Preventing Sweet Itch
Reduce the risk of exposure to Flies and midges by practicing good stable management.
Remember to remove horse droppings and any rotting vegetation and straw as both of these things attract insects.
Keep your horse clean as sweat and dirt will attract all manner of bugs and mites.
Sweet itch rugs, blankets and hoods all help to protect your horse from these pesky insects. They offer good coverage as they are specifically designed to stop bugs penetrating and getting onto your horse.
It’s a good idea to have more than one rug so that whilst one is is the wash you have another on stand by.
Before using a repellent or insecticide it is advisable to do a patch test.
Sweet Itch can be aggravated by high sugar foods such as sweet treats and sweet feeds. If your horse is suffering from sweet itch it may be advisable to avoid these sugary foods.
Sweet Itch Prevention
The best for way forward is to prevent the sweet itch in the first place – Sweet Itch is caused by an allergic reaction to the bites of the Culicoides midge and, to a slightly lesser extent, Simulium Equinum. At present there is no actual cure for Sweet Itch. Once a horse develops the allergy it is generally affected every spring, summer and autumn. There are two different approaches to improving the comfort of an affected animal: to minimize any allergic reaction with corticosteroids, anti-histamines or soothing lotions or to minimise midge attack using our sweet itch “body”©. The latter offers the most effective protection and avoids the need to use chemicals, repellents, oils or greases.