sheath cleaning

Crazy_cat_lady

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14 January 2012
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5,385
So H's man part is in need of a bit of a spring clean. I haven't had to do it before but this year it looks in need of a freshen up. What do people usually use to clean said parts?
 

_GG_

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So H's man part is in need of a bit of a spring clean. I haven't had to do it before but this year it looks in need of a freshen up. What do people usually use to clean said parts?
Nothing. If I think the sheath area looks like it has an issue, I'll have a vet check it on the next visit but unless there is a wound, I leave well alone as any type of washing, even with just plain water will affect the levels of bacteria that should be present and allow bacteria that shouldn't be present to get established. It is very difficult to get reverse it when bad bacteria have set in and it's really important for the health of the area for it to be kept as it should be. If I thought smegma was getting to a point where it wasn't managing itself so to speak, I would want to know why and get it checked rather than messing with the bacteria balance.
 

Carlosmum

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My boy can get really nasty black gooey sticky stuff everywhere, plain water just doesn't work so I use 'ladies intimate wash' and or lambing lube. A latex glove & thick paper towel which I change 4 or 5 times during a wash.
 

shergar

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19 August 2012
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442
If you use the search box at the top of the page and use the words willy washing,you will find three pages of threads.
For the geldings we have had they have always been cleaned dirty sheaths attract flies that lay eggs the result is maggots in the sheath.
 

Cinnamontoast

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I mostly avert my eyes and pretend I can't see it, but if you must:

Sheath Cleaning

Stick my hand up where!? One of the joys of owning a gelding is periodic sheath cleaning. This is a mysterious topic to some, so Pat Harris wrote these instructions which she posted on Equine-L.

Step 1) Check to make sure there are no prospective boyfriends, elderly neighbors, or Brownie troops with a line of sight to the proceedings. Though of course they're probably going to show up unexpectedly ANYWAY once you're in the middle of things. Prepare a good explanation <vbg>

2) Trim your fingernails short. Assemble horse, hose, and your sense of humor (plus, ideally, Excalibur cleanser and perhaps thin rubber gloves).

3) Use hose (or damp sponge) to get the sheath and its inhabitant wet. Uh, that is, do this in a *civilized* fashion with due warning to the horse; he is apt to take offense if an icy-cold hose blasts unexpectedly into his personal regions ;-)

4) Now introduce your horse to Mr Hand. What I find safest is to stand facing the horse's head, with my shoulder and hip snugly against the horse's thigh and hip so that if he makes any suspicious move such as raising his leg, I can feel it right away and am in any case pressed so close that all he can do is shove, not really kick. The horse should be held by an assistant or by your free hand, NOT tied fast to a post or to crossties. He may shift around a good bit if he's not happy with Mr Hand's antics, but don't be put off by that; as long as you are patient and gradual, and stick close to his side, he'll get over it.

Remember that it would be most unladylike of you to simply make a direct grab for your horse's Part. Give the horse a clue about what's on the program. Rest your hand against his belly, and then slide it back til you are entering The Home of the Actual Private Part. When you reach this first region of your destination, lube him up good with Excalibur or whatever you're using.

5) If the outer part of his sheath is really grungy you will feel little clods and nubblies of smegma peeling off as you grope around in there. Patiently and gently expedite their removal.

5) Thus far, you have probably only been in the outer part of the sheath. The Part Itself, you'll have noticed, is strangely absent. That's because it has retired shyly to its inner chambers. Roll up them thar sleeves and follow in after it ;-)

6) As you and Mr Hand wend your way deeper into the sheath, you will encounter what feels like a small portal that opens up into a chamber beyond. Being attentive to your horse's reaction, invite yourself in <vbg>. You are now in the inner sanctum of The Actual Private Part. It's hiding in there towards the back, trying to pretend it isn't there. Say hi and wave to it <vbg>. No, really, work your finger back and forth around the sides of it. If the horse won't drop, this is your only shot at removing whatever dried smegma is clinging to the surface of the Part itself. So, gently explore around it, pulling out whatever crusty topsoil you find there. Use more water and more Excalibur if necessary to loosen attached gunk.

7) When Mr Hand and the Actual Private Part have gotten to know each other pretty well, and the Part feels squeaky clean all around, there remains only one task: checking for, and removing, the bean. The bean is a pale, kidney-shaped accumulation of smegma in a small pouch just inside the urethra. Not all horses accumulate a bean, but IME the majority do, even if they have no visible external smegma.

So: the equine urethra is fairly large diameter, and indeed will permit you to very gently insinuate one of your slimmer fingers inside the urethral opening. Do so, and explore upwards for what will feel like a lump or "pea" buried no more than, I dunno, perhaps 3/4" in from the opening. If you do encounter a bean, gently and sympathetically persuade it out with your finger. This may require a little patience from BOTH Mr Hand AND the horse, but the horse will be happier and healthier once it's accomplished. In the rare event that the bean is too enormous for your finger to coax out, you might try what I did (in desperation) last month on the orange horse: Wrap thumb and index finger around the end of the Part and squeeze firmly to extrude the bean. Much to my surprise it worked and orange horse did NOT kill me for doing it and he does not seem to have suffered any permanant damage as a result ;-> I have never in my life seen another bean that enormous, though.

