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  1. #1

    Default Stubborn case of scratches--Photos added, post 41

    My gelding has some pretty persistent scratches. I've been scrubbing daily with Betadine, followed with either MTG or a Nolvasan cream, then ichthammol overnight. Repeat. With this regimen I've been able to somewhat keep it from getting worse, but it's not healing. If I miss one day of cleaning/treating, it immediately spreads and gets worse. It's frustrating, and my horse is getting SUPER annoyed, as it's clearly painful when I treat it. I'm wondering if there's some sort of supplement I can use that would support his immune system and skin health. He's already on Vitamin E/Selenium as well as SmartHoof.
    Last edited by JCS; Jun. 30, 2011 at 12:09 PM.



  2. #2
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    Monistat 7 cream works well.



  3. #3
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    I've had great results with MSM(10,000 mg) and flax (I use Bioflax 20). When I was battling scratches before using this combo, Animax (prescription only) really worked wonders.



  4. #4
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    I've had good results with ground flax, up to 1 cup/day. I think the omegas help the immune system and the overall skin quality.

    Also, sunshine! My mare hadn't gotten scratches in years and years, but when I boarded her for a few months last year and she was on night-only turnout, ended up with a mild case of scratches. Brought her home, back to 24/7 turnout, skin issues went away.

    Finally, for topical treatment: go ahead and scrub with betadine. Then add mixture of: diaper rash ointment with zinc, tube of yeast infection cream (eg monistat) (or athlete's foot ointment), and tube of triple antibiotic ointment. Getting those things, with latex gloves, can earn you some interesting looks at the store, but this mixture works really well.

    Apparently scratches can be caused by bacteria, fungus, or a combination, so this mixture zaps whatever is there, and the diaper rash ointment with zinc helps resist moisture and speed healing.



  5. #5
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    Thanks for the tips!



  6. #6
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    Grasshopper's mixture also works very well for me....
    The big man -- no longer an only child

    His new little brother



  7. #7
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    IME insufficient copper in the diet is often the underlying issue
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  8. #8
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    Don't know about supplements, but we have found this topical formula to be pretty effective.

    1 part triple antibiotic cream
    1 part Monistat 7
    2 parts Desitin

    Wash legs and dry really well, then slather on the above mixture. We leave it on, although I will wipe off leftover residue the next day before putting on polo wraps to ride. Then repeat the process after riding/hosing, etc. We can usually clear up a case in 3-5 days, but we tend to get right on it once we see symptoms appear. Once the scratches has cleared up, you can help prevent reoccurrences by dusting the leg pretty well with Gold Bond Medicated Powder.

    We have also found that geldings tend to get it the worst, because their urine splashes up on their cannons when they pee. Dirty tails brushing up against their legs can also contribute to it, so it helps to keep their tails clean and not gummed up with thick moisturizers.



  9. #9
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    Be aware a food allergy can cause it. I have two horses that if they go on any soy one gets scratches and one gets rainrot within just a few weeks. I've got one that gets scratches on alfalfa. If it's dietary all the topicals in the world won't do much. For non diet related issues I've had great luck with Banixx and Krudbuster.



  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkevent View Post
    I've had great results with MSM(10,000 mg) and flax (I use Bioflax 20). When I was battling scratches before using this combo, Animax (prescription only) really worked wonders.
    You know, I never would have put two and two together - but since putting my horse on this combo, plus a pro bio/vit suppplement, I've gone from contsantly battling scratches to not seeing any in a very wet and muddy season with record rainfulls...interesting.
    Proud Member of the "Tidy Rabbit Tinfoil Hat Wearers" clique and the "I'm in my 20's and Hope to be a Good Rider Someday" clique



  11. #11
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    MSM made my horse more susceptible (check labels, it's in a lot of joint supplements). SmartOmega3 helped quite a bit.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  12. #12
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    I ordered some Omega Horseshine (mostly flax, eh?) and will be going out to buy all the creams for the magic potion you all recommend.

