Large strongyles, otherwise known as bloodworms, are parasites known to be the most destructive and deadly of all equine parasites. As immature larvae migrate through the horse’s blood vessels, they begin to destroy arterial walls, block or rupture blood vessels, damage circulation, organs and tissues. This parasite can result in your horse getting anemia, fever, lethargy, diarrhea and sometimes colic.
This parasite lives and migrates within the intestinal tract. If left undetected will cause inflammation of the intestines, anorexia, diarrhea, weight loss and possibly colic.
The medical term is Ascarids but the more commonly known name is “roundworms”. This type of parasite most often affects the young horses, such as yearlings, weanlings and sucklings. Roundworms can cause damage to the horse’s liver and lung tissue. Some signs to watch for are fever, coughing, and pneumonia. Roundworms that reach the adult stages will live in the small intestine, which becomes even more serious. If left untreated it can cause colic, blockage, rupture gut and sometimes death.