Spring signals the start of sweet itch for many horses and the battle therefore begins for their owners to beat the midges before they start munching! Here are our 8 top tips for managing your sweet itch sufferer… Hello and goodbye to Sweet Itch.
Whilst feeding with the horses allergic reaction to the midges, as well as helping to promote healthy skin and accelerated healing in cuts and sores caused by the horses’ scratching, we always recommend that you should take a multi-pronged approach to tackling the condition. Using a protective rug and fly/midge spray alongside our supplement is advisable and we recommend the Snuggy Hoods Sweet Itch Anti-Itch Horse Rug & Hood for great nose to tail coverage.
Good stable management is vital. For example you could try turning your horse out during the middle of the day, rather than at night or early morning when midges are more likely to be more active, especially in fields that are marshy or near rivers or lakes (which midges love). Midges also do not fly in strong wind, heavy rain or bright, clear sunshine, so under these weather conditions your horse shouldn’t be under such strong attack.
Keeping your horse stabled at ‘high risk’ times will help keep them at bay and you could try using fly strips with citronella in the stable (making sure of course that they cannot be reached) is another option.
Often it is impossible to avoid the odd midges bite, no matter how careful you are and this is where Aloeride can help support healthy skin. Aloe vera is renown for having anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, which alongside additional anti-inflammatory qualities and a range of B vitamins (which again are known to help with allergic skin reactions) it can quickly help tackle the problem inside out.
Han van de Braak BSc LicAc MCSP MBAcC (Retd.) wrote an in-depth article about The Problem Of Sweet Itch (click to read).
N.B: This advice is general and we would always recommend that you seek your own vet’s advice concerning your horses’ well-being and management.