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  • TICKS!!!

    Is there ANYTHING that actually works to keep these satan spawn away!?!? My yearling lives out on ~30-40 acres 24/7 and is absolutely miserable with tick bites. I can’t keep them away! I have tried Equi-spot, ultraboss, and countless fly sprays that are labeled to work for ticks too. Nothing works. I’m absolutely petrified of ticks (and all insects) so not only is spending 20-60 minutes a day pulling ticks off him and trying to soothe the huge painful/itchy welts unpleasant for him but is traumatizing for me as well. He is boarded so I have no control over the property management and I can’t move him so I need some way to put a protective bubble around him before he ends up with Lyme disease.

  • #2
    I have great results with Freedom 45 every two weeks. You don’t have to put it in a million places like Equi spot suggests. My pinto used to get terrible reactions to tick bites and has had what we call tick fever and probably Lyme too. But since I started using Freedom 45 I have found zero ticks on him. No more oozey bite marks. I have used it for the last 3 or 4 years. I swear by it.


    • #3
      Originally posted by JFJ View Post
      I have great results with Freedom 45 every two weeks. You don’t have to put it in a million places like Equi spot suggests. My pinto used to get terrible reactions to tick bites and has had what we call tick fever and probably Lyme too. But since I started using Freedom 45 I have found zero ticks on him. No more oozey bite marks. I have used it for the last 3 or 4 years. I swear by it.
      I also feel like Freedom 45 made a difference for my horse. He is a thin-skinned thoroughbred and seems to get more ticks then any other horse in his field. Or at least used to, now when I see one I apply the Freedon 45 and usually won't see one again for about 2 weeks.


      • #4
        Originally posted by Rusty15 View Post
        He is boarded so I have no control over the property management and I can’t move him so I need some way to put a protective bubble around him before he ends up with Lyme disease.
        Maybe not an option, but I keep reading that ticks dessicate easily so are less active when it's hot and dry, so I started turning my horses out during the hottest part of the day and keeping them in the rest of the time. I feed hay until the grass "hardens" (has more fiber) later in the summer anyway, so thought I'd try this to see if it makes any difference.


        • #5
          Ultra Boss is $38 for a quart from Valley Vet. I use 6ccs every 2 weeks on my horses. The packaging states you can use up to 30ccs on a 1,000 lb horse. I haven't found it necessary to do so.

          Using a 6cc syringe, I apply a dab on the forelock, some along the mane, a bit at the dock, some in the tail hairs and a bit along each pastern.

          The ticks will still crawl on your horse, but they won't survive very long. I took my horse on a trail ride today. I had applied the Ultra Boss 10 days ago. We must gone through an area that was thick with ticks because he started stomping and I could tell he was tense. 1 1/2 hours later, after we got home and I had hosed him off, I checked his legs. He had several ticks that had "bitten", but when I pulled them off they were either dead are very near dead.

          I have tried Equispot, Freedom 45 and Celebration in the past. All three caused skin irritation and very violent reactions with my herd. I haven't had any reaction with the Ultra Boss and it is MUCH less expensive.


          • #6
            I use Martin's 10% Permethrin concentrate, diluted per directions every two weeks on my guys and have never found a tick on them (supposed to be effective for up to 4 weeks). Product is totally odorless (some permethrin products are really stinky). For daily fly control I use Espree essential oil concentrate (also diluted per instructions) and find it works great in my area. Both products, purchased in the gallon size, are a good bang for your buck vs buying premade quarts.


            • #7
              Anecdotally: when I cared for horses in New England, they lived in pastures with really tall grass. We used to have such bad ticks that they would cover the docks of the horses' tails in the summer. When we realized what was happening, it was not a pleasant situation but we were able to get them all off. From then on, we put baby oil on all their docks. It seemed to work quite well!! We found a lot fewer ticks on the docks of their tails once we started doing that.

              That was the only place we really saw them, so you may need another product for the rest of the body. Just my two cents.
              Last edited by WavyRider; May. 23, 2020, 09:47 PM. Reason: Edited to change "base of tail" to "dock" to make it clearer.


              • #8
                Frontline spray works..spray in the mane and tail. Year before last I used cat collars on each leg and frontline..worked great. I had no ticks and other borders were finding plenty. New farm has better managed pastures and haven't found a tick yet, but he also lives in a dry lot near a bunch of chickens and fowl.
                "Anyone who tries to make brownies without butter should be arrested." Ina Garten


                • #9
                  First, I'll say that I commiserate with you. I hate ticks.

                  Second, you should consider giving your horse a Lyme vaccine. The vaccine is made for dogs, but most vets will give it to horses if the owners ask for it. It has not been tested for efficacy in horses, but there's anecdotal evidence that it provides protection. Trust me, you do not want your horse to get Lyme disease.

                  Third, ticks typically hang out in tall grass, waiting for a likely host to walk through the grass, and then they can hop on. Mow the grass. That immediately cuts down on the tick possibilities.

                  Also, if you have woodpiles, or stone walls or places where you know that mice congregate, particularly deer mice, there's a neat trick for cutting down their infestations with ticks. Take a cardboard tube (from a roll of toilet paper or paper towels), and put several cotton balls well sprayed with a permethrin (anti-tick) spray. Put these in the woodpile and the stone wall. The mice take the balls to use in their nests, and the permethrin kills the ticks that are on the mice.
                  "The formula 'Two and two make five' is not without its attractions." --Dostoevsky


                  • #10
                    This may be a little far left but could you consider buying a flock of Guinea Hens? My friends bought a flock and after a few mishaps, they got the hang of it. These plucky little birds go around and devour ticks!

                    Anecdotally - before guinea hens my horse had upwards of 7 per day. After guinea hens, no ticks.