Interesting facts about mallenders 

Mauke beim Pferd - Erkennung und Behandlung

The term "mallenders" covers various skin diseases in the area of the horse's pasterns. A distinction is made between eczematous, wart-shaped and gangrenous mallenders.

Mallenders can be recognised by bald patches in the area of the bend of the fetlock. Depending on the extent, these can be reddened, crusted, scaly or weeping. If the disease is not treated, swelling and inflammation can occur. It is important that the mallenders are treated daily right from the start.


  • Fungi
  • Bacteria
  • Mites

There are various causes for the development of mallenders. There are certainly breeds or gender-specific characteristics that favour the development of the disease. Often horses with long and dense hair in the pastern area, such as Friesians or cold-blooded horses, are more susceptible to infection. They have thicker skin in the fetlock area, the moisture balance is disturbed and cracks and damage occur in the skin. Pathogens can thus establish themselves more quickly. Mostly, however, it is damp soil that softens and damages the skin. The natural barrier can no longer be maintained. The worse the hygiene conditions and the more pathogens there are in the soil or bedding, the greater the likelihood of infection.

The course of the disease:
At the beginning of a mallenders disease, often only the top layer of the skin is affected. The coat disappears, the skin is reddened and partly crusted. If no immediate action is taken, the disease can also affect the lower layers of the skin. The crusts become more extensive, clear cracks can be seen and the skin is no longer able to fight the pathogen on its own. In individual cases, the mallenders also spread above the head of the pastern and can cause a shot.

The horse's pastern must first be thoroughly cleaned with mild soap products so that the crusts disappear. It is important to clean only once with water, as too frequent washing is counterproductive. When the pastern has been sufficiently cleaned, antibacterial products should be used: derbymed Cutargent preaktiv.

It is important in the therapy of a malleus not only to treat the inflammation, but also to combat the cause. Without a change in the animal's attitude, the scurf will always return. The pasterns should not be shorn or cut too short, so that irritation of the hair roots cannot lead to renewed irritation. Both bedding and exercise should be as dry as possible. It is also helpful to dry the horse's legs thoroughly after washing and to ensure sufficient hygiene.


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