Bad Case of Scratches During Hottest+Driest Summer?
My tough old gelding has never had scratches before, even living outside in the wettest months on a mud lot. So I am baffled as to why he has a bad case now, during the hottest and driest summer on record? Its covering his left hind leg, from coronet to above the hock.
It itching him badly, to the point where he swings his butt around and pins me against the wall till I scratch his leg for him.
I haven't done anything in terms of treatment becuz I would feel terrible to scrub off his scabs...... and I'm hoping it will go away.
What you describe is not scratches. I would wash with chlorhexidine daily and keep it wrapped during all day light hours. If it does not make marked improvement in 3-4 days, I would head into the vet for a skin scraping.
If it's really as bad as described, I'd call the vet NOW, not wait (I mean, not now, as in late Sunday night, but definitely call first thing Monday to schedule an appointment). That sounds like more going on than just "scratches" (granting that that in itself is something of a nebulous term), and probably in need of more than OTC treatments.
(The last time I thought "it's just scratches" and kept trying to treat it myself even as it got worse, I ended up with 3 more months worth of treatment under the vet's oversight, and almost $1000 in vet bills. Not a place you want to go!)
what you're describing sounds like chiggers, they like hot dry weather.
My old gelding got them bad this year, all 3 black legs (they seem to not like white) up to his knees/hocks, and he even got them on his muzzle and some on his chest. He must have found one heck of a nest.
If it is chiggers there isn't much you can do as the itching and swelling is from the damage left behind after the chigger has fed. I wash with pine tar soap and then slather the area with desitin. Takes about a week or so for the itching to subside, until then they are miserable.
Ask yourself: "Can I do anything about this?"
If you can, do it. If you can't... then you can't and leave it at that. Worrying achieves nothing but stress.