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Baking soda for hives?

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  • Baking soda for hives?

    Just heard this one the other day..... after it rains (for some reason) several of the horses come in with tons of hives.... which do not seem to bother them at all, but look horrible.... and the other day someone told me to try putting a spoonful of baking soda in their feed every day. You can buy big bags of baking soda in the pool supply dept. Anyone ever tried this? Something about changing the pH of their skin?

    Jennifer
    Third Charm Event Team

  • #2
    I'm familiar with the concept only with regards to humans, in that it is a treatment that has been used by practitioners of environmental medicine to neutralize allergic responses in human patients. Although I am only familiar with the treatment being used for food allergies.

    The remedy is typically given as a combination of Calcium carbonate, Magnesium carbonate, and Potassium bicarbonate, however I have heard that Sodium Bicarbonate will also work, but it is not preferred as it adds Sodium to the body, and that may not always be a good thing.

    "Ecological Formulas" is a supplement company that makes a product called "Tri-Salts" for use in people. Tri-Salts has been around for a very long time.

    However, I have no idea if this treatment works in horses.

    I personally would be very hesitant to try the treatment in a horse without first doing research as to the safety of giving these various "salts" to horses.

    For instance, giving Potassium bicarbonate to a HYPP horse would be a very inappropriate choice.....

    If the horse has hives, I call the vet, get the horse some dex, give the horse a neutralizing bath, and then work on discovering, and removing the allergen from the horses environment.

    Additionally..... I personally would not ever feed a horse anything that I obtained from a pool supply store.....

    Comment


    • #3
      I don't know about feeding baking soda to horses, but I'd sure buy the big bag at Costco, BJ' or similar before I gave them something from the pool store.
      My boy just had a case of bug bites/hives (not sure but he was bumpy all over, but not run together like hives usually are). Anyway my trainer suggested diluting white vinegar just a bit and sponging it on then leaving it. Worked!

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Well, the bag they got from the pool store was plain ol Arm N Hammer baking soda, like used for cooking, so not inherently contaminated I think. Not sure what its function in pool maintenance!

        Just curious if anyone had heard of this, wasn't necessarily planning on trying it....

        Jennifer
        Third Charm Event Team

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Bezysmom View Post
          I don't know about feeding baking soda to horses, but I'd sure buy the big bag at Costco, BJ' or similar before I gave them something from the pool store.
          My boy just had a case of bug bites/hives (not sure but he was bumpy all over, but not run together like hives usually are). Anyway my trainer suggested diluting white vinegar just a bit and sponging it on then leaving it. Worked!
          I learned of the 50/50 water/ white vinegar neutralizing bath from my vet.

          However, my vet said to let the vinegar solution sit on the horse for several minutes, and then to rinse it off with just water.

          White vinegar smells like ketchup once it evaporates.....

          Comment


          • #6
            Think about it strictly from a biological/physiological point of view, it makes no sense whatsoever, and the amount recommended is so small I'd have a very difficult time imagining it makes even the remotest impact on anything at all.

            Not only do hives have nothing to do with pH, but you cannot--repeat, CAN NOT--change the pH of an animal's body (skin, blood, etc.) by feeding it anything short of GIGANTIC AND LUDICROUS volumes of acids or bases, which would prove so difficult that it's hardly worth mentioning. You can make the urine slightly more acidic or basic through what is fed, but that is a function of the marvelous kidney, which is IN CHARGE OF dumping excess acid or base. They do such a phenomenal job, in fact, that the animal's pH is maintained--ALWAYS--in a very, very, very tight range. For which we can thank God, or mother nature (your choice) because if pH were as volatile and subject to manipulation as folk remedies make it out to be, we'd all be so many puddles of goo.
            Click here before you buy.

