PARASITE HELP!

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bunni1900

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HELLO! I am in need of some help. I have a filly that I have dewormed regularly all her life. She is almost a year old now. I took in a fecal sample to my vet and had them spin it down and look for parasites. (this was about a week before Christmas) She had 2 strongyles and nothing else. I dewormed her to be safe. Today, I went out to feed and saw her defecate. Just out of curiosity I took a gander and saw what I now know to be round worms (large adults). I JUST dewormed her 2 days ago with Ivermectin but am concerned she needs to be dewormed again for the roundworms. I have been struggling to keep her worm free since I got her and thought I was doing ok. I deworm every 2 months (if not sooner) and take in fecals to target deworm. I am at a loss for what to do. I have heard of people using daily dewormer on big horses, would that be a possibility? PLEASE HELP!
 

Matt73

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If you saw dead worms in her feces, it means that the Ivermectin is working
. No need to deworm her again until the next time you regularly deworm. I would probably do the 5 day Safeguard purge next time you deworm to get rid of any encysted ones.
 

Minimor

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Yes, they are often still moving when they come out--but they are dying from the dewormed that you just used.

If you keep seeing worms--I have in the past gotten weanlings that I dewormed, got worms out as a result, and then two weeks later time foals were passing more roundworms, which obviously were not coming out as a result of deworming but rather as a result of a heavy overload--then I dewormed again.

In actual fact you should not try to keep your horse 'worm free' because the horse does not then build up any natural immunity to worms--and horses DO build up an immunity to worms, especially round worms--a horse dewormed too often will not build up so much immunity.
 

rabbitsfizz

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No.

Incidentally do not do the Fenbendazole five day course instead of the normal Ivermectin worming, do it as well as. Leave ten days between the last day of worming and then give the full does of Ivermectin- there are quite a lot of worms Fenbendazole no longer adequately kills. It is brilliant for encysteds (which is why it is a course not a purge) but really, that and roundworm in foals is about all it gets well.

Ivermectin as a base wormer, plus Fenbendazole (Panacur) and Praziquantel (tapeworms) twice a year.

You cannot get a worm free horse and you do not want one, either- the worms are actually part of the digestive system, it is when there are too many that you have a problem.
 

Lilbit1997

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I have heard from my vet multiple times not to use a daily dewormer as it only helps the worms adapt to it and build up an immunity.
 

Carolyn R

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Okay, here is my experience with this.... Round worms are common in youngsters. Around 18 months of age they start building an immunity to them, roundworms are one of the only parasites that a healthy horse will begin to ward off on its own when it matures, as long as the numbers are kept in check. Older horses with a compromised system are at risk for picking up these parasites too.

I would wait two weeks and do the 5 day double dose of fenbendazole. The only reason I say wait two weeks is to make sure your horse does not get colicky while the worms die off. A bit of oil or milk of magnesia does not hurt to keep things moving, as well as soaking hay or adding warm water to the feed to make a mash. This ensures the horse is hydrated until they are passed. Often times the horse seems a little off....a bit drowsy, a little less energy than expected, a little bit of a droopy lip while standing around. After things seem like they are in check, then start the five day treatment. Be prepared to soak the feed and hay as a precaution then also. Glove up and check the feces. You will need to do this each time you worm until you don't see them anymore. Some horses don't shed eggs like others and it does not always show up on a fecal. I would reworm again one month after the five day course is up with another five day coarse as a precaution. The fenbendazole is one of the only coarses of action that kill all stages of roundworms. Young horses need to be wormed each month, regardless of a fecal. They are more succeptable. Bad news is that once you have roundworms in the environment you must be extremely vigilant of very young or older succeptable horses worming schedules. The eggs and parasites can remain active up to ten years in unused fields, longer in fields being used where they can continue to ru their life cycles. Cold temps do not kill them, some studies have shown composting and achieving high temps within the compost may have some effectiveness on killing the parasites.

Dealt with this this summer/fall with my GV colt. He is as healthy as can be now, but please be proactive in heading off possible complications that may come hand in hand with them. As my vet said, even when purchased from a good breeder with adequate care, it happens. A foal can spit out the wormer, a dose can be skipped, maybe they think every two months is frequent enough to worm a foal, but once roundworms are in the environment, they stay there for a long time. Glad I have no other young horses and have no intention if having anymore.

I wanted to add that others are correct, you will never have a completely parasite free horse. Roundworms and tapeworms can wreak havoc on a horses system if not kept in check. Don't know if you did any research on them,but there are some pretty nasty pics, especially involving colic/impacting surgery involving them.
 
