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Is fly spray critical for a horse?

484 Views 9 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Knave
So I’ve never used fly spray on my horse, and she has been absolutely fine, but the owner of the horse in the paddock next to my horse is demanding that I use fly spray to protect her horse from pigeon fever. Is it critical that I use fly spray on my horse?
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IMO, no it is not. While spraying does help YOUR horse keep the bugs off for “five minutes”, it won’t help her horse. She needs to reevaluate her thinking as to how a horse can get pigeon fever.

This is a great article from UC Davis. The other horse owner might benefit from reading it.

 

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Nope, I'm cheap and only ever use fly spray prior to riding or horse showing (only if the flies are being obnoxious).

If I didn't have fly issues, I would never use fly spray. I certainly don't use it as a preventative in the pasture - it'd have to be reapplied frequently throughout the day to have any effect whatsoever.
 

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We use it when the flies are really bad, but mostly not. I'm cheap and $65/gallon is crazy expensive for short term protection. The horse doesn't really care, much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
IMO, no it is not. While spraying does help YOUR horse keep the bugs off for “five minutes”, it won’t help her horse. She needs to reevaluate her thinking as to how a horse can get pigeon fever.

This is a great article from UC Davis. The other horse owner might benefit from reading it.

that’s the article that the other horse owner sent me to try to convince me of her point lol
 

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When the bugs are really bad and we're going for a ride, I spray, let it dry, and spray again but keep it away from the face. Be careful about putting it on the fronts of the legs, where they might rub their eyes. Don't use any type of fly repellant, even a "gentle herbal" repellant around the eyes - use a fly mask instead. If they're really suffering out in the pasture I've sprayed them in the past but after what happened to my mare's eyes I think I'm going to start using fly sheets instead.

I'll still spray their butts and the places they can't reach with their tail or face.
 

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I don’t think it’s necessary, but have a couple of horses who think it is. One is like me, and he cannot stand biting bugs. He will panic over a mosquito cloud. I get mad, but I am the same way. Flies were really bad here this year though.

I use it before I ride during fly season, and if horses are panicking in the corrals we go spray them to give them a bit of relief. Like everyone said though, it really is short term and very expensive.

Yet, if your horse was in my yard, and you didn’t fly spray him, would I have a problem? Nope. Yes, flies transmit pigeon fever, but I don’t care how much you fly spray, if it’s coming it’s coming. What we do when there is a breakout is move and quarantine a sick horse. There is a thought that a half mile is enough distance, but really that’s been disproven. Now, I still will quarantine a horse at another place because I can, and because I do think it helps, but I realize it is no guarantee.
 
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