Horse Side Vet Guide ®

Equine Health Resource

Dull or Poor Haircoat

Code Yellow - Contact Your Vet at Your Convenience for an Appointment

Code Yellow - Contact Your Vet at Your Convenience for an Appointment

  • To have your vet rule out underlying health concerns.

A rough or dull coat is a sign that a horse is not thriving for some reason. Horses that receive poor nutrition, have chronic low grade parasitism, or any chronic disease tend to show it in their coat. A late winter coat that is shedding is expected to be dry and dull.

WHAT TO DO

Evaluate your feeding and management regimen. Call your vet to discuss your horse’s nutritional needs and general healthcare program, including parasite control. A general exam and additional diagnostics may be recommended.

WHAT YOUR VET DOES

Your vet assesses the horse’s general health with a physical exam. They consider management and feeding, and interpret the horse’s condition and hair coat with that in mind. It is important to rule out any underlying disease before simply resorting to feeding products that improve the coat. Laboratory work may be helpful in ruling out underlying conditions.

Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP

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