I was listening to a Horse Radio Network show, The Stable Scoop, and one of the hosts mentioned that she needed to use sheepskin only next to her horse’s back because of collagen bumps. Something clicked and I thought “maybe that’s what Farley has????”
Starting at Wild West (a late May endurance ride), I noticed little bumps on Farley’s back after the ride. They appeared right after the ride concluded, didn’t seem particularly painful, and were gone within a couple of days.
They reappeared several times over the summer, particularly after long hot rides. It didn’t seem to matter which saddle or saddle pad (fleece or sympanova synthetic) I used.
I kept an eye on them as they appeared and disappeared, but never progressed to a point where I felt I needed to call the vet, weren’t particularly tender etc.
Since the weather cooled off, I haven’t seen them,even though we’ve done several endurance rides with the same saddle/pad combo that I used earlier.
So far my research has been disappointingly spare. Apparently these bumps are created with a bug bit or debris irritates the horses skin. The skin reacts by forming a little nodule around the irritant. For treatment, they can be injected with steroids or surgically removed.
I’m sure there’s more to this condition! Does anyone else have any experience or wisdom to share? Obviously fly control is important, but what about other factors? Do dirty saddle pads contribute? Does sheepskin really help? Does using a pad that keeps the back cooler help? Should I be bathing more frequently to keep her cleaner?