Hello! So I have a had a mare that will not stop itching her tail/backside for anything. This has been going on for months. I’ve tried wormer, cleaning her utters, moisturizing her dock with vaseline, anything you can think of! I have the vet coming out soon because I’ve finally given up. However, the vet couldn’t get out until some time next week and even then, it’s probably going to be a while before she stops itching completely. So, I was wondering if there is a way to protect the top of her tail from anymore damage while in the paddock. Right now, her “tail top” looks like an old steel wool pad. It’s all broken and little pieces sticking up everywhere. It makes me very upset because I care a lot about her hair and she currently has a trailing tail and a superrr long mane/forelock with this awful fuzzy tail top. Any tips would be appreciated! Thanks!
I have never used a tail wrap or tail guard in the paddock. I personally would never use a tail wrap. I think that would have the potential to dangerous such as get pulled too tight and cut off blood flow to tail. Tail guard might have less risk.
One suggestion for the itching is to take Ivermectin wormer and smear it in and around the anus. I had one horse that had been wormed and he had a clear fecal that was rubbing his tail. I had 2 slightly expired tubes of apple flavored ivermectin wormer so figured it was worth a try. I smeared it on the underside of the tail, in and around the anus and then repeated it about 3 weeks later. No more tail rubbing. Best guess is pinworms which don’t show on a fecal. I had read about this on COTH.
I won’t use a tail bag in the pasture, especially after seeing another boarder’s horse at the farm I was boarding at get all tangled up in the fence with it. He ended up pulling out half his tail. No one witnessed it, but we found half of his tail and half of the shredded tail bag on the fence line the next morning. There is also the potential of it getting too tight, and blood flow being cut off as Sonnysmom said.
I’m sorry I don’t have any solutions, but just wanted to second a caution on using a tail wrap in the pasture. I hope your vet can determine the cause and get her comfortable again. I have heard pinworms could be a cause.
I’ve never turned out in a tail wrap/bag. For trailering, we sometimes use the Professional’s Choice tail wrap. It’s just a neoprene piece with three velcros that goes around the top of the dock. If the horse is determined to itch, they can probably catch it on something - but it seems safer than a bag style. I worry though that to make it tight enough to stay up with scratching, it might be too tight to leave on for a full day of turnout. A few hours might be ok.
I wouldn’t wrap it. Treat for pinworms eggs, you can take clear packing tape around the anus and put it under a microscope to see if they are there. If so, smear ivermectin on the backside, deworm, and wash around the tail every few days.
If you do a hot oil treatment and keep the scruff parts moisturized on the tail feathers, they will start to smooth out and not look like a wire brush.
What have you tried? What product, what dose?
Pinworms do have some resistance to ivermectin, so double doses of pyrantel pamoate may be needed, either one time or every couple weeks until it’s cleared up.