Tests on horses at the yard owned by leading equestrian ChristopherBartle support the results of a European study which showed thatmoxidectin is 100 per centeffective against small redworm.

Horses based at the world famous Yorkshire Riding Centre have been following a moxidectin-based worming regime for over five years, and in several cases for ten years. In their most recent faecal worm egg count (FWEC) test, conducted in June 2009, no worm eggs were detected.

The results support the findings of a 2008 Fort Dodge-sponsored study (the largest of its kind so far undertaken in horses) which was led by scientific teams from veterinary faculties in Italy and Germany, and which identified no cases of moxidectin resistance. By contrast, it confirmed that resistance to fenbendazole was a particular challenge with 80 per cent of the yards tested in the UK and Germany showing resistance. Resistance to pyrantel also proved to be increasingly prevalent while cases of ivermectin resistance were emerging.

Christopher Bartle, leading three-day eventer and national coach to the German three-day event team, opted for a moxidectin-based regime for his yard in 1999 and, since then, his horses have been routinely wormed every 13 weeks.

He said: “Based on the science presented to me, I believe that the EQUEST wormer brands, containing the unique active ingredient moxidectin, are the most effective and easy to use treatments to control small redworm.

“It’s reassuring that, after up to ten years’ continuous treatment, it has remained effective, particularly at a time when resistance is appearing against ivermectin in horses.”

Helen Barnes, equine business manager for Fort Dodge in Europe, said: “Worming is a complex and rapidly changing area and it can be hard for horse owners, retailers and vets to keep track of the latest thinking.

“With so much information out there, it’s important to separate out scientifically proven facts from subjective opinion. It has certainly been proven that moxidectin is more potent than ivermectin and that it remains effective against parasites which have become resistant to ivermectin.

“It’s also been proven that because moxidectin treatment is required less frequently, fewer generations of parasites are exposed to the drug compared with ivermectin. This means that when an animal is treated with moxidectin, more generations of parasite can complete their life-cycle without being exposed to an anthelmintic, which in turn, increases the proportion of susceptible parasites in the total population.

“At the end of the day, each horse’s worming regime must be tailored to its individual needs. Our advice to owners is to consult their vet or a Suitably Qualified Person. Our website www.wormingyourhorse.info also provides a wealth of useful information.”

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