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Scottie’s Manky Armpit!

Scottie wearing his fly rug to protect is manky armpit

Roughly this time last year Scottie had a really manky ear. His ear was blistered and weepy and just disgusting! We think it was an allergic reaction to an insect bite or sting and it eventually cleared up with the help of bute, antihistamines and using a fly mask. Earlier this week it seems whatever bit/stung him last year, struck again!

I’m unsure if it happened in the stable overnight Tuesday, or in the field Tuesday/Wednesday. I work in London Tuesdays, so I don’t get Scottie in. But he seemed happy when I fed him later that evening. Wednesday morning he was a little bit quiet going out, but not enough for me to be too concerned. He just didn’t drag me out to the field and didn’t gallop off to the bottom once he had his headcollar off! I poo picked around him and he looked comfortable enough moving round the field. But in hindsight, I think the reaction might have already started.

Scottie in the field
I wonder if there is already a little bit of swelling appearing in this photo…

Wednesday afternoon he was very slow walking in and I could tell he was slightly lame. He was taking short strides in one front leg and was very heavy footed in the other. I instantly worried about laminitis as horses all around us are developing it at the moment after some crazy grass growth last month!

*There are some manky images coming up*

Once we got to the yard I tied him up to have a proper look at him and I quickly found the problem. His armpit was swollen, weepy, crusty and very sore! It almost looked like a burn! At first I wondered if he had got tangled up in the electric tape, as he is a bit of an escape artist. But the fencing was all intact. After a good hose and a clean, I couldn’t see a wound anywhere. It was just sore, weepy skin. I was really reminded of his ear last year. It seemed to be the same thing. I didn’t feel like it needed and out of hours vet there and then. So I gave him some bute and some antihistamines and decided to see what it looked like in the morning.

Scottie's manky armpit
This photo doesn’t show just how swollen it was, but looks very sore.

It looked less crusty and weeping in the morning, but still swollen. But I sort of expected that after standing in the stable all night. After another clean, I popped his fly rug on to try and protect it as much as possible from the flies and turned him out. Luckily it’s been a bit cooler and breezy the past few days so flies have been less of a problem! I also sent some my photos to my vet and they weren’t too concerned about it just yet.

After being out all day it looked a lot better! Less swollen and less gunky. I gave it another clean and was happy with how much it had improved since the morning. It looked even better again this morning too. I didn’t bother giving it a deep clean, just hosed it off to get rid of the bedding stucky to the last remaining crusty bits. I want to be careful not to irritate the already sore skin by over cleaning. He was even comfortable enough to canter off down the field after being turned out!

Scottie's manky armpit
Last night it looked a lot better after a clean.

I am going to keep cleaning it daily as I’m a bit worried about the crustiness irritating the skin as he moves around, but I’m going to try and stick to once a day now. But I am happy with how it is looking. Hopefully it won’t take too long for the skin to heal up as I am quite paranoid about the grass at the moment and I would like to keep him working where possible! Fingers crossed we are past the worst of it now.

Last Updated on 02/06/2023

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