Hive And Skin Allergies

Last Updated on February 21, 2022 by Allison Price

The skin, which is the largest organ of the body, serves many important functions. The skin of horses can develop redness, itching, or hives due to exposure to different substances. These allergic reactions can occur when the horse eats, inhales or touches certain substances.

Hives (Urticaria)

Urticaria, also known as hives, is a skin condition commonly called urticaria. These skin conditions are often associated with itching and reddening of the skin.


Most commonly, hives are caused by an allergic reaction to drugs, vaccines, food, soap, leather conditioners or plants. Hives can also be caused due to heat, sun, exercise, stress, or excessive pressure on the skin.

Hive And Skin Allergies on Horses


It can be difficult to identify the source of hives. It can help to determine the cause by testing a horse’s reaction for shampoos, soaps, and tack cleansers. For horses with chronic (chronic) hives, you may need to take more drastic measures such as treating the horse for allergies, changing his environment, and testing for food allergies. Sometimes, skin testing can be used to check for allergic reactions to inhaled substances such as pollens.


Hives can be treated by treating the root cause. Hydrocortisone and dexamethasone are some of the medications that can be used to treat hives. The hives may return if the allergen isn’t eliminated.

Skin Allergies

Horses can experience allergic reactions that affect their skin and other body parts. The treatment of allergic reactions is similar to hives. It involves first identifying the cause and then treating it. To reduce allergic reactions, medications may be used. Some lotions, shampoos, and sprays may be able to relieve symptoms.

Food Allergy

Horses are not susceptible to food allergies, although some cases have been reported. Itching can occur on the skin from these allergies, and it may cause hives or mild itching. These allergies can also affect the lungs and other body parts. Most commonly, they are suspected of being caused by foods like potatoes, wheat and alfalfa. Although diet changes can improve symptoms, it is important to verify that the food was the actual cause.

Contact Allergy

Horses are not at risk for skin allergies from something touching their skin. These allergies can cause more damage than irritation to the skin. Allergens can include medication, tack equipment, bedding materials, insect repellents, and medication that is applied to the skin. Within a few days, it can cause reddening, swelling, pain, swelling, or itching. Untreated, horses may experience crusting and loss of hair.


This allergic reaction can cause severe skin and respiratory problems. This condition can be passed on from one parent to the next (inherited). Allergens that are suspected include dust, fabrics and grasses as well as molds, trees, and molds. Atopy symptoms include skin reddening, itching, and skin lesions. It doesn’t matter if the affected area is in direct contact with the allergen.


The sun (ultraviolet) exposure of horses to certain chemicals and plants is believed to cause this type of skin condition. Reddening, crustiness, or swelling of the skin are some of the symptoms. This is more noticeable in white muzzles or lower limbs.

Allison Price
Allison Price

I’m Allison, born and raised in San Diego California, the earliest memory I have with horses was at my grandfather’s farm. I used to sit at the stable as a kid and hang out with my Papa while he was training the horses. When I was invited to watch a horse riding competition, I got so fascinated with riding!