Having considered the possible or probable causes, the next step will be to decide as to the duration of the disease, and the chances or otherwise of cure - matters in which the owner of the horse is always particularly interested. Prognosis will be materially assisted by a history of the case. In the first place, the ground may be cleared by the recognition of the fact that skin diseases, with a few exceptions, are not fatal. Those affections which are hereditary are the most difficult to cure. Psoriasis, eczema, and urticaria, and, it may be added, those forms of itching which are not associated with any eruption, such as pruritus, are likely to recur, although they may yield to simple treatment.
In the case of parasitic disease, such as ringworm and mange, in the horse, the cure is generally tolerably easy if taken in the early stages; in cases where the animal has been long neglected, especially when the disease is due to the burrowing mite (sarcoptic mange), the cure sometimes proves to be absolutely impossible, and in many of these cases the system has become so debilitated by the ravages of the parasite and the unrest of the patient that a fatal result is by no means uncommon. More frequently still it is considered advisable to destroy the subject as incurable.