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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 23, 2003
    Location
    South Carolina
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    1,857

    Default Copper supplement and rain rot?

    I've read a number of times that constant rain rot issues can be from dietary problems (copper deficiency). I'm currently dealing with a horse that has almost year round rain rot... have tried everything under the sun and while some work to a certain degree I don't know that I've ever seen him totally free of it. He's currently getting weekly micro-tek baths, I'm soaking my brushes often so I don't keep recontaminating him with those. Same goes with saddle pads. I felt like I was getting somewhere with this, but this week it seems like he's "bloomed" again. We live in coastal SC so the grass isn't too great. He gets 4.5lbs of Safe Choice a day. His supplements include U-gard, One AC (as he does have anhydrosis issues as well), Smart Omega 3, and tri-amino. I'm seriously thinking about trying a copper supplement just to see if it helps lol. So has anyone added a copper supplement and had it help?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 6, 2007
    Posts
    902

    Default

    Have not used copper supplements for rain rot, but wanted to add you'll need to look at the balance of zinc:copper, before adding copper by itself.

    Perhaps get a nutritional consult to see what total amounts he is getting currently, so you can make a more effective change?



  3. #3

    Default

    I have heard of it helping with rainrot and I successfully used it on a horse with thrush that would not clear up in the middle of the super dry summer. Bestest of course to make sure diet is balanced but you can get straight copper (and zinc) from Uckele. I read somewhere that darker coloured horses often have a higher need for copper but I don't know how true that is.
    for more Joy then you can handle
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb. 19, 2006
    Location
    Sevierville Tn
    Posts
    177

    Default

    Vitamin A/Beta carotene is the prime suspect for me in true rain rot cases. Horses not out on lots of green grass are suspect to being deficient. Ive seen too many cases clear up where the rain rot scabs just fall off in a week or two with no other treatments given by simply dosing the horse with Vit A.

    I like Farnams Mare Plus for a high vit a supplement. Also, I regularly dose my horses with cattle injectable vit A/D over their feed ORALLY for a boost as we hay all year long here and they tend to be low from eating hay that is older that a couple months. It has been suggested that the current RDA for vit A in horses is probably too low especially for horses not on nice pasture.

    Also, I like Flax seed for horses with coat issues as it is similar to green grass (but the smart omega may provide similar nutrients?) Id be more prone to add these two things first before adding copper which needs to be balanced to other nutrients.


    Also, are you sure you are feeding the recommended daily amount of Safechoice for your horses weight? Safechoice is a formulated feed as well and adding things that should be balanced like copper etc is asking for trouble and unbalancing your feed product unless you are doing all the math and have the help of a nutritionist. I use a good ration balancer and add calories as needed in the form of alfalfa so I know my horses are getting a balanced diet.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Posts
    35,576

    Default

    Works very well for me

    Poly Copper and Poly Zinc from Uckcle, I mix it 1:1 and feed a full scoop of the mix, which is a 1/2 scoop of each, which is the recommended serving size.
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 30, 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    465

    Default

    I asked a couple of different vets about it. They agreed that it would not help and to be very careful about adding in copper and zinc into the horses diet. You can very easily over dose your horse.

    My horse had no rain rot in Il., tons in southern virginia and as soon as we moved to Minnesoda it dissapeared.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2011
    Location
    Lambertville, MI
    Posts
    125

    Default Have the scabs been tested?

    Rain rot is a fairly generic term for any kind of scabs/grossness that won't go away, so have you had the scabs tested? My horse has had recurring scabs in the same spots for a few years now. I had them tested and they came back as infection. I spent tons of time trying fungus remedies and it was pointless. He was on doxy for about 3 months and the spots greatly improved. I will say they are not totally gone, but I am now spot treating the remaining few with gentamicin as the cost of doxy was getting a little crazy, especially when i had to hide it in treats to get it in the horse! Good luck with your horse, it is such an obnoxious problem.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
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    Default

    What does that vet mean "won't help"?

    My soil is very high in iron. That means very little copper in the forage, which means little copper being ingested from hay/grass.

    I dealt with scratches on my horse's white legs until I started copper. Not a scab since then.

    I've personally known quite a few other horses whose chronic rain rot or scratches disappeared and didn't come back after starting copper.

