Deworming Horses

Parasite control is an important part of your horse’s overall health. Our team at Connecticut Equine Clinic in Coventry, Connecticut can help you come up with a deworming program that is right for your horse or facility. If you have browsed through horse publications in the last few months, you’ve likely seen more than one article on deworming. The concern is that parasites resistant to available dewormers are being found in horse populations around the country. Contributing to this resistance is the overuse of dewormers. Thus, it is important that deworming should occur only when the horse needs it.

With over 29 years of experience, Connecticut Equine Clinic can devise an appropriate deworming program for your horse.By counting the number of worm eggs your horse sheds in a gram of feces Connecticut Equine Clinic can categorize the horse into 1 of 3 different categories: high, medium or low shedder. We will then develop a deworming program based on your horse’s immunity to worms and his environment. For the program to be effective, all horses will require fecal analysis twice yearly to determine parasite load. Horses are exposed to parasites from their environment. The amount of exposure depends on where your horse lives and how many other horses share the area and how susceptible the individual horse is to parasites. Over 80% of all parasites come from 20% of the horses in a herd. Connecticut Equine Clinic can identify horses that have a greater risk of parasites by testing the feces. Environmental factors need to be considered when establishing a deworming schedule because some horses have increased exposure to parasites. Daily de-wormers are not recommended because they cause resistance to build up in the parasite population.

Internal parasites or worms are silent thieves and killers. They can cause extensive internal damage without you even realizing your horse is heavily infected. The effects of internal parasites on a horse range from a dull haircoat and un-thriftiness to colic and death. Internal parasites lower the horse’s resistance to infection, rob the horse of valuable nutrients and in some cases cause permanent damage to the internal organs. Establishing an effective parasite control program should be a top management priority.

Connecticut Equine Clinic knows that there are more than 150 species of internal parasites that can infect horses. The most common and troublesome are the following:

  • Large strongyles (bloodworms or redworms)
  • Small strongyles
  • Roundworms
  • Tapeworms
  • Lungworms
  • Pinworms
  • Bots
  • Threadworms

Probably the most important in terms of health risk are large and small strongyles, roundworms and tapeworms. There is no single deworming program that suits all horses and all situations. The ideal program for your horse depends on the type, number and ages of the horses on your farm, pasture management and geographic location. Strategic deworming allows us to deworm only at certain times of year, decreasing the amount of medication that your horse is given and specifically targeting the parasites infecting your horse. Paste is the most common formulation of dewormer and should be administered based on your horse’s weight.

It is best to have Connecticut Equine Clinic help you devise an appropriate deworming program for your horse or farm. You can always expect a wealth of knowledge, experience and passion from Connecticut Equine Clinic in Coventry, Connecticut.