I’m a big believer in being prepared and forewarned so apart from a fully stocked first aid kit, it’s important to have some good books on veterinary care.
One of the best I’ve read is All Horse Systems Go by Nancy Loving DVM, available from www.amazon.com .
Another book she has co-authored is a handy size to carry in your first aid kit – called ‘First Aid for the Horse and Rider’ – Nancy Loving and Gilbert Preston.
This list includes each item’s use and where to buy the supplies.
Remember, if you have a first aid kit and some good first aid books, you can do something for your horse until the vet arrives.
Available from a Homeopath or Pharmacy:
- Rescue Remedy drops (for any kind of trauma or shock)
- Homeopathic Apis (for insect bites and stings)
- Arnica ointment & drops (for bruising, hematomas and sprains)
- Aloe Vera gel (soothing for burns and wounds)
- Savlon liquid or iodine – 7-10% solution should be diluted 1-3 parts water.
- Hydrogen Peroxide – 3% solution (for cleaning puncture wounds)
- Antibacterial hand wash
- Large Padded wound cover
- Space blanket (handy if you’re travelling)
- Blunt nose scissors
Available from a supermarket
- Natural salt – to make a wound cleaning solution add ½ tablespoon to 1 litre of water
- Absorbent pads (the type women use) and disposable nappies (for poultices)
- Washing cloths or gauze sponges for cleaning wounds
- Clean towel
- Disposable gloves
- Pen, pencil & notebook (for recording vital info and times until the vet arrives)
- Electrical tape & duct tape
- Torch – manual charging or with fresh batteries
- A plastic container with a lid to hold the first aid kit contents – this can also double as a dispensary tray (lid) and clean bucket (for washing solution).
Available from your vet supply store or saddlery store
- Vet wrap elastic bandage roll
- Elasto-plast adhesive bandage roll
- Animalintex poultice (for leg swellings)
- Large roll of cotton wool – to pad wounds
- Paraffin gauze or other non-stick wound cover
- Plain gauze dressing pads
- Digital thermometer
- Various sized syringes (for wound/eye irrigation)
- Hoof pick
- Instant cold/hot pack
- Your Vet’s phone numbers (listed so others using your kit can easily find)
Record of your Horse’s normal vital signs (Heart rate, respiration, temperature)
Apart from the items above, here are some of the other healing treatments I like to keep in my First Aid kit for follow up use.
Available from Pharmacies
- Manuka Honey (for treating wounds, especially where proud flesh is evident)
- Comfrey ointment (for treating bone injuries)
- Tea Tree oil (for wounds)
- Colloidal silver (antibacterial for internal and external use)
Available from veterinary supplies/Saddleries
- Filtabac ointment (antibacterial sunscreen for wounds and white noses)
- Stockholm Tar/Pine Tar (for seedy toe)
- Fly Repellent ointment (to put around open wounds)