A wet horse is prone to the nasty bacterial infection known as rain rot.

Wet, humid conditions are the perfect environment for rain rot. This skin infection leaves painful scabs along the back, hindquarters, and legs. While it may start off mild, over time this contagious bacteria can spread and cause a considerable amount of hair loss. The good news? You might be able to treat this condition with a few items laying around your barn.


  • 16-ounce bottle of mineral or baby oil
  • 16-ounce bottle of 3% USP hydrogen peroxide
  • .5-ounce bottle of iodine


  1. Mix all ingredients in a bucket.
  2. Sponge onto the infected area and let sit overnight.
  3. On the next day, wash your horse with a mild shampoo. Let them air dry in a sunny location.

Other Remedies

Some have had success with Listerine and baby oil combined (equal parts). However, the Listerine can cause skin irritation in some horses.

Tea tree and rosemary oil have also proven helpful in treating rain rot. It can be combined with Vaseline and rubbed onto the infected areas.


There’s quite a few preventive measures you can take, as well. This can include daily grooming, changing and cleaning blankets, providing a run-in shelter, sanitizing saddle pads, keeping up with mud in pastures, and proper nutrition. Horses with compromised immune systems are more at risk for rain rot.

Always consult your veterinarian when treating your horse.