Vaccinating and deworming your horse

  • The five core vaccines in Minnesota are:

    • West Nile

    • Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis

    • Western Equine Encephalomyelitis

    • Tetanus

    • Rabies

  • Your horse may need additional vaccines if they show or travel, or are at risk for less common diseases.

  • Fecal egg counts can help monitor your horse and decide if your horse needs deworming.

Always work with a veterinarian yearly to discuss a vaccination and deworming schedule for your horse or your farm. 

Vaccinating

Vaccinating a horse
Vaccinating a horse. Photo credit: Krishona Martinson, equine Extension specialist

In Minnesota we recommend these five core vaccines:

  • West Nile

  • Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis

  • Western Equine Encephalomyelitis

  • Tetanus

  • Rabies

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Deworming

Deworming is key to horse and foal health care programs. Some studies show 80 percent of colic cases relate to parasites. Common parasites to deworm for include:

  • Adult strongyles

  • Larval strongyles –most responsible for colic in adult horses

  • Roundworms (ascarids)

  • Tapeworms

  • Bots – target this parasite after the first hard frost

Fecal samples can test for internal parasites except tapeworms and bots. Horses don’t consistently shed tapeworm eggs or segments in manure. But the rate of tapeworms in horses is highest in Minnesota. Thus, you should include products that target tapeworms in your deworming program.

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Julie Wilson, DVM, formerly with the University of Minnesota

Reviewed by Ron Genrick, Assurance Feeds; Harlan Anderson, DVM; Missie Schwartz, Minnesota Horse Council and Krishona Martinson, equine Extension specialist

Reviewed in 2018

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