Advice on a mare sold to me with sweet itch and how to control?

applestroodle

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Looking for some advice again from you knowledgeable lot

some of you might already know that I have a wee welsh section d mare which I bought at the end of last year. She started off very well, lunging her, saddle bridle riding in the school and hacking out alone and in company, over the last couple of months she seems to be slowly getting worse. Things like not keen on letting me on, jumpy out hacking, just very uncomfortable. She has started rubbing her mane out and not keen to be tied up trying to itch herself on everything. In general just really hard work to even handle.

I bought her from a dealer in Scotland in November had previously spoke to her breeder who had sold her to someone in Birmingham as a yearling so as I live in Scotland she has been well travelled for a 4 year old. I googled her name recently and found she had been sold at sales, so I contacted the sales and found out she was sold by the person who bought her as a yearling to my dealer in Scotland but in the catalogue it said she had sweet itch but able to be controlled with a rug and mask.!! So this I think is explaining her change in behaviour and looking back it seems to have just steadily got worse since march time!! I am annoyed this dealer never told me who had from May time to November when I bought her, so I think was fully aware she had sweet itch. I am sure this case is very common and her rug she was sold with has mysteriously disappeared. : (

I have been lucky as I live in the hills so there is always a slight wind hence why I think it has not been that bad up an till now. Also she lives out 24/7 in an electric fence paddock so nothing to rub on but I would like to make her more comfortable so I can ride her, so what is the best rug to buy and does anyone have any tips on how to control sweet itch? Just reading last weeks horse and hound.

Thanks so much for reading, biccys and tea for you.

Many thanks
 

AmyMay

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Have you tried feeding her brewers yeast or marmite? And how about investing in a boett rug for her?
 

BobbyMondeo

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I personally love the snuggy hoods sweet itch rugs, the work really well and last for ages! I had mine for 4 years and it was still going strong.

Marmite is also good for keeping flies off.
And if you does rub so much she gets all sore benzyl benzoate works really well just wear gloves when you put it on
 

MrsMozart

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Ditto the Boett rug: it is the best for bad sweet-itch. You can ride in it as well.

Try and keep in at dusk and at dawn.

Keep the muck heap away an/or covered with black plastic (it's where the little biting beasties come from).

Google sweet-itch. There have been a few posts on here about it lately.
 

f_s_

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Boett rug, brewers yeast, fly spray, skin so soft from Avon, killitch, sudocrem...

It's a bit of a battle, and does depend on how severe the sweet itch is.

I would buy a boett rug, feed brewers yeast, cut out garlic from the feed, plaster her in fly spray and protect sensitive areas with vaseline.

Hope this helps, there is a vaccine available now, but, you have to be careful, as some vaccines can bring on laminitis.
 

JC1

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I have bought the snuggyhoods sweetitch rug this year for my shetland who suffers terribly. She is so happy in it. I'm really impressed with the fit and the quality. Now all I have to do is stop the youngster trying to take it off her!!
 

AmyMay

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[ QUOTE ]
And if you does rub so much she gets all sore benzyl benzoate works really well

[/ QUOTE ]
Please don't use benzyl benoate on broken skin - it stings terribly. In fact, if you can keep clear of it all together......
 

applestroodle

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Thanks so much everyone lots of thinsg to try, it dosent seem to be that bad at the mo but would like to control.

Yes Hermangerman i am walking up and down my living room thinking what should i do with this dealer. i am 100% sure he would have known, when i bought her she had scabs on her and he said it was rain scald also her mane was pulled short which makes me think she might have rubbed it out over the summer he had her.

anyone any experience or what i should do, tempted to phone but then thinking a letter??
 

AmyMay

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[ QUOTE ]
anyone any experience or what i should do, tempted to phone but then thinking a letter??

[/ QUOTE ]

What outcome would you be looking for??
 

