This month we review two products from the NETTEX Mud Control Range to help you out should you horse suffer with mud fever.
Mud fever can strike at any time of the year, but is mostly found during the colder, wetter, winter months. Having products you know can help prevent the problem will help set you and your horse up for a happy healthy winter. Creating a barrier against the elements will mean your horse can be turned out more frequently (when available), will prevent suffering, and of course will save you time on treatment, which would be better spent in the saddle.
But, what products are suitable to prevent mud fever? Aside from our article here, we trialled the NETTEX Mud Control range to see if products do what they say on the label.
Note: please conduct a patch test on the horse 48 hours before application, this should be done when using any new product on a horse. Especially those prone to skin conditions.
Our review process includes testing on our own horses, that may differ in type, age and condition to your own. Our review offers no product guarantees. Each item was gifted from the manufacturer.
NETTEX Traditional Pig Oil
Used for many years as a reliable product to combat and prevent skin conditions during the winter, NETTEX Traditional Pig Oil, acts as a waterproof barrier on the horse’s legs to help protect from unwanted conditions such as Mud Fever.
We tested the product on a selection of horses, a Thoroughbred with no feather, a Warmblood cross with medium feather and a heavy weight cob with substantial feather.
We applied the product on a sponge with the Thoroughbred and Warmblood cross. A little went a long way, and without much use each leg was sufficiently covered with the product. There’s no particular smell and there didn’t need to be a great deal of rubbing in to get the even coverage. Over the following days, when the horses were collected from an already muddy gate, the lower leg areas held a reduced amount of mud. Once dried the mud was groomed away easily. Skin wasn’t inflamed, sore to the touch or damaged during the review process.
- Plenty of Product for your Money – The NETTEX Pig Oil comes in a 2 litre tub and retails at around £16.00, which we found useful especially when applying to a variety of horses as the product goes a long way while offering excellent value for money (a bonus in the current UK financial climate)
- Easy to Apply – As mentioned above, a little goes a long way. The product can be applied using a hand, sponge or brush and is easily worked into heavier feathers to provide a consistent waterproof coating.
- Versatile – pig oil can be used on the sole of the hoof to help prevent snow blocks from forming, or a little can be added to the mane and tail to keep it tangle and mud free
- Messy – It can get a little messy, and slippy so be careful during application
- Product build up – be careful not to apply to much, and be sure to keep on top of product build up by thoroughly washing the feathers periodically. Products such as acti-scrub or hibi-scrub are an excellent way of removing this product without damaging the integrity of the skin
- Slippy – Boots may slip down the legs, and don’t apply around the girth area as may cause the girth and saddle to slip
For the horse with substantial feather, the product was gently massaged through the hair with ease. As the oil has natural properties to detangle, we found it easier to run through with our hands. More product was needed, however when brought back in from the field the next day the feathers were easier to brush through and the hair closer to the skin was noticeably dryer.
The oil should be applied to the legs a couple of times a week at least, be careful not to overdo as a residue may build up.
Wash and dry legs thoroughly, this is best done with an antibacterial wash, such as Robinson Animal Healthcares ….., and dry with a clean towel.
Apply NETTEX Traditional Pig Oil with a clean sponge to the back of the pastern and around the coronet area. Use any residue to wipe down the horse’s legs. For horses with feathers, rub the product into hands and comb through feathers from skin to end.
Avoid use on sore or irratated skin, at this point an antiseptic barrier cream could be used if turnout is necessary.
The product information states:
- May help tackle mites
- Detangles manes and tails
- Can help prevent grass stains
- Provides lusturious shine for showing
NETTEX 7 Day Mud Away
Included in this tried and tested was the NETTEX 7 Day Mud Away. Designed to be used once a week, this is another product in the NETTEX Mud Control range.
A slightly different product to the NETTEX Pig Oil, the Seven Day Mud Away is designed to be used on the horses coat, rather than just on the legs, mane or tail.
Although this product is different, it complements the benefits of the pig oil by providing the horse with an upper body relief from thick mud. The product is ideal for use on the neck, especially if exposed and not covered.
- Helps prevent build up on exposed areas – Should you horse be turned out without a rug, or at least neck cover, this spray makes mud removal easier from the coat as it helps prevent build up throughout the week.
- Compliments the pig oil – Ideal to use from the knee up, all over the horse
- Two sizes available – A smaller option is available to purchase which offers a trial before purchasing the larger sized bottle
Area application – We didn’t trial the product around the girth or bridle path area incase it slipped.
- Application times – We did use the product a over a few days a week for optimum results
- Saturation – Shake the bottle well before use to mix the product, be careful not to hold too close to the skin so it saturates and distributes unevenly
Easy to apply to the horses heals and legs, the spray bottle distributes the product evenly creating a seal to the hair helping mud fall away easier when dried and brushed off. Product build up was minimal, and it is washed away easily with normal shampoo. The product was effective in helping the mud come away from the horse’s coat during the review process.
Shake bottle thoroughly before use to mix settled ingredients before application. Hold approximately 6 inches away and move the spray around quickly during application. Be careful around the horses head, and sensitive areas. Can be used all year round.
For a full range of Mud Control products from NETTEX please visit the Mud Control category on the NETTEX website www.nettexequine.com/range/mud-control/
Remember: When using mud guard/repellent products to still monitor the horse’s legs on a daily basis for sores, inflamed skin, scabs and cuts, as these are all points of entry for bacteria.