Fact Sheet: Understanding Hives in Horses
The sudden appearance of multiple raised eruptions on a horse’s skin with no apparent underlying cause can be alarming for owners. That distress often leads to disappointment and frustration when owners learn many cases of hives (aka urticaria or wheals) become chronic in nature and challenging and expensive to treat.
Hives can develop on any part of the body but mainly occur on the horse’s back, flanks, neck, eyelids, and legs. In some advanced cases they might develop on the gums, nose, around the eyes (conjunctiva), rectum, and vulva. Often the hair stands up over these swellings and they become itchy, causing the horse to scratch his body and damage the skin. Horses might also become excited or restless when the lesions appear.
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