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New Horse has Weird Skin Issue

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  • New Horse has Weird Skin Issue

    Hello all! My new horse has a weird skin issue that I have never seen before. He produces this white powder off his skin, almost like a dander. There is A LOT of this and no amount of brushing or bathing has stopped it. He also is still shedding from the spring, it seems like he never shed out. Nothing that looks Cushings related, just shedding like he should have in the spring.

    His background: I picked him up from a "back 40" type lot as a give away. Owner was sick and could no longer pay for him. He was on a huge dirt lot, no shelter, never blanketed, never had a bath in the past few years or any grooming. He was not being fed well, as his board was not being paid. About a week after he was on his re-feeding program he started to shed, but has always had this skin issue. However it seems worse now. Does anyone have any experience with a condition like this? I have seen cushings, rain rot, various fugus but never anything like this

  • #2
    It could just be dry skin. Some horses are more prone to it. Don't bathe with shampoo too often, rinsing is fine. I only use shampoo on my horses' bodies a few times a year. Also, a flax based supplement can really help!


    • #3
      Look closely. do the white particles have teeny legs and are moving ? if so, lice.
      Patty Stiller CNBBT,CNBF,CLS, CE
      Natural Balance Certified Lameness Specialist ,instructor.


      • #4
        Sounds like either dry skin or what we call "scurfy"/fungus skin.

        Have you bathed him a couple of times with an iodine or anti-fungal bath yet?

        If it is just dry skin, add corn oil or flax to his feed.

        As soon as he gets some good care and consistant nutrition, it will all work out. In my experience the constant shedding is a sign that he was missing something in his diet.
        Last edited by headsupheelsdown; Aug. 19, 2011, 09:51 PM. Reason: spelling


        • #5
          Add some oil to his feed, shampoo w/ something that has Aloe Vera in it and rinse w/ a hydrating conditioner.
          Brush him daily don't curry to vigerous just medium to soft brushed and finish w/ a polish w/ soft rub rag. you need to nourish the skin..hence from his insides, and also encourage his coat oils.
          Do not shampoo w/ anything harsh, if you don't see scabs or lesions or greasey rotty scurf I personally would not shampoo w/ anything iodine based it may well scald his thin under nourished dry skin.


          • #6
            There are alot of things it could be, the ones mentioned as well as autoimmune diseases. Can you take a picture?


            • #7
              Originally posted by judybigredpony View Post
              Add some oil to his feed, shampoo w/ something that has Aloe Vera in it and rinse w/ a hydrating conditioner.
              Brush him daily don't curry to vigerous just medium to soft brushed and finish w/ a polish w/ soft rub rag. you need to nourish the skin..hence from his insides, and also encourage his coat oils.
              Do not shampoo w/ anything harsh, if you don't see scabs or lesions or greasey rotty scurf I personally would not shampoo w/ anything iodine based it may well scald his thin under nourished dry skin.
              This. Don't use shampoos, esp harsh ones, until you know what the problem is. If it's dry skin related, oil in feed is the best solution. It takes a while for the oil to work through system and skin / coat to improve. Our vets recommend this.


              • #8
                thank you

                Props to you for giving him an upgrade.


                • Original Poster

                  Thanks for the help! There was a lot of good advice offered!!! I checked him carefully and there are def. no lice just a dander like flake. No scabs, or open skin anywhere He wasn't really being fed when I got him so the nutrition is probably the prime suspect. I had a really nice calming shampoo recommended for horses with super dry skin, and I will follow the grooming advice and oil in his feed! Thank you all again, will update if I see a difference!


                  • #10
                    I've had a several that I borrowed for lawnmowers that had this scurfy skin when they came. A month of proper amounts of copper, zinc and omega 3 fatty acids (either as fresh grass or flax) and it goes away and the coat gets shiney. Copper and zinc are deficient nearly everywhere, and very important for skin/hair health.
                    Are you feeding your horse like a cow? www.safergrass.org


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by HPFarmette View Post
                      Props to you for giving him an upgrade.
                      Ditto. Best wishes!


                      • #12
                        Shedding this time of year is normal--they're losing summer coats and will begin growing winter coats.
                        "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

                        ...just settin' on the Group W bench.