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TurmerItch For Horses - Sweet Itch

Have you heard of sweet itch?

It is an insect Bite Hypersensitivity, otherwise known as Sweet Itch, in the UK ("summer mange", "summer eczema" or "Queensland itch", across the world), is a chronic, recurrent, seasonal dermatitis of horses.

What causes sweet itch in horses?

Sweet itch is caused by an allergic reaction to the protein in the saliva of biting insects. This causes the immune system to attack its own cells and leads to an extreme reaction. Horses predominantly show signs of sweet itch at the base of the mane and tail, and on the face. The withers, back, belly and rump can also be affected. Clinical signs range from mild to severe itchiness, often accompanied by hair loss and broken skin from constant scratching which can then lead to an infection. Over time the skin can thicken, folds develop, and the hair becomes sparse and coarse with flaky skin. Several behavioural changes can also occur including excessive rolling and mutual grooming, head shaking and an agitated/restless demeanour. 

Is there a cure?

This hereditary condition presents typically in a horse's second or third summer and subsequently worsens with age. It can affect almost any horse or pony – regardless of type, breed and age – but research does show it is particularly prevalent in some native breeds. Sweet itch is the most common allergic skin disease in the UK and affects around five per cent of our horse population. There is no cure and treatment is aimed at preventing or reducing exposure of the horse to the biting midge and reducing the hypersensitivity reaction.

How can you manage sweet itch?

Along with all the essential management tools you can use to help manage your horse or pony’s symptoms such as a fly rug, stabling during times of high midge activity (dawn and dusk) and using various creams and sprays that are available, have you thought about helping soothe from the inside out?

TurmerItch from The Golden Paste Company is a skin and coat supplement that is absorbed into the blood stream rather than applied topically. It combines key specialist ingredients including neem, red bush tea and chamomile, to help provide relief from itching and soothe the skin by promoting a healthy skin and coat. Suitable for horses and ponies prone to laminitis, the unique pellets can be added to daily feed or simply fed by hand. The active ingredients in TurmerItch support biting insect repulsion and help maintain reduced sensitivity which was demonstrated during trials with the supplement over a 12-month period.  

Don’t just take our word for it

Sophie, whose 13.2hh Tom trialled TurmerItch said, “After just a few weeks of feeding TurmerItch the transformation was unbelievable! Tom’s itching had reduced significantly and his skin, mane and tail improved. He now has a long mane and hardly ever itches! His tail looks great too.”

TurmerItch customer, Sarah Patterson said,

“We have noticed plenty of improvements with feeding TurmerItch. Definite hair growth in areas which were bald last summer plus a more comfortable mare. Isla is not half as twitchy and uncomfortable when being groomed and when she has sweated up after work or competition.” 

Prepare for sweet itch season

Whilst TurmerItch’s specific activity is for use during the fly season, its continuing role to support skin condition, help with allergic responses and maintenance of the gut microbiome and immune system all contribute to keeping the threshold to sweet itch high, and so allows sensitive horses to enter the fly season pre-prepared. 

Get your horse ready for the sweet itch season by preparing the body with a tub of TurmerItch™.

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