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Dewormers To Use For The Best Protection

Posted by Nicole Nauss on January 27, 2014 at 5:40 PM


If you choose to deworm your horse orally  follow this deworming schedule to gain the best parasite protection for your horse or horses. Remeber its best to deworm all the horses at the same time to keep from recontamination.

Tapeworms, bots, flies, roundworms, and many other parasites love to make their home in your horse's digestive tract. Generally a horse can handle a few parasites, but when they become too concentrated in the horse's digestive tract, they can wreck havoc and cause devastating effects to your horse's overall health and well-being.

There are many different equine deworming medications on the market today, all offering to be the best. The simple truth is that many of them contain the same active ingredient and are manufactured under different names. Price and appearance are often the only differences between deworming medications that contain the same active ingredient.


There are four main equine deworming medications: ivermectin, moxidectin, fenbendazole and pyrantal pamoate. They all have different uses and when combined together provide complete parasite protection for your horse. The worming schedule you follow does depend slightly upon the type of horse and their use, but most pasture kept horses can follow this simple deworming rotation.


The pasture kept horse should be dewormed every 6-8 weeks. The most effective deworming rotation you can follow for your horse is this: fenbendazole in the deep of winter, ivermectin or moxidectin in the early spring, pyrantal pamoate in summer, fenbendazole in late summer, ivermectin or moxidectin in the first freeze, and another pyrantal pamoate in the early winter.


Depending on how often you wish to administer the deworming medication, you may need to add another 1-2 doses throughout the year. The most important part of the schedule is that you administer the pyrantal pamoate at the beginning of the grazing season, and again at the end of the grazing season. Try to split these two doses 6 months apart for optimum coverage. April and October are two great months to administer a pyrantal pamoate deworming medication.


Some horse owners choose to skip the fenbendazole dewormer and just rotate between the ivermectin or moxidectin and the pyrantal pamoate. This schedule works great as well. It will be less expensive than rotating with the fenbendazole as well, so if you are trying to budget for less expense, omitting the fenbendazole may be your best option.


The reason you need to use more than one deworming medication is because there is no product that protects your horse from all the parasites that may affect them. Each medication is known for the parasites it can destroy.


Ivermectin is one of the best equine deworming medications on the market. It kills many of the parasites that affect your horse. The main reason it cannot be used exclusively is that is does not target tapeworms or encysted small strongyles. Another great benefit to ivermectin is that it is not susceptible to parasite resistance. This is a great pro to these deworming medications. Some brand name ivermectin medications include: Equell, IverCare, Equimectrin, Zimectrin, and Rotectin 1. Ivermectin needs to be administered every 6-8 weeks, with 2 rotations substituted for the pyrantal pamoate.


Moxidectin is another great equine deworming medication. It kills most of the parasite including the encysted small strongyles. Moxidectin des not kill tapeworms, so another deworming medication needs to be rotated through for complete parasite protection. Another benefit to moxidectin is that you only need to administer it every 8-12 weeks. The brand name of the equine deworming medication containing moxidectin is Quest.


Fenbendazole is the most effective medication against small strongyles, commonly called bloodworms. It keeps up with these intense parasites that may not be completely killed by the other deworming medications. Substituting one or two ivermectin doses with fenbendazole may be worth staying ahead of these pesky parasites. Fenbendazole can be administered in a power dose that is made of 5 double doses spread throughout 5 days. The brand names of fenbendazole are Safe-guard and Panacur.


Pyrantal pamoate is the most effective medication to reduce the number of tapeworms in a horse's digestive tract. A routine dose provides a protection rate of 88%. You can double dose to increase this rate to 83%. Tapeworms only affect horses that are pastured, so if your horse is never sent to pasture, you do not need to worry about this parasite. Use pyrantal pamoate at the start and end of grazing season to rid the tapeworms acquired through grazing.


Dosing directions are always included with any equine deworming medication. You need to know the approximate weight of your horse. It is not recommended to save any unused medications that may be left in single dose syringes. The bacteria from a horse's mouth can enter and contaminate the medication. It is also very important that you keep a record of when you administer each dose of equine deworming medication. Never use a deworming product that was designed for a different animal on your horse.


By following this schedule and rotating ivermectin, moxidectin, fenbendazole and pyrantal pamoate, your horse should not suffer the devastating effects of parasites. Maintaining a healthy digestive tract in your horse is very important. Be sure to always provide clean water and feed to help prevent parasites from being consumed by your horse.

Categories: Treatments / Injuries

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