Worcester Horse Testing Lab Introduces ParaScreen-e™

A Convenient Fecal Testing Option for Horse Owners

With intestinal parasite resistance in horses on the rise, equine fecal testing is becoming more important than ever. It is the only way to test for parasite resistance and provides valuable information necessary for establishing responsible deworming programs.

“Advocates for fecal testing include veterinarians, horse-care professionals and even deworming drug manufacturers,” says Jim Staruk, President of New England Horse Labs, Inc., a Worcester based, USDA-APHIS certified lab providing horse specialty testing services for over 30 years.

“Without fecal testing, horse owners can’t know what specific parasites exist on their farm, which horses are in need of treatment and whether or not parasite resistance is present. Even if horse owners are using daily dewormers or rotational deworming, without fecal testing, they could be treating unnecessarily or worse, using chemicals that are ineffective on horses with parasite resistance,” explains Jim.

ParaScreen-e™ is a fecal collection and mail-in testing kit that provides a very convenient way for horse owners to obtain fecal testing. New England Horse Labs is committed to making fecal testing available to all horse owners by offering ParaScreen-e™, a fecal testing option never before available to the individual horse owner. “We want to encourage fecal testing and help horse owners step away from out-dated deworming practices that encourage the overuse of deworming medications and indiscriminately administering them to horses,” says Jim.

Jim notes that if fecal testing is not easy for horse owners to get or too difficult to coordinate with their veterinarians, who are not always located close by, these owners are less likely to get their horses tested. ParaScreen-e™ eliminates those obstacles and is an easy option for horse owners wanting fecal testing done by a qualified lab.

New England Horse Labs does the testing, detects the existence of common intestinal parasites and provides a fecal egg count (FEC). These findings are reported directly to the horse owner. This information can then be shared with a veterinarian or used by hands-on horse owners to devise the most effective treatment options and only if treatment is deemed necessary.

“On farms where common intestinal parasites easily spread, properly managing the situation will save time and money for horse owners in the long run,” Jim suggests. “A simple fecal test may reveal that no treatment is necessary, eliminating the need for buying unnecessary dewormers or treating horses that are not in need of deworming.”

ParaScreen-e™ is the first in a line fecal testing options that Staruk hopes to develop for other animals such as goats, cows, llamas and sheep.

ParaScreen-e™ is available for online ordering at www.parascreen.com and costs $19.95 plus S&H.

New England Horse Labs will be making ParaScreen-e™ available to retailers selling horse supplies and is currently providing a time saving, easy-to-use, private labeled fecal testing program for busy equine veterinarians.




Ladybugz Agency, Lysa Miller lysa@ladybugz.com  ParaScreen, Sheila Yarborough Sheila.yarborough@parascreen.com

Worms vs. Drugs: The Fundamentals

Here is a great article on “The Horse’s” website explaining the differences between various parasites and how to go about choosing the correct dewormer.   Click here to read the article.

Understanding Equine Parasites – Strongyles

This is the most common type of egg found in the fecal sample.  There are two main types, “large” and “small”.  All Strongyles start out as eggs scattered throughout the environment (feces, soil, etc.) which hatch into larvae that are consumed by horses as they graze or drink infected water. The larvae mature in the intestinal tract.  The “large” Strongyles migrate into either the blood vessels of the intestines or migrate into the liver.  “Small” Strongyles stay within the intestines and burrow (encyst) within the wall of the large intestine. Here they can stay for months or years before the proper conditions trigger them to emerge.  While Strongyles are in this stage, they are not shedding eggs and are not impacted by dewormers but are doing the most damage to the horse.  The “large” Strongyles can cause severe or even fatal colic or blood vessel ruptures as well as weight loss, anemia or colic and the encysted “small” Strongyles can severely damage the walls of the intestines.

Sooner or later, all Strongyles migrate back to the intestines and adhere to the inner walls.  This is when the worms are the least damaging to the horse.  This is also when the worms shed their eggs which we find in their feces.  All Strongyle eggs look exactly alike, so the parasitologist cannot distinguish a “small” Strongyle from a “large” Strongyle egg.

Equine Fecal Test Kit – Horse Parasite Testing Kits from ParaScreen Labs

DO YOUR HORSE A FAVOR….ParaScreen-e Labs, developers of the Equine Fecal Test Kit, made for horse parasite testing, has been providing personalized, world-class equine laboratory testing for over 25 years to the veterinary community.

The lab, New England Horse Labs,  is inspected and certified by the USDA-APHIS and passes various proficiency testing every year to maintain this status.  ParaScreen-e now offers the equine fecal test kit directly to every horse owner and stable manager/owner for as little as $19 per sample, which includes a free, postage paid mailer with easy instructions.

Targeted equine deworming is recommended by veterinarians based upon fecal results, the environment, exposure to parasites, age and use of the horse, etc.  Also, equine deworming strategies are critical to providing the best possible care for our horses armed with the knowledge from a fecal analysis.  Experienced technicians will examine, identify and report to you and your veterinarian if your horse has any intestinal parasites.

To get started, please contact us for more information and convenient ordering.

The Importance and Reasoning for Equine Fecal Egg Count Exams

The fecal egg count exam is an important tool veterinarians use to determine parasitic infections in horses.  A fecal egg count exam is a simple, fairly inexpensive test that provides information about a horse’s health and if the present deworming program is effective.


When a veterinarian orders a fecal egg count exam, they are looking for intestinal parasites.  Intestinal parasites reproduce by laying eggs which pass through the horse’s gastrointestinal system via feces.  If there are eggs in the feces, then there are living adult parasites somewhere within the horse’s intestines.


A typical fecal test will report on two important findings:


  • Are there any eggs in the feces?
  • If there are, what is the type of parasite laying the eggs (strongyle, roundworm, whipworm, tapeworm, pinworm) and how many eggs are there, reported as “eggs per gram” (or EPG).


Traditionally, a horse with more than 200 eggs per gram of feces would be considered a candidate for deworming treatment (although this range can vary between veterinarians).  Some horses may require as few as two deworming cycles per year while others may require five or more.  Appropriate deworming products to use may vary from horse to horse, farm to farm and veterinarian to veterinarian.


For reporting on fecal parasitic egg burden in equines, New England Horse Labs offers two types of fecal exams:  Qualitative and Quantitative.  In our experience, the qualitative (modified Wisconsin) analysis is more precise for finding and identifying eggs in low-burdened animals, thus, reducing the number of false-negatives.  The quantitative (McMaster’s) analysis is valuable for establishing a baseline and for monitoring any patient on a deworming program.