What you see. The starting point for addressing any equine health related issue is your observation.


Drainage from Anal or Tail Base Areas


Black drainage from the tail base and around the anus is fairly common in gray horses with advanced melanoma. Injuries and infections can occur here, and abscesses can form too.

  • Code Orange

    Call Your Vet at Their First Available Office Hours

your role


What To Do

Assess your horse's general health using the Whole Horse Exam (WHE) and share your findings and concerns with your vet.

your vet's role

Your vet determines the cause of the drainage often by physical examination but also using microscopic evaluation of the drainage itself.
Questions Your Vet Might Ask:
  • When did you first notice this?
  • What is the horse's age, sex, breed and history?
  • Is the horse gray in color and if so, are there firm bumps in the area or elsewhere?
  • How is your horse's attitude and appetite otherwise?
  • Does the horse show any signs of lameness or resistance to move?
  • Do you notice swelling in the area?
  • Does the horse have a fever?
  • What are the results of the Whole Horse Exam (WHE)?

Treatments Your Vet May Recommend

A way to resolve the condition or diagnosis. Resolving the underlying cause or treating the signs of disease (symptomatic treatment)

Very Common
more treatments

Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP