Flies. What Horse Owners Can Do To Make Them Buzz Off!
Reprinted form induehorse.com
By Louis Dando
I don’t know about you but I just love the summer. I love the hot weather, the light evenings, and it helps that I now have the summer holidays off! However I absolutely hate flies. Since starting riding in France, I have honestly been shocked at the amount and size of flies that follow the poor horses around.
So, here are my top tips to make those flies buzz off!
1. Fly repellent and lots of it. I have recently been gifted some fly repellent from Fly Off to review and it seems great. Fly Off is different as it has little discs of fly repellent that you can strap to your horse on its leg using their handy Velcro strap and I also was sent the rider clip too that I clipped to my saddle & I was bugged a lot less than normal whilst hacking like that.
2. Fly Masks. For me fly masks are an essential part of my horses wardrobe now. I could not put Mya out without one as her face would be covered in flies.
3. Fly Rugs. Now Mya is turned out all summer with a fly mask and a rug too. This is because she is VERY sensitive to any flies and although it may make her a little hotter, she seems far more comfortable in a fly rug than without. I do understand that this may not be necessary for all horses and I would like to add that Mya is checked twice a day when it is hot as sometimes it is simply too hot for her to wear it in the French summer heat. But most of the time to works a treat in keeping her fly free.
4. Poo picking. Now Katie & I like a clean paddock. It’s something we are proud of and we often compare our lovely poo free paddock to Mya’s neighbors with great satisfaction. However it does serve a purpose too. Poo (particularly freshly dropped poo) attracts flies. Big time. So getting that out of your paddock and away from your horses is a good idea.
5. Riding with an ear bonnet. I always ride Mya inn the summer with an ear bonnet so the flies cannot get to her ears as she seems very sensitive to this. Again can be a little hotter in the heat but totally worth it in my opinion.
6. Research by thehorse.com has shown that a field shelter is essential for your horse not just to protect it from the bad weather in the winter but very effective from protecting horses from flies in the summer also. I would agree with this as I think Mya actually uses the shelter in her field more in summer than in winter and if she is particularly troubled by flies she will always stand in her shelter for relief.
7. Remove any standing water from your field or yard. It is known that flies are attracted to water so if you have any pipe leaks or puddles that build up. Get rid of them as they will attract flies too.
8. Removing buckets from your paddock or stable. Now we are quite old school and use rubber buckets to feed Mya in her field. I also used to do this with my own horse when he was stabled. Namely so the bucket can be left there without the risk of the horse injuring itself on it. However I have noticed that after Mya has eaten, the flies swarm to her bucket to get any left over bits of food from her bucket. So they have to be taken away if you want those flies to buzz off!
So, although not ground breaking I hope you find some of those tips useful for the last part of summer. I can’t actually believe it is September already.
Putting it out there. Fly Off GIFTED me these products to review. I have tried out the products & am happy to recommend them to you. To get some for yourself head to Fly-off.co.uk.