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Tips on Reducing Flies Around Horses

Whilst we love the summer months providing warmer days and lighter nights so we can ride after work or school, the major downside is the dreaded flies. Here are a few tips on trying to get rid of flies and keep horses happy:

Fly repellent

Ensure horses are adequately covered with fly repellent, especially on hotter days when the flies are more active. Most commonly used in spray form to ensure a wider coverage, fly repellent is definitely advisable to spray onto a cloth or use a gel based, or roll-on, when applying around the face or for easily spooked horses which don’t appreciate being sprayed!

Bug rugs & masks

They may not be the most aesthetically pleasing deterrent but for horses who get bothered by flies they are an absolute savior! Fly rugs can also come with UV protection, water resistant tops and mane savers so there are plenty of options on the market to find the right one for your horse and turnout routines. Masks offer protection especially for those who suffer with the flies irritating their eyes which can lead to nasty infections. They can also be purchased with ear covers to avoid gnats nibbling in their ears. 

Stable during the day

As stables are generally darker and cooler, there are less flies inside during the day than if the horses were left to graze in the field. This practice also aids any horses or ponies which suffer with laminitis as the sugar content is higher in the grass during the daytime when the grass is heated. If you don’t have access to a stable, a Field Shelter is a good option for providing shade on hot days.

Supplements 

When fed daily, supplements containing garlic, apple cider, yeast and other ingredients with natural fly-repelling properties, discourage flies from biting. Providing complete body cover, they can save money on sprays and ensure that all areas are covered. 

Fly traps

From the dangly sticky tapes and traps to advanced fly zappers, all fly control and traps will reduce the number of flies to pester your horses Just make sure they are safely positioned out of reach.

Fans

Heat and humidity attracts flies. If you have warm barns then fans are a great option to cool horses down during the summer months, but they also provide assistance in reducing fly numbers as flying insects find it difficult to fly through a breeze.

Move the muck!

Flies bread on and so are attracted to fresh manure. Try to keep muck heaps and wheelbarrows away from the stables. It is also good practice to skip out your horses when passing to reduce fly attractions – and to try to keep your horses clean!

It is difficult to escape from flies, especially for horses. So the only way is to live with them and get used to taking measures that reduce them. We hope you find these tips useful. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook or Instagram.

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