Girth gall in horses

2 min read

Girth gall in horses - Vetster

Girth galls in horses are skin sores that develop due to the friction between the girth (or harness) and the horse. Galls are also named girth blisters. Girth galls can occur when the girth is too tight and pinches, the girth is dirty or hard, or the horse has sensitive skin. Girth galls are a very painful condition for a horse to have. If you find skin sores on your horse, you must call your veterinarian.

Symptoms of Girth gall in horses

Symptoms include one or more of the following: 

  • The wound on the skin
  • Sore
  • Blisters
  • Swollen lumps under the skin
  • Pus in the lesions
  • Loss of hair
  • Sticky serum around the open sore
  • Inflammation of skin

Treatment of Girth gall in horses

Treatment of girth gall involves careful cleaning with a saline solution or hydrogen peroxide and applying a thick, protective ointment. You will need to stop riding the horse until the sore heals completely.  Anti-inflammatory medication and ice packs can be used to reduce inflammation. A topical ointment may also be prescribed when there is a bacterial or fungal infection.

The veterinarian may suggest having your horse refitted for correct equipment by a reputable saddler. Further infection can often be prevented by using wool or synthetic fleece-lined girths.

Concerned about girth gall in horses? Schedule an appointment with one of our veterinary professionals today at for advice and to learn more about your pet’s wellness.

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