Tag Archives: Horse Health

Multi-Vitamins for Horses

Multi-Vitamin Supplements

Deciding on an adequate nutrition program for one’s horse can, at times, be a frustrating endeavor.  There are so many differences, from types of feed to the amount one needs to feed to ensure all of your horse’s nutritional needs are being met.  Combine that with differences in the quality of hay from field to field.  First to second cut, and nutrient loss over time – one can really struggle to provide the best possible diet for one’s horse.  Feeding a general multi-vitamin can help ensure that your horse is getting the vitamins and minerals it needs.

Multi-vitamins are going to include a wide range of vitamins including vitamin A, D, E, and the B-complex vitamins.  Most horses can meet their requirements of vitamin A simply by grazing.  However, especially here in northeast Ohio, horses are unable to graze year round.  As we switch from relying on pasture for our horses forage requirements to relying on hay, we need to consider the impact storage has on vitamin content.

What Should You Look For

Hay, no matter what quality, will lose vitamins, especially vitamin A over time.  The hay we are feeding in February, March, and April is of significantly lower quality than the same hay that was fed last September or October. Because vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, horses are capable of storing it for a certain amount of time. This can somewhat offset the content lost in hay over time. However, towards the end of winter it may be a good idea to look for alternative sources for vitamin A.

Vitamin D is readily available, especially during summer months, as horses can obtain all they need from the sun.  Again though, not all of our horses are turned out all day during the winter months.  Some show horses are kept stalled and turned out either for short amounts of time, or in indoor arenas only.  For these horses, vitamin D supplementation is important as well.

Horses in strenuous work during the winter months have and horses suffering from muscular system disorders need extra help.  Supplemental vitamin E and the mineral selenium can be very valuable and help prevent certain disorders. Continue reading Multi-Vitamins for Horses

Deworming Horses 101

Deworming Horses 101 | Big Dee's Tack & Vet Supplies

Deworming guide

Have you ever been in a tack store staring at the wall of dewormers wondering “what should I give again“? Hopefully a savior (in the form of a store associate) arrives to tell you what to give. Then one arrives, but they are full of questions you just can’t remember the answers to! What did you de-worm your horse with last? , How often do you de-worm?, Have you had a fecal sample taken?  Since most of us have been there, here is an overview that we hope is helpful when planning your horses deworming schedule this year.

Let’s start with some basics –

What types of worms cause trouble?

Encrusted Small StrongylesMost susceptible are young and older horses. The larva can embed in the intestines. Large numbers of small strongyles can cause weight loss, colic, diarrhea and overall poor condition.

Ascarids (roundworms) – Dangerous to foals and horses under the age of two. Once ingested the larvae move through the veins into the liver, heart and lungs. Larvae in the lungs will eventually get swallowed to develop in the small intestine. Because the larvae migrate through the lungs a young horse could develop respiratory disease, have poor weight gain and colic.

Large Strongyles (bloodworms) – These worms can be dangerous to organs and can weaken abdominal artery walls. Common symptoms – diarrhea, weight loss and colic.

Pinworms – Not as dangerous as the other worms listed here – these worms typically cause itching around the horse’s rectum and tail.

Threadworms – Dangerous to foals and young horses. Foals can become infected by nursing from a mare with the larvae. They live in the intestinal tract. Common symptoms – diarrhea and weakness.

Bots In the warm seasons bot flies swarm around horses with the main purpose of finding a place on the horse to lay its eggs. After the eggs are laid – the horse can ingest them. Once inside the horse, they implant themselves in the mouth or intestines. While living in the intestines they can cause poor overall condition and mild colics.

Tapeworms – These are probably the least worrisome worm of them all. Tapeworms reside in the intestine and just live off of the food that comes to them. Mild colic and diarrhea are common symptoms of a horse carrying many tapeworms.

Now that we know about the worms… let’s find out how to treat them!

What types of dewormers are there?

