Does Ivermectin Kill Ticks On Horses?

Ivermectin is a highly effective medication for controlling and eliminating ticks on horses.

With its strong parasiticidal properties, Ivermectin targets and kills ticks, preventing them from infesting and harming horses.

By administering Ivermectin regularly as recommended by veterinarians, horse owners can ensure their equine friends remain tick-free and protected from the potential health risks associated with ticks.

Make sure to consult with a veterinarian for proper dosage and usage instructions to maximize the effectiveness of Ivermectin and safeguard the well-being of your horses.

does ivermectin kill ticks on horses

Benefits of using Ivermectin as a Tick Control Method for Horses

Ticks are a common nuisance for horses, as they can cause discomfort and transmit diseases. To protect horses from these parasites, various tick control methods are available, and one effective option is the use of Ivermectin. Ivermectin is a widely used parasiticide that offers several benefits in tick control for horses.

1. Broad-Spectrum Action

Ivermectin is a broad-spectrum antiparasitic drug, meaning it is effective against a wide range of parasites. This includes ticks, as well as other external and internal parasites that may infest horses. By using Ivermectin, horse owners can conveniently tackle multiple parasite problems simultaneously.

2. Long-Lasting Effectiveness

When administered correctly, Ivermectin provides long-lasting protection against ticks. After treatment, the drug remains active in the horse’s system, killing and repelling ticks for an extended period. This allows horses to remain tick-free for several weeks, reducing the need for frequent reapplication of tick control products.

3. Easy Administration

Ivermectin is available in various formulations, including oral paste, injectable, and pour-on solutions. This makes it convenient for horse owners to administer the medication according to their preference and the specific needs of their horses. The easy administration of Ivermectin makes it a practical choice for tick control.

4. Cost-Effective Option

Compared to other tick control methods, Ivermectin is considered a cost-effective option. The drug is readily available, and its affordability makes it accessible to a wide range of horse owners. By choosing Ivermectin for tick control, horse owners can effectively manage the parasite burden without breaking the bank.

5. Targeted Tick Control

Ivermectin specifically targets ticks and disrupts their nervous system, leading to paralysis and eventual death. This targeted mode of action ensures effective control of ticks without harming the horse or other non-target organisms. It offers a safe and reliable solution for tick infestations.

6. Prevention of Tick-Borne Diseases

Ticks are known carriers of various diseases that can affect horses, including Lyme disease and babesiosis. By effectively controlling tick populations using Ivermectin, horse owners can greatly reduce the risk of their horses contracting these tick-borne diseases. This helps ensure the overall health and well-being of the horses.

7. Trusted and Proven Treatment

Ivermectin has been extensively tested and widely used in veterinary medicine for many years. Its efficacy and safety in tick control have been well-documented, providing horse owners with confidence in its effectiveness. Many veterinarians consider Ivermectin as a reliable choice for tick control in horses.

In summary, Ivermectin offers several benefits as a tick control method for horses. Its broad-spectrum action, long-lasting effectiveness, easy administration, cost-effectiveness, targeted tick control, prevention of tick-borne diseases, and trusted treatment status make it an ideal choice for horse owners looking to protect their horses from ticks and the associated problems they bring.

How to Properly Administer Ivermectin to Horses for Tick Prevention

Ticks are a common nuisance for horses and can transmit harmful diseases. One effective way to prevent tick infestations is by administering Ivermectin, a medication commonly used in livestock to control parasites. In this section, we will discuss the proper steps to administer Ivermectin to horses for tick prevention.

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1. Consult a Veterinarian

Before administering any medication to your horse, it is important to consult a veterinarian. They can provide guidance on the appropriate dosage and frequency of Ivermectin treatment based on your horse’s specific needs. A veterinarian will also be able to assess your horse’s overall health and check for any potential contraindications.

2. Gather the Necessary Supplies

Ensure you have all the necessary supplies before starting the administration process. This includes:

  • Ivermectin medication – available in paste or liquid form
  • Appropriate dosage syringe or measuring device
  • Gloves
  • Applesauce or a small treat to help mask the taste

3. Prepare the Horse

Before administering Ivermectin, make sure your horse is calm and properly restrained. This can be achieved through the use of a halter and lead rope or by having an assistant hold the horse.

4. Measure the Correct Dosage

Using the dosage syringe or measuring device, carefully measure the correct dosage of Ivermectin as recommended by your veterinarian. Ensure that you are using the appropriate amount based on your horse’s weight.

5. Administer the Medication

Hold the syringe or measuring device containing the Ivermectin near the back of the horse’s mouth and gently depress the plunger to administer the medication. To prevent the horse from spitting out the medication, gently hold their head up and stroke their throat to encourage swallowing.

6. Offer a Treat

To help mask the taste and ensure your horse has swallowed the medication, offer a small amount of applesauce or a treat immediately after administering the Ivermectin.

7. Proper Disposal

Dispose of any unused medication or empty syringes as per the instructions provided by your veterinarian or local regulations. Do not allow other animals or children to come into contact with the medication.

8. Follow-Up and Repeat Treatment

After the initial treatment, it is essential to follow up with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate timing for repeat Ivermectin administration. Regular tick prevention measures, such as proper pasture management and grooming practices, should also be implemented to further reduce the risk of tick infestations.

In summary, administering Ivermectin to horses for tick prevention involves consulting a veterinarian, gathering the necessary supplies, preparing the horse, accurately measuring the dosage, administering the medication, offering a treat, and properly disposing of any unused medication. Regular follow-up and implementing additional tick prevention measures are crucial for maintaining your horse’s health and well-being.

