Anhidrosis in Horses

In adult horses, anhidrosis, or “drycoat,” refers to a decreased ability or loss of ability to sweat in response to appropriate stimuli. Like humans and a limited number of other mammals, members of the Equidae family, including horses and ponies, rely on sweating for regulating body temperature and avoiding hyperthermia. Horses that are unable to sweat do not perform well athletically. Because they cannot regulate their body temperatures, severe cases can result in death.

The underlying cause of anhidrosis is unclear. Since the cause of anhidrosis is unclear and there are no known risk factors for anhidrosis, it is difficult (or impossible) to predict which horses will become anhidrotic. There is no cure for anhidrosis. However, there are many medical treatments advocated for anhidrosis.