Do fly repellents really work?

Elektra, our 3 yr. old freiberger filly and star of Diary of Starting a Young Horse, is probably wishing she’d stayed in her native Switzerland. She is SOOO sensitive to flies. The commercial fly repellents are firstly extremely expensive and NO bang for your buck – they evaporate within minutes. They are one of the least “value for money” products I can think of.

The ones that do work for a short period of time are also used up very quickly over a short period of time!

I bought Elektra a fly band – like a dog or cat flea band only bigger.

Two days ago I put it on her at lunchtime, standing in a shady place on the grooming area. It has an extremely potent smell, so I was hoping it would do the job. It also comes with a warning that it can cause allergic reactions on your horse’s skin! After I’d put it on Elektra, I led her out into the blazing mid-day sun, fully confident we could walk down to the outdoor stabling without being molested by hordes of hungry horse flies.

Not a chance. Within one horse’s length of leaving the safety of the shade, Elektra was a veritable fly-magnet for all horse flies and any other kind of fly within a 50 km radius of where she was standing.

Totally useless. However, it did not cause an allergic reaction on Elektra’s skin. (If anyone does have a success story about their fly  band on their horse please send it in!)

So now I’m collecting and trying out home remedies. I’ll publish the most effective one(s) here.

A Google-savvy friend did a search for home-remedy fly repellents for me. These are the results she sent me. I’ll be trying them out one by one and reporting on their success.

http://www.equine-world.co.uk/horses_care/fly-repel.htm

http://fiveoclocksomewherejewelry.blogspot.com/2009/04/vinegar-for-horsesa-miracle-cure.html

http://www.apple-cider-vinegar-benefits.com/horse-care.html

Global Feeds produces a supplement called Flyfree: Powerful nutrients that flies really hate.  FlyFree helps your horse cope with flies but it also helps with general skin condition, keeps the breathing clear and soothes the membranes around the nose and eye.

I will order some of this and give it a try – watch this space!

In the meantime, if anyone has any effective fly repellent remedies of their own, please, please share them with me for Elektra and any other readers whose horse might be suffering from the same raw deal!

As our horses live out all year round, if all else fails I’ll have to put fly rugs on her.

And as a footnote, an interesting article from the Horse and Hound:

http://www.horseandhound.co.uk/horsecare/1370/56161.html

 

Use the comment box on the blog itself to send me your questions about horse training. You can also write in about any problems you might be having with your horse.Either I or one of the resident expert trainers will do our best to answer your questions.

Always wear appropriate safety items of clothing, gloves, shoes and head protection when handling or riding your horse. There is always some risk involved in horse training for both you and the horse. Be sensible and stay within your level of training. This information illustrates the training methods and techniques I and my colleagues use. It is your responsibility to use it wisely. It is not intended to replace personal instruction from a professional instructor. Keep yourself and your horse out of trouble. if you wish to learn more about these methods contact us at: elizabeth@horsetrainingsolutions.com www.horsetrainingsolutions.com

Members area coming soon!

Thinking Horse DVD Click here to see sample exercises.

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8 Antworten auf Do fly repellents really work?

  1. Estelle Gawthorpe sagt:

    Hi Elizabeth,
    Just thought you may like to know that in this months ‘Your Horse’ magazine they have been testing out loads of fly repellents & the ‘Out-right Winner’ is Barrier Animal Healthcare Super Plus Fly Repellent Spray, priced around £8.50 for 500ml. Ease of use:10/10
    Effectiveness:10/10
    Value for money:10/10
    Verdict:30/30
    Report says: This product was easy to use and has an excellent spray dispenser, which is quiet and gentle. This repellent had a good smell, and the instructions were clear. It worked very well and kept the flies away between applications, which were morning & night. I noticed a difference in my horse’s coats when using it- they shined & looked in top condition. This product is excellent value for money & I will use it again as well as recommending it to others. It is very effective, has a pleasant smell and also conditions coats.

    I also found more info at Pegasus Health, that someone in Scotland gave an excellent report on it with regard to the well-known Giant Biting Scottish Midge!!
    I can’t wait to try it out myself!! Will let you know how I get on.
    Regards, Estelle

    • Elizabeth sagt:

      Hi Estelle, nice to hear from you again. Thanks for all the information. I found the fly spray you mention at Amazon, here is the link in case anyone is interested: http://amzn.to/p79dv2

      After reading the product description, it does sound to be worth recommending and I will give it a try. It comes packaged in different shapes and sizes so there is a good choice for whatever your needs might be.

      If it works so well on the Giant Biting Scottish Midge it must have gone straight to the top of the flyspray testing class!

