disease known to man. What I had been doing is adding hens, roosters and other poultry from peoples backyard flocks. Chickens definitely do get lice and they can be crawling with lice. To delouse them you have to put each hen into a paper sack with plenty of lice powder, shake but do not bake. When I started raising new baby chicks from a hatchery on new ground where chickens had never been, I never had another chicken parasite or worm or any kind of chicken disease, knock on wood.



Wild birds also have lice. I have heard of chickens and birds in barns infecting horses with lice. The All Out part of this management style is you slaughter them all or sell them all, disinfect and start over.
 

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It looks like sweet itch, which is an allergy to gnats/midges. My mare has it. The gnats bite where they can get bare skin, which is initially the base of mane, tail, underbelly and face.
As the horse scratches off more hair, the midges can bite other places.

The problem with fly sprays and sheets is that midges are tiny and most fly sheets have larger mesh or don't cover the mane, tail and underbelly. Many fly sprays don't work on midges or last 24/7. One bite can set a horse itching for two weeks.

The key is to break the cycle. Boett fly blankets cover the horse's key areas. I use one if I can't keep things under control at times. I use a combo of thick cream such as eucerin on the mane base, tail base and underbelly (midges can't bite through thick oil or cream), along with a long acting fly spray labeled for midges such as Endure, sprayed daily on all the open skin areas, underbelly, base of mane and tail. Sometimes I also use 100% deet if things are bad.

You have to absolutely consistent or the itch cycle can start again. That is where the fly blanket can really help.
 

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I'm sorry if this is redundant.

Definitely looks like Sweet Itch which is a gnat allergy and you will need to get him on some Dexamethasone ASAP.

My horse has Sweet Itch and I made it all the way to September using topicals and antihistamine but then we had a huge influx of gnats and he scratched so much so quickly he injured his ear.
 
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