Thrush does have a dark side, we have all seen it as we pick out our horses feet, black and smelly, keratolytic bacteria quietly eating into our beautiful horses frogs.
So when should we be worried, what is it, how can we address it and prevent it from invading healthy tissue.
The jury is still out on this with little data and supporting evidence, however Fusobacterium Necrophorum is reportedly the most commonly isolated organism that is responsible for thrush and canker but still the processes are not clear or well understood.
So with this in mind what makes sense is to remove the culprit from our horses environment. Not easy when this organism is part of the the fecal flora of horses and cattle, and it can survive in soils for months and lets face it, they are both good at depositing the little critters just about everywhere.
Thrush is an anaerobic bacteria that does not get on with open air, clean environments and tissue friendly antimicrobial and antifungal topical applications. Bring back the smile in your horses frog, here are some tips.
Clean and disinfect where your horses spend their time standing, if its a pooey muddy gateway then throw down some hardcore.
Address your horses feet whether shod or barefoot, are they in balance, this matters, sheared heels provide a great skinny crack that's hard to clean...yummy for thrush.
Do you pick out your horses feet prior to stabling overnight? If so, think about packing your horses feet with Hoof Clay, this will form a barrier overnight and protect from squidgy bacteria laden poo in the central sulcus and collateral grooves. Protect.
If you want to get a head-start try a Milton solution soak 1 cap (30ml) to 5 litres of water for a weekly soak.
This regime is simple and effective but you gotta keep it up, these pesky organisms are opportunists just waiting for the right conditions
Diet and exercise equally important, suitable high fibre diet and lots of movement for good circulation that's delivers nutrients to the hoof.
As always seek veterinarian advise if in doubt about your horses hooves and health.
Share your stories and tips with fellow horse lovers and guardians of our Equine Beauties or just post a comment.