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DrMelJ, Horse Veterinarian
Category: Horse Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 825
Experience:  experience in racetrack medicine and general practice; owned and ridden horses throughout life.
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My mare seems to have a sun allergy and the portions or her

Customer Question

My mare seems to have a sun allergy and the white portions or her coat and body are peeling and loosing hair. I have been told by bet to use sun block, but is there any antihistamine or something to stop it?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Horse Veterinary
Expert:  DrMelJ replied 1 year ago.

Hi there. Thanks for the question.let me see if I can help. I'm sorry to hear that your horse is having some trouble with sunburn. Often this is from ingesting a weed that causes photosensitivity. Unfortunately an antihistamine will not fix this or help the sunburn heal. Check your horses pasture for weeds that could be a problem so you don't have ongoing exposure. If your horse is just on hay, it maybe a weed baled with the hay, so you might have to purchase new hay or change out round bales.sone of the plants that commonly cause sunburn are moldy clover, St. John's Wort, buckwheat.

In the meantime, to heal the sun exposure. Gentle bathing with chlorhexadine scrub to help remove dead skin and scabs and then generously apply silver sulfadiazine cream or zinc oxide and for really irritated areas use Panalog ointment (you would get that from your vet). It will take about 4 months for the skin to heal...but if sun exposure continues, it will take longer. Some paint horses will always tend to sunburn on their face but should not be having sunburn issues on the rest of their body. For the face, use a face mask/fly mask that covers the whole face and nose. Google search should help you find one.

Expert:  DrMelJ replied 1 year ago.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions. Take care.

Expert:  DrMelJ replied 1 year ago.

Additionally, it is impossible to keep sunblock lotion on a horse or apply it enough for it to truly work. You really have to get a sunblock/fly sheet to cover the body to provide continuous protection from the sun.

Expert:  DrMelJ replied 1 year ago.

Hi there. How is your horse doing? Do you,have any further questions?