Win The Battle Against Your Horse And Flies


It’s almost summer again and that means flies… Flies have been a horse’s enemy since the beginning of time.

So how do we get a grip on the problem? Here are a few tips that can help!

  • Repellents:

    Make sure you get a good repellent for your horse.  There are many to choose from, both insecticides and repellents are available in lotions, gels, roll-ons and wet wipes as well as sprays; these are useful for applications around the face as well as touchups along the trail, but they are best used as complements to the sprays, rather than replacements.  Here are a few that we found to work well…

    1. Ultra Shield Ex Fly Spray ($27.95 for 32 oz.)

    Absorbine sets a new standard for insect protection with their Ultra Shield Ex. It kills and repels over 70 insect species for up to 17 days with a sweat-resistant insecticide formula. This effective spray contains sunscreens and coat conditioners with aloe and lanolin to keep your horse safe and their hair looking great — and it can also be used on dogs, too!

    2. Pyranha Wipe ‘N Spray ($23.95 for 32 oz.)

    This highly-rated pyrethrum-based solution can be sprayed directly on your horse. It’s a ready-to-use formula that provides excellent protection with the added bonus of producing a lovely high shine when the hair is brushed out thanks to a lanolin additive for coat conditioning. It kills and repels many kinds of flies, including horn flies, deer flies, stable flies, and others as well as gnat and mosquitos. This spray offers effective protection with only two ounces per head, making it economical and effective.

    3. Absorbine Flys X Insecticide Spray ($16.95 for 32 oz.)

    This fly spray is economical, versatile, and ready-for-use right out of the bottle. It’s a contact killer and works effectively on flies as well as mosquitos, gnats, and lice. It’s safe to use on your horse, dog, and livestock. This water-based formula doesn’t leave an oily residue, so it won’t compromise your clothing.

    4. SWAT Fly Repellant Ointment ($12.95 for 7 oz.)

    SWAT is a pyrethrin fly-repellent ointment formulated to use around sores, scratches, wounds, and abrasions. It’s an ideal treatment for hard-to-reach and sensitive areas and can be used daily for fly control. SWAT can be used on horses, ponies, and dogs and it’s effective for hours.

  • Fly Masks: 

    Fly masks can help with flies irritating the horse around the eyes and ears and face.  It helps to get a mask that covers the ears as well, but let that be decisive of your horse’s needs.

  • Manure Management

    Flies live and reproduce in your horses’ manure, so you need to attack them where they start. Keeping stalls and runs clean is the first step.

  • Fly Traps

    Stable Management says, “Even with the advantages of the above and below listed techniques, flies will likely appear at your barn. A single fly can produce up to 1,000 offspring within a month. Trapping them is an effective and fulfilling way to kill the ones that got away.

    The most common trapping products are jars filled with an attractant, either natural or chemical, which lures flies in where they can’t escape. Another effective and time-honored method is fly paper. Place either or both of these contraptions liberally throughout your barn, runs and corrals. If your house happens to be near the barn, you may even want to put a jar near the back door.”

There are many different actions you can take to protect your equine from flies this summer.  The best way is to try and test.  What products and defense do you find works best with your horses?