      How are things with you and your horses?
      Thanks again for the info.
      Elizabeth

  2. Estelle Gawthorpe sagt:

    Hi Elizabeth,
    Just thought you may like to know that in this months ‘Your Horse’ magazine they have been testing out loads of fly repellents & the ‘Out-right Winner’ is Barrier Animal Healthcare Super Plus Fly Repellent Spray, priced around £8.50 for 500ml. Ease of use:10/10
    Effectiveness:10/10
    Value for money:10/10
    Verdict:30/30
    Report says: This product was easy to use and has an excellent spray dispenser, which is quiet and gentle. This repellent had a good smell, and the instructions were clear. It worked very well and kept the flies away between applications, which were morning & night. I noticed a difference in my horse’s coats when using it- they shined & looked in top condition. This product is excellent value for money & I will use it again as well as recommending it to others. It is very effective, has a pleasant smell and also conditions coats.

    I also found more info at Pegasus Health, that someone in Scotland gave an excellent report on it with regard to the well-known Giant Biting Scottish Midge!!
    I can’t wait to try it out myself!! Will let you know how I get on.
    Regards, Estelle

    • Elizabeth sagt:

      Hi Estelle, nice to hear from you again. Thanks for all the information. I found the fly spray you mention at Amazon, here is the link in case anyone is interested: http://amzn.to/p79dv2

      After reading the product description, it does sound to be worth recommending and I will give it a try. It comes packaged in different shapes and sizes so there is a good choice for whatever your needs might be.

      If it works so well on the Giant Biting Scottish Midge it must have gone straight to the top of the flyspray testing class!

      How are things with you and your horses?
      Thanks again for the info.
      Elizabeth

  3. Estelle Gawthorpe sagt:

    Hello Again,
    The Postman came just as I was getting ready for my morning ride! So my delivery of SUPER PLUS FLY REPELLENT was put to the test straight away & I’m pleased to report that it did the job splendidly.Even through the woods (notorious for the swarms of flies) it kept on working!! I can certainly recommend this product.
    My two horses are coming along just fine, Elizabeth, thanks to you setting me on the ‘right track’, particularly Alston Mists. We are growing in confidence, have been back on the moors, (incremental learning, so there’s always a good foundation to build on) & as the famous Monty Roberts says ‘Adrenalin down-learning up’. Alston has passed, Roadworks, a convoy of very large vehicles, cement mixers, tractors & trailers, with the greatest of confidence & I’m very pleased to report that we have had our very first ‘calm & enjoyable canter’ this morning.
    I have been helped enormously by transfering the first three lessons of the ‘Thinking Horse DVD’ to my riding; by that I mean that when out hacking there are lots of things that would make your horse ‘jump’. So, by pointing them out to him & saying, ‘Look, Don’t Spook’ one can 9 times out of 10 avoid your horse becoming ‘startled’ by things he hasn’t spotted. Also makes for a ‘good rapport’ between you & your horse. Thanks again, Elizabeth, My Best Wishes, Estelle.

  4. Estelle Gawthorpe sagt:

    Hello Again,
    The Postman came just as I was getting ready for my morning ride! So my delivery of SUPER PLUS FLY REPELLENT was put to the test straight away & I’m pleased to report that it did the job splendidly.Even through the woods (notorious for the swarms of flies) it kept on working!! I can certainly recommend this product.
    My two horses are coming along just fine, Elizabeth, thanks to you setting me on the ‘right track’, particularly Alston Mists. We are growing in confidence, have been back on the moors, (incremental learning, so there’s always a good foundation to build on) & as the famous Monty Roberts says ‘Adrenalin down-learning up’. Alston has passed, Roadworks, a convoy of very large vehicles, cement mixers, tractors & trailers, with the greatest of confidence & I’m very pleased to report that we have had our very first ‘calm & enjoyable canter’ this morning.
    I have been helped enormously by transfering the first three lessons of the ‘Thinking Horse DVD’ to my riding; by that I mean that when out hacking there are lots of things that would make your horse ‘jump’. So, by pointing them out to him & saying, ‘Look, Don’t Spook’ one can 9 times out of 10 avoid your horse becoming ‘startled’ by things he hasn’t spotted. Also makes for a ‘good rapport’ between you & your horse. Thanks again, Elizabeth, My Best Wishes, Estelle.

  5. Elizabeth sagt:

    Hi Estelle, good to hear that the fly repellent works. And thanks for the up-date with your horses. That’s just great news! Well done. Thanks again for all the info. Enjoy your ride! Elizabeth

  6. Elizabeth sagt:

    Hi Estelle, good to hear that the fly repellent works. And thanks for the up-date with your horses. That’s just great news! Well done. Thanks again for all the info. Enjoy your ride! Elizabeth

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