If you own a horse, you should know that flies can be a problem as these not only cause significant discomfort but also spread diseases.
To protect your horse, you’ll need to take appropriate measures to keep your horses safe. Knowledge of what needs to be done is crucial to finding solutions.
Finding far-reaching solutions is hinged on fully understanding the tips listed below.
While some of these may prove very useful, the place of a vet doctor is essential and never in doubt as they’re better trained to offer solutions.
So, consider using this article as a bonus to more competent medical solutions.
Flies can be Highly Problematic to Horses.
When it comes to horse health, all surrounding conditions must be optimal to promote good health.
Most times, poor sanitation and manure management attract a lot of flies which spread a wide range of conditions and diseases.
These adverse conditions include pigeon fever, summer sores, hypersensitivity, and eye worms. Others include equine infectious anemia and onchocerciasis.
So, what are these conditions, and what symptoms do they cause? Let’s briefly take a look at each.
i. Pigeon Fever
Here, multiple fly varieties are responsible for this condition. These include horn flies, house flies, and stable flies. These spread the bacterium corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis.
The resulting infection causes external or internal abscesses or both and disease of the limb.
ii. Summer Sores
Summer sores are another fly-related ailment horses suffer from. Here, parasitic nematodes are transferred by face flies, houseflies, and stable flies.
Of course, the target is mostly the moist areas around the eyes. Other vulnerable points include wounds, nostrils, genitalia, and mouth. Chronic injuries result from this condition.
Flows’ constant bugging leads to all sorts of irritation like skin thickening, hives, hair loss, intense itching, skin ulceration, and excoriations.
This can lead to a secondary infection unless treated urgently. To eliminate the problem, you must fully address the cause (in this case, fly activity).
iv. Eye Worms
Irritation and secondary infection arise from the transmission of the Thelazia lacrymal nematode worm by face flies.
When these get transmitted, the worms reside in the ducts and eye glands of the horse. Effective containment of the problem requires treating the condition and preventing flies.
v. Equine Infectious Anemia
Equine infectious anemia is a condition that’s primarily transmitted in horses by deerflies and horseflies. This virus is injected through the specialized mouthparts of these flies into horses.
What results is a fatal condition that affects the horse and can spread from one horse to the next.
Horses suffering from this parasitic condition show a wide range of symptoms that include ulceration, loss of skin pigmentation, scales, hair loss, and crusts.
These worms are found in horses’ skin and the neck’s nuchal ligament, among other areas. Apart from treatment, such flies will need to be kept at bay.
Keeping Flies Off of Horses’ Eyes
From our discussion, it’s evident that flies are a menace to horses as they cause all sorts of adverse conditions. You’ll have to take appropriate and urgent steps to keep these pests at bay.
Luckily, there are tons of ways to achieve this objective, as you’ll soon learn.
There are two broad approaches for the prevention of flies in horse eyes. They include calling a vet and taking preventive action.
i. Call a Vet
One of the most effective ways of dealing with a fly problem is speaking to the pros.
Keeping flies away from horses’ eyes can be achieved with various medications. Existing conditions will require a vet performing diagnosis and administer treatment.
This tends to provide immediate relief to horses. Also, there may be recommendations on how best to prevent a repeat of the problem.
Preventive treatments will be determined by what’s diagnosed or observed.
ii. Take Preventive Actions
Treating your horses for health conditions caused by flies is not enough.
A preventive approach is suitable for your horse and helps maintain overall health. Prevention involves a whole range of actions aimed at fly control.
These include placing fly traps, quickly removing manure, adding fly spray systems, properly closing garbage containers, and systematically drying manure.
Others include the proper location of manure sites, covering composted manure with a fly barrier, modifying paddocks, and using fly predators.
What more? Using horse protection and feeding growth regulators will help do the trick. Let’s briefly discuss each of these points.
Proper Placement of Fly Traps
Because you want fewer flies disturbing your horses or getting into their eyes, consider drawing them away by placing fly traps at strategic points outside your barn.
These traps mostly contain sugar lures, insecticide baits, and pheromone lures. These have been proven to be helpful in fly prevention.
Quick Removal of Manure
Flies are often attracted to horse stables when excess manure is left to pile up.
Organic debris like wet hay or straw will need to be removed to discourage fly presence. By clearing up the area, problems like horse-eye diseases are limited.
Properly Closing Garbage Containers
Open garbage containers are a ready invitation to flies.
This is especially problematic when the garbage container(s) is located close to your horse barn or stable. Consider tightly closing such containers to limit the presence of flies.
Using Fly Predators
Fly predators are a great way to contain your horse’s fly problem.
By releasing these predators, you’re able to adopt a natural control. These wasps seek out fly pupae to lay their eggs in. The developing fly larvae are then killed, thus preventing their development.
Protecting horse eyes from flies includes using passionate fans, putting on fly masks on horses, and using sheets. These and several others help eliminate or minimize the nuisance caused to flies.
Keeping flies off horses’ eyes is one area you’ll need to focus on to prevent diseases and other health problems. We’ve mentioned the different ways this is achieved.
More importantly, you’ll need professional medical (vet) help to find a lasting solution.