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  1. #1
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    Default Live worms in poo!!

    I wormed my horse and her companion pony at weekend and was alarmed to see a few live red worms in the horses droppings and a few dead white worms in pony's. I wormed them with equimax. I had a worm count done on the horse in the spring which came back at zero, so she was only wormed once in the summer with equest. The companion pony is a new addition (so not sure what his worm count would be), but they are in separate paddocks and I poo pick the fields daily. Am really shocked that my horse obvioulsly has a worm problem!! Can anyone advise when it would be safe to worm her again, and what with (was thinking of equest)?? Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    Before you worm next, get a worm count of both horses. Worming will flush out any worms and it is an idea to keep horses inside for 24 hours following worming to avoid pasture contamination.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    Many wormers work not by killing the worms but paralyising them. This causes the worms who burrow into the horses gut eg small intestine to not be able to 'hang on' & therefore they get passed out in the horses poo. Nice!

    When you had your worm count done, do you know what they checked for? Not all worm eggs can be detected in poo & remember that yo only send a very small sample off to be checked. Some worms like tape worm can only be checked by blood tests.

    If you have had one show a high infestation of red worm, I would be inclined to do a 5 day course of Panacur Equine Guard as this is one of the few wormers to shift the small encysted red worms which is you don't kill off can cause huge problems for your horse when they come out of the encysted phase of the worm cycle. It would be safe to worm again straight away if you wanted to. When I worked at the vets we kept a foal with horrific worm infestation on Equine Guard for about 2 months.

    What did the white worms look like? Were they thin & stringy or flat & fat?

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    thanks for replying! The dead worms in the pony's droppings were white, small and stringy. To be honest I wasn't that alarmed to see them in his droppings as I don't know his worming history, but I was upset to see the little wrigglers in the horses, due to her previous worm count and the fact that she grazes alone and the field is kept free of droppings!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    When you see them wriggling it is always a bit grim! Basically they hold on to their host with their mouths (which is why they do so much damage) and when they are paralysed (sp) by the wormer they are unable to chomp away on their host. I'm not entirely sure why they are still able to wriggle when they come out (it may just be their mouths that are paralysed) but it is being evicted from their host horsey &amp; therefore in a hostile habitat at the wrong stage of the worm cycle that kills them off - hence you should leave your horses in for 24 hours after worming as there is a risk of them being ingested again.

    The white worms sound like pin or thread worm to me. They aren't anything too serious but you may find the pony with them spends a lot of time scratching its bum - they burrow around the bottom end &amp; make them itch. I think Eqvalan is the best wormer to get rid of pin worm but I'm pretty certain some of the new wormers on the market now kill it off too.

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    Is it safe to re-worm pony straight away? He is fairly ancient! And with the panacur 5 day I take it they don't have to stay in for the 5 days? (To be honest they are only out for a max 4 hours at the moment anyway, so I can be extra diligent with the poo picking). You know lot about worms

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    I wouldn't worry about leaving them in if you are doing the 5 day course. Strictly speaking you should but as you have already wormed once you will have knocked the worst of them on the head already, this second worming is more a case of making sure they are under control and diligent poo picking will help prevent overly contaminating the pasture.

    I don't see why you shouldn't worm the old pony straight away if you are using a different drug to the first wormer. You would actually have to over dose a horse with about 10 times the normal dose to do any serious harm &amp; they always say it is better to use a bit too much wormer than to under do it &amp; cause resistance to that type of anthelmintic by not killing the worms off properly. Worming seems to be my pet subject tonight!

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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    Thanks so much for your advice, will be off to saddlery first thing tomorrow. Obviously I will just buy the wormers and nothing else

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    for worm counts to be accurate they need to be done quite frequently, once in the spring is not enough, worm life cycles get most active during the grazing season, i.e march to october, you really need a count to be done every 6 - 8 weeks or so. worm counts will only tell you the estimated number of egg laying adults present, it is likely your horse was carrying a burden on juvenile non egg laying worms. worm counts DO NOT detect the prescence og encysted small redworms (cyathastomes) or tapeworms.

    i would be inclined to do a panacur 5 day guard in 2 weeks as a follow up this will start to flush any encysted small redworms that may be present from her system, follow that up in a months time with an equest. MAKE SURE YOU ARE TREATING YOUR HORSE FOR IT'S CORRECT BODYWEIGHT!!!!!!! i cannot believe the amount of people who have no idea what their horse weighs and end up under dosing, which leads to resistance to drugs.

    different chemical wormers have different modes of action, equimax and equest cause paralysis of the parasite, whereas panacur effectivlt starves the parasite to death.
    the white worms you describe sound like immature roundworms, these tend to be more of a problem in foals and youngstock causing gut blockages due to the size they can grow to (40cm) i would be more worried about the redworms.

    do you know what was grazed on the land before your horse?? could have been something that was riddled and yours has picked up infection from the pasture......

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Live worms in poo!!

    No problem! I seem to have bit of a strange interest in parasitology for some reason

    Of course, you will resist all temptation at the saddlers &amp; not succomb to that gorgeous pair of jods with your name on. Or the beautiful saddle cloth that would make such a nice pressie for your horsey

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