Promising new research published in Agriculture 2021 (https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture11060525 ) found that the addition of pure flaxseed (linseed) oil to the diet of Thoroughbred and Arabian horses, significantly reduced the burden of Strongylidaes. The addition of flaxseed oil significantly reduced the evidence of stronglyle infection in their fecal samples and “The results indicate that properly selected plant additives obtained from arable crops may be helpful in limiting the numbers of drug-resistant strongylids,” Aleksander Górniak and his fellow researchers reported in the journal Agriculture.
The paper noted that traditional deworming medications are becoming less effective due to the evolution of drug resistance by parasites. “Therefore, the application of feed additives possessing antiparasitic properties may be helpful in limiting the burden of parasites,” they said.
Their study involved 15 Thoroughbreds and 12 Arabian horses fed a base diet of oats, muesli and roughage, given in meals three times a day. All the horses were healthy and housed individually in box stalls without access to pasture.
The animals were dewormed with ivermectin and praziquantel in February 2020. The animals were individually assigned across four groups, three of which were supplemented with daily vegetable oil while the fourth group remained the oil-free control group.
One group received soybean oil, another group Flaxseed oils, and the third group was supplemented with both linseed oil and vitamin E. The oil was feed at a rate of 0.5 millilitres per day per kilogram of body weight. The horses had free access to water and mineral salt. To read the full results of paper click here
“The main conclusion arising from the results of the present paper is that the addition of pure linseed oil significantly reduces the burden of Strongylidae in examined horses,” the study team said. Flaxseed oil warrants further investigation, including tests on other farm animals.
Górniak, W.; Moniuszko, H.; Wojnarowski, K.; Górniak, A.; Cholewińska, P.; Waliczek, A.; Soroko, M.; Szeligowska, N. Effect of Vegetable Oils Feed Additives on Endoparasites Associated with Dewormed Racing Horses. Agriculture 2021, 11, 525.
The full study can be read here.
Horse Talk NZ also has a great article on the same study: