Unlimited access >

How to tackle scratches?

You may be fighting Ecology.
My horse was given to me by a friend with pasture-kept horses, with the caveat that he was prone to scratches.
She also gave me some Majik cream her vet made up, didn’t know ingredients & said it was pricy.
Horse definitely had a minor case of scratches when I got him in late Summer.
I used her cream, but when it got low, got an alternative from this BB:
Equal parts triple ABX, athlete’s foot cream & diaper rash ointment - all from Dollar Tree.
Worked just as well as her Speshul stuff.
My 2¢ says something in her soil didn’t exist in mine & that made the biggest difference.
8yrs later he remains free of scratches, though turned out 24/7 in my Now-Needs-Bushhogging pastures.

1 Like

I think he is beautiful!

Too bad they don’t make a protective turn out boot that would keep the medicine undisturbed but keep his feet and lower legs dry?

1 Like

Silver Socks with fly boots over them works well.

1 Like

I hadn’t heard of these before. They do look neat. Do you know if they’d get wet in the morning dew, by chance? Or are they water resistant? I havent been able to find much information on them.

We are having a long term problem with scratches in our barn. Its an old horse property and our feeling is that its probably in the soil, and white socked horses have proved very vulnerable.

I did wonder whether it was something in the hay causing photosensitivity, but it isn’t consistently from the same supplier, so I think thats a dead end.

We’ve tried a whole range of different potions with mixed success, depending on the horse. I tried supplementing with zinc and copper with no success.

These are all well cared for (some might say micromanaged) horses on an assortment of custom diets.

At the moment, my horse is clear. Unlike some of the others his all cleared up once the weather improved and the ground dried up. But winter is coming… I’m going to try to get ahead of it somehow this year. Pre-emptive application of desitin and fungisol, I’m guessing. But who knows.

Desitin is such an easy cover up while you boost immunity and go after the source of your problem. Just this morning I wiped a bit on the back of my guy’s RF fetlock. The only spot on his body that has an issue. I’ve got copper and zinc at optimal levels - I did the calcs and test my hay and add it all up.

I suspect systemic inflammation and working on that.

The dew in the grass until noon doesn’t help.

For cheap you can keep the problem at bay until you solve the bigger picture.


I’ve stopped messing with it. My mare always gets a dime sized patch of it on her hinds. I catch it quickly, and just slather the crap out of it with desitin while it’s present. No picking, nothing else. It tends to get better but never gets worse, and does heal eventually. Early catching is the key.

She gets poly copper, poly zinc, selenium, and E supplementation.

1 Like

Well, the reason I get paranoid is my last horse would blow up with cellulitis if I didnt stay on top of it. I do put Desitin on it. Yesterday I started the Desitin, athletes foot creat, hydrocortisone, and triple antibiotic mixture. The Equiderma skin lotion feels nice, but IMO is too liquidy to stay put.


The Equiderma lotion made my horse really sore. And just a small patch wouldn’t worry me, but the stuff we’ve been getting is aggressively nasty.

1 Like

Yeah, so does my “normal” level of cu/zn supplementation, but I have certain horses do better with more, especially in late summer. I don’t know why, but truly there’s so much about nutrition we don’t know that I’m okay just rolling with it.

I am curious about the role of the microbiome and wonder if that’s why two very similar horses in size/weight/housing/diet can need pretty drastically different levels of supplementation. But we’re just beginning to crack into that.


Yes, and thanks to your recent post I did boost my cu/zn a tad bit and curious to see if our skin issue goes away. Wanted to do the calc to see where I was before that. I’ll post back later those numbers - they are at home.

do you have the totals? Just because they’re at 100:400:400 cu:zn:mn or even a bit more (1100lb horse give or take) doesn’t mean they might not need 2-3x that much just because of how Fe might be

SO appreciate your insight. I’m an amateur and would love eyeballs on my numbers.

2023PaddockWoodHay.xls (89 KB)

Can you open the xls file? If not I’ll upload as a pdf.

I need to add in feeding 1 lb of alfalfa pellets. That was next and was going to MadBarn to get those details.

how much does the horse weigh, and how many pounds of this does he eat?

An 1100lb horse eating 22lb would get only 66mg of copper (needs 100) and 154gm zinc (needs 400).

As is very common, there’s plenty of iron, and plenty of manganese

I can’t open an xls, sorry!

Look up Silver Whinnys

1 Like

You are SO good to me. Here it is as a pdf - how you open that?
He’s 1000 lbs and I have 18 lbs loaded… 2023FeedAnalysis.pdf (314.2 KB)

yep that works!

So the current cu:zn ratio is basically 1:3 which is fine. You forgot to add in the 200mg of Mn from the KIS Trace, so that total is basically 593 which is fine

I definitely wouldn’t add more cu or zn here.

1 Like

Thank you!!! It means so much!!! :heartbeat: :heartbeat: :heartbeat:

1 Like

This seems so odd, are you serious? Tell me more about this. I don’t eat sauerkraut, so I’m not sure what you mean by “pulp” - do you mean the cabbage?

1 Like