Hayfever and horses!

Uliy

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13 April 2013
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All my life I have suffered with hayfever and dealt with it fairly successfully for years by taking Benadryl (Acrivastine 8 hour version, nothing else works!). However, having bought my first horse and needing to fill up haynets twice a day, Benadryl just isn’t cutting it anymore. I’m having to take several pills a day and still suffering with what feels like a terrible cold and a cough.

I’ve started wearing a mask to fill up the nets which has helped a little bit, but does anyone else suffer the same fate and have any tips?!

Thanks for any suggestions - I’m getting desperate! 🤧
 

milliepops

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I am allergic to everything horsey, pretty much... incl the horses.. those acrivastine tablets are the best but I don't buy them too often as they are so much more ££ than the other kinds!

anyway, what's your storage like? I have about 20 haynets (2 horses) and I condemn myself to haynet day now and then, it's horrible at the time but it means I get several days off which makes it less awful.
Haylage is better for me than hay, not sure if that's an option for you.
 

rabatsa

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I feel your pain. I also use a squifty up my nose and eye drops. I stopped using nets altogether and forked the hay into a corner trough before giving that up and feeding from a ring feeder in the barn.
 

lunginggirl

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I am the same with Hay and straw. Its mainly the dust that affects me. I second getting rid of nets altogether. I was worried he would mix it in his bed and it would be a mess but it is the best choice I made. Just chuck it in a tonne bag and drag it in, no fuss :)
 
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I'm the same with hay and straw and if I handle it with bare arms it can bring me out in little blisters too ( more so if it's wet for some reason ? ) . Fortunately my OH mostly deals with filling nets and feeders but if I have to do it I make sure my arms are covered and I wear a swimmers nose clip . I find masks very claustrophobic and they restrict my vision ( which isn't brilliant anyway ) but the nose clips are cheap , unobtrusive , -small enough to keep in the smallest of pockets and mean you can breath through your mouth ! I also make sure I wash my hands/change my gloves afterwards .
 

saalsk

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A friend struggles with this, and has tried a few different antihistamines, as some are more effective for pollen/dust allergy based hayfevers, and some are better against allergies like insect bites. She also does all her haynets at the weekend, for the week ahead, and on *net day* she does them last thing before leaving the yard, then goes straight home for clothing change and a shower. When doing the nets, she wears a cotton mask over face/nose, which she pre soaks in cold water. Obviously this is different for the current covid thing, but hers ( for net filling ) is to stop dust getting to her, and soaking makes the fibres fatter, so they stop more dust. She then washes the mask with the net-filling clothing, ready for the following week.
 
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I went to the doctors in the end as it was so bad and was prescribed Fexofenadine. I pay for the monthly prescription (about £10) and I am so much better now, as long as I take them half an hour before I expose myself to the yard/horses.
 

Uliy

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13 April 2013
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Thanks all, these are brilliant ideas! Sometimes the simplest things are the ones you never think of - I’ll try having a “net day”!

I also get bumps on my arms from the hay (not blisters, luckily). It’s surprising how many of us seem to suffer from the same thing, but put ourselves through it for the love of horses! 😁🤧
 

Abby-Lou

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I have moved my hay stack today and I feel your pain ! I usually take 2 x Loratadine but not cutting the mustard today. Last week I bought from an online pharmacist I bought Fexofenadine I have heard good reports but want to try when I am not busy incase they make make drowsy. For a reset sometimes I take a piriton at night, which works well. We have just invested in a blueair pure 411 Air purifier last week and can't recommend enough it currently going full pelt in my bedroom, the air in the room just feels fresher.
 

Pedantic

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Stuffing hay nets upsets my eyes and my nose, I find getting another mug to do it helps enormously:p

I use a good quality face mask, I try to stuff a weeks worth at a time, and when riding/horse gear is ready for the wash, I then go in the shower soon as I get home and shower off well around the face.
 

milliepops

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I have moved my hay stack today and I feel your pain ! I usually take 2 x Loratadine but not cutting the mustard today. Last week I bought from an online pharmacist I bought Fexofenadine I have heard good reports but want to try when I am not busy incase they make make drowsy.
Oh wow, hadn't spotted you could get it online. I was prescribed it several years ago and it was fab but gp wouldn't put it on repeat. Probably because its pricey. Off to Google!
 

Boulty

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Beconase spray twice daily on top of the tablets (I use cetrizine year round) +/- hayfever eyedrops. DO NOT touch your face after handling hay until you've washed your hands (& would reccomend washing your face when you get home as well) or you will suffer! Oh I'd also say to wear long sleeves when around hay as well (I come out in a rash if not) If your horse is ok on it haylage can be less dusty than hay & might give you less symptoms (I'm A LOT less allergic to haylage than hay... if I handle a lot of hay without a mask on I literally can't breathe for a few days... this winter shall be interesting as ideally Fergs would be better off on hay, will have to see how I go but at least I've got plenty of masks now!)
 

ozpoz

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I had hay fever all my life but after taking Pollena I am rarely troubled now, or only have very mild symptoms occasionally. I don’t take loratadine after having s very side effects.
 

MarvelVillis

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Devon
I started taking fexofenadine as the over the counter anti histamines weren't cutting it! I have also got rid of nets and put hay into a travel cot in his stable, so I'm not handling it too much, which has helped. It's awful in summer when you're wearing short sleeves and I get lumps and a rash up my arms from the hay. I have to keep reminding myself that they're worth it though...
 

WandaMare

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3 August 2009
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I find handling the big bales the worst, it takes longer to make the haynets and its difficult to keep your face far enough from the bale when you're pulling off the hay. Its much quicker grabbing a few slices from a small bale and less dusty but a lot more expensive! I order some of both so that I can use the small bales if I need to look respectable without sneezing and runny eyes for the rest of the day.
 

Uliy

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13 April 2013
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I find handling the big bales the worst, it takes longer to make the haynets and its difficult to keep your face far enough from the bale when you're pulling off the hay. Its much quicker grabbing a few slices from a small bale and less dusty but a lot more expensive! I order some of both so that I can use the small bales if I need to look respectable without sneezing and runny eyes for the rest of the day.
I’ve been using a big bale - today I pulled a bit up off the floor and got an eyeful of dust! 😰 goggles may be required!

These are all brilliant tips, thanks! I’ve looked into getting fexofenadine. It dawned on me the other day for the first time that some people (like my YO, my friends) have no reaction to hay at all - oh to be so lucky!!
 

rabatsa

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When using a big bale use a pitch/hay fork and peel it off in rounds and fork into a wheelbarrow then unload into the nets rather than trying to take off the bale with your hands.
 
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I suffered with this really badly last winter whenever I had to fill multiple haynets. I hate taking antihistamines, even the non-drowsy ones make me tired, so I ended up using a mask, goggles (safety goggles that don't steam up work best), and rubber gloves (as my arms would break out in hives too). It was much more manageable after that although I did look ridiculous :)
 

Uliy

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13 April 2013
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112
I suffered with this really badly last winter whenever I had to fill multiple haynets. I hate taking antihistamines, even the non-drowsy ones make me tired, so I ended up using a mask, goggles (safety goggles that don't steam up work best), and rubber gloves (as my arms would break out in hives too). It was much more manageable after that although I did look ridiculous :)
I think looking ridiculous just has to be the price to pay for clear airways and eyesight!

The vet has just advised me to try giving my horse Piriton to help with her own runny nose, so we might be a matching hayfever pair 🤧
 
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