    I don't THINK it's a food allergy--but I suppose it could be! He eats Triple Crown Senior. I just checked the ingredients and it's full of soy. Hmmm. Would it be only on one leg if it's a food allergy? I'd think it would be more systemic.



  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCS View Post
    I ordered some Omega Horseshine (mostly flax, eh?) and will be going out to buy all the creams for the magic potion you all recommend.

    I don't THINK it's a food allergy--but I suppose it could be! He eats Triple Crown Senior. I just checked the ingredients and it's full of soy. Hmmm. Would it be only on one leg if it's a food allergy? I'd think it would be more systemic.
    Of course it could be. I have a few horses with sensitivities and they all present differently.



  14. #14
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    You need to stop torturing your horse, stop messing around with random treatments from people on the internet that don't have a clue what they are talking about, and call a veterinarian and figure out what the problem actually IS so you can treat it properly.



  15. #15
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    Hmm, I stopped asking the vet about scratches because I was told numerous times that there really wasn't any one specific cure because, as mentioned above, there are many possible causes. The instructions I received, from the vet(s), pretty much echo what was said above with the exception of the supplement aspect. But then I stopped asking years ago so who knows.



  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by atlatl View Post
    Hmm, I stopped asking the vet about scratches because I was told numerous times that there really wasn't any one specific cure because, as mentioned above, there are many possible causes. The instructions I received, from the vet(s), pretty much echo what was said above with the exception of the supplement aspect. But then I stopped asking years ago so who knows.
    They can do skin biopsies for them to see exactly what you are dealing with. It CAN get really, really bad and go into cellulitis I believe (or is it a V word?? Can't remember off the top of my head).



  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaimebaker View Post
    They can do skin biopsies for them to see exactly what you are dealing with. It CAN get really, really bad and go into cellulitis I believe (or is it a V word?? Can't remember off the top of my head).
    It's called Vasculitis, and yes, that can lead to serious infections and cellulitis if you continue to scrub and irritate the skin.

    If a horse is literally getting worse "overnight" then you are most likely looking at a primary problem, and a secondary infection. Scrubbing and putting goop all over the horses legs is just going to continue to make it worse until both the primary problem is treated correctly, as well as any secondary infection is treated with a proper antibiotic. You have to treat the problem and the inflammation. Constantly irritating the legs is doing nothing but making the inflammation worse.



  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perfect Pony View Post
    It's called Vasculitis, and yes, that can lead to serious infections and cellulitis if you continue to scrub and irritate the skin.

    If a horse is literally getting worse "overnight" then you are most likely looking at a primary problem, and a secondary infection. Scrubbing and putting goop all over the horses legs is just going to continue to make it worse until both the primary problem is treated correctly, as well as any secondary infection is treated with a proper antibiotic. You have to treat the problem and the inflammation. Constantly irritating the legs is doing nothing but making the inflammation worse.
    I tend to agree with you (the scrubbing does seem to irritate the skin) but I am following my vet's advice here. Last summer he had the same problem, and the vet sold me the Nolvasan cream and icthammol and told me to do exactly what I'm now doing. It did eventually clear up last year. This time I had a (different) vet look at it when he was out to do shots, and he basically gave the same advice.



  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCS View Post
    I tend to agree with you (the scrubbing does seem to irritate the skin) but I am following my vet's advice here. Last summer he had the same problem, and the vet sold me the Nolvasan cream and icthammol and told me to do exactly what I'm now doing. It did eventually clear up last year. This time I had a (different) vet look at it when he was out to do shots, and he basically gave the same advice.
    Well I highly recommend you consult with a dermatologist. IMO you have a problem that needs proper treatment. Do you have pictures?



  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perfect Pony View Post
    You need to stop torturing your horse, stop messing around with random treatments from people on the internet that don't have a clue what they are talking about, and call a veterinarian and figure out what the problem actually IS so you can treat it properly.
    LOL, after over 30 years involvement with horses, I have not had one.single.vet who could successfully clear up scratches - despite a variety of treatments, etc.

    Best success I have seen is using the protocol I mentioned earlier, but again, we don't wait for a case to get really bad before starting treatment.

    YMMV.



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