Having a horse in summer is a lot harder than you’d think, especially when the flies are about. They don’t just attack horses; they can also attack us! There are multiple (serious) diseases that flies can give horses. Here are our top tips on what you can do to prevent this from happening.
They may be small, but they can carry a large amount of deadly diseases. These diseases are carried via the fly’s footpads, hairs, mouth and faeces and then deposited onto your horse or your horse’s food. Flies can carry up to 33 million diseases on their body at any one time. These can include typhoid, bacterial and viral infections and some deadly virus’.
Flies and their diseases are not the only thing to worry about, flies can also irritate your horse’s legs resulting in stamping which can damage their legs and hooves, this can lead to serious leg related problems in the future.
Flies are also known to bite horses. This can cause stress and nervousness in the horse.
Although flies are very small and have a life expectancy of 28 days, they mate quickly which is why getting rid of all of them is nigh impossible! The below methods will only help to minimise the flies and the effect they have on your horse.
When horses are in their stables, they need to have no other water than their drinking water
All manure should be picked up as this is the flies main mating grounds
When cleaning out your horses stable, make sure you use anti-bacterial spray as this will then keep the smell away so that the flies are not drawn to it
If you have a tire holding your water bucket in place, make sure that you clean the tire out as this is also a place flies like to hide
Have a good drainage system in your horse’s stable as this will help to get the moisture out, this will then hopefully reduce the number of flies.
You can get fly traps such as insect catcher killer tape (Stable Fly Products). If you’re feeling creative, you can make your own. All you would need is a bucket and a lid with a few holes in big enough for the fly to fit through. Fill the bucket with vinegar and dish soap (this is so the flies don’t just sit at the top).
Flies love to go into the corner of horse’s eyes (as they drink the fluid). This can be deflected by putting a fly mask on when your horse is out in the field (Fly Masks & Fringes). You can also put a fly rug on your horse as this repels the sun and keeps the flies away from their body’s (Fly rugs & Sheets).
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