How do you handle parasites and worming in a natural horse keeping environment?
Proper manure management and disposal:
This is the single most important thing you can do to control parasites. Here at Hoofbeats Holistic we hand pick all manure each day from the horses living environment.
Keep the digestive system healthy:
Proper nutrition for your horse is critical to keep the entire system healthy. A solid program includes free choice minerals, good quality hay, water, and prebiotics like Bio-Mos and probiotics like Yea Sacc 1026 as appropriate to support the gut.
Keep the immune system strong:
Parasites thrive in an unhealthy environment. The healthier the horse the better chance they have of defending against parasite infestation.
Use natural parasite control mechanisms:
Herbs will help to make the horse’s digestive system unfriendly to parasite breeding.
Monitor parasite loads:
We observe fecal matter, to look for evidence of worms. We observe the animals appearance, watching for coat condition, tail rubbing, body condition, etc. At Hoofbeats, we perform fecal egg counts seasonally to determine the parasite loads of each herd member. Careful records are kept to establish a baseline for each animal. Low levels of parasites are normal and do not necessarily need to be treated. No horse has zero parasites, EVER. Knowing exactly which parasites are present in which horse and at what number is necessary to ensure that the appropriate action is taken.
Our Control Plan:
Daily picking of all manure in the horses living environment helps to remove potential pathogens.
Herbal Treatments :
At Hoofbeats Holistic we choose to feed an herbal product for five days of each month during the full moon when parasites have been scientifically proven to be the most active. This herbal blend assists in establishing a gut environment less friendly to parasite infestation. Providing these herbs to our domestic horses, mimics the actions of their wild counterparts who actively seek out herbs in their daily forage intake.
Prebiotics and Probiotics:
We feed the prebiotic Bio-Mos and the probiotic Yea Sac 1026 to help maintain gut integrity, health and overall wellness which discourages parasite infestation. Parasites favor unhealthy gut environments. Maintaining an optimum state of overall wellness is one of the most important things you can do to protect your horse from parasites.
These are strong toxins designed to kill parasites inside the horse’s system, and we resort to their use in an educated and careful manner.