Ivermectin Paste &  Praziquantel – For the removal & control of large and small strongyles, pinworms, hairworms, threadworms, stomach worms, lungworms, ascarids (roundworms) and bots.

Moxidectin Paste & Praziquantel – For the removal & control of large and small strongyles, ascarids (roundworms), pinworms, hairworms, stomach worms and bots.

Fenbendazole – For the treatment of large and small strongyles, ascarids (roundworms) and pinworms

Pyrantel Pamoate – For the removal and control of large/small strongyles, roundworms and pinworms

Daily Dewormers – Pryantel Tartate – Provides continuous protection against large and small strongyles, ascarids (roundworms) and pinworms.

Many veterinarians recommend fecal exams every three months. The exam will determine how much your horse sheds parasite eggs. Horses can range from heavy, to moderate to light shedders. Some horses have a high immunity to the parasites while others don’t. Horses that are in the pasture with other horses have a higher risk of becoming infected with roundworms and strongyles. A horse needs to ingest the eggs to become infected. Horses that are kept in well cleaned stalls are less likely to become infected. There are other factors as well – age, environment, climate, etc.

Your vet will most likely come up with a proper deworming program for you that will last a year. After a year, you will need to reevaluate and come up with an updated program.

Hot Picks from the 2012 Last Chance for Summer Savings Flyer

The new Last Chance for Summer Savings Flyer will be arriving in mailboxes soon. If you’ve shopped at Big Dee’s for years, then you know our sales flyers are your exclusive ticket to amazing savings. Since I know all of you must be “Chomping at the Bit,” I wanted to give you a sneak peek at some of my favorite deals.

Acti-Flex 4000

If you haven’t heard about the equine joint supplement Acti- Flex yet, then you are missing out on one of the greatest trade secrets in the business. This powerful liquid joint supplement combines Chondriotin Sulfate, MSM, Glucosamine Sulfate, Ascorbic Acid, Boswella Serate and Hyaluronic Acid (125 mg per oz). If you still need convincing, check out the label, or better yet the reviews. Acti-Flex 4000 has 64 reviews and averages a FIVE STAR rating. Most importantly, you can’t beat the deal. When you take advantage of the promotion, Acti-Flex is only $0.53 a day! I challenge you to beat that deal. If you find a joint supplement that combines the same ingredients at the same dosages at a cheaper price, I would love to hear about it. Not to sound too Hair Club for Men, but I also use Acti-Flex for my hunter mare. It really works!

Horse Health Ivermectin

Whether you’re on a rotation, do fecal testing, or just deworm when you feel like it, we all have to deworm our horses. Unfortunately, it is a necessary evil. Here at Big Dee’s we want to make this process as easy and hopefully painless as possible. How you ask? We work with our suppliers to give you the BEST possible deals on dewormers. Whether you choose Ivermectin, Bimectin, Pyrantel, or Fenbendazole, we have the best deals to keep your horse healthy and worm free. With Horse Health Ivermectin costing as low as $2.05 per tube, it was an easy choice!

Fly Mask by Horse Sense

Summer is upon us and fly season is in full force.This Fly Mask by Horse Sense will help both you and your horse beat the bugs this season. The durable netting not only protects your horses eyes, but is also easy to wash. The comfort cotton trim will make your horse both calm and cool during these hot summer months. At $9.99, this fly mask’s price is hard to beat.

OOPS Jolly Balls – Assorted Colors

“OOPS” during production means BIG savings for you! These Jolly Balls may have irregular colors, but they still have the same functionality and quality craftsmanship as all Horsemen’s Pride products. These balls, which require no air to inflate, have become a stable staple. With over 29 reviews, these Jolly Balls still maintain a FIVE STAR rating. If you’re looking for a great horse toy at an amazing value, then this is the product for you!

Want to check out more of these great deals before everyone else? View the flyer deals online now – HERE!

Products mentioned in this article: Acti-Flex, Horse Health Ivermectin, Fly Mask by Horse Sense, and Jolly Balls