            Comment


            • #7
              I have never used it on a horse, but when I had a bad case of the hives, I bathed in it to help ease the itching and swelling.
              RIP Mydan Mydandy+
              RIP Barichello

              Comment


              • #8
                My mare has the bumps in a wide area of her body. You would think they were hives, but the same as bezy'smom...in a random pattern.
                another horse definitely gets hives.

                I think I am going to try the bath, vinegar treatment, but wash off after letting it stand for a few minutes.

                What bothered me is it looked like her cellultis in the way the bumps were...except these were on her sides of her belly.
                She seems fine otherwise, but not sure if she got bit horribly or if its hives.
                what an awful summer, very humid, lots of continuous rain, its just plain ugly and makes winter seem much more tolerable.
                save lives...spay/neuter/geld

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hives

                  My two TB geldings both came in this morning with hives. Never seen anything like it before. The older TB was just covered with huge hives, the younger gelding had little bumps all over his belly and flanks. Not a pretty site.
                  It has been raining alot here recently and the bugs are just terrible. I wondered if that had anything to do with it. I have been driving myself crazy all day wondering what caused this allergic reaction.
                  Do you have to use a vinegar "bath" as soon as they break out or can it be later and still be helpful?

                  How long do hives normally last?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                    Think about it strictly from a biological/physiological point of view, it makes no sense whatsoever, and the amount recommended is so small I'd have a very difficult time imagining it makes even the remotest impact on anything at all.

                    Not only do hives have nothing to do with pH, but you cannot--repeat, CAN NOT--change the pH of an animal's body (skin, blood, etc.) by feeding it anything short of GIGANTIC AND LUDICROUS volumes of acids or bases, which would prove so difficult that it's hardly worth mentioning. You can make the urine slightly more acidic or basic through what is fed, but that is a function of the marvelous kidney, which is IN CHARGE OF dumping excess acid or base. They do such a phenomenal job, in fact, that the animal's pH is maintained--ALWAYS--in a very, very, very tight range. For which we can thank God, or mother nature (your choice) because if pH were as volatile and subject to manipulation as folk remedies make it out to be, we'd all be so many puddles of goo.
                    THANK YOU!!!

                    I was about to jump in here and try to say what you just said, but no doubt less eloquently.

                    This "it can change your blood pH" nonsense just makes me NUTS.

                    So thank you.
                    Approved helmet: Every time; every ride.
                    "When a sport gets to be predictable it ceases to be fun." - RAR's wise brother

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      FWIW, I think you can make a paste of baking soda and put it on a bug bite, and that might reduce the itching... but I'm not even sure about that!
                      Approved helmet: Every time; every ride.
                      "When a sport gets to be predictable it ceases to be fun." - RAR's wise brother

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Risk-Averse Rider View Post
                        FWIW, I think you can make a paste of baking soda and put it on a bug bite, and that might reduce the itching... but I'm not even sure about that!
                        Yep, that's what I was going to suggest... that won't hurt the horses. They might LOOK funny with it on, but it won't hurt them!

                        Meat tenderizer is supposed to reduce the pain of bee stings, but I don't know about using it on hives on animals.

                        Kim
                        I loff my Quarter horse clique

                        I kill threads dead!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Back in the 60's when I was a kid we went raspberry hunting and I came up with a horrible case of poison ivy. So bad all of my fingers were webbed together with huge blisters and one ankle had several inches all way around of crusting oozing pus. My parents took me to the doctor after a few days when the standard calamine lotion didn't cut it.

                          The doctor said to take several baths a day with a large amount of baking soda in the bath water and apply it also as a paste to the worst areas. Can't say it helped much. Took weeks to resolve and the itch was pure torture.

                          Both of my sons are also highly allergic to poison ivy. Thank the stars much more effective treatments (prednisone) were available by the time they came along.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            rcloisonne, I love your signature line--just noticed it!

