Train your Horse to Accept Paste Deworming

empty squeeze bottle, funnel, jar of applesauce, empty syringes

Use these tools to help your horse accept treatment with paste deworming

Do you dread deworming your horse because it always seems to turn into a wrestling match?  Use an empty syringe and a sweet reward of applesauce to train your horse to accept paste deworming calmly and happily.

What you’ll need:

  • Clean, empty 24 oz. squeeze ketchup bottle with cap
  • 25 oz. jar of applesauce, sweetened or unsweetened
  • Kitchen funnel
  • Catheter-tip 60 ml syringe or clean, empty paste dewormer syringe


  1. Use the funnel to fill the ketchup bottle with the applesauce.
  2. Put the squeeze dispenser cap on the ketchup bottle.
  3. Remove the plunger from the syringe and set it aside.
  4. Put the cap on the syringe tip.
  5. Use the squeeze bottle to fill syringe about 3/4 full of applesauce.
  6. Replace the plunger in the end of the syringe.
  7. Turn the syringe over, holding the body of the syringe with the tip pointing up.
  8. Gently tap the end of the plunger, so the applesauce falls down to the butt end of the barrel.
  9. Carefully remove the syringe cap, allowing pressure to escape from the tip.   Don’t spray applesauce on the ceiling!
  10. Slowly push the plunger to squeeze the air out of the syringe and replace the cap.

Now you’ve got a syringe neatly filled with tasty applesauce!

Practice ‘deworming’ your horse with an applesauce-filled syringe every time you see him, until he learns to expect a tasty treat when you approach him with the syringe.  When you do need to dose him with a paste dewormer, follow it up for the next few days with an applesauce treatment, until he accepts having the syringe tip put into his mouth without resisting.


  • Store the squeeze bottle of applesauce in the refrigerator.
  • Most horses like both sweetened and unsweetened applesauce.
  • To reduce sugar content, use unsweetened applesauce, diluted with water.
  • Put the syringe tip-end down in a coffee cup to hold it upright while you fill it.
  • Search for 60-ml catheter-tip syringes for sale on ebay. (
  • Use vegetable oil or silicone spray to lubricate the black rubber seal on the syringe plunger.
  • Wire nuts, found in the electrical department at hardware stores, can be used as replacement syringe caps.
  • An applesauce-filled syringe can also be used to administer dissolved Bute or antibiotic tablets.

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