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This topic has recently come into focus as we have learned indiscriminate overuse of deworming products has led to increasing resistance among some parasite populations.
There are three commonly employed methods used for deworming horses. The first method is to follow the a "Targeted Deworming" Protocol. The second is to administer paste dewormers every 6-8 weeks, on a rotational schedule. The third method is to keep the horse on a daily dewormer and paste deworm twice a year. We recommend you choose the program that works the best for you, your horse, and horse-keeping situation.
1. Targeted Deworming Protocol:
This method is based on identifying horses who need treatment and identifying the products that are effective on each particular property. This method relies on utilizing a McMaster's Fecal Egg Per Gram Test (EPG). This test quantitatively measures the number of parasite eggs per gram of feces. Is is commonly performed by a veterinary diagnostic lab or other agricultural or extension office.
The idea is to time deworming treatments for optimal impact and use a dewormer proven effective against the target parasite. This method will vary due to geographical differences in climates that affect parasite transmission. Working with your veterinarian, you can develop an individualized approach that is specific for each property and horse.
For more information, please read Equus (Feb. 2011) Special Deworming Report here: Equus Special Deworming Report.pdf
2. Paste Deworming (Rotational) Protocol:
This method employs the rotational use of dewormers administered on a specific schedule.
This schedule is recommended for the Southeastern United States for horses not on a continuous deworming program. ( i.e. daily Strongid C 2X or Continuex):
January - Oxibendazole (Anthelcide) or Fenbendazole (Panacur or Safeguard)
3. Daily Deworming Protocol:
Deworm December and June with Ivermectin/praziquantel combination(Equimax or Zimectrin Gold) and keep horse on a daily dewormer, pyrantel pamoate (Strongid C 2X or Equi Aid CW).
** Before starting the continuous deworming program, deworm with Equimax or Zimectrin Gold.
4. Foal Deworming Protocol: