We’re having a dry autumn so far, thankfully, and the mud at my yard has barely got going, but I am already ‘on it’ as far as Mud Fever is concerned, aiming to totally avert it this year for my horses’ sakes.
Last year, my first on clay for 17 years (my previous two yards were on mercifully clay-free soil) brought back all the almost-forgotten horrors of scabby, swollen legs and sore, grumpy horses.
Last winter I tried just about every product on the market, trying to clear it up. One of my mares in particular is very suspectible to cellulitis and spent literally months stabled at night and turned out on a small all-weather pen every day to avoid any mud, as her legs had swollen up alarmingly at the first sign of scabs.
Having tried the rest, with various degrees of success and annoyance, I concluded that the Equimins range is definitely the best.
If there’s one product I absolutely couldn’t do without, it’s their Winter Leg Scrub. It’s an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial wash. A little goes a really long way, and you leave it on, no need to rinse. I ended up with a dedicated bucket and sponges just for this, quickly doing 3 horses’ legs with it every evening. When it’s going to freeze hard overnight and the last thing you want to do is to shampoo and rinse horses’ legs with loads of water (and risk having a potentially lethal skating rink of a yard the next morning), it’s a total godsend.
Dilute it (I always used warm/hot water), work it in well all over the horse’s lower legs with a sponge, done.
I’ve already bought a couple of big bottles of it ready for this winter – it’s available in 500g and 1 litre sizes. It really seems to get under the scabs (especially if used with hot water) and because it’s left on I was very happy that it kept doing its stuff when the horse was put in the stable for the night. I watched carefully (okay, paranoid-ly… is that even a word?) for any signs of a reaction, but there were none. A top product.
As a general preventative, Equimins Mud Slide Lotion is pig oil and sulphur, and stops the mud from sticking. This, slathered on every morning before turnout, did a fantastic job. It meant that the legs were pretty much clean when I brought the horses in, and they usually only needed a quick wipe-off before I used the Leg Scrub.
To help any scabs and nicks heal up as fast as possible, I used Equimins Mud Block Cream (especially on heels, feltlocks, really scuzzy looking bits) and/or Lotion (good for coating the whole lower leg quickly). They contain lots of goodies such as tea tree oil, colloidal silver, cetrimide (an antiseptic), zinc, and MSM, and made a big difference to getting the legs healed up fast and the horses back out again where they are happiest. These products really do get results. Definitely recommended!