                            We can have a clique where signature lines are used as talismans to ward of the cosmic rays of nonsense, kind of like tinfoil hats. If you believe in talismans, that is . . .
                            Click here before you buy.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Yet the moments of inspiration that often lead to new ideas and truths often arise out of musings of utter nonsense and imagination.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                musings of utter nonsense and imagination.
                                True enough, but these musings are then subjected to analysis, study, and the rigors of research before they're marketed to the public. At least, that's how it ought to be--too many things go with the timeline of idea-marketing-MAYBE-some-research in stead of idea-research-marketing.
                                Click here before you buy.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by blakesbunch View Post
                                  My two TB geldings both came in this morning with hives. Never seen anything like it before. The older TB was just covered with huge hives, the younger gelding had little bumps all over his belly and flanks. Not a pretty site.
                                  It has been raining alot here recently and the bugs are just terrible. I wondered if that had anything to do with it. I have been driving myself crazy all day wondering what caused this allergic reaction.
                                  Do you have to use a vinegar "bath" as soon as they break out or can it be later and still be helpful?

                                  How long do hives normally last?
                                  Yes... the bugs can cause hives.

                                  For bug bites just a bath of plain cool water can sometimes be helpful in reducing the swellings.

                                  The vinegar "bath" concept is more of a method to "remove" suspected allergens from the horses coat and skin, then that of a concept where as it is a "direct cure" of the hives themselves.

                                  To answer the question... It is better to give the bath sooner because you will then be removing the suspected allergens sooner.... but the bath may be just as effective at reversing the hives if given at any time, because the hives will generally not resolve until the allergens (whatever they may be) are removed from the horses coat.

                                  However.... If your horses were if fact stung by a nest of bees that they both encountered while out in their pasture. The vinegar bath would probably be no help at all, because hives due to bee stings are caused by the bee venom that was injected into the horses skin via the bee's stinger, and not due to any allergy causing "substance" (i.e. mold. pollen, laundry detergent, hair conditioner) that may have come into contact with the horses coat.

                                  For hives caused by a bee sting, I would hose the horse down with cool water, as in my experience the cool water has anti-inflammatory effect just due to it being "cool" (same as cold hosing a swollen leg).

                                  A vinegar bath can not wash away anything that is causing the allergy "internally", and it even may not work in all cases of an allergy that is caused by something contacting the horse "externally". But to my knowledge I consider it a relatively harmless, and potentially effective, first treatment to try....

                                  But do note that hives can in rare cases, can be only the first "phase" of a more systemic and possibly life threatening allergic reaction called "anaphylactic shock". This is why I personally tend to be very cautious regarding the health of a horse that I have never known to have hives before. If a horse that has never had hives sudden erupts with a case of serious hives.... I will call the vet.

                                  In all cases if the horse has an elevated heart rate in association with the hives, I will call the vet "immediately", as an elevated heart rate can be a symptom of anaphylactic shock.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Another thought....

                                    Down here when it is especially hot, humid, and rainy, I have two beasties who will occasionally come in with what looks like hives over large portions of their bodies. I have learned (the hard way) that for these particular horses, the hives are a sort of precursor to rain rot. At first they look like they have simple hives, then their skin becomes very sensitive, and finally the bumps show up.

                                    When I see large areas of hives on these beasties, I know to get the betadine shampoo out....
                                    Y'all ain't right!

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      When my horse gets hives, he gets 15 Costco benadryl-equivalent tablets in some soaked pellets; morning and night if need be (vet recommendation). If it is warm enough, a bath and a white vinegar rinse, too. White vinegar will also remove any buildup of hair product in your own hair, in case you've bought a big bottle and want to do your own rinse in your apres barn shower.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        OMG Eeeeeek

                                        I can't believe this post. My mare came in yesterday with hives from Hell. This is the second time in her life it's happened, we've run allergy tests and nothing really important. And now at a totally different time of year, huge hives. She's on Dex per the vet and we'll see.

                                        Also, it's been raining for a week on and off.
                                        Last edited by Eventer55; Aug. 2, 2009, 06:31 PM.
                                        RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

                                        "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

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