8) Now all that's left to do is make a graceful exit and rinse the area very thoroughly in apology for the liberties you've taken <vbg>. A hose will be MUCH easier to use here than just a sponge and bucket, IME. Make sure to direct the water into the Part's inner retreat too, not merely the outer part of the sheath. This may require you to enfold the end of the hose in your hand and guide it up there personally.

9) Ta-da, you are done! Say, "Good horsie" and feed him lots of carrots. Watch him make funny faces at the way your hands smell. Hmm. Well, perhaps there is ONE more step...

10) The only thing I know of that is at all effective in removing the lovely fragrance of smegma from your hands (fingernails arms elbows and wherever else it's gotten) is Excalibur. Even then, if you didn't use gloves you may find you've got an unusual personal perfume for a while. So, word to the wise, do NOT clean your horse's sheath just before an important job interview or first date ;-)

and of course, there is that one FINAL step...

11) Figure out how to explain all this to your mother (or the kid from next door, or the meter reader, or whoever else you've just realized has been standing in the barn doorway speechlessly watching the entire process.

Now, go thou forth and clean that Part :)
 

rowan666

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12 February 2012
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cheshire
Nothing. If I think the sheath area looks like it has an issue, I'll have a vet check it on the next visit but unless there is a wound, I leave well alone as any type of washing, even with just plain water will affect the levels of bacteria that should be present and allow bacteria that shouldn't be present to get established. It is very difficult to get reverse it when bad bacteria have set in and it's really important for the health of the area for it to be kept as it should be. If I thought smegma was getting to a point where it wasn't managing itself so to speak, I would want to know why and get it checked rather than messing with the bacteria balance.
^^ This
 

BraidedTail

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Joined
10 November 2014
Messages
173
I mostly avert my eyes and pretend I can't see it, but if you must:

Sheath Cleaning

Stick my hand up where!? One of the joys of owning a gelding is periodic sheath cleaning. This is a mysterious topic to some, so Pat Harris wrote these instructions which she posted on Equine-L.

Step 1) Check to make sure there are no prospective boyfriends, elderly neighbors, or Brownie troops with a line of sight to the proceedings. Though of course they're probably going to show up unexpectedly ANYWAY once you're in the middle of things. Prepare a good explanation <vbg>

2) Trim your fingernails short. Assemble horse, hose, and your sense of humor (plus, ideally, Excalibur cleanser and perhaps thin rubber gloves).

3) Use hose (or damp sponge) to get the sheath and its inhabitant wet. Uh, that is, do this in a *civilized* fashion with due warning to the horse; he is apt to take offense if an icy-cold hose blasts unexpectedly into his personal regions ;-)

4) Now introduce your horse to Mr Hand. What I find safest is to stand facing the horse's head, with my shoulder and hip snugly against the horse's thigh and hip so that if he makes any suspicious move such as raising his leg, I can feel it right away and am in any case pressed so close that all he can do is shove, not really kick. The horse should be held by an assistant or by your free hand, NOT tied fast to a post or to crossties. He may shift around a good bit if he's not happy with Mr Hand's antics, but don't be put off by that; as long as you are patient and gradual, and stick close to his side, he'll get over it.

Remember that it would be most unladylike of you to simply make a direct grab for your horse's Part. Give the horse a clue about what's on the program. Rest your hand against his belly, and then slide it back til you are entering The Home of the Actual Private Part. When you reach this first region of your destination, lube him up good with Excalibur or whatever you're using.

5) If the outer part of his sheath is really grungy you will feel little clods and nubblies of smegma peeling off as you grope around in there. Patiently and gently expedite their removal.

5) Thus far, you have probably only been in the outer part of the sheath. The Part Itself, you'll have noticed, is strangely absent. That's because it has retired shyly to its inner chambers. Roll up them thar sleeves and follow in after it ;-)

6) As you and Mr Hand wend your way deeper into the sheath, you will encounter what feels like a small portal that opens up into a chamber beyond. Being attentive to your horse's reaction, invite yourself in <vbg>. You are now in the inner sanctum of The Actual Private Part. It's hiding in there towards the back, trying to pretend it isn't there. Say hi and wave to it <vbg>. No, really, work your finger back and forth around the sides of it. If the horse won't drop, this is your only shot at removing whatever dried smegma is clinging to the surface of the Part itself. So, gently explore around it, pulling out whatever crusty topsoil you find there. Use more water and more Excalibur if necessary to loosen attached gunk.

