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 Post subject: Sweet itch
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:53 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:24 pm
Posts: 1132
Location: Southampton, UK
The pony we share our field with (Leggie) has sweet itch. He won't wear a rug and over the past year his mum has been trying without much luck to find a suppliment or remedy to ease his suffering and stop him itching.

I was wondering if any of you guys know of anything that can help him. I have hear that feeding brewer's yeast can be beneficial to horses with sweet itch as it releases something through the skin that repels the midges.....but can't find out a huge amount of info on this. Has anyone here tried it and if so did it work?

Any helpful hints and tips would be welcome to make his life easier next year.

Thanks you!! :D

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 10:51 am 
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Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 7:51 pm
Posts: 2055
Location: Netherlands
I tried yeast with Blacky years ago too, but it didn't work for us.

Now however we seem to have found a cure in magnesium supplements. I've just created a topic on that in this subforum, where you can find the experiences of others with it too.

I hope it works for you as well as it does for Blacky! He has been with a sweet itch blanket from februari to november for years, and now after feeding www.equilin.nl (but you can also try another form of magnesium oxide/chelate) for almost a month he has been standing without blanket, without itching for three weeks.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 10:54 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:18 pm
Posts: 103
Location: uk
Hi, I have two horses with sweetitch and for the first time this year have found a successful solution having tried many things. Last year I used a rug for my andalusian but he hated it. So this year no rugs. They all live out 24/7.
I feed them Skratch from global herbs. They also have linseed in the feed as the omegas help the skin. Then I use neem oil topically on root of tail, crest, tummy and neck, at first every day and then every couple of days.
The scratch powder has to be built up very very slowly otherwise they wont touch it. Its best to start before the sweetitch kicks in at the very beginning of the season.
There are many products with Neem in but I use the pure oil. It is disgusting but works. I did find with one of them that at times he didnt want me to put it on. I think as it is an oil, then maybe it was causing him problems in the hot sun. Global Herbs also do a cream called stop itch and when he was like that I used the cream instead.
It sounds a hassle but once you get into the routine its ok and for me it has really worked. I tried everything I could think of before (bar chemicals) and this is the first year my andalusian has had a mane (the friesian also who I didnt have last summer, but came to me with no mane and a boett).
Hope that helps, and Ill be happy to answer any questions you have but am away for a few days so will reply when I get back.
All the best
Colette


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 10:59 am 
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Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:44 pm
Posts: 1937
Location: The Hague, Netherlands
I found that with every horse another thing is the trigger for sweet itch. With my Evita it is grass and normal horse food. She won't itch when I keep her off the grass and only feed hay and special food called "subli semit" and indeed a vitamin powder also containing magnesium. I have Evita on the grass however now because her itch is not as bad that she would scratch herself open and she enjoys the grass so much. Also with vaccinations or deworming I make sure I don't do this in the sweet itch season, this increases Evita's itching.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 11:00 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:24 pm
Posts: 1132
Location: Southampton, UK
Thanks for the advice. Miriam...I feed both my girls magnesium oxide and they don't seem to suffer too much with regards to the midges...maybe it's helping them without me realising it?? I'll let my friend know, thanks.

Colette....neem oil is great. I did mention it to my friend and said to maybe rub it in to the worst affected areas (I used it round tegan's eyes this year when flies were really bothering her and it seemed to work well) like you say it smells bad but it is an oil (which apparently midges don't like) and soothing for irriated skin....so yeah...will mention that to her again for sure!!

Bianca...interesting that maybe certain feeds could set this off....I think in this case it's definately midge bites that cause his problem but I will metions the food aspect just in case.

I have been reading that midges don't like vit B (which is why the brewers yeast is supposed to work) but marmite has yeast extract in it and many people have said that a marmite sandwich a day works wonders...anyone tried that?

Thansk for all your help. Will let my friend know what you guys have mentioned. :D

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 11:23 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2008 3:13 am
Posts: 44
Location: Australia
I have a shetland/welsh black pony mare called Laya who used to itch really badly. Each morning I have been feeding her brewers yeast (about a heaped teaspoon) as well as powdered rosehips and a big handful of saltbush. I don't know much about saltbush except that is high in minerals and natural salt and it supposed to help itch. It tastes really weird (yes I taste all my horse feed) and when I carry a large bag home in my car, it smells a bit little cat pee. I don't know if Australian saltbush is any different from any other country's saltbush.

Another thing to be aware of is copper. If your soil is copper deficient (black horses sort of brown out on copper deficient soils) horses tend to itch more. You could try adding a small pinch of copper sulphate to their feed. Be careful not to add too much because when wet it becomes sulphuric acid.

You could also try a salt lick which has copper in it but make sure that it isn't one for cattle as it will have urea in it which is bad for horses. Also try to get one without too much molasses in it. Of course they love molasses but it is too much sugar and bad for feet, skin etc in excess.

Psychologically, there could also be something going on for itchy horses. Are they happy in their situation? with their herd? Ask them.

