Insect-775x344.jpg
Insects

By: Dr. Lydia Gray

What is it?

Insects not only annoy horses, they spread diseases and cause allergic reactions such as “sweet itch.” While there is no way to completely eliminate these flying pests, a coordinated approach can significantly reduce their numbers.

What can be done about it?

The most obvious method of controlling insects is to use repellent designed to be sprayed or wiped directly on horses. Spot-ons are more concentrated repellent that is applied less frequently and may be more appropriate for pasture-kept horses. Fly masks, boots and sheets place a physical barrier between insects and the horse. Horses should be kept inside when insects are at their worst. Screens and fans can be used to provide inside horses with even more protection. Other methods to reduce insect numbers in the barn include fly traps, strips, sticks, bait, automatic misters, residual sprays and area foggers. Feed-through larvicides may be an additional option to consider when designing your comprehensive insect management program. Many horse owners also swear by supplements that contain ingredients such as garlic, apple cider vinegar, and diatomaceous earth.

What else do I need to know?

Managing the environment is every bit as important as managing the horse and his immediate area. All standing water on the farm must be eliminated because this is the breeding ground for some insects. Since other insects prefer wet organic matter such as soiled bedding, not only must stalls and paddocks be cleaned frequently, the material must be removed, covered or composted.

About Dr. Lydia Gray

 

Have questions? Contact us »
Connect with us:

Mollie and Eden
I started riding when I was 9 years old and quickly got swept up into the competitive hunter/jumper world. I showed my first pony, Chloe, in the Small Pony Hunter divisions were we competed at shows like Fairfield Hunt Club, Old Salem, HITS, and West...

Learn more »

SmartPak Barn Field Trip, Part 2: Decoding hay and grain for horses
Download the worksheet to test your knowledge! How much hay and grain does your horse get every day? How much SHOULD your horse be getting each day? Many horses may not be getting what your feed bag recommends, so we’re

Read More »

Download our mobile apps

Put SmartPak in your pocket with these awesome apps!

Check It Out »

Healthy horses, happy riders.
SmartPak is committed to a greener planet.
Sign Up Now!
Free Catalog Get Yours Now!

Questions? Call us Toll-Free at 1-800-461-8898.

SmartPak Equine™ is the premier online provider of horse supplies and equine supplements.
© Copyright by SmartPak Equine LLC. All Rights reserved.