Westgate represent the RAMA view at the National Equine Forum '22

Westgate represent the RAMA view at the National Equine Forum '22

Westgate represent the RAMA view at the National Equine Forum '22

07 March 2022

Expert Panel speak about wormer resistance

We were honoured to be invited to speak about wormer resistance at the National Equine Forum last week, 3rd March ’22. Along with a panel of experts that included Dr Claire Stratford & Dr Alison Pyatt from the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and David Rendle from the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA), Westgate Labs Director Claire Shand gave the RAMA point of view. Claire talked about the targeted approach to parasite control that we have been advocating for the last 23 years and highlighted the steps that all horse owners need take to help us address this issue.

The session posed the issue of wormer resistance as a collective responsibility and sought to raise awareness of the severity of the problem and the consequences if we don’t heed the advice. What was clear from the statistics David presented is that only one diagnostic test is used for every 11 wormers given. This means that although habits are changing, many horses are still being treated for parasites without the knowledge from testing as to whether they need it or not.  

The focus of our Westgate message was to raise awareness in the role the RAMA/SQP could play in supporting horse owners with this aspect of horse health alongside a vet. Claire talked about how to make testing the centre of a parasite control programme, treating only the horses that need it and dosing appropriately to preserve key medicines. She encouraged us all to back this up with management techniques like poo picking and resting and rotating grazing to break the lifecycle of the worms mechanically rather than having to rely on chemicals.

Claire said: “Wormer resistance isn’t a subject that gets much of the limelight yet it’s one of the biggest problems facing the future health of our horses. We’re very passionate about this here at Westgate so it was a privilege to get the opportunity to speak on this subject alongside the VMD and BEVA. If we’re to safeguard our ability to keep horses on our grazing land into the future we have to work together and we have to act now. The pan industry approach the VMD are leading on is a real lifeline of hope to enable this change the we are right behind. The alternative if we carry on as we are is a very bleak prospect indeed.”

Read the Horse & Hound Report on the session 
What is Wormer Resistance and how do we combat it?


Session Chair:  Dr Pat Harris
Initiating a coordinated response  Dr Claire Stratford & Dr Alison Pyatt, Veterinary Medicines Directorate
The veterinary perspective  David Rendle, British Equine Veterinary Association
A RAMA perspective  Claire Shand, Westgate Labs
Panel discussion with Sara Jerman, World Horse Welfare

The National Equine Forum exists to address and debate matters that could impact on the equestrian industry, including policy changes, scientific developments and cultural initiatives and to bring them to the attention of key decision makers. It seeks to provide a platform for the exchange of opinions, concerns and ideas on all matters relating to the equestrian industry and to encourage and assist the equestrian industry to take greater responsibility and continuously improve standards, by providing access to the latest information and research.


> Watch the session here