Hello summer, hello… flies? Fly season is perhaps the only annoying yet unavoidable part of the warmer months. These insects are irritating to horses and humans alike, leaving them with bites, sores, or even rashes and hives. Luckily, we have many lines of defense you can gear up with to have you and your horse prepared and protected this fly season.
Spray It Down
The options are seemingly endless for fly spray, our most basic form of defense against insects. Consider your horse’s needs when choosing a formula, such as long-lasting and sweat-resistant or gentle and all-natural. Oil-based fly sprays tend to last longer and often contain ingredients for conditioning and shine. Water-based or all-natural formulas are better options for our more sensitive equine friends.
Pyranha Wipe N’ Spray is a tried and true oil-based fly spray and insecticide that provides a sweat-resistant shield for your horse. It also adds conditioning and shine to their coat. This fly spray is excellent for everyday use and ringside prep to keep the shine on and the flies away.
Swät from The Infused Equestrian is an excellent all-natural water-based repellant that both you and your horse can use – it contains nine different essential oils to defend against various insects, and it smells great! This fly spray is great for horses with sensitive skin.
When sprays aren’t enough, stop insects in their tracks with physical barriers. Especially during turnout time or trail rides, consider using a fly mask, fly sheet, bonnet, or nose net. Though they may try, the insects will be unsuccessful in irritating or biting your horse. Similarly to fly sprays, the options seem endless for masks and sheets. Think about the amount of coverage you want and the climate you are living in when picking out your physical protection.
This Amigo Bug Rug from Horseware Ireland is an excellent option for a lightweight flysheet. It is a breathable material and has a removable neck attachment and tail flap for customized coverage. It also will prevent sun bleaching, so your dark horses stay dark!
Equifit’s Essential Fly Mask offers protection for your horse’s face while maintaining comfort. It has lightweight and moisture-wicking material to avoid irritation or bacteria buildup from sweating. This fly mask is also great for horses who are masters at removing fly masks!
Did you know your fly protection can also start from within? Feed-through fly preventatives are a great way to get ahead in the battle before it even starts.
Insect growth inhibitors such as Solitude IGR from Zoetis work by disallowing any fly eggs in the horse manure to mature into full adults. It is made from alfalfa and is safe at even 100 times the dose! Simply add this to your horse’s daily feed and within weeks your flies will start disappearing. Start this supplement early to keep flies away all season long.
Garlic supplements such as Animal Health International’s Pure Garlic Powder are another great option to repel insects from within. The sweat produced by a horse on garlic supplements gives out an odor that repels multiple types of irritating insects. And as a bonus, garlic also has incredible health benefits for your horse including anti-inflammatory and improved intestinal health.
Trapped in the Back
The age-old battle technique – traps – still exist for a reason: it works! However, it is important to remember that fly traps work by attracting flies, so you want to be sure you don’t hang them inside the barn or too close to your horse. Hang them just outside the barn or around the perimeter of the area you want to protect.
This Trap N Toss Fly Trap from Animal Health International works by attracting flies via odor, then trapping them inside the container. It can be hung up or set on the ground, so it will work in whatever location you need!
If you’re ready to gear up for the fly season, shop here! Or you can shop all of our products at FarmVet.com 24/7 or call one of our friendly Sales Associates at 1-888-837-3626. You can also email your order to email@example.com.
Is your horse experiencing allergies this spring from the flies or the change of seasons? Read about ways to treat and avoid allergies HERE.