Wounds should be treated as soon as possible because untreated wounds are more likely to become infected or develop excessive proud flesh, preventing wound healing.
Proud flesh (granulation tissue) forms when an excessive amount of new tissue is produced when a wound is healing. Proud flesh usually occurs when the skin starts to heal itself; granulation tissue forms over the wound followed by the growth of skin over the granulation tissue.
When a wound begins to heal, the new tissue is very fragile. If the wound is located near a joint where there is a lot of motion, the fragile new tissue tends to break down and rebuilds several times before the wound heals completely. In some cases proud flesh can impede the healing process.
It is common in leg lacerations, which is one of the most common conditions that vets see in horses.
Wounds should be treated as soon as possible because untreated wounds are more likely to become infected or develop proud flesh.
The main way of preventing proud flesh from forming is to ensure the prompt suturing of a wound; if your horse is injured, make sure you call your vet as soon as possible so any wounds can be closed immediately, or as soon as possible after the injury has occurred. When closure of a wound is delayed, this is when proud flesh can become a problem.
It is important to limit the motion of the area of the wound as much as possible, usually by bandaging or using a cast (common on the lower limb). Pressure bandaging can also help prevent proud flesh formation; however pressure bandages can be potentially harmful if not applied correctly, so if you are unsure how to do this, you should ask your vet first.
Wounds should be covered with a non-stick sterile pad and a soft gauze bandage which can then be covered with a thick cotton bandage to prevent contamination from bedding and other dirt.
Large wounds may require skin grafts to aid the healing process, decrease scar tissue and help with a better cosmetic appearance in the long term.