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Summer eczema in horses

June 13, 2023

Summer eczema, also called tail and mane eczema (SME), is a nasty condition that affects many horses during the warm months. It is caused by an allergic reaction to the bites of the Culicoïdes Robertii mosquito, also known as the midge. These are small mosquitoes that are especially active at dusk. The horses get itchy and scrub, which can lead to bald patches, wounds and infections.

In this article, we share some practical tips and explain how you can support your horse's immune system with the right nutrition, making your horse or pony less susceptible to the midge bites.

Increasing your horse's resistance with the right nutrition

Omega 3 fatty acids, biotin and zinc are important substances that keep your horse's skin and coat healthy and strong. Thus, you can increase your horse's resistance to the midges and reduce the inflammatory reaction. In our assortment we have a number of suitable products that you can use for this purpose:

  • Subli Biotin Mix is a powdered dietary supplement to support hoof, coat and skin health.
  • Subli Omega 369 Mix is a flour-shaped energy supplement with a very high content of vegetable oils. It is high in omega 3 fatty acids, which can have an anti-inflammatory effect, reducing itching and allergy.
  • It is important not to overload your horse with too much concentrate feed, as the body is already stressed when an allergic reaction occurs. Choose a feed product that is low in sugar and starch. The Subli Diet Mix is a granola without grains, grain by-products and molasses. As a result, sugar and starch levels are extremely low.

Practical tips to reduce itching

In addition to scrutinizing your horse or pony's ration, there are several measures you can take to prevent itching as much as possible:

  • Protect your horse or pony from midges with an eczema blanket.
  • Coat your horse or pony with insect repellent. Be sure to repeat this regularly, as it can evaporate or wash off quickly.
  • Gnats are most active around dusk. So try to keep your horse or pony indoors around sunrise and sunset.
  • Put your horse or pony in a pasture where there is a lot of wind. In the wind, midges are less able to fly. It is also advisable to make sure there is no standing water nearby.

Want to learn more about which horse feed is right for your horse or pony with summer eczema? Ask tailored feeding advice to our website or ask your questions directly to our customer service team at We would love to help you and your horse get through the summer months comfortably.