I've noticed that a lot of horses on COTH with hive outbreaks or allergies are chestnuts(and geldings?) Anyone happen to know if this is just pure coincidence or if there is any reason that this could be due to their coat/skin color? My chestnut gelding likes to have skin allergy issues when it comes to bugs and getting clipped and sometimes just randomly it seems. :P
Or maybe I am just crazy and just happen to think that there are more chestnuts with allergies posts!
Clancy 17hh chestnut Dutch WB, '99. Owned and loved since '04 and still goin'!
My mare is a chestnut (well, sorrel, to be specific) and she does have allergies. My sister's chestnut TB also is prone to scratches/fungus/etc but doesn't seem to have actual allergies. My mom has a liver chestnut, and he doesn't seem to have any skin problems.
Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!
I have had similar converstaions with several vets about this. All basically said the same thing that while there are no studies to support it in their experience chestnuts tend to have more skin issues in general. Obviously this does not apply to all chestnuts nor am I saying that horses of other colors don't have skin issues as well, just that is seems chestnuts can be more sensitive. I don't think it's more common in chestnut geldings vs chestnut mares though.
This also seems to be true in my personal experience. Of the 5 chestnuts I've owned over the years all but one have had skin issues. 2 had known allergies, 1 was very prone to fungus and the last is sensitive in general (has popped hives several times). Of the non-chestnuts I've owned in the same time, only one has had skin issues. He was a bay and best we could figure he was allergic to something related to leather, which was super fun