worming schedule

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worming schedule

Post by Sunny Admin on Sat Feb 20, 2010 4:26 pm

Hi Dr. Pike. I'm hoping you can help me settle an argument. The place where we board never worms their horses in the winter. They've got 200+ horses there and lots of manure everywhere. I don't see why you should stop worming in the winter, but admittedly, I don't fully grasp the whole worming schedule anyway. It's very confusing about what to use when everyone has a different opinion about rotational worming. What do you recommend to worm, and when?



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Re: worming schedule

Post by Dr. Daniel Pike on Sat Feb 20, 2010 6:21 pm

Melissa,

Well, here's my soapbox speech on deworming programs. If you are in the southeast, including most of Texas, we have several parasitic concerns, and we focus on small strongyles and we need to be aware of tapeworms. A deworming schedule should begin in the fall of the year, usually september/october and end in April/may. In the southeast, it is rarely necesaary to deworm in the summer, as the environment is usually too hot and dry for parasite larvae to survive in the envirmonment. On the other hand, the winter may be some of the most active parasite transmittal in the environment. The northern states work on the opposite schedule.

It is my suggestion that fecal egg counts should be performed in the fall, and horses dewormed accordingly following the egg count. I will deworm the high shedders in the early winter. I usually deworm everyone in Jan. or early Feb, and then repeat fecal egg counts in April. The exact drug that is used at each time should be discussed with your veterinarian, and mild variations in times may depend on your specific area.

Basically, you should focus your deworming program in the fall and winter, as it is during these times that we see the largest amount of transmission of parasites. Due to the large and growing resistance problem, it is very wise to deworm your horses based on the results of a fecal egg count. A once or twice yearly mandatory worming my be necessary to kill parasites that are not detected via fecal egg counts (such as tapeworms).

This is a relatively new concept, and will be how we will effectively manage parasite control in the years to come. Non-judicous deworming may not be necessary or effective, and leads to the rapidly growing resistance problems. Good Luck!


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