The polo field I ride on in the summer boarders a forest, so the insects are rather nasty and persistent, and seem immune to the fly spray. The worse offenders are these little gnat-like insects that fly into your mouth, eyes, up your nose without a second thought. And they drive my poor boy nuts! Matt has no respiratory issues, but over the last couple days he's been letting out a single cough two or three times during out rides, along with hard snorts as if he's trying to get something out of his nose or throat. I truly think he's choking on the little buggers!
Regular nose nets don't fit him, so I was thinking about using a hair net over his muzzle. Is the netting fine enough to prevent small insects from getting through? Matt is a Thoroughbred with a fine head, so do the nets stay in place well?
I'm willing to get creative and Macgyver something just as long as my boy stays comfortable.
You may try also to spray whatever you use with Off.
Our vet long ago told us to do that and it sure worked.
Those spring gnats are really swarming about now, if you are where there is any moisture for them to thrive.
We had one horse that was a veritable mosquito magnet.
There could be no mosquito anywhere on any one but on him, his neck and face black with them.
He lived in Off and that was the only way to keep insects off him.
He lived into his 20's, so all that Off didn't hurt him any.
Ask your vet and if all is clear to us it on your horse, give it a try, on a small spot first.
I have a headshaker, and I found that he destroyed the hairnets pretty quickly and spazzed about the tights (but he is kind of weird about his nose.) I use the Cashel net with a loose flash noseband over it to keep it in place and that's worked really well and been really durable. But my horse loves to rub his nose on his legs and will do it any time I'm distracted-- if you don't have this problem you might be okay with the hair nets. http://www.cashelcompany.com/Product...roductID=10399
We did both, sprayed off on a brush and brushed on the horse in places you don't want to spray, or spray where you can without maybe over spraying into where you don't want it and at times on whatever we used on the tack too.
Be sure first your horse won't react to Off, use it on one spot only and see what happens before using it all over, just in case.
Hope you can find a way to help your horse, that is miserable.