Farnam outlines your options to protect your horse from parasites.
March 4, 2009
From AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam
For effective parasite control, you must have your horse on a regular deworming program. Several options are available. Pick the one that works best for you.
Single Product, Broad-Spectrum Control
Broad-spectrum compounds, like ivermectin and moxidectrim, kill a wide range of equine parasites, including bots, when used regularly, according to label directions. Dosage is based on the weight of the horse.
Because of their broad-spectrum control and no record of resistance, these products may be used exclusively in a deworming program.
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Many horse owners and veterinarians prefer to rotate between chemical classes to prevent resistance. Some small strongyles have shown resistance to benzimidazoles through the years.
If you rotate dewormers, be sure to alternate between chemical classes, not just brand names. Parasites develop resistance to whole classes of drugs. For example, ivermectin and pyrantel pamoate are often rotated because they come from different chemical classes. Ivermectin is a macrocyclic lactone; pyrantel pamoate is a pyrimidine.
Ivermectin is often included in rotation programs as a boticide. Many compounds, like pyrantel pamoate, do not have an FDA-approved claim for bot control.
Daily deworming has become more and more popular during the past decade. A dose of pyrantel tartrate is fed daily to continuously kill parasites as they enter the horse. Parasites are killed before they have a chance to reproduce, reducing pasture contamination.
If you use a daily dewormer, make sure your horse eats his full dose every day.
Since pyrantel tartrate has no effect on bots, you need to use a boticide, like ivermectin, twice a year.
You can get more information on effective parasite control from Farnam's deworming guide.
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