Thursday, June 17, 2010

Worming success

Yesterday Coriander got paste wormed without even having a halter on his head!

I have been very unhappy with how stressful worming my horses has been in the past: they'd throw their heads up and shake their muzzles away from me up above my head. Then, when I finally managed to get the paste in their mouths they'd either rear or jump away from me. It was horrible.

So this time I decided to do it completely different. First I threw the due date right out the door and gave myself a two week window to get them wormed in. Second I just took the tube of wormer into their stalls and played the "can I touch you" game with it. I started at the shoulder and eventually moved up their necks, to their jaws and finally next to their lips. After I got to this point I switched to the "good" treats and asked them to let me put the tip of the tube in their mouth.

Gwen is currently still stuck at this point, she's in heat right now so she's feeling more testy than usual.

My boy, with the motivation of the "good" treats (he loves his licorice), started consistently letting me put the tube in his mouth until I just took the opportunity and squeezed it in. He didn't throw his head, rear, or jump. He mouthed it for a while and then looked at me for more treats- which I gave him. He got quite the jackpot for that.

The cost? Four days and lots of treats.

The result? Completely stress free worming. Priceless!


  1. Wonderful! Stress-free is good. Gwen will come around. Gem is getting his stuff on Monday. What flavour licorice do you use? I have never heard of having it as a treat.

  2. It's just the Start-to-Finish treats in licorice flavor. I tried them on a whim one day and he's been hooked ever since. I'm not giving him Twizzlers or anything ;)

  3. Thank goodness you clarified!! :-) Thanks for the link.

  4. Really good work - it's lovely to have horses that worm easily and take medicine by mouth as needed.

  5. Hi Kate, yes it was pretty fantastic. Now if only I could get my girl on board. Mares are so picky!