Sweet Itch Info

Sweet Itch Info

Sweet Itch Info



Sweet itch is caused by an allergic reaction to midge bites


Intense irritation. Affected animals will rub and rub causing open sores, which will further attract flies and cause irritation. The areas most commonly affected are the mane, tail, hindquarters, head/ears and sometimes the belly


1) The use of an anti-midge sheet on susceptible animals, before sweet itch starts, will help prevent it

2) Use an effective insect repellent

3) Avoid fields near ponds or muck-heaps

4) Bath the pony once a week or fortnight with an insecticidal shampoo

5) Petroleum jelly applied inside the ears will help prevent midge bites there


Once sweet itch is established, rugs should be used in conjunction with antiseptic creams to help existing sores to heal and to bring the itching under control. Mesh fly sheets will not stand up to being constantly rubbed on fencing or stable walls so it is important to apply ointment regularly to soothe the itching. Electric fencing can be used in the field to protect the pony and rug against damage