Cahill

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the thing about SW is prevention.
the pony need to be covered up before the midges arrive.

i myself,after trying lots of things,have got it under control...
a pagony rug,electric fence and a spray of deosect every 1 to 2 weeks to repel the midges when i am riding.

you could easily spend the price of a rug on sprays and stuff that do not work when all you prob need is the rug and to have it before the midges arrive.

(my pon was so bad the 1st year she had it that i could not even stable her because she rubbed on the walls now she doesn`t itch at all)
 

f_s_

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Agreed the pony needs to be covered up before the midges arrive, but in this case, the person wasn't told the pony had sweet itch, so now she needs a solution to try and control it!
smile.gif
 

applestroodle

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Well I feel very annoyed that I was not told when he was fully aware of her condition. Also the poor pony has suffered hasn’t she because he neglected to tell me? If he has forgotten to tell me that who else has he sold horses to with out telling them about certain conditions/ problems.
 

AmyMay

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[ QUOTE ]
Well I feel very annoyed that I was not told when he was fully aware of her condition. Also the poor pony has suffered hasn’t she because he neglected to tell me? If he has forgotten to tell me that who else has he sold horses to with out telling them about certain conditions/ problems.

[/ QUOTE ]

Has she suffered because he neglected to tell you? The signs of sweetich are quite clear - you have identified them quite easily and are now taking action.

I can't imagine you paid much for her if she was in such a poor state when you bought her - so financial compensation is negligable.

Some people are just not honest. But you're probably wasting your time chasing up the dealer I would suggest.

Why not just concentrate your efforts on helping the pony......
 

applestroodle

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Yes of course first thing is helping my pony that goes with out saying. But amymay how would u feel if this happened to you, would u not be a little annoyed?
 

AmyMay

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But amymay how would u feel if this happened to you, would u not be a little annoyed?

[/ QUOTE ]

To be honest with you, no. I'd just put it down to experience. I also hope that i would be able to have spotted the signs of it when I purchased initially as well.
 

Foxyeventing

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I have 3 bad sweet itchers, all comp horses, After many years getting frustrated with a red roar bald horse to compete, I have found that:
A good rug, a boett or snuggy hood, or the rambo sweet itch hoody is very good, on 24/7 under turnout rugs if neccessary worksthe best, mine are out full time, and if they are in they are still rugged in something from head to tail whether it a stable rug or a sheet, all year round.
Whilst riding i use sprays etc,
and main comp season i feed The itch plus supplement in a purple tub, not sure who makes it but will look and then post. Hope this helps
 

BigRed

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I have a lovely horse that I took on without knowing she had sweet itch, in fact the previous owner (who I know) didn't have the problem in the area she lived in. I live in a clay soil area, near woods, lakes etc. Worst place for midges. After a couple of years with a very unhappy horse, I finally accepted that none of the sprays really work and I bought a Boett rug. My horse can now stay out in the field 24/7 if I want her to. She is very happy to wear the rug and hood and the midges cannot bite her.

My experience of scotland is that is has a lot of biting flies. Buy the pony a rug and don't waste money on anything else. She will quickly become more settled once the midges cannot bite her.
 

f_s_

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I would say send a letter to the dealer. They didn't disclose that the pony had sweet itch, which technically is unsoundness.

However, be aware, that if you did not expressly ask if the pony had any allergies or vices, then the dealer does not have to tell you.

You may be able to return the pony on the grounds that it is unfit for purpose, and with a dealer, you may have more come back than a private seller.

Unfortunately these things are usually not so straightforward, so be prepared for a bit of a battle.
frown.gif
 

LankyDoodle

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[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
But amymay how would u feel if this happened to you, would u not be a little annoyed?

[/ QUOTE ]

To be honest with you, no. I'd just put it down to experience. I also hope that i would be able to have spotted the signs of it when I purchased initially as well.

[/ QUOTE ]

If she purchased the pony at the end of last year (thinking Oct/Nov time), the signs of sweetitch would not have been there. My horse suffers from severe sweet itch and his had cleared up by the end of September.
 

nobbster

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hey i personally like the pig oil and sulpher solution works a treat and cheap of the internet ( old travlers soloution fantastic)
 

LankyDoodle

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My boy wears a snuggyhood rug and hood set, and it's been the best thing for him, although he has rubbed a few holes in it (which we sew up). It's been amazing for him, as before he came to us he was with our friends in a wooded area with a stream and in a sheltered valley. He was red raw with all the rubbing, had next to no tail and had rubbed the bottom of his mane out by the end of June last year. Here we are, almost into June, and he has a full mane and tail, no scabs anywhere except his sheath (he kicks if you put anything on, so although we manage to get a cream on there occasionally, it is difficult).

The rug is amazing. I stood with him the other day and watched midges land on his ears; he did not even flinch, whereas this time last year he had no hair on his ears! I put this all down to the rug and the fact the midge population in his field is lower than where he was last year (very little in the way of trees, no natural water supply, open space). I am about to put electric fencing around the field, about 1m in from the boundary so that he can't keep rubbing holes in the rug.

I would still get a rug now, if I were you. Yes, they are only 100% effective if you put it on in March; however, my boy spent about 2 weeks without one on in April because the seam came undone and SH had to fix it. He developed two small patches of SI, which since having the rug back on have actually cleared up.

Apart from the rug, I also feed some marmite (or similar product) each day, groom regularly, bathe once a week (or fortnight sometimes) using a mix of dettol and insecticide shampoo, after a bath or ride I stick killitch on mane and tail areas and I used a home-made fly spray daily (but I am slowly coming round to the idea of using deosect instead).
 

hussar

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We're in a high midge population area and have lots of trees and water by the horses' fields. My Arab has mild sweet-itch and is rugged from March-October. I hate the Boett rugs and found the Rambo Sweet-itch Hoody the absolute best thing - it's got great coverage, allows air to circulate and is tough.

I also feed NAF D-Itch from March-October and plaster any exposed bits with diluted Avon Skin-So-Soft bath oil. I wash his mane and tail in a medicated shampoo once a week.

This summer I've moved my muck heap 20 yards further away from the stables (which the horses use as shelter) and that has helped enormously with the number of midges actually in the stables. I also hang greenhouse sticky flypapers in the windows.
 

LankyDoodle

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[ QUOTE ]
I hate the Boett rugs and found the Rambo Sweet-itch Hoody the absolute best thing - it's got great coverage, allows air to circulate and is tough.



[/ QUOTE ]

See I have found the complete opposite to be true. My horse had a rambo si hoodie last year, with his last owners, and it left so many bits unconvered, which were the bits that were left with no hair and in places red raw and bleeding. The rambo did not cover his belly. He is 17.3hh, though.
 

AmyMay

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If she purchased the pony at the end of last year (thinking Oct/Nov time), the signs of sweetitch would not have been there. My horse suffers from severe sweet itch and his had cleared up by the end of September.

[/ QUOTE ]

From the OP: [ QUOTE ]
when i bought her she had scabs on her and he said it was rain scald

[/ QUOTE ]
 

OWLIE185

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Last weeks Horse and Hound had an excellent article written by a vet about the latest vacinations for horses who suffer from sweet itch. Please read the article.
 

LankyDoodle

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[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
If she purchased the pony at the end of last year (thinking Oct/Nov time), the signs of sweetitch would not have been there. My horse suffers from severe sweet itch and his had cleared up by the end of September.

[/ QUOTE ]

From the OP: [ QUOTE ]
when i bought her she had scabs on her and he said it was rain scald

[/ QUOTE ]

[/ QUOTE ]#

Ahhhhhh. Well in that case, I'd probably have been asking questions! Ooops!
 

PennyJ

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Boett Rug
Low sugar Diet - Mine is fed alfalfa based diet which works for her
Brewers yeast type supplement (I use baileys lo-cal)
Linseed Oil
Apple Cider Vinegar both in the feed and topically as it soothes itches.

Working for me, we are in our second year with her and have "tweaked" things a bit from last summer and it is working better this year.
 
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