Worming Advice

To worm or not to worm, that is the question. There is much conflicting advice in the equine world on when and how to worm horses. To make it simple for our clients we have put together the following worming advice. The information below has been produced after consulting the most recent scientific literature. Please read the advice below and if you have any questions on worming your horse please ring the clinic to speak to one of our vet team so we can help.

To take advantage of this advise fully, why not sign up for our 'Worming Offer' that provides the complete worming package at a fraction of the cost of regular worming protocols. Please call the clinic to sign up today (01908 560789).

A printable version of our worming advice can be found here or by clicking on the pictures below.

Worming Calendar  Table of wormers

Adult horses (>6 months of age)

Worming calendar

During the months April, July and October the levels of adult worms should be monitored using worm egg counting (WEC). Samples of dung should be delivered to our clinic in the morning. A veterinary surgeon will then report the worm levels of your horse within 24 hours and give appropriate worming advice.

At some point during the winter period (November to February) we advise using a wormer that treats both adult and juvenile roundworms and also tapeworms administered to all horses, even if their recent worm counts have been low. This is because juvenile worms cannot be monitored using worm egg counting but their emergence in the Spring can have serious deleterious effects on the health of a horse (e.g. colic, diarrhoea). The wormer we recommend is Pramox Equest.

A full table of the wormers currently on the market and their relative merits can be found here (on page 2).

Foals (<6.5 months)
Immediately after birth foals are at greatest risk of receiving worm from their mothers. Mare should therefore be wormed towards the end of pregnancy (see below). Foals should not be wormed until 6 weeks of age. We then advise giving the foal a wormer containing fenbendazole (Panacur) or ivermectin.

Weanlings, yearlings, 2, 3, & 4 year olds
Worming should be maintained regularly throughout the year alternating annually between ivermectin, moxidectin and pyrantel. Young horses are most at risk from high worm levels so should be treated regularly.

Lactating mares
We recommend lactating mares should not be wormed until at least 2 weeks after giving birth. We then advise giving a moxidectin or ivermectin based wormers repeatedly while the foal is at foot. The timing of this wormer depends on which wormer was last given during the pregnancy, i.e. 13 weeks after last moxidectin wormer, 8 weeks after last ivermectin wormer.

Pregnant mares
It is important to maintain a worm free status in the pregnant mare as she can pass on worm larvae to the foal soon after birth. We therefore recommend monitoring worm egg levels (WEC) as for adults horses (above) and giving a moxidectin or ivermectin wormer within the last month of pregnancy.

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