A quick look at cattle and sheep wormer classes

Worms are one of the biggest risks to cattle and sheep farmers. The parasites can cause big production losses. They do this in a number of ways, including harming the gut and lungs. Ultimately they can have an impact on feed intake, cause respiratory problems, and weaken the immune system so other diseases can cause more damage. What you need to do to stop this is use wormer effectively to kill the parasites.

The latter can be easier said than done in some cases though, especially if you are new to it. What you will notice is there are many different products on the market. That can make it tricky to decide what to use and when. We want to offer a little more information to help you choose.

The classes

What you need to start off with is a look at the different classes. Every wormer will belong in a class. This will vary depending on the chemical structures and how they work (mode of operation).

Cattle wormers have three classes to consider.

The first is white and indicates benzimidazoles (BZ). They are one of the largest families with five active ingredients, including albendazole, mebendazole, and ricobendazole. They can treat various internal worms, such as lungworm, and can also tackle tapeworm. The albendazole can treat liver fluke too.

The second class is yellow and indicates Levamisoles (2-LV). They only have a single active ingredient, tetramisole. It can help treat worms, including lungworm, and fluke. However, it is typically for grazing season. It is not recommended for housing treatment.

Finally is clear wormer, Macrocyclic Lactones (3-ML). This family has four active ingredients, including ivermectin. These products are a popular option because they treat internal worms as well as external pests like lice. They can also have persistent activity in treating some parasites.

Sheep wormers include the three for cattle and two additional ones.

The first is orange, Amino-acetonitrile derivatives (AAD). The active ingredient here is monepantel. They are specifically for roundworm, best for sheep with parasites that are resistant to white and clear wormer.

The second is purple, Spiroindoles (5-SI). It is a newer class for sheep and is a more potent clear wormer that can tackle resistance.

Ask us for help with choosing a wormer

It is important to think about the classes when you look at wormers. However, you should identify them by the formula instead of the packaging or colour of the solution. It is also a good idea to rotate the ones you use.

If you do have cattle or sheep and want to maximise production, treating parasites is vital. You can ask us for help if you need any wormer products. We have experience and stock a selection of them. So, contact us today.