diatomaceous earth - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 20 Old 06-02-2012, 11:23 PM Thread Starter
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diatomaceous earth

Hi, this is a horse question really, it just starts off with dogs!
I moved to a new block about 6 weeks ago and my poor dogs are getting hammered by fleas. I just gave them a (chemical) flea bath and five minutes later they are covered again even though they have flea collars on as well. The fleas are obviously in the soil here to the point that they are now biting me as well when I go outside. So I found an internet site recommending diatomaceous earth(sp?) which sounds like a good non-chemical option. So Im supposed to sprinkle it on the ground. It also says its "attractive" to horses. Is there any danger to my horse if he licks up this dust? And is "attractive" as in he will start licking up dirt to get to it? I understand it is used in some licks? But is there an amount where it becomes toxic?
Im really desparate to help my poor dogs so I would appreciate any advice at all! Thanks!
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post #2 of 20 Old 06-02-2012, 11:28 PM
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We feed it to our horses, it kills worms as well and stops flies from laying eggs in their poop- they also tend to roll in it, if you put it on the ground, which will keep the flies and the fleas off of them!

The girl in our feed store suggested putting it in a sock and hanging it from a stall door, so they 'dust' themselves with it as well. So yeah, generally safe for horses.
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post #3 of 20 Old 06-02-2012, 11:47 PM
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A rancher I met in Hawaii swore by it for worms and other pests. Fed it to the horses, directlyl. But , there are food grade and non food grade DE's . I might inquire as to that.
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post #4 of 20 Old 06-02-2012, 11:48 PM
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Right Tinyliny, I definitely forgot to mention. I haven't seen a non-food grade, but my local feed shop might not carry it. Definitely look into getting one that's good as a supplement.
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post #5 of 20 Old 06-02-2012, 11:54 PM
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Around here you can get it a 50lb bag for not to much at "the" feed store.
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post #6 of 20 Old 06-03-2012, 12:08 AM
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Just remember that manure that has it in it is not good for gardens. I'm going to begin using it in my dogs, can't decide on the horses as we use composted manure in our garden.
Maybe I'm wrong about it?
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post #7 of 20 Old 06-03-2012, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by cakemom View Post
Just remember that manure that has it in it is not good for gardens. I'm going to begin using it in my dogs, can't decide on the horses as we use composted manure in our garden.
Maybe I'm wrong about it?
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Really? Becasue it kills the beneficial insects, too?
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post #8 of 20 Old 06-03-2012, 12:35 AM
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Well, now I'm researching again. Originally I read several articles that said it would hurt the earthworms we need. Now I'm reading different. I see a call to the county agent coming.
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post #9 of 20 Old 06-03-2012, 12:42 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone, yes I just did a bit more reading on it. Im just paranoid to use anything new with the very sad threads on here about horses being poisoned by things I never even knew were toxic to them.
So according to my reading, yes, it does make the horse manure useless for gardening as it kills a lot of beneficial bugs. But Im not actually planning to feed it to the horse at all, I just want to sprinkle it around the house to kill these evil fleas. And yes, it looks like there are gardening grades (to kill pests) and food grade (for treating stock for worms). Obviously I'll have to get food grade as he's bound to at least try it.
And then Im worried because its a powder and you're supposed to feed it moistened in case of choke. Well, I'll just try a tiny sprinkle first maybe....

OR if anyone knows any other non-toxic ways to get fleas out of soil that wont poison a horse??? Im open to all suggestions!
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post #10 of 20 Old 06-03-2012, 12:49 AM
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You can use nematodes to get rid of fleas, works very well as long as you keep chemicals out of the environment.
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