What is Rain Rot in Horses and How to Prevent it
Rain rot, also known as Rain Scald, is a condition caused by a fungus that can cause skin irritation, crustiness, hair loss, and scaly patches in horses. It often appears on the horse’s back, neck, or hindquarters. While rain rot is not life-threatening to horses, it can be painful and uncomfortable. It is essential to know what rain rot is and how to prevent it from keeping your horse healthy and happy.
What are the Causes?
Rain rot is caused by a fungus called Dermatophilus congolensis, which thrives in moist environments like those created by wet weather or sweaty blankets left on the horse for too long. The fungus attaches itself to the hair shafts on the horse’s skin, where it multiplies quickly—if left untreated, this can spread rapidly throughout the coat, causing irritation, bald spots, and scabs.
How Can it be Treated?
Medicated shampoos designed to treat fungal infections are the best way to treat rain rot. These shampoos should be used several times over the course of several weeks until all signs of infection have been eliminated. Additionally, it would be best to use an antifungal cream or ointment, such as Fungus Fighter spray or Heal, on any affected areas, which will help speed up the healing process. If you notice any open sores or wounds resulting from rain rot, consult with your vet about further treatment options, such as antibiotics or other medications.
Rain rot can be a painful experience for horses, but thankfully, there are steps you can take to prevent it from occurring in the first place! Ensure your horse has plenty of shelter from wet weather such as rain or snow; remove sweaty blankets immediately after exercise; regularly groom your horse using medicated shampoos. Use Fungus Fighter and Heel at the first sign of a problem. Inspect their coat often for any signs of infection, and consult your vet if necessary. By following these prevention tips, you will help ensure that your horse stays healthy and happy!