Potential Side Effects and Precautions when using Ivermectin for Tick Control on Horses

Ivermectin is a commonly used medication for the control of ticks in horses. While it is generally safe and effective, there are some potential side effects and precautions that horse owners should be aware of when using this medication.

Potential Side Effects

1. Neurological Effects: In rare cases, horses may experience neurological side effects such as ataxia (loss of coordination), lethargy, or depression after receiving an ivermectin treatment. If any of these symptoms occur, it is important to contact your veterinarian.

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2. Allergic Reactions: Some horses may develop an allergic reaction to ivermectin, which can manifest as hives, itching, or swelling. If your horse shows any signs of an allergic reaction, discontinue the use of the medication and seek veterinary advice.

3. Gastrointestinal Disturbances: Ivermectin can occasionally cause mild gastrointestinal disturbances in horses, such as diarrhea or colic. These symptoms are usually transient and resolve on their own, but it is important to monitor your horse closely and consult your veterinarian if the symptoms persist or worsen.


1. Dosage Accuracy: It is crucial to administer the correct dosage of ivermectin according to your horse’s weight. Underdosing may result in inadequate tick control, while overdosing can increase the risk of side effects. Always consult your veterinarian for proper dosage instructions specific to your horse.

2. Pregnant and Nursing Mares: Ivermectin should be used with caution in pregnant and nursing mares. While it is generally considered safe, it is recommended to consult your veterinarian before administering the medication to pregnant or lactating mares.

3. Drug Interactions: Certain medications or substances may interact with ivermectin, potentially affecting its efficacy or increasing the risk of side effects. Inform your veterinarian about any other medications or supplements your horse is receiving to avoid potential interactions.


Ivermectin is an effective medication for tick control in horses, but it is important to be aware of potential side effects and take necessary precautions. Monitoring your horse closely for any adverse reactions and consulting your veterinarian for guidance is essential for ensuring the safety and effectiveness of the treatment.

Other Alternative Tick Control Methods for Horses Apart from Ivermectin

Ticks can be a nuisance for horses, causing discomfort and potentially spreading diseases. While ivermectin is a commonly used and effective tick control method for horses, there are also alternative options available. In this section, we will explore some of the other tick control methods that horse owners can consider.

1. Pyrethrin-Based Products

Pyrethrin-based products are a popular alternative to ivermectin for tick control in horses. Pyrethrins are natural insecticides derived from chrysanthemum flowers and are known for their insecticidal properties. These products work by affecting the nervous system of ticks, leading to paralysis and death.

Pyrethrin-based products are available in various forms such as sprays, shampoos, and wipes. They are generally considered safe for horses when used according to the manufacturer’s instructions. However, it is important to note that some horses may be sensitive to pyrethrins, so it is advisable to perform a patch test before applying the product over a larger area.

2. Essential Oils

Essential oils have gained popularity as natural alternatives for tick control in horses. Certain essential oils possess insect-repelling properties and can help deter ticks from attaching to the horse’s skin. Popular essential oils used for tick control in horses include cedarwood, eucalyptus, lavender, and citronella.

Essential oils can be diluted with a carrier oil such as coconut oil or almond oil and applied to the horse’s coat. It is important to note that essential oils should be used with caution, as some horses may have skin sensitivities or allergic reactions. It is advisable to consult with a veterinarian or equine expert before using essential oils on your horse.

3. Tick Repellent Clothing and Gear

Another option for tick control in horses is the use of tick repellent clothing and gear. This can include fly sheets, fly masks, and leg wraps that have been treated with insecticides specifically designed to repel ticks. These products create a barrier between the horse’s skin and ticks, reducing the likelihood of tick attachment.

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When using tick repellent clothing and gear, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application and reapplication. Regular inspections of the gear are also necessary to ensure its effectiveness and to remove any ticks that may have attached.

4. Environmental Management

Implementing good environmental management practices can also help reduce the risk of ticks on your horse. This includes regularly mowing pastures and paddocks to keep grass and vegetation short, as ticks thrive in tall grass and brushy areas.

Additionally, removing leaf litter, debris, and other potential tick habitats can help create a less favorable environment for ticks. Fencing off wooded areas and regularly checking and cleaning stable areas can also help minimize tick populations.

5. Biological Control

Biological control methods involve the use of natural predators or parasites to control tick populations. One example is the use of Guinea fowl, which are known to feed on ticks and other insects. Introducing Guinea fowl to your equine facility or pasture can help reduce tick numbers.

It is important to note that while alternative tick control methods can be effective, they may not provide the same level of efficacy as ivermectin. It is advisable to consult with a veterinarian or equine expert to determine the most suitable tick control strategy for your horse based on their individual needs and the prevalence of ticks in your area.


While ivermectin is a commonly used tick control method for horses, there are alternative options available. Some of these include pyrethrin-based products, essential oils, tick repellent clothing and gear, environmental management practices, and biological control methods. It is important to consider the individual needs of your horse and consult with a veterinarian or equine expert to determine the most suitable tick control strategy.


Does ivermectin kill ticks on horses?

Yes, ivermectin is effective in killing ticks on horses. It is commonly used as a dewormer, but it also has acaricidal properties that can eliminate ticks infesting horses. However, it is important to follow the recommended dosage and consult with a veterinarian before administering ivermectin to your horse.


In conclusion, ivermectin is an effective treatment for ticks on horses. Its powerful tick-killing properties make it a popular choice among horse owners and veterinarians alike. With its ability to target and eliminate ticks, ivermectin helps protect horses from the harmful effects of tick infestations. It is important to follow the recommended dosage and treatment schedule to ensure maximum effectiveness. Regular use of ivermectin as part of a comprehensive tick prevention program can greatly reduce the risk of tick-borne diseases in horses. Keep your horses healthy and tick-free with the help of ivermectin.