Has your horse got itchy skin?
As the weather improves and pollen levels, as well as insect numbers increase, allergic skin disease is seen more frequently. Horses with allergic skin disease can present with itchiness or hives or both itchiness and hives together.
Sometimes it is easy to identify the trigger but more often than not, the cause is not easy to identify, and management of these horses can be incredibly frustrating with flare-ups common.
Management amendments can be made and the response to these changes monitored but in recurrent cases that we are struggling to control, skin tests (IDAT- intra-dermal allergen testing) can be performed to identify allergens which may be contributing to allergic skin disease. Skin testing remains the ‘gold standard’ diagnostic test for horses with allergic skin disease at this time.
Intra-dermal allergen testing
We are fortunate to be able to offer this service to our patients at Oakhill. Small blebs of common allergens are injected intra-dermally and the response to the allergens is checked 30 minutes, 4 hours and 24 hours following injection.
We subsequently provide our clients with a full written report detailing changes in management which may assist in managing these patients based on the results of the individual patient’s skin tests. De-sensitising vaccinations can also be formulated based on results of the skin tests to further assist in the management of these cases.
If you have any questions regarding allergic skin disease or the diagnosis and management of, please do not hesitate to contact the team.