Poultice for horses – a soothing, cooling treatment
A poultice is an inexpensive and easy-ish way to support your horse’s hard-working legs. It works to cool the legs and help after a workout!
- Poultice is clay or salt-based paste that is spread on lower legs (typically) to draw out heat and inflammation.
- The clay-based poultice is usually pretty thick and needs to stay sealed in its container or it will dry out.
- A salt-based poultice has Epsom salt as the main ingredient and is usually green.
The green Epsom-based poultice is also great to use as a hoof goop.
Types of poultice for horses
- The clay-based variety of poultice for horses is usually used on legs, the Epsom salt variety is usually used on the hoof.
- I have used the green salt variety on the legs, but the green color is not easy to get out and will stain your horse’s coat.
- You can use poultice after a heavy work out or a swollen tendon or ligament. You can also use a poultice to soothe hooves and to help draw out an abscess in the hoof.
- Of course, talk to your veterinarian if you suspect a hoof issue or abscess – it may be super easy or more horrible than you think. Abscesses also need a hole to track to drain before poultice will do any good.
Poultice is one instance in which I like to apply more, just to be sure the entire leg is covered.
- I will also cover the front of the cannon bone. Oh, and use gloves. Nothing worse than picking dry clay from under your fingernails.
Poultice is perfectly fine to use a lot of! Add a bit of water in your hand to smooth things out if you like before you wrap it up.
Damp paper, newspaper, feed bag lining, paper towel, etc. all work well!
The next step is to wrap with some sort of paper, then a quilt and a standing wrap.
- For the paper, I like wet newspaper or the paper lining of a feed bag.
- Paper towels also work, but I wouldn’t wet them, they just fall apart.
- Then quilt and wrap your horse’s legs, and you are good to go.
- In the morning, unwrap in the stall and do most of the clay removal in the stall, just to keep the barn aisle clean. Dried poultice crumbs tend to be really hard to remove from mats! I use grooming gloves to remove the dried poultice, this makes things quick and easy.
Dried poultice comes off easily with grooming gloves. No need to rinse!
If you need to pick up some poultice, use these links! They go to an affiliate program, which does not cost you a cent more. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases, which I greatly appreciate!
Uptite Poultice – the clay kind!
HandsOn Grooming Gloves – and also use code PEG for some free shipping! These are great for grooming and removing poultice from your horse’s legs.
Standing bandages for quilts or no-bows