Fly, midge and lice control

Fly and midge control

Control is aimed at minimising exposure to fly and midge bites and often includes some of the following:

  • Starting control before the midge season - do not wait for your horse to start itching
  • Stabling your horse during dawn and dusk when midge activity is greatest
  • Turning horses out in fields with lower midge burdens such as breezy pastures, higher ground and away from woodland
  • Preventing horses from grazing areas that have ponds nearby as these naturally attract the troublesome flies and midges
  • Using an effective fly rug to prevent midge contact with your horse’s skin
  • Using an effective long acting product containing Permethrin and Citronellol that is licensed to both kill and repel flies.

Ask your vet or retail outlet for a licensed, long-acting fly control product that both kills and repels flies, which will come as a ready-to-use, topical application. While off-the-shelf products may provide relief for short periods of time, re-application a number of times per day will be necessary which can prove unmanageable. By using a licensed control product, your horse can normally gain up to four day’s relief. However, longer or shorter protection may occur depending on climatic conditions, the prevailing fly species and the intensity of fly worry.

Lice control

Lice are common in horses but thankfully they are relatively easy to control. Rugs, saddle pads, brushes, and other equipment should be treated with very hot water or rubbed with an insecticide solution. All bedding should be removed from the stable, which should be disinfected and ideally kept horse-free for a number of days. Where one horse in a group has lice, all horses must be treated whether they show signs of infestation or not. This will break the possibility of lice transmitting from one horse to the next and back again.