الإثنين 22 يوليو 2024

How to Prevent and Treat Mud Fever

موقع أيام نيوز

Mud fever, also known as scratches, pastern dermatitis, and greasy heel, is a common equine skin disease affecting the lower limbs, particularly the back of the pasterns and the bulbs of the heels. The ailment is most prevalent during autumn, winter, and early spring when horses are more likely to spend prolonged periods of time standing in wet, muddy conditions where the bacteria and fungi that cause mud fever thrive.

Normally, the skin acts as a protective barrier against such harmful microorganisms, but increased exposure to moisture can compromise the skin’s integrity until a point of entry becomes available by means of an abrasion or other skin damage. Horses with white legs or pink skin may be more prone to developing mud fever, as are those with particularly hairy feathers that trap moisture and dirt against the skin. 

Symptoms

Skin lesions, exuding fluids which dry to form scabs, are the most characteristic symptom of mud fever. These painful, crusty sores can be accompanied by mild inflammation. Severe cases of mud fever may present with the additional symptoms of extreme swelling and heat in the affected leg, severe skin sloughing, and lameness, and in these cases a veterinarian should be consulted.

Treatment

Successful treatment of mud fever begins with moving the horse to a clean, dry environment. Then the following steps should be taken:

  1. Carefully clip the hair away from the affected area to make cleaning easier