Kentucky Equestrian Articles


Rain Rot: Myth vs. Fact

Submitted by: Danielle Aamodt
Phone: 267-972-1491
Email Address: danielleaamodt(at)gmail
Date Added: 2/28/2015

MYTHS about Rain Rot:

1) Rain rot is caused by a fungus. Not so!
Rain rot is actually caused by a bacteria called Dermatophilus congolensis. Don't waste your antifungal products trying to treat it.

2) Rain rot will only manifest on the neck & back. Wrong!
While rain rot is most commonly found along the topline, it can also be found on the legs or belly -especially in moist climates.

3) Washing your horse daily with strong soap will prevent rain rot. Not necessarily.
While keeping clean is generally ideal, you also don't want to strip their coat of its natural oils which protect the skin. The bacteria that causes rain rot will only penetrate exposed or weakened areas in their natural skin barrier.

FACTS about Rain Rot:

1) It is necessary to treat rain rot. If left untreated, it can develop into a secondary infection.

2) If problems persist, a recommended method for treating rain rot is to wash the infected areas with a shampoo containing a keratolytic agent, such as benzoyl peroxide. Discuss this option with your Veterinarian.

3) By correcting the environmental factors which are allowing the rain rot to fester, it should recover within 10 days. Most importantly, keep your horse DRY.