When it comes to deworming horses, the message has been confusing. After all, for more than four decades, horse owners heard the same one: rotate. But now, rotating is old news. What’s the new message? Be strategic about your deworming.
That new message is just one in a three-video series now available at RethinkDeworming.com. Called “Still Rotating? Why You Should Stop Now,” the video helps debunk the theories long recommended by veterinarians and followed by horse owners. Why change after all this time? Turns out, that like many things from the 1970s and 80s, new information means new recommendations.
“There have been a lot of advancements in equine parasitology since scientists originally recommended rotating dewormers,” says veterinarian Hoyt Cheramie, equine specialist for Merial’s large animal veterinary services division. “The most important message is that if you’re rotating, you may actually be contributing to resistance, which is why it’s important to start following the new recommendations.”
Horse owners may wonder, how can rotating contribute to resistance? The video helps explain it in detail, but over the years, parasites have developed resistance, much like bacteria in humans have developed resistance to certain antibiotics. In the case of small strongyles, identified as the most prevalent parasite in adult horses today, there is evidence of their widespread resistance to two of the three major dewormer classes – benzimidazoles and pyrantels.
Another episode in the online educational video series addresses tapeworm control and another, the need for a dewormer that handles a broad spectrum of parasites.
“Until very recently, tapeworms weren’t considered to be a significant problem in horses,” said Cheramie. “But we now know that tapeworms can be an important cause of intestinal disease, such as colic, in the horse. Every horse owner knows how serious, even life-threatening, colic can be, so controlling for tapeworms is critical.”
Resistant parasites and tapeworms aren’t the only concerns for horse owners, as there are dozens of species of parasites and it is imperative to use a product that controls for a broad spectrum like Merial’s ZIMECTERIN® Gold, which contains ivermectin and praziquantel. Together, the two ingredients control more species and stages of parasites than any other dewormer.
“Changes in protocols can be confusing,” says Dr. Cheramie. “I encourage horse owners to watch the videos and discuss best deworming practices with their veterinarians.”
To view the videos, go to: http://rethinkdeworming.com/video