7) When Mr Hand and the Actual Private Part have gotten to know each other pretty well, and the Part feels squeaky clean all around, there remains only one task: checking for, and removing, the bean. The bean is a pale, kidney-shaped accumulation of smegma in a small pouch just inside the urethra. Not all horses accumulate a bean, but IME the majority do, even if they have no visible external smegma.

So: the equine urethra is fairly large diameter, and indeed will permit you to very gently insinuate one of your slimmer fingers inside the urethral opening. Do so, and explore upwards for what will feel like a lump or "pea" buried no more than, I dunno, perhaps 3/4" in from the opening. If you do encounter a bean, gently and sympathetically persuade it out with your finger. This may require a little patience from BOTH Mr Hand AND the horse, but the horse will be happier and healthier once it's accomplished. In the rare event that the bean is too enormous for your finger to coax out, you might try what I did (in desperation) last month on the orange horse: Wrap thumb and index finger around the end of the Part and squeeze firmly to extrude the bean. Much to my surprise it worked and orange horse did NOT kill me for doing it and he does not seem to have suffered any permanant damage as a result ;-> I have never in my life seen another bean that enormous, though.

8) Now all that's left to do is make a graceful exit and rinse the area very thoroughly in apology for the liberties you've taken <vbg>. A hose will be MUCH easier to use here than just a sponge and bucket, IME. Make sure to direct the water into the Part's inner retreat too, not merely the outer part of the sheath. This may require you to enfold the end of the hose in your hand and guide it up there personally.

9) Ta-da, you are done! Say, "Good horsie" and feed him lots of carrots. Watch him make funny faces at the way your hands smell. Hmm. Well, perhaps there is ONE more step...

10) The only thing I know of that is at all effective in removing the lovely fragrance of smegma from your hands (fingernails arms elbows and wherever else it's gotten) is Excalibur. Even then, if you didn't use gloves you may find you've got an unusual personal perfume for a while. So, word to the wise, do NOT clean your horse's sheath just before an important job interview or first date ;-)

and of course, there is that one FINAL step...

11) Figure out how to explain all this to your mother (or the kid from next door, or the meter reader, or whoever else you've just realized has been standing in the barn doorway speechlessly watching the entire process.

Now, go thou forth and clean that Part :)
Lol. Just brilliant. Just to add - don't prepare tea for the family for the next couple of days...
 

fatpiggy

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Joined
1 December 2006
Messages
4,593
I've never understood why so many people baulk at the mere thought of sheath cleaning. I'd rather do that than change a yukky nappy any day of the week. It is amazing how roomy it is in a horses sheath, its soft and hardly disgusting and nice and warm :)

Oh, and I used to introduce any water into the depths with a big penecillin syringe. No messing about with hoses flapping around the horses feet and you can slide it in effortlessly beside your fingers.
 
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Suncat

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Joined
2 February 2012
Messages
81
Location
South Wales
I&#8217;d also sound some caution over cleaning with anything other than water &#8211; I used to use off the shelf natural sheath cleaners. This upset the bacteria in my lads sheath and (after tearing my hair out trying every treatment anyone could suggest) I discovered stallion broth &#8211; it still took 2 rounds of that to sort everything it out. I was battling an ichy, icky sheath for over a year; poor lad :(
 

pony&cow

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Joined
22 January 2013
Messages
279
I use (advised by vet years ago) ky jelly. Just pop a a good dollop up there and it softens the smegma so it can loosen off and clean out itself. And if ky jelly is safe to put up your you know where then i trust its safe for my ponies boy bits.
 

impresario08

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Joined
2 February 2014
Messages
779
I use (advised by vet years ago) ky jelly. Just pop a a good dollop up there and it softens the smegma so it can loosen off and clean out itself. And if ky jelly is safe to put up your you know where then i trust its safe for my ponies boy bits.
yep I do this too :)
 

Cobbytype

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9 December 2014
Messages
914
Yup - also Vet Lube is a similar product, as is obstetric gel.

My lad had a smeggy sheath due to his neurological disorder (he didn't retract fully when asleep, so his bits would get bits of shavings stuck to them), so I had to clean him regularly and used tepid water and he had his own flannels that were boiled after use. The crusty bits were smeared with the vet lube and rinsed off after a few minutes to allow the crusty stuff to soften.

After his initial horror, sheath cleaning seemed to become the highlight of my boy's day - he'd stop eating and stand stock still whilst cleaning was in process, looking very relaxed and pleased that the slave was doing a good job of things:)

I'd agree with the idea that unless the horse's sheath is really smeggy, it's best to leave well alone. My lad got a nasty Citrobacter infection inside his sheath, but this was due to him not tucking away fully as he should have, so it was inevitable that he'd succumb to the odd infection now and then.
 

puli

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Joined
18 July 2006
Messages
190
My vet told me to clean it with just warm water and make sure you use gloves. My gelding has to be sedated to allow someone to clean his sheath so his is normal left alone
 
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