Horse has an itchy belly....

Discussion in 'Horse Health' started by APHAPtHA, May 17, 2011.

  1. APHAPtHA

    APHAPtHA Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,560
    Likes Received:
    396
    So my horse has a really itchy belly! It only occurs during the warmer months and really only bugs her in the evening when the bugs are out..... Ive researched it and talked to vets and the only conclusion weve been able to reach is that its "ventral midline dermatitis" however she doesnt get the lesions associated with it.
    Weve tried deworming her with quest as weve been told this kills whatever it is that causes it but it has little to no effect.... does any one else have a horse with this issue? Or any ideas how to make her more comfortable? Ive tried many types of bug sprays which help keep the bugs away but it doesnt help the itchy belly problem! ive tried anti itch type creams too (sorry for my lack of proper terms.... its been a long day) Its to the point where she is contantly kicking at her belly and she lays down and actually rubs her belly with her feet....:rolleyez: thanks in advance
     






  2. redhorseridge

    redhorseridge Senior Member+

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Messages:
    2,174
    Likes Received:
    1,918
    All three of our horses get itchy bellies (and itchy necks) when the black flies/midges come out; these flies are active at dusk and dawn. So we make sure the horses have spray on. They do make blankets with a "belly band" you can put on a horse to protect the stomach. There is also a Belly Guard.
     
    3 people like this.
  3. APHAPtHA

    APHAPtHA Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,560
    Likes Received:
    396
    thank you! I might have to look into getting one of those! But then i wonder would she rip it when she lays down and rubs her belly on her back legs?
     
  4. IIIBarsV

    IIIBarsV Senior Member+

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Messages:
    8,387
    Likes Received:
    6,218
    My little roan mare has had this problem increasingly over the last two years--- including rubbing her mane out, her tail out, and her chest. Flysheets and sprays didn't help at all, neither did oral antihistamines.

    This year she's been on a potent prebiotic mix, KER Equishure, and 1 cup of whole Flaxseed per day, maybe more. I have also been wiping her with "Shield & Sheen" an oil based fly spray. She has not only bloomed in colour and weight, she hasn't been itching herself raw yet, or itching her belly at all. Her neck is itchy, but no more than any other horse's. It's still early in the season though, but I'm hoping getting her hindgut under control will lower her histamine reactions, and making sure she's getting enough omega 3's will prevent that inflammatory reaction too.

    Shield & Sheen works remarkably on blackflies with just a chest, ear, and belly wipe. I haven't tested it on mosquitoes yet, they haven't really come out yet.
     
  5. JStorry

    JStorry Senior Member+

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2010
    Messages:
    2,304
    Likes Received:
    2,873
    The flies were really bad at a guest ranch I worked at one year, I used Swat on the sores... It soothes and repels bugs at the same time.... Speeds healing very well.
     
  6. gaitedboomer

    gaitedboomer Senior Member+

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    Messages:
    1,103
    Likes Received:
    884
    Sweet itch is nothing to mess with and requires daily treatment for some horses. One of my four is really allergic to midge fly bites.
    http://www.horse-advice.com/equi-therapy/horse-veterinary/equine-sweet-itch.shtml

    Then there's the Onchocerca worms, a/k/a Neck Threadworms, that the midge flies are responsible for. In some cases they can get in the horses' eyes and can be responsible for moon blindness.
    http://www.animalworldnetwork.com/bunthreadonc.html

    I had issues with neck threadworms last July-August. It takes over-dosing with PURE Ivermectin at 2 - 4 week intervals to get rid of them but that's another subject -- just be aware that Midge flies are responsible for them too, so the better control that can be kept of the horse's skin health the better.

    My horses come in at night but they are still attacked by midge flies during the day. It reaches a point where fly spray doesn't help. Sheeting them is out of the question because they are on 22 acres with plenty of trees to catch and rip coverings on. I keep ointments on any bites I find and I slather my Arab's belly line with diaper rash cream before he goes out in the morning.
     
  7. Goonhorse

    Goonhorse Senior Member+

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2006
    Messages:
    5,569
    Likes Received:
    1,001
    There's a ton of info in this link about the Onchocerca worms. http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=155469

    I hope it's okay to post it!
     
  8. allison finch

    allison finch Senior Member+

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2009
    Messages:
    2,282
    Likes Received:
    3,956
    Most horses have a cowlick on their bellies. This causes the hair to have a place where small "cattle" flies (that really BITE) can get to the skin very easily. This causes an irritation that really itches. I make sure to put heavy fly spray on these cowlicks.

    However, it is fun to scratch the cowlick and watch the horse's lips grow......
     
  9. APHAPtHA

    APHAPtHA Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,560
    Likes Received:
    396
    Thanks for the help everyone! :) Ive used swat just to try and keep the bugs away as theres no wounds on her belly... its just hairless from her rubbing it so much.... Ive looked into sweet itch but nothing else itches and that seems to mostly effects the hind quarters and they rub there tails which she doesnt do! And her neck isnt itchy or anything.... Yes she loves her belly rubbed! haha she really gets those lips going! Even when she scratches it herself she moves those lips! :p
     
  10. woman_in_shoe

    woman_in_shoe Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Messages:
    381
    Likes Received:
    52
    I also live in the Pacific Northwest and have a mini who has really suffered badly with sweetitch in the past. My vet recommended Equi-spot, a topical med applied like flea meds. It is a wonder drug! Since using it no more sweetitch!
    I asked my vet just a few days ago about neck threadworms and she told me that she has never seen signs of them in Western Washington.
     






Share This Page