Greasy Heel

WHAT IS GREASY HEEL?

Greasy heel (sometimes referred to as mud fever) is a skin condition correctly known as pastern dermatitis.  It can be caused by a variety of bacteria, which thrive in muddy, wet conditions.  It can also be brought on by compromised immune systems and humid conditions when mycotoxins are present in grazing grasses. 

Best Choice

our SOLUTIONS for GREASY HEEL management

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What steps should I take to help my horse?

REMOVE THE CAUSE.

As with all conditions of the horse, removing the cause if known will set you on the fast track to success to heal.   If you have a dry lot available for the horse, it is preferred to keep them locked away from wet or moist paddock conditions whilst you implement your management plan.  

Mycotoxins in the pasture (common cuplrits are: Paspalum, Rye and Clover) cause photosensitivity which outwardly presents as Greasy heel and the "sunburnt" crusty nose.

WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE?

Broken skin, scabs, crusty lumps, raised hair with a lump underneath in the skin, redness, and sometimes open weeping sores.

IS IT PAINFUL FOR THE HORSE?

Yes, the areas affected by Greasy Heel will now be very sensitive to the horse so you will need to use caution when working on the area as the horse is likely to be uncomfortable with you working on the scabs and sores in this area.

WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP MY HORSE?

Nutritional

Ensure your horse is consuming a quality mineral mix based on the nutritional deficiencies in the rest of the diet.  Mineral mixes high in Copper and Zinc are a must.   You can also purchase a basic mix of Copper and Zinc which will provide a good basic mineral boost.

If Greasy heel has been brought on by Mycotoxins in the grasses present, then adding MYCOSORB A+ toxin binder.  Its is fed daily, usually part of the hard feed and at a feed rate  guide of 2g per 100kg (so approx 10g for a 500kg horse)

Topical

 Hoof Spray with Kunzea Oil can help with cleansing and knocking off some of the topical bacteria.  It will also help to soften the scabs prior to the topical application of Zinc Putty.   Zinc Putty is a very thick cream and will last for several days on the application site, although you may want to top it up daily if you are dealing with a large area.  It has a high Zinc content, is based in Beeswax and also includes Neem and Kunzea oils along with Vitamin E and other essential oils essential for healing greasy heel.

Please don't ignore Greasy heel, rainscald or scabby sunburnt look on noses.  The management we suggest above is suitable for all 3 conditions and can be dealt with swiftly before it becomes extremely painful for the horse.

As always, our advice is never intended to replace Veterinary advice and if you are concerned about any condition with your horse, they should be your first point of call.