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Equine Bug Bites

Aardora helps speed healing in three ways. First, Aardora's unique moisturizers soothe itch, irritation and swelling to deter over-scratching of bug and fly bites. Second, Aardora serves as an antimicrobial dressing in order to protect raw, damaged patches from harmful germs (bacteria and fungus). Lastly, Aardora’s Active Earth Elements™ draw toxins and allergens away from your horse's skin while providing essential mineral nutrients. Guaranteed results with no reported side effects.

Common Insect Bites & Symptoms:

Unfortunately, horses are likely targets for a range of insects, flies and mosquitoes that can nest in pastures, paddocks, stalls and arenas. Although most insect bites are not serious, they can be very uncomfortable. By applying a topical (surface) cream to stop the itch and inflammation, you can manage your horse’s discomfort, and also discourage him or her from biting or over-rubbing their already-sensitive skin.

If you notice a singular swollen red bump or bite on your horse, this is most likely the work of a mosquito. More serious bites and stings (by a bee, wasp or hornet) will be hot to the touch and may be accompanied by flu-like symptoms such as fever, shivering, loss of appetite or lethargy. If your horse incurs more than one bite or sting at once and displays these symptoms, it is best to contact a veterinarian to arrange more serious pain management.

Spider bites can also cause large, swollen bumps or sores. This type of reaction occurs when the venom of a spider reacts with your horse’s skin. Fortunately, the fangs of most spiders are too weak to penetrate thick animal skin. Their "bite" will most likely just cause localized irritation and itch.

If there are a large number of bumps or knots, it is likely that your horse has stumbled into a full nest of insect, bees or hornets. More severe (allergic) reactions include swelling around the eyelids or lips and increased body temperature. Although each horse will respond differently to an insect bite, the tell-tale sign of an allergic reaction is usually a small red scab at the center of their skin bumps where the insect stung their skin.

How to Care for a Horse with An Insect Bite Reaction:

To relieve your horse’s discomfort, itch and inflammation, use a fast-acting and soothing topical cream.  A topical (surface) skin protectant, such as Aardora, will also lower your horse’s risk of infection, particularly if their skin is extremely irritated and raw. If the insect bite is particularly swollen, apply an ice pack (or bag of frozen veggies) to soothe the burn. And, of course, treat your horse with an extra dose of TLC (tender loving care) to help him or her to heal more comfortably. Give your horse extra hugs, treats, and attention.

After you’ve directly treated your horse’s skin, try to restrict their access to the wound site (if possible) by covering the affected area with bandages, using a muzzle, or placing them in an environment that has few hard surfaces to rub against. If your horse rubs or repeatedly bites these itchy areas, it can cause serious lesions, baldness and infection. So, in the first few days of treatment, monitor your horse frequently daily to make sure that the lesions are not expanding.

Throughout the healing process, try to maintain your horse’s overall health by obeying a consistent high-quality equine diet regimen and using non-irritating grooming products. Keep in mind that a horse can develop dry, dull or itchy skin in reaction to a malnourished diet, over-bathing, under-brushing or to a chemical-filled shampoo. In general, you can help reserve your horse’s natural skin moisture by not over-bathing or over-using soap; hosing down especially dirty areas is sufficient in most cases to keep their coat clean in between monthly or bi-monthly washings. It is also good to allow your horse's skin to breathe, so try not to leave sheets and blankets on their coats for long periods of time (more than a day).

Finally, keep stalls clean and dry so that bacteria, fungus and parasites don't have a place to breed. And, keep fields clean from irritating brush, stinging nettles, etc.

Trying to Prevent Insect Bites...

If you know that your horse has sensitivity to bites, measures can be taken to ward off these tiny intruders: insect-proof stables using fine-mesh screens or use ceiling-mounted fans in the stables to create a breeze so the flies find it more difficult to land. Also, only stable horses at the times of the day when flies are scarce, such as one hour before sunrise and sunset. Since flies like to breed in damp areas, try moving horses as far away from marshy pond areas, clean their water dishes regularly and maintain regular pasture drainage. Also, be careful to change wet (soiled) bedding, and discard manure. Insect repellents (available at all horse shops) can also work, but they need to be constantly reapplied.


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Aardora Veterinary Health, Ltd.
PO Box 2182
Woonsocket, RI 02895
Phone 888-327-6215 or 401-228-9802

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