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albahurst

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We just went through this type of experience with a filly we recently purchased. The filly passed large roundworms PRIOR to even being dewormed. Anyway, Ivermectin was not sufficient, as the horse had encysteds. The Ivermetin probably got the ones that were hatched at the time, but the encysteds just kept hatching. This filly was even anemic from the parasite overload. So, as per vet recommendation, we gave Panacur 5 day treatment, and then were told to give Strongid 2 CX for 60 days. Also, deworm again one month after the 5 day with the Panacur single treatment. I suppose you could use the IVermectin the second treatment. So, yes, we were told to use daily dewormer for 60 days. We do not typically use it here, so we don't have a situation here which would cause us to have an immunity to the daily. Clean up the poop daily, too, (which we always do).

Just out of curiosity- does your filly have bad breath??
 

Matt73

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I bought a filly a few years ago that was full of parasites, too. Willow, underneath all that fur, was skin and bone and so weak and lethargic. I thought that was her temperament; I was so wrong, as now she is a fit, happy, healthy, very active 4 year old. What I did right away for her was do the 5 day Safeguard. 10 days later I wormed with Ivermectin. 14 days later I wormed with Eqvalan Gold. She was also anaemic, so was put on something similar to Red Cell (but better). That year she also got a suspected case of PHF or colitis and was treated with oxytetracycline IV and many other things. Then she got ulcers and was treated for that. It was a rough first year...and much of it was due to her arriving with a huge worm load and being unhealthy. She hasn't looked back since. That lethargic, weak little filly is now a very healthy, opinionated, energetic, happy young lady
. It's so important to properly deworm the babies, and so often you see people buying worm-infested weanlings.
 

Marsha Cassada

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The wormers do not kill the parasites. They affect the nervous system, which causes them to release and be expelled. The wormer is a dose of toxin, calculated to affect a parasite and not enough to affect the host (the horse). It is not a poison, it is a neurological toxin. That's why the parasite is still alive when expelled. Of course, it cannot live in the open, so will soon die.

This is how it was explained to me by my vet.

I do not understand the concept of daily wormer. Why would anyone give his horse such a constant dose of a toxin? Control of parasites is, of course, necessary, but the idea of keeping a horse parasite free totally is not realistic or even desireable. You are a good horse owner to be concerned and ask questions! The sight of parasites in poop is shocking.
 

albahurst

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The wormers do not kill the parasites. They affect the nervous system, which causes them to release and be expelled. The wormer is a dose of toxin, calculated to affect a parasite and not enough to affect the host (the horse). It is not a poison, it is a neurological toxin. That's why the parasite is still alive when expelled. Of course, it cannot live in the open, so will soon die.

This is how it was explained to me by my vet.

I do not understand the concept of daily wormer. Why would anyone give his horse such a constant dose of a toxin? Control of parasites is, of course, necessary, but the idea of keeping a horse parasite free totally is not realistic or even desireable. You are a good horse owner to be concerned and ask questions! The sight of parasites in poop is shocking.
At some point one has to trust a vet. To be parasite free is not our goal- the goal is to slow the cycle to keep the parasites at bay. I would hate to have parasites take over here. I would rather be a bit proactive now to help

prevent a bigger problem down the road. We don't use daily here, as a rule. But, in this instance, we are using it for 60 days. I don't feel I am a bad horse mom for doing what the vet suggested.
 
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albahurst

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It's funny you ask because I have always thought her breath was a little smellier than most. Is that significant?
Yes- In our case, the vet commented on it and said she felt it was due to the parasite load. The vet described the smell as when a horse has coliced and hadn't eaten anything for awhile. I might add that our little filly

had repeated digestive upsets with her worm load. She was a sick girl for awhile. Doing fine now, however!
 

rabbitsfizz

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Albahurst of course you must do what your Vet told you to do. Unless you know for sure your Vet has made a mistake (like being told as I was to give a sachet of bute twice a day- when I queried it and she looked it up she nearly had a breakdown!!) Unless you are willing to do as the Vet says there is no point in calling them out- I like to see people asking their Vets questions though, and if a Vet is unwilling to discuss treatment I would be looking for a new Vet! As to the routine you were put on, I don't think it was extreme under the circumstances. It seems to me that you had a real problem that your Vet approached aggressively and correctly, you were completely right to follow the instructions.
 

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