Laya still itches but less badly now. She itches more when she is bottom of the pecking order in one herd than when she is top of the order in the other.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:40 pm
Posts: 4733
Location: Belgium
We have a herb mix that helps a lot of horses.
The herb mix:

1. cleans the body from harmful substances
2. reduces pain (itch is also a form of pain)
3. heals and prevents internal infections
4. reduces stress

I also advice to watch the horse food your giving.
is it filled with chemicals?
It must be a 100% natural not to undermine the liver which I see as the sorce for the sweet itch problem.

Also your field and grass needs to be natural (no chemical manure etc.)

And no chemical products on the body (petroleum based washing product or fabric softener, regular shampoos, detangler with silicone, body shine sprays etc.) All these harmful chemicals leeks into the blood and is a burdon on the liver.

Stress and or an infection or poisening in the childhood can also be the start of the problem.

The skin showes a reflection of the inside of the body.

For example: children with asthma get skin problems after the asthma is under control by chemical medication.
The problem however is not solved...

Warm regards,

Josepha

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 6:43 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 7:38 pm
Posts: 701
Location: UK
andi wrote:

Psychologically, there could also be something going on for itchy horses. Are they happy in their situation? with their herd? Ask them.

Laya still itches but less badly now. She itches more when she is bottom of the pecking order in one herd than when she is top of the order in the other.


That is a good point Andi, my Irish DraughtX gelding is what I would call a highly sensitive horse. He suffers from sweet itch, dust allergy and suffered a mild attack of laminitis. Sometimes he breaks out in hives he has very sensitive skin ( he is palomino )and a very sensitive nature, easily upset and becomes over aroused and stressed. During times of stress he develops a cough and the sweet itch bothers him more,

He is 19 years now and over the years I have used lots of different remedies for him. In his case herbs and food additives did not help, neam oil painted on his mane and tail daily was a great help.

For the past couple of years he has worn a Boett rug and that really worked for him. However this year Gouch has shredded the rug all in the name of play. At the moment I am dabbing oil of eucalyptus on his mane and tail and that seems to be working.

Eileen

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 6:49 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 17, 2007 11:57 am
Posts: 1983
Location: provincie Utrecht
i have had a SE horse and give him Okozon
a biologic substanse from herbs and so on.
A lot of work but it had help him very much.
in the morning some cookies and luiquid stuff that in the evening too and put some cream and so over him mane and tail.
I had to start before the SE season (febr.)started and give him until november the treatment.
I will search some pics of him with and witout blanked.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 9:10 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:18 pm
Posts: 103
Location: uk
I tried the marmite sandwich and got exactly the same reaction as the pigeon in the marmite advert that we have on tv here in the UK :lol: :lol:
Colette


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 12:12 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:24 pm
Posts: 1132
Location: Southampton, UK
hehe...I love those Paddington marmite adverts....makes me chuckle for some reason!! Bo will sell her soul for a marmite sandwich...she loves them!! But Tegan hates bread so can't even try with her.

My friend did water down marmite and used it to dampen down her pony's feed the other night and he seemed to like it that way so she's gonna try that each day over the winter and see if it helps at all when the spring arrives. Have also passed on all the info from you guys to her! thank you!! :D

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 Post subject: Sweet itch and blankets
PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 10:08 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:19 am
Posts: 72
Location: Rhode Island
Edit by Romy: This topic was split from the AND video thread. Please continue discussing sweet itch over here.

What is the little black mini wearing? It looks like a suit of armour and he's going off to battle...is it fly protection? Why doesn't the other one have it on?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 10:20 pm 
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Location: Dresden, Germany
scarlet wrote:
What is the little black mini wearing? It looks like a suit of armour and he's going off to battle...is it fly protection? Why doesn't the other one have it on?


As Miriam is not here at the moment, I am answering for her: Blacky is wearing a blanket against the flies which cause him to itch during the summer. If a horse with severe sweet itch does not wear a blanket (in case the itch is triggered by the flies), he rubs off his mane and tail and often ends up with open wounds. The blanket keeps away the flies, the horses don't itch and in that way their overall life quality is improved a lot.

Sjors does not wear a blanket because he does not have the sweet itch. :smile:


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 11:35 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:19 am
Posts: 72
Location: Rhode Island
Thanks Romy, I was asking because my pony has terrible sweet itch and did in fact loose his mane last summer and I'm looking at ways to help for next season. Is this a special type of fly protection? Or is one just as good as any other? He's not great about wearing winter jackets without pulling at them w/ his teeth but he will have to have something to help him this year. Last summer, not only did he rub his mane off but his entire belly was a mess of cuts/itchy bites. I tried medication but it didn't help.
Please, if you know of specific remedies or the name of special sheets, let me know! Thanks!! Carla


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 11:45 pm 
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scarlet wrote:
Please, if you know of specific remedies or the name of special sheets, let me know!

This one is said to be great... unfortunately they don't have the site in English, but they ship to other countries (last year I ordered some of them for Sue in Taiwan). If you want one and don't get along with the German, I could order one for you. :smile:


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