    The immune system is composed, in part, of SOD - superoxide dismutase. SOD has at least 4 components - iron-based, manganese-based, copper-based, and zinc-based. Horses don't need more iron. They CAN fairly easily need more copper and zinc, as both of those are suppressed by excess iron.

    It's not THAT easy to OD on Cu and Zn.
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr. 7, 2012
    Posts
    302

    Default

    I have pasture kept horses for 45 years. I have found that all I have to do is go out and brush loose the clumps that the hair forms on their backs when they have gotten wet. Those clumps form little tents that harbor fungus....nice wet, warm, sebum filled places for "stuff' to grow. Give them the once over with a shedding blade, especially after a rain, to fluff up the hair and make it breathable again. I haven`t had rainrot on a horse in 40 years. Only takes 2 minutes at most, once in awhile.

    We do not live in a dry climate.

    "'One AC (as he does have anhydrosis issues as well),"

    This could be the key to your problem which makes it a little more unique.
    Perhaps when a horse sweats and excretes salts, which is a natural anti-fungicide, it protects to some extent. Your horse doesn`t sweat so he doesn`t have that protection
    Last edited by re-runs; May. 7, 2012 at 10:39 AM. Reason: addition



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 3, 2010
    Posts
    1,423

    Default

    Best coat supplement is Super 14. Been using it for decades. NOthing trumps it.

    Beer and Gatorade work better than One AC. Beer needs to be unfiltered and live culture if possible. My horses drink orange flavor G only but I know of others who could care less about which flavor.

    I use rose hips as a source of copper and vita c.

    Honestly? Some rain rot isn't. It has to do with an underlying thing from threadworms or disease from something else.
    “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
    ― Albert Einstein



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr. 15, 2010
    Posts
    67

    Default

    My horse had scratches and rain rot for 2 years in a row around springtime, put him on copper-bye bye problems!!



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar. 10, 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts, USA
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    3,503

    Default

    Pat Coleby, author of Natural Horse Care, states that if there were more copper in horse's diets then we could do away with Thrush, Yeast, Scratches, etc. Here's link to her book on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Natural-Horse-.../dp/0911311653

    ALot of good info in it.
    --Gwen <><
    "Treat others as you want to be treated and be the change you want to see in the world."
    http://www.thepenzancehorse.com



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
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    Greensboro, NC
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    Default

    I think that's a bit overly optimistic, since none of those things are always caused by a copper (or any other mineral) deficiency.
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun. 30, 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    465

    Default

    JB,

    When I was talking with the vet, I also discusses his current diet. The vets felt it was well balanced. He was already getting copper and zinc from his hoof supplement and they felt that adding more would not be good.

    I tend to not ask any more questions after I have my answer. They did say to start adding more of just one element was not good and that I would have to spend a lot of time making sure that everything was in balance. That is why they did not want me to do anything more than what I was doing because the hoof supplement company had already done that for me.



  15. #15
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    Dec. 13, 1999
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    Greensboro, NC
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    Default

    But see, that's the thing - what might appear "balanced" on paper is not necessarily enough for an individual horse.

    I'm not trying to say your horse absolutely needs more copper. I'm merely saying because of different metabolisms, etc, a given horse may well need more than what is "normal".

    Farrier's Formula, for example, has 92mg of copper per 1c serving - not a great deal - maybe enough for some horses, probably not enough for others. It certainly isn't enough for mine.

    Horseshoer's Secret has 96gm per 6oz serving.

    Focus HF has 43gm per 1.5oz serving.

    Compare that to the 310mg that Poly Copper provides in a 1/2tsp serving. That is what it takes for some horses to get enough copper *for them* I also add a serving of zinc - 670mg in a serving. That helps balance the copper, and both the cu and zn are suppressed because of my high iron.

    IME, this is one of those things that isn't going to kill a horse to try, and may well help
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr. 7, 2012
    Posts
    302

    Default

    Also be careful with the amount of copper and mares. An old technique on the racetrack: feed a mare or filly out of a copper bucket and it will keep her from coming into season.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
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    Default

    Dang. I fed my mare the Uckele copper supplement and she got pregnant. How much copper was coming out of a copper bucket?

    I would think that any amount of a mineral that screws up the reproductive system/